We have taken a look at why and how companies should strengthen their internal communication. Now let’s focus on the corporate intranet and the kinds of information employees are often looking for there — and do not find.

Remember two things:

  • Solid, strong internal communication will help companies make money, save money and attract and retain talent. Content should be produced in alignment with these four core payoffs for the organization.
  • Workers spend too much time searching for information and resources they need to do their jobs. One study conducted by global management consulting firm McKinsey & Co., found that employees spent an average of 1.8 hours every day — or 9.3 hours every week week — searching and gathering information. Think of it this way: A company has five employees, but only four show up for work; the fifth is searching for answers but not contributing any value.

What employees need to find easily on your company’s intranet

Media Salad’s skilled business editors and communications managers see it all the time: A company builds a lame-o intranet that quickly becomes outdated and unhelpful. As a result, everyone remains trapped in endless strings of email that are easily confused and lost. Employees use the intranet only if they’re desperate to find something. They’re more likely to ask colleagues than to bother with an intranet search for what they need.

And what is it that they need? Our work for organizations ranging from Fortune 100, global powerhouses to the smallest nonprofits have given us some insight into that. When we step in to help our clients shore up their internal communications and manage them effectively, we always ensure their intranet’s home page makes it easy for employees to find:

Information about their benefits. Not only do they need to be able to access information about their benefits, they also need to receive updates about enrollment periods and changes in coverage. Benefits also can include perks, such as discounts on event tickets, museum memberships, and at local stores and restaurants; access to the corporate gym; and an array of on-site services, such as dry cleaning, car repair and carry-out meals from the company cafe.

Corporate policies, standards, procedures and guidelines. Employees need to know what are essentially the rules of your organization — everything from how to summon emergency medical attention to a job site to how to report a lost or stolen laptop.

Easy access to the tools they need to do their job from Day 1. A smartly produced intranet walks employees through the processes they need to request, receive and set up software, hardware, office supplies and any other tools they need to work efficiently and effectively.

Online training. This is a biggie because there are endless software tools and work tasks employees could learn through online study. The Media Salad team helps our clients prioritize the training that has the biggest, most positive impact. We help our clients deliver online training in software (especially Microsoft programs, such as Excel, Power BI, PowerPoint and SharePoint), job safety requirements, and common tasks (everything from creating secure passwords and securing documents to operation tips for backhoe loaders).

News employees really can use. Sales teams appreciate knowing about upcoming projects that will help them pitch your company’s market differentiation to win a deal. Alerts about market dynamics and the competitive landscape could spur new ideas that help your organization spot and seize an opportunity. Alerts about internal systems and software apps that are experiencing outages or need to be taken off line for maintenance could save employees a lot of frustration. And yes, it’s always nice to announce new hires and extraordinary contributions and achievements to help everyone on the job feel valued.

There are many ways to structure and maintain and effective corporate intranet that engages, informs — and even entertains for the sake of helping companies make money, save money and attract and retain talent. Please contact Media Salad to learn more.