What Makes a Great Intranet?


What Makes a Great Intranet?

So, you have an intranet and it…works. A few people are using it – you think. Documents are sporadically posted, the search repository is incomplete, workflows are half-built and the design mirrors that of a Word document. Every time employees are encouraged to use your company portal, they roll their eyes and begrudgingly take a crack at navigating the system. Sound familiar?

So what MAKES a great intranet? Bank of America has had it figured out for years and per the recent NN Group 2017 Intranet Design Award winners, they’re not the only ones. Here are the 10 companies that earned this award:

1. Bank of America
2. Encana Corporation
3. Goldcorp, Inc
4. Goodwill Industries International, Inc.
5. IBM Corporation
6. JetBlue
7. Kerry Group plc
8. Latvian Railway
9. Santander Group
10. Tourism New Zealand

A great intranet is one associates rely on for everyday activities. Workflows, permissions and sites are baked into existing processes so leveraging the power behind an intranet is effective and valuable. Information is accurate, content is relevant and associates know exactly how to find what they are seeking. These are just a few qualities of a great intranet – all of which Bank of America has been able to  successfully implement and sustain.


Top 10 Qualities of a GREAT intranet:

1. COLLABORATION: Encourage teamwork and bring teams together by collapsing geography and removing barriers to increase productivity; share pertinent information for day-to-day activities.

2. COMMUNICATION: Encourage top-down, bottom-up, two-way communication including notifications, company updates, critical dates, milestones, accomplishments and announcements that impact business objectives.

3. NAVIGATION: Balance both a simplistic but engaging interface so users can easily find information.

4. MOBILITY: Empower your users with a mobile platform, and with a consistent look and feel for optimized productivity.

5. FLEXIBILITY: Configure an environment that supports rapid implementation of customized solutions aligned with key business priorities.

6. SUSTAINABILITY: Keep content and information maintained and accurate with minimal manual effort.

7. FINDABILITY: Ensure Enterprise Search provides quick access to relevant information from multiple sources; if users cannot find what they want on the first attempt, they likely won’t come back.

8. ROLE-BASED: Adapt to the needs of individual users by bringing relevant information together based on the user’s context or role.

9. ACTIONABLE: Empower users to make decisions based on up-to-date information in a proactive manner – the right information at the right time.

10. UNIFICATION: Utilize enterprise system connectors to break down data silos allowing access to relevant, actionable information.

All of the awarded companies relied on a combination of internal resources and external intranet experts. The greatest intranets require specialized talent that range from development to design (UI/UX) to search, and so on. Hiring and gathering the right people bring together common objectives, attainable deadlines and most importantly – a successful portal.

Why is this important? Because, my team and I can bring that success to life for your organization. 

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