Nothing evokes ‘engaged employees’ more than an intranet that draws high employee participation rates. Your intranet should be where your company comes together to align and celebrate, but that can only happen if most of your employees are actively participating in your intranet community. Here are the nine essential steps for making that happen.
1. Keep it private within your company
For people to participate and share, they need to know they’re in a safe place. A place where things are only shared within the confines of your company. There should be no confusion around “will this also post to Facebook” or “will our customers see what I’m sharing here”.
Keep your intranet separate from your externally facing social and customer channels. Don’t use a platform that employees can invite (or think that others might be able to invite) non-employees into discussions or groups.
2. Create a safe environment
Your intranet needs to be a safe and secure place. That means there can’t be any user anonymity or the chance that users can sign in as each other. Everyone needs to be responsible for their actions on your intranet, which means every comment or Like should be transparent.
3. Ensure usability
When employees visit your intranet, they’re in the middle of their busy workday and have arrived with a specific purpose. Let’s face it—they’re not signing in from home for fun.
Your intranet needs to efficiently serve their purpose, be it helping them find a document they need or updating them on what’s going on around the company.
For this reason, your intranet should be easy to navigate and only display content that’s relevant to each unique user. Make sure they don’t run into out-of-date content, broken links, or choices that aren’t relevant to them.
4. Avoid clutter
Make sure each piece of content has clear ownership and hold those content owners accountable for keeping things fresh and up-to-date. Obsolete documents, outdated forms, and stale news will quickly kill participation. Your intranet needs to be the reliable place for finding the current version of policies and the latest breaking company news.
5. Deliver a range of viewpoints
Your intranet should reflect the diversity of your organization. If everything is written in a press release style by a professional in your communications department, you won’t be delivering engaging and diverse content that represents your whole company.
Get your key leaders, subject matter experts, and people from different locations and departments to make contributions from time to time. This mix of formal and informal, and different viewpoints and styles, is essential for creating an authentic and engaged community.
6. Deliver news fast
When things happen, get the news to your intranet quickly. As things change and develop, provide timely updates. The beauty of an intranet is that you can keep everyone in your company abreast of updates, news, and changes as they happen.
Don’t turn your intranet into a newsletter of last month's news. When forms are updated, get the new version on your intranet immediately. When your sales team closes a deal, post the story. These details keep your intranet alive and breathing.
7. Invite comment
Participation invites participation. Encourage people to comment and Like other content. Your leaders and middle managers are key to leading this effort. If they add comments and responses in a relevant way, and with a reasonable cadence, others will follow.
8. Take action
If you're asking people for their input—for comments or feedback—they need to see that it matters. They should be able to see that the viewpoints expressed and ideas contributed will often catalyze change and action. So, provide feedback on how ideas have been taken on board and the changes that are being considered.
9. Make it your go-to channel for real communication
Your intranet should be where your mainstream communication and conversations happen. Shut down other channels such as newsletters, and discourage emails to large groups. Don’t use your intranet just to announce outcomes, otherwise people won’t have a reason to regularly log in.
Your intranet can be a powerful tool—a place where collaboration happens and work gets done—so set it up for success.
Achieving high intranet participation is important. In today’s world of remote workers and global offices, your intranet is the one place where employees can come together to understand what’s going on, find help, and celebrate together.
Over 10% of Jostle customers achieve full (100%) employee participation on their intranet. That’s extraordinary. Focus on these nine essentials and you’ll see your intranet participation quickly grow.