We don’t have thousands of staff like the big government departments, hospitals and local councils that we support, but we still need an intranet.
Do we use GovIntranet? Of course! We host our own WordPress intranet theme on our own servers and we can use the CMS from anywhere.
For us, the intranet is more of a cross between a CRM tool and a knowledge base.
Our homepage features a big search box for finding out how to do things, and a prominent online holiday booking form.
There’s a list of all our clients, linking to further information; intranet details, contact details (including photos), support allowance and contract details.
There are graphs showing helpdesk support quotas and usage, feeding from a live database.
And finally, there’s a feed from Intranet Diary showing my latest blog posts. Yeh, yeh, it only gets updated a few times a year. 🙄
We don’t use our intranet as a comms channel. There are no announcements or feature news. No vacancies or events. Do we visit the intranet every day? No. But it is there when we need it.
The main value of our intranet is the ‘how do I?’ section. This is our knowledge base, filled with helpful articles, from tips on how to use the linux command line and the WP CLI, to instructions for creating a ‘Wonderwall‘ on a client intranet or configuring the Relevanssi search engine.
This guidance section is invaluable. There are things that I need to do, so infrequently, that I can never quite remember the right commands or the correct process. When you take the time now to create useful content, your future self will be grateful.
This growing bank of information is perfect for new staff. There are checklists and setup guides, online forms and the official staff handbook. The answers to most of the questions that have been asked before are on the intranet.
It’s also important to keep things up to date. For example, having moved out of our office, I have removed information about where the first aid box is, and the fire evacuation procedures. And there are now new procedures in place for working from home.
We use other cloud services for email, calendar, project collaboration, file sharing and video calls. Some may call this a digital workplace; we just call it work. And while all the chitter-chatter, file uploads, video calls, jam-board sessions and git pushes are taking place, the intranet remains at the heart of the operations.
Big government department or small business, the intranet still needs to support staff in doing their work.
Check out the Govintra demonstration site for ideas on how your intranet can support your staff.