One of the most important parts of making an intranet strategy is defining a clear purpose for the intranet. Without a clear purpose, it is difficult to measure the success of your intranet and communicate it to the rest of your organisation why the new intranet is important.
When creating goals for an intranet, bear in mind that it can sometimes be a challenge to measure the change you want to see eg. a stronger organisational culture, increased knowledge sharing or employee satisfaction. This is why it's important to be clear on your purpose and what the specific purpose means for your individual organisation. At the same time, it can be beneficial to relate the intranet purpose to some measurable key performance indicators (KPI's).
How to define an intranet purpose
In relation to the above, it is important to be specific about the change you want to see when implementing your intranet. This should be in line with the overall goals and strategy that your organisation has eg. increased productivity or less use of e-mails.
If your organisation has departments dispersed over different geographic locations, one purpose of the intranet could be to increase knowledge sharing and improve internal communication by using work groups to communicate. Or if your employees feel that they spend too much time reading e-mails that are not relevant to them, one goal could be to decrease the number of e-mails and instead publish news on your intranet to the relevant departments.
If you already have an intranet, it can be beneficial to start looking at the advantages and disadvantages of your old intranet in order to formulate new goals better. There are a few things to work with when you are changing from an old to a new intranet.
It is important that you spend time considering your intranet purpose in some form or another, as it otherwise will be difficult to measure the success, and thereby take full advantage of your intranet. If you communicate the goal of the intranet properly to your employees, there is also a greater chance that they will become more engaged with the project, because it will be more clear to them what the goal and potential are.
Defining a purpose: Step-by-step
So, where should you begin?
First of all, you should answer the question why. Why does your organisation want a new intranet? Remember that Colibo should be a tool for your organisation to fulfil your needs, rather than it is your organisation that should accommodate to the platform. In other words, your goal should be relevant for exactly your organisation.
Your answer to the first question will help you answer the next question, which is how:
How can your organisation find a common goal that makes sense for everyone?
First step is to discuss your current pains and gains. What works well, and what doesn't? This can be done in several ways, depending on how large your organisation is. As the needs can differ among departments, it is important to involve as many people as possible in the process.
Each department could organise a meeting in which they discuss internally what is essential for them to consider when implementing a new intranet. Then, a representative for each department can pass on the information to the people in charge of implementing. You can also choose to conduct a survey. Either way, it is important to involve as many relevant stakeholders as possible in the process, as the intranet should not only be a project for a selected group of people but something that everyone feel that they are a part of.
You will not be able to evaluate the success of your intranet if you do not know how to measure the change. Therefore, an intranet purpose is crucial for your organisation to achieve what you want.