What is an intranet governance policy?
An intranet governance policy normally takes the form of a document but it can also be stored and shared using any information management tool on your intranet. It ultimately acts as a guide to all team members by providing a high-level strategic view of the intranet’s purpose and a detailed overview concerning site management and maintenance.
Why do you need an intranet governance policy?
Particular departments or employees, who weren’t necessarily involved in the initial stages of your intranet project, may be unsure of the overall intent of the company intranet and how it will affect them. The intranet governance policy will therefore:
- Provide support to intranet teams
- Eliminate any confusion among end-users
- Set out good practice guidance for running a successful intranet
- Firmly establish the intranet’s role
Every organisation needs a unique intranet governance plan
You may find many examples of intranet governance policies previously generated, but your policy should be unique to your organisation. For example, a short article posted on the intranet may be more useful than a lengthy document. Ultimately, your communication method should reflect your organisation’s particular needs and culture.
Your intranet governance policy should include:
This section should begin with the main purposes of the intranet and what it’s intended to achieve.
Include information about why the organisation needed an intranet and the issues previously experienced due to its absence or failures. For example, perhaps your previous intranet didn’t provide a good user experience. Documenting this will ensure that your next one is more user friendly.
What are the next intranet stages your colleagues will experience? Is there a road-map? Sharing this information can help gain buy-in from various departments and individuals. Try to keep the number of ‘big bang’ surprises to a minimum.
To recap, here are a few important points:
- What were the previously identified reasons for deploying a new intranet?
- What does the business want to achieve?
- What short-term or long-term goals does it support?
- How will it positively impact employees on a day-to-day basis?
- Map out the next stages in the deployment strategy (try to incorporate your colleagues’ opinions and feedback into the intranet’s road-map if certain element have not been decided)
- How will you measure success – site/application analytics or KPIs?
Do you have content champions from various departments within the business or is it the sole responsibility of a department or employee? Making the current or planned content creation process clear will eliminate confusion and clearly outline the procedure.
It’s also appropriate to define the content strategy in relation to each intranet application, for example, what types of content should be shared on social media feeds? Setting out some basic usage guidelines will reduce any apprehensions related to content sharing.
Individual and departmental roles
Highlight both the intranet team and their roles and responsibilities on an individual basis. State who is the first-point-of-contact for common issues, such as change requests, the creation of new intranet pages, functionality questions and adding new employees. Does each department play a key role by fulfilling certain functions? Do you have a dedicated project manager who oversees the running of the intranet?
Intranet site structure
This area should provide an overview of the many components or information areas within your intranet. Departmental areas should also be included here and the sort of information each departmental area will provide.
For example, one of the IT department’s objectives on the intranet may be to maintain technical documentation, whilst your marketing team’s objective could be associated with the generation and sharing of reports.
Topics this section may include:
- Menu bar and the reasons behind its layout i.e. quick access to particularly important applications or information
- Departmental areas and their purpose
- Company and personal links
- Methods for effectively finding resources
- Homepage layout and design
- Fast access buttons and quick links
- Branding guidelines