The world's first study on the use of management tools in strategic communication, based on a survey among chief communication officers and communication managers with responsibility for strategy, steering or controlling in leading companies. It identifies the Top 12 tools for practitioners as well as the best-known and least known tools, and the satisfaction with different procedures. The relevance for implementing tools and knowledge gaps are shown, as are drivers influencing the use of management tools in communications. The study organized by Leipzig University and Lautenbach Sass complements research on the most popular management tools conducted by consultancies like Bain for more than a decade.
Communication management tools are methods, procedures, standard processes and frame-works (thinking tools) for the analysis, planning, implementation and evaluation of communication activities in organisations, and for steering those processes. They are implemented according to a uniform scheme and can be used in a wide variety of situations. Management tools provide orientation and make everyday work easier by enabling practitioners to perform frequently occurring tasks in a uniform, routinized and comprehensible manner.
Such tools are widely used in business management and management consulting. But what about corporate communications? To what extent do communicators use tools for analysing, planning, implementing and evaluating communication activities? The results show that there is still room for improvement. In addition to classic, more operational PR tools, more established management tools should be adapted. A toolbox tailored to your own needs is essential for the further development of the communications department – and for being recognized as a trusted partner by top management.