When you start a new intranet project, you need an effective way to gather your intranet requirements. Any intranet designed without consulting your employees is likely to fail before it launches. Employees will only use the intranet if they feel it is of use to them, so it’s absolutely vital that the requirements of users are identified from the outset.
If you are an Intranet Manager or have been given the role for the duration of this project, you may want to think about the opportunities open to you to gain a solid insight into what your employees want from their intranet. No matter what your background is whether Technical, communications or marketing your approach to requirements gathering will be the same.
Many organisations use a combination of quantitative and qualitative research to really understand the core issues. A good place to start is with a staff survey. You can create a survey and distribute it to the whole company and invite feedback.
We typically say that you can expect a response rate of 30-40% for your internal survey. It’s a good idea to make sure that your employee intranet survey takes no longer than 5 minutes to complete, otherwise you will see your response rates start to fall.
The Staff survey may give you volume of data and highlight parts of the business that are very keen to tell you about their thoughts and perhaps those that are not so forthcoming.
Your role is to interpret the results and identify teams and or individuals you need to speak to further to clarify or dig deeper about the way in which they use your intranet.
Stakeholder interviews are a great way for gaining more in-depth insight into your end user requirements. It’s also a good way to get buy-in from individuals and teams from across the organisation. You should plan for each interview to take 30- 40 minutes and you should base your questions on their initial survey responses (if they have completed it).
What next? If after completing your staff survey and having undertaken some stakeholder interviews you still have some knowledge gaps, or maybe your organisation is multi-site and even global. You might want to consider holding some employee intranet requirement gathering workshops. Holding a series of workshops would enable you to build support, ask further questions and help work through any issues that may have arisen. It’s a good idea to seek some help at this point from an impartial third party. This maybe from one of your shortlisted intranet suppliers.
I hope this has been useful in providing a framework for your employee intranet requirement gathering. To find out more, why not attend on of our free showcase events.