It was over four years ago that I attended an intranet conference hoping to pick up some tips about how to develop a better intranet. One of the speakers, a well dressed and impressive looking guy from a global company, delivered a case study about a multi-million dollar intranet redesign project his company had just finished and that he had project managed.
He began his presentation by saying that it was important to get key stakeholders involved and that an effective business case was the key to doing this. He went on to say that card sorting and wireframing were important tools for the design and that you also needed a detailed content development plan, along with training, communication and marketing plans. Everyone was nodding their heads and thinking, ‘these guys have all the bases covered’.
Then he demonstrated the new intranet. There were lots of ‘oohs’ and ‘aaahs’ as a very good looking website was unveiled. He took us through some of the key features, nice looking staff profile pages, revolving news stories, some colourful performance indicators on the front page, even a few online forms… and then… that was the end of the presentation!
I felt like Moses looking at the gates of the ‘Promised Land’ but unable to enter! I wanted to know ‘Was the intranet any good!? Where was the evidence? Was anyone using it? Did employees value it?’ Sadly, he answered none of these questions. And in my opinion without this evidence his presentation lost its credibility.
Partly as a result of this anti-climax, I began the Worldwide Intranet Challenge (WIC). The WIC is a free service that gives companies the ability to obtain feedback about their intranet from their employees and then benchmark this feedback with other companies. It helps answer the question, ‘How do employees value our intranet?’
So far over 50,000 people from nearly 200 organisations in 23 different countries have participated in the WIC. It is the largest study of intranet end users in the world.
We have analysed this wealth of data in-depth to identify intranet trends that help answer questions such as:
- What are the core business drivers that highly rated intranets have in common?
- What are the biggest problems that intranet end users have with their intranets and how are leading organisations resolving them?
- How have intranets in general evolved over the last 4 years and in what direction are they heading?
- Is it a worthwhile goal to get employees to spend more time on your intranet?
- How important is it that your intranet provides two-way communication tools?
- What types of intranet content do end users think add the most value?
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