The purpose of this paper is to examine how digital communication tools are used for internal communication (IC) in multinational corporations (MNCs). Specifically, the study illustrates the role of digital channels in IC, the benefits they bring and the difficulties involved in using them.
This research features a single-case study focusing on a listed Finnish multinational industrial corporation with a long history. Data for the study come from semi-structured theme interviews and a workshop in which the results were discussed.
Digital IC tools are able to facilitate IC in MNCs, although some challenges may arise in relation to planning their utilization. Related to the role of digital channels in IC, these findings highlight the importance of face-to-face channels in everyday IC and the role of digital channels as more formal communication channels.
This paper focuses on a single organization. Additional research would be required to attain generalizable results.
The effective use of new digital communication tools requires common guidelines across all areas of an MNC. Despite the great potential of new tools, the importance of face-to-face communication should not be ignored.
Most of the research on IC in MNCs was conducted before the digital communications era. Recent advances in information technology have created new challenges and opportunities for IC.
The funding from Tekes – the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation is gratefully acknowledged.
Sisko Maarit Lipiäinen, H., Ensio Karjaluoto, H. and Nevalainen, M. (2014), "Digital channels in the internal communication of a multinational corporation", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 19 No. 3, pp. 275-286. https://doi.org/10.1108/CCIJ-07-2012-0050Download as .RIS
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