It’s not you, it’s not them either. It’s your intranet. You didn’t work hard researching, developing and implementing your intranet for it to just sit dormant and look pretty. You want to know your employees are using the tool you worked hard on. Statistics can help paint a picture of how, when and by whom your intranet is being used. But measurements such as “Time logged in” or “Number of logins” doesn’t necessarily show your intranet is successful and engaging. To be fair, ‘less’ time spent on an intranet is best, IF it’s doing it’s job and making it easy for employees to find the information they need.
A different rating is required to really understand how your users are utilizing your intranet (or if they aren’t) and how and when to make improvements. Sometimes it’s a change of culture. Some employees may be reluctant to share information or post something they found interesting because they are afraid of breaking any rules. They believe the old adage of the intranet’s content being placed by management and HR, that they do have have a part in the development or contribution of the tool.
It’s far too difficult (and unrealistic) to judge the value of your intranet by using just a series of statistics. Instead, you need a rating that combines these metrics into a more measurable score. Using an “Engagement” score looks at the big picture of how a user is spending time on the intranet.
How does Noodle track engagement?
Noodle is full of analytics to help you manage the ongoing progress and growth of your intranet. Site wide statistics will help paint an overall picture. Noodle goes even further with more personalized stats. This includes keeping track of how many comments a user makes along with “Likes” they receive on their posts, blogs and other items. They are also assigned an “Engagement Score” which looks at a calculation based on things like how many items they contributed and how many items have they viewed. All these stats paint a useful picture of how your intranet is being used and by whom. This information can be used to help improve the user experience of the intranet.
How to Improve Intranet Engagement
“Started from the top, now we’re here” – (Not Exactly) quote by Drake
It cannot be stressed enough that establishing a social collaborative culture in your workplace, requires input and participation by upper management. It is great to not only read a regular blog written by the CEO for the employees, but to also see them commenting and liking items your employees contributed. It’s never been easier to stay connected with your staff and reward them for doing a good job. All it takes is a “Like” or a comment to make them feel really recognized and accomplished as everyone else in the company can recognize the work they did. An employee then feels empowered and more willing to add more to projects and take on tasks. Their overall quality of work is improved because they know their work is being seen.
Fear and Loathing in Your Intranet
There are usually two main reasons an employee won’t use your intranet. One reason is, they don’t like it. It is very important to encourage feedback on your intranet to know how it can be improved. Employees won’t usually speak up and criticize the intranet or make suggestions, at least not to managers. This is where the fear comes in. They feel if they make any negative comments, it might be overheard by the wrong person who will then take it out on them. Same idea with adding content, or commenting on an item. If you try to “lock down” your intranet (restrict commenting, too many rules about posting, not giving an open discussion area, the famous “review/approve before posting”.) Employees feel like they are not trusted so they are more afraid to share anything in the open.
Make the Basics Better
One of the main uses for a company intranet is to find things. If it’s difficult to locate what your employees are looking for, they will be less likely to use it or they will become frustrated with the interface. Instead of going to the intranet for resources, they are more likely to ask a co-worker for the file they are looking for instead of looking for it themselves. Or they may download a copy of a particular document on their desktop to avoid having to search, only to find that they are using an outdated document. Noodle features many powerful search options to help users find what they are looking for and fast:
- Tagging items and searching by tags.
- Linking to documents inside a comment or post.
- Easy access portlets to display most commonly used documents.
- Full text search of indexed documents to find content inside a body of text.
- “Google style” auto-complete search. Very helpful if you aren’t sure of the exact name of the file you are looking for.
- Advanced search with features such as, searching items by user, by file/content type and by date or section.
- People tagging on comments and other areas to link or notify a specific user.
Keep it Fresh and Fun
Finally, to make users visit your intranet when they aren’t looking for a specific document or resource, make sure you are keeping your site updated on a regular basis and including fun content. This can include blog posts as noted earlier, daily industry news, weekly company updates, posting pictures, making polls or surveys. You can share fun facts, embed work friendly videos, or even hold an online contest. Your employees will enjoy visiting the Intranet as a place to gather and share. They will not be afraid of the intranet, instead they will embrace it as they will feel a part of it. This is how an online enterprise community is successful, by encouraging feedback and contribution and including your employees as part of the growth of your intranet.
To learn more about employee engagement and how Noodle can help you transform your intranet into a vibrant social hub, allow us to build you a FREE prototype and demonstrate how Noodle can make your intranet project successful.