Internal comms staff warned on EU directive

Internal communications advisers face a fresh threat from a European Union directive, an IPR conference was told this week.

The IPR's first conference on internal communications saw president Jon Aarons warn members of the implications of the Information and Consultation Directive, adopted by both the European Council and the European Parliament in the past two months.

Aarons was addressing more than 100 internal communicators on the extent to which their work will be affected by the latest legislative changes in Brussels.

He said: 'The new directive will give employees an EU-wide right to be informed about a business's economic situation, informed and consulted about employment prospects and informed and consulted about decisions likely to lead to substantial changes in work organisation or contractual relations, including redundancies and transfers.'

'The directive will result in a fundamental shift in the balance of power within companies, challenging the fabric of UK corporate culture and the historic character of relationships between employers and employees.

'In-house and internal communicators will be central to the implementation and integration of the new regulations and procedures into UK corporate practice,' Aarons added.

Elsewhere at the conference, delegates heard case studies on the internal comms processes within major organisations.

BBC internal comms head Russell Grossman addressed the conference on the theme of the corporation's 'Cut the Crap - Make it Happen' campaign, while Smythe Doward Lambert founder John Smythe spoke of the need for a fresh focus for internal communicators since the 'marketing-based' philosophy for internal comms 'no longer works'.

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