Let’s take a moment to appreciate the lowly intranet.
Unloved. Overcomplicated. Underutilized. Outdated.
Gartner has called intranets, “static websites in a dynamic world.” What was meant to be a portal to the enterprise instead became a doorway to nowhere. Just 13% of employees report using an intranet every day, with 31% never using it at all.
Should organizations tear it out at the server roots and try and start over? Or maybe…best to leave it be, forgotten behind firewalls.
There is another way: utilize new technologies to modernize your existing intranet into a digital hub where employees communicate, collaborate, innovate, access data and get work done — a gateway to your connected workplace no matter where each individual works.
Why Do You Need a Modern Intranet?
A modern intranet simplifies the quick delivery of the relevant content that empowers your employees through consistent interfaces on the web and mobile — even when accessing essential enterprise applications. When your company workforce is satisfied with collaboration tools and access to data, there’s a proven correlation with high levels of employee engagement. High levels of engagement have been shown to:
- Increase customer ratings by 10%
- Increase sales by 20%
- Increase worker productivity 20% to 25%
One clear example: Employees spend close to 2 hours on average every day gathering relevant information from internal sources. Adding smart search to your newly modernized intranet can recoup that time and redirect it toward productive work.
Make it a Mobile Intranet
There may no faster on ramp to modernizing your network intranet platform than adding mobile intranet capabilities. A digital workplace experience platform can bring with it a new access-anywhere front-end to your current traditional intranet. For your employees, the mobile intranet is now the same contemporary experience whether it’s a customized company mobile app, across any laptop or desktop web browser.
On-premise, remote, hybrid, and frontline workers will enjoy convenient, optimized access to company data, resources, and business applications. This encourages frequent use and more opportunities for interaction with their co-workers.
Backed by a workplace experience platform, this re-energized and modern company intranet can also leverage publishing features from its built-in content management system. You can start to think of your employee communication as campaigns that can be set for automated delivery and push notifications, with targeting that gives teams or each employee a more personalized experience based on work, role and connections.
A truly modern intranet is not one thing to everyone. It can (and should) be customized for the most relevant content and links. When your people are presented with workplace experiences related to their job and that matter to them, they will keep using their intranet.
Further encouraging adoption is an interface modeled on the intuitive user experience of consumer applications. A familiar mobile device look-and-feel can also encourage the use of social features with your content, such as tagging, likes, comments.
More than mirroring social trends and actions, this steers your modern intranet toward becoming a collaboration vehicle where employees can share current projects and an extended circle of colleagues can join in with advice and feedback.
As part of the process, your traditional intranet moves from physical company servers to a cloud-based solution that’s more cost-effective, thanks to less management and maintenance. This is also what enables access and productivity from any location. Single Sign On delivers IT-approved security, but with a one-time log-in that removes the hair-tearing hurdles of old school VPN.
The Question of Employee Communication
While digital technologies can help you create a modern intranet, it’s people that will define it. As you begin to activate digital transformation across your company, ensure success by developing a clear understanding of the information and tools your people are looking for and create value for how they work best.
The different experiences of your employees and how they work — wired employees at desks may live via Slack, your frontline employees don’t even have email addresses — will also define how they interact with and get the most from your intranet. Determine features with a series of questions designed to elevate the preferences of your workforce and tailor employee communications to their needs.
- What’s a typical workday?
- How do you prefer to work?
- What tools do you currently use to do your job?
- What roadblocks are there to getting information?
- What frustrations complicate your work experience?
- What do you want from our intranet?
- What does success look like to you?
Benefits of Digital Transformation
It’s not simply that your existing intranet deserves more: your workforce needs more from it. And you’ll gain more by digital transformation of your current intranet platform. The robust, technical foundation of a workplace experience platform combined with an employee-first strategy brings a multitude of benefits.
- Internal communicators can seamlessly identify, create, and publish content, targeted to employees at all levels wherever they are on any device.
- Employees gain the value of personalized content based on their role, location and preference.
- Data and tools are easily accessed and used by in-office, remote and distributed employees.
- Manual processes are digitized to resolve employee needs more quickly.
- Company culture is enhanced by up-to-date employee communication that gets delivered through one consistent interface.
The result is a trifecta: improved employee productivity, increased employee engagement, and overall optimized operations for your business.
A Better Employee Experience
“Center of excellence” is an overused term in business but can be a central goal for your modernized intranet. How will you know you’ve created the right employee experience for your workplace?
- It’s where employees start their workday
- It’s always with them
- Everything is in one place — and easily accessible
- It promotes collaboration
- It makes their job easier
Far beyond organizing your intranet by process or area of business, seek to organize by business outcomes and initiatives. Don’t settle for a shinier version of yesterday’s collection of files. Aspire to a collection of experiences that bring value.
Let’s make this the moment to appreciate the modern intranet.