A Successful Intranet Management Framework Starts with 3 Things

By Simpplr Marketing

Successful intranet launches don’t just happen. They need a well-established management framework that clearly defines the roles and responsibilities required to allow the intranet to operate efficiently and sustainably.

This article covers the key components of a practical management framework that will ensure your intranet continues to grow and improve over time.

Establish sponsorship and ownership

Establishing Sponsorship and Ownership on Your IntranetLike any important system or platform in a company, you need to have a business sponsor or owner of your social intranet.

This person should be at the C-level, have recognizable influence in the organization and believe passionately in the power of the platform. They are likely to be the one who makes the business case for investment, clears roadblocks, promotes new initiatives and generally fights your corner.

The owner and sponsor may not necessarily be the same person. The owner will have direct responsibility for the performance and success of the platform and may be the ultimate leader of the intranet team. The sponsor might be a more removed, senior figure.

In addition to an owner or sponsor, you may also need to involve senior stakeholders from other functions and areas of your organization in your social intranet.

Many larger organizations choose to have a steering group that meets regularly and is made up of senior people from HR, IT, Communications and other lines of business. Depending on the size of your organization or the scope of your intranet, a steering group might not be necessary.

Underneath this level, there is also likely to be a cross-functional team that meets regularly to discuss operational issues such as new content areas and features.

Appoint a dedicated intranet manager and put the team in place

Appointing an Intranet ManagerAn important ingredient for your successful social intranet involves having someone responsible for executing the intranet strategy, and ensuring the smooth day-to-day management of the channel.

Depending on the size of your organization and how you are using the intranet, this may not be a full-time role. Social intranets tend to be driven more by the users themselves, compared to traditional content-heavy intranets that are usually more labor-intensive to run.

It is sensible to have an ‘intranet manager’ – a person responsible for coordination and who can act as a central contact point.

Supporting any intranet manager is likely to be an extended, ‘outer-ring’, intranet team that takes on a number of different activities. These include IT development, search, training, content management, community management, internal communications, image production and so forth.

The responsibility for many

of the intranet ends up being decentralized, with the intranet manager playing a coordinating role across a network of individuals.

A key part of the extended intranet team will be the individual owners of the sites and communities within your social intranet. In addition to an owner, each site or community group will have an administrator or manager who coordinates most of the day-to-day activity. In some organizations, there may be a further tier of ‘super-users’, who coordinate a set of sites within one part of your company.

Make sure that all the activities associated with the intranet, and all the different areas, have named individuals who understand their responsibilities.

Define processes, standards, and policies

Defining Intranet Processes, Standards, and PoliciesOnce you’ve got the right people in place, you need to define the rules, policies, and guidelines so that your social intranet operates to its full potential.

These rules don’t need to be heavy-handed or bureaucratic – this is more about establishing clarity than enforcing lockdown. Ultimately, rules and guidelines are there to help and support the employees who use the social tools and the site owners who manage their own areas.

Depending on the capability of your employee intranet software, aspects you will need to cover include:

  • Usage policy for social media
  • Branding guidelines for content look and feel
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Processes for requesting new sites and groups
  • Processes for requesting new features on the intranet
  • Archiving and reviewing content
  • Decision paths for disagreements

What we learned

There you have it! To summarize you need to establish sponsorship and ownership, appoint a dedicated intranet management team and define processes, standards, and policies. These key components will ensure your intranet continues to grow and improve over time.

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