Here at MyHub, we know a thing or two about intranets. So, if you’re looking to deploy an office intranet in the near future, then this post is essential reading. We give you the benefit of our many years’ experience and highlight some of the common mistakes that companies make when it comes to intranets. Avoiding these pitfalls will help to ensure that your intranet deployment is a success from the get-go.
Poor objective setting from the outset is probably one of the most common pitfalls. It’s also one of the most easily remedied.
Usually it’s a vague notion of wanting to improve communications, streamline business processes or get staff more involved that prompts the company to look at an intranet solution. There’s no doubt that an intranet will contribute greatly to those aspirations. But if you want your intranet to really make a difference then you’ve got to be more specific and align those rather vague notions to much more concrete business goals. So, for example, let’s consider communications. A more useful and specific objective for your intranet could be something along the lines of the following:
Staff communication will be improved by replacing the generic, weekly all-staff email with a daily intranet news feed, featuring a combination of team and corporate news and updates.
In much the same way that staff members have key performance indicators to set expectations and evaluate their achievements in relation to their jobs, so the intranet needs to have clear objectives to guide its functionality and to help you determine its effectiveness.
Lack Of Buy-In From Staff And Management
Another mistake that companies sometimes make is not getting sufficient buy-in from staff or management for that matter. Let’s consider each of these stakeholders in detail.
Likewise, the buy-in of staff members generally is critical to the intranet’s success. They are after all the end users who will be utilizing the intranet every day. Make sure that you include staff representation at every step of the way. From brainstorming objectives, undertaking a needs analysis, designing the intranet or selecting and testing intranet software options, involving employees will ensure the intranet is fit for purpose, is received well and is widely adopted by the staff body.
Poor Intranet Design
For an intranet to be successful, it’s got to look good and be easy to use. Go for a clean, uncluttered feel with a simple color scheme. Give it visual appeal with pictures, graphics and lots of white space. Pay attention to the basics such as an intuitive menu and a decent search function. Draw on the latest trends and best practice in good web design.
The design is just as important as the content and the functionality of your intranet so make sure you involve staff members and spend sufficient time on getting it right.
Successful intranets don’t just happen, they must be properly planned for. Testing, piloting, consulting with end users let alone launching and reviewing are all vital steps in the process. And as Benjamin Franklin so succinctly stated: ‘By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail’. And so be sure to avoid this pitfall by carefully considering all the steps that will be necessary to successfully deploy your intranet and preparing a comprehensive plan.
Lack Of Training
We’ve seen many an organization that has neglected to have a comprehensive staff training program in place to the detriment of the intranet’s successful deployment.
Failure To Future Proof
Try not to focus too much on the here and now. Intranets that stand the test of time are those that can grow and adapt to the changing needs of the business. While it’s impossible to predict what’s going to happen in the future, every business should have some idea of where it’s going and how it’s going to get there. In the long run, it will pay to future-proof your intranet solution by ensuring it is flexible and adaptable enough to meet the challenges you anticipate for your business.
Cloud Intranets Offer A Solution
Want to avoid the mistakes that others have made before you? Want a stress-free intranet deployment? Or perhaps you’re looking for a tried and tested intranet model that can easily be implemented? Then contact the expert team at MyHub today for an informal discussion on cloud intranets.