While everyone agrees that an intranet needs to be engaging, it can be a fine line between keeping between keeping employees informed, and turning your intranet into a workplace gossip zone.
For some of you this may be confusing. How can an intranet ever be too social? Isn’t that what an intranet is for?
Yes, intranets need to be engaging, but for many reasons--particularly to obtain leadership buy-in--intranets must also remain work relevant.
One of the reasons first generation intranets were criticized is that they took employees away from the work that needed to get done. They were often nothing more than long scrolling threads that rarely included work related conversations. It’s no wonder many companies resisted adopting one.
Fortunately today’s intranets are completely different. They are designed specifically to help employees find the connections they need to get their jobs done. However, even with the best intentions, intranets can still easily become overly social. Here are a few ways to ensure your intranet remains work related.
The primary goals of most intranets are connecting and engaging employees; helping them find the people and resources to get their job done; and educating and informing employees on company news and events. By adhering to goals like these, you can ensure you are keeping your intranet is work relevant.
Have a Right Mix of Contributors
It’s important that your content contributors are a diverse group that represent the entire company. Not just one department. It’s also important that you obtain participation from your leadership team as well. Having contributions from your executive will go a long way in keeping your intranet focused and adopted.
Create a Content Calendar
It can be challenging to always have content ready to go at a moment’s notice. Creating a calendar can help you gain perspective of the direction your content is taking and whether your content has the right mix and contributors.
Have Etiquette Guidelines
If you want to ensure your intranet stays work oriented, you might want to consider having some etiquette guidelines. This could include items about language, tone, and discrimination.
Create a Designated Social Section
By doing this you can encourage employees to keep their non-work related discussions in a separate place. For some intranets this is through a chat widget, and for others it’s a designated social section. Your intranet may also hold functionality that allows you to disable or enable comments in particular sections.
One final word of advice, keeping your intranet work related doesn’t mean you can’t still have a little fun with it. In fact, keeping an intranet overly corporate could possibly do even more harm. How will you know if you have the right balance? Look at your metrics! If the adoption is strong, then chances are you are doing something right.