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What is a Stakeholder Engagement Framework?

The stakeholder engagement framework outlines an organisation’s key actions, the models for engagement, the organisation’s approach to risk oversight, and their improvement plans.  The stakeholder engagement framework helps to communicate commitments, collaborate and share knowledge, improve planning and consistency and also to develop programs and services.

In this blog, we cover what a stakeholder engagement framework is, why it’s important and its purpose. We also look into what you should include in a stakeholder engagement framework, and give an example of a stakeholder engagement framework for your reference.

Why is a Stakeholder Engagement Framework Important?

A stakeholder engagement framework is important to an organisation because it outlines the business commitments in a working document that can be shared with all stakeholders. The stakeholder engagement framework outlines the roadmap and future direction of the business and collates all important aspects of stakeholder management including engagement, planning, communication and acts as the central point for any stakeholder communication matrix. 

A stakeholder engagement framework commits an organisation to be relevant, trustworthy and open, responsible, responsive and inclusive. They are used to enhance the way an organisation interacts and engages with their stakeholders and to help deliver on their objectives.

Who uses the Stakeholder Engagement Framework?

Many organisations use a stakeholder engagement framework including Government, Education and not for profits.  Perspective stakeholders or people interested in investing in an organisation or organisational project will review a stakeholder framework as an introduction to the company or familiarise themselves with the objectives, principles and strategies of the company.

What to include in a Stakeholder Engagement Framework

Introduction

Use this section to introduce who the organisation is,  provide a general overview and background. It is here that you include a small history of the organisation, the company’s ambitions and missions. Try not to make this section too long, just top-level information on the company is sufficient.

Purpose of the Stakeholder Engagement Framework

In this part, you should identify what you set out to achieve from your stakeholder engagement framework documentation. Here you should include your company’s objectives and strategic priorities. Use this section to identify your strategy for managing your stakeholders. For example; the principles you will adopt, the model you will follow, the matrix you will use and challenges to consider.

How you will engage with your stakeholders (Stakeholder Engagement)

Here you should detail the various ways you will be open to engaging with stakeholders. Whether it is via email, newsletters, daily or weekly meetings, over-the-phone or in-person catch-ups, or screen to screen. Using your Stakeholder Communications Template will help you identify the various methods you will use to engage with your stakeholders.

Your stakeholder engagement should make sure it follows the sequence; inform, consult, involve and collaborate. Use this area in your stakeholder engagement framework to create a table with these headers which detail the types of engagement and the method of engagement.

Principles

Identify and highlight your principles in your stakeholder engagement framework. Principles should be adopted and picked to assist you in stakeholder engagement activities. Principles should set standards and be aspirational. They should also be consistent, achievable and respectful. 

Examples of principles in a stakeholder engagement framework are:

  • Purposeful 
  • Transparent
  • Inclusive 
  • Respectful 
  • Accountable 
  • Responsiveness
  • Collaborative

Strategies

Your stakeholder engagement framework needs to include information on your strategies and how you will make these a success. Ensure a coherent approach across stakeholders, agree on rules of engagement, manage time and resources, map your stakeholders, act with transparency and focus.

Evaluation and Improvement

It is important that an organisation evaluates and continuously monitors its stakeholder engagement and management so they can put together an ongoing improvement plan. Evaluation will ensure you understand how your stakeholders want to be engaged with and what can be done to improve this. In this section, you should highlight how you will be evaluating your stakeholder engagement. Some ideas for evaluation that you could include in your stakeholder engagement framework are:

  • Engagement rates from your ESP (emails service provider) e.g. open rates, click-through rate
  • Newsletter data and statistics
  • Attendance in meetings
  • Complaints and feedback

Examples of Stakeholder Engagement Framework

Improve your Stakeholder Communication with Automation Software

Understanding how to communicate with stakeholders is an invaluable skill and is important to the overall project success. If you would like more information on how to improve your communication with stakeholders then feel free to get in touch with Swift Digital. Swift Digital works with a number of public and private sector companies – including Government organisations and Universities – to improve their communications and stakeholder management.

Do you need help communicating with stakeholders? Or want to improve your stakeholder management process.  Here at Swift Digital, we provide email automation services that can help facilitate your stakeholder communications and help to improve your stakeholder relationships. 

To find out how your business can get the best out of Swift Digital’s platform, contact our team today on 02 9929 7001.

Stakeholder Communication Plan Template

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