On Thursday I attended the 2017 Intranet Now conference in London – a day of talking digital with a room full of people responsible for intranet development. As always, the day was filled with 9 and 15-minute talks from a range of companies, experts and organisations.
So, what were the themes this year and what were my top takeaways from the day?
Task based content is king
It was amazing to see all the different intranets out there, and how some have been changed and adapted over the years. This is what I love about this conference – it’s the only place you can see behind the firewall and into the intranets of other organisations.
The example from Standard Life Aberdeen was the best example I have seen of changing to task based content – just six months after launch. You can see from the images below the change they made to the top level and the mega menu – it’s not a small change!
The need to focus on tasks when designing menus and the overall IA of the intranet is a definite shift from previous years and something to consider for anyone reviewing their intranet.
The six things we want from an intranet
The team at Barnados presented a great case study of the journey they have been on and shared the six things people identified in their discovery phase. Both Rachel Miller and I commented that based our experience – this could be any organisation. Those six reasons are:
Finding the right solution to meet these six themes will vary for every organisation but taking them as the principles for the rationale for an intranet platform is a great starting point for anyone.
What was interesting about this example was the need to combine a social platform like Facebook Workplace with an intranet platform that allows for the single source of truth – I hope the team come back to share how the final solution came together and how the launch went!
Remember the reasons for the platform
The presentation from Sarah Moffat was a real highlight for me. Partly because it echoed some work I have done in the past to use digital solutions to engage managers, but mainly because it was ultimately using the technology to solve a particular challenge and integrating it into the wider channel mix. The line manager page with a supporting email cuts through the noise, provides everything in one place and saves time.
My definition of internal communication includes the need for efficiency and using digital platforms to do this should be part of any internal comms strategy today.
There were other presentations throughout the day that echoed the importance of the goals of the project. Don’t create something as a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.
There are always some big themes and some smaller takeaways from events – here are my smaller takeaways from the sessions:
I was lucky enough to join the panel at the end of the day and there was a question on personalisation and collaboration that has stayed with me – further blog to follow on that theme!
So, if you’re working with intranets do check out @intranetnow and be sure to look out for the tickets next year. This event is a must-attend for those working in digital.