Connect with HealthSouth, an eight-year-old publication for employees of HealthSouth Corp., had been delivered three times annually to the homes of 28,000 employees across the country (including Puerto Rico). The effectiveness of Connect led the organization’s communicators to take the publication to a new stage. In so doing, they won first place for “Most Improved Design (Print)” in Ragan’s 2016 Employee Communications Awards.
Two goals were increasing the publication schedule from three times a year to quarterly and expanding the size from 16 pages to 36. Consistency was a key objective of the redesign, with each issue providing a familiar path: a full-page table of contents to make navigation easy, recurring departments with shorter stories at the front of the magazine, and longer in-depth feature stories following the regular sections.
The redesign was about more than just establishing a consistent format with each issue, though. Everything was on the table, from the fonts employed to a greater use of photography. This represented a challenge given the geographic spread of the organization, a challenge that was met with the assistance of employees and the occasional freelance photographer. The feature stories employ multiple elements, including sidebars, charts and timelines.
Congratulations to editor Laura McAlister for a most impressive redesign.