If you want to ensure your intranet meets the needs of your users and your business, it’s vital to have a governance policy in place.
A governance policy helps everyone work towards the same goals, makes sure intranet content is kept relevant and searchable, and assigns responsibility for every page to a colleague. It can even give you the tools to resolve conflicts further down the line.
Modern intranets (like our intranet platform, Kira) have default settings that help achieve good governance and user adoption. It’s also possible to set up additional, customised workflows to suit your needs before your intranet is launched, for tasks such as automatically archiving old sites.
But you still need human involvement to make sure momentum around your intranet is sustained, and that your business achieves all its intended outcomes from this major investment. A governance policy keeps your contributors, editors and users on the straight-and-narrow; it explains what the intranet is for, and how it should be used, helping focus the content on what’s needed. It puts a structure in place that ensures your intranet is created, maintained and archived in a robust way and doesn’t turn into a sprawling mess.
If your business is subject to legal or regulatory requirements, a governance policy can also ensure your intranet doesn’t become a legal headache.
Elements of an intranet governance policy
There are a few key elements that any intranet governance policy must get right.
- Intranet strategy – It’s vital to have a clear strategy. Make it clear why you have an intranet, and how it ties in with the success of your organisation. The strategy should reflect the needs of your staff, and ultimately help them to achieve outcomes for the business.
- Roles and responsibilities – Set out clear roles for the people who will look after your intranet and foster its growth. Set up a core intranet team, and define the roles of IT, site owners and content authors. Every piece of information on the site should be assigned to someone. Roles can be set up within the administrative interface to periodically remind content owners to make them archive or update the content they’re responsible for.
- Content strategy and guidelines – A good content strategy helps keep your intranet feeling fresh, and ensures people can always find up-to-date, relevant information. It determines what content is considered useful or acceptable, what’s kept available, what’s archived – and when.
- Acceptable use policy – Clear guidelines set a tone for the intranet’s use as a professional tool, and can prevent or help resolve problems further down the line. Aim to have a small number of clearly-written guidelines that don’t sap the fun and energy out of your intranet.
- Performance indicators – You must be able to track that your intranet is delivering on its expected outcomes. Performance indicators help track how the site is being used, allowing you to spot problems and make adjustments to the governance policy to ensure the intranet continues to be efficient and well-used.
At CompanyNet, we have twenty years’ experience building, deploying and supporting enterprise intranets. If you’d like to discuss best practices in intranet governance, user adoption, or any aspect of intranet delivery, drop us a line for a no-obligation chat.