Home Office Heroes – Internal Communications Campaign

One Home Office Heroes is an internal communications campaign that was developed to bring to life the everyday heroism of our people. The campaign recognises the extraordinary efforts of civil servants working in the Home Office, helping to engage colleagues and build pride in our work.

Every day, colleagues across the Home Office deliver brilliant work that helps keep the organisation running and ultimately ensures we can deliver results for the public, keeping the UK safe, fair and prosperous. Yet, with low staff engagement and pride within an organisation of such critical importance to the UK, there was a real need to recognise the good work of the unsung heroes in the Home Office.

What we did

Our team conducted extensive insight (via pulse surveys, focus groups and in consultation with a variety of staff networks). This highlighted the need for any pride campaign to be rooted in the authentic voices and stories of real people, rather than feeling too ‘corporate’. While also being accessible to all Home Office colleagues. In an organization where 80% of our people work in operational roles with limited access to traditional internal communications channels, this would be no easy task.

Collaborative campaign approach

We worked collaboratively with our stakeholders to design a brand identity for our campaign, including a suite of creative assets and messaging. This included the development of a digital site and ‘hub’, where colleagues could share their stories and read testimonies of others, as well as featuring written case studies across our intranet. Powerful posters were placed strategically across the Home Office estate, to grab the attention of staff. We also developed short ‘Instagram-style’ videos for the office digital-screens.

Insight suggested that operational colleagues benefited most from in-person events and meetings with their direct team or line manager, so we developed mini toolkits that teams could use and share, while recognising the brilliant work of their peers at a local level. Meanwhile, ‘TEDx’ style testimonies and stories were also shared at internal-facing events.

We also produced, (in-house and at no-cost) a series of high-quality videos, making use of the latest in visual storytelling techniques, modelled on industry best practice. These videos told the stories not just of our colleagues – but also of the people whose lives have been changed because of their work.   

Insight and evaluation

Through these inspiring stories, we captured the way our colleagues were delivering core Departmental priorities:

  • cutting crime
  • protecting homeland security
  • supporting economic prosperity
  • tackling illegal migration while protecting the vulnerable.

This helped our staff easily draw a connection between their work and our core purpose as an organisation (a vital foundation to effective staff engagement). Within just 6 months of campaign launch, a new pulse survey revealed – 88% of our staff are now aware of the department’s core priorities. This represents a change from baseline survey data, when just 66% of colleagues were aware of our priorities – an increase of 22%.

76% agree they understand how their role contributes to the delivery of our department’s priorities. We ran a further series of focus group sessions that also revealed the positive impact the campaign is having on Home Office staff.

We continue to collaborate with colleagues and stakeholders to find great stories to tell. Repeatedly, staff ask for the stories we share internally to be proactively told externally – shared on Home Office social media, to support new staff recruitment campaigns or at careers fairs. We are looking at ways we can partner with external communications colleagues to find opportunities to share our staff stories through these external channels. If you are a communications expert who would like to share one of our Home Office Hero stories, please email: sam.dodson@homeoffice.gov.uk

Thanks to the following people who led the campaign – Adrian Clough, Samuel Dodson, Janet Lawless, Amy O’Brien, Hannah Sheyindemi and Ruth Archer.