A good intranet focuses on the needs of it’s users; their requirements should form the core of your intranet solution. This blog explains what is meant by intranet usability and sets out what you need to do to ensure your intranet solution benefits your end users. For more information on how to best manage your intranet project, download our free guide.

According to Neilsen Norman  intranet usability is a quality attribute that is widely used to help evaluate how easy user interfaces are to use. It’s also used to describe the method of improving ease of use during the intranet design process.

Neilsen Norman go on to detail the 5 quality components of usability as being:

  1. Learnability: How easy is it for users to complete basic tasks the first time they encounter the design?
  2. Efficiency: Once users have learned the design, how quickly can they perform tasks?
  3. Memorability: When users return to the design after a period of not using it, how easily can they re-establish proficiency?
  4. Errors: How many errors do users make, how severe are these errors, and how easily can they recover from the errors?
  5. Satisfaction: How pleasant is it to use the design?

There is more to creating a positive intranet user experience than design alone. Before you start to think about the end solution, you need to be clear about what it is that you are trying to achieve. To create the most effective intranet for your organisation and your end users, you should:

  1. Be clear about your business objectives and ensure your intranet is helping to achieve these aims.
  2. Engage with technical experts to make sure you are considering the right type of solution for your organisation.
  3. Understand your end users pain points and challenges they face with the current intranet, their roles, functions and processes.
  4. Get feedback from your end users to help guide the creation of an engaging design that fulfils your business objectives.
  5. Keep your intranet content up to date. Out of date content is a sure way to create a negative experience and see engagement levels tail off.
  6. Continuous improvement – commit to a cycle of regular imrpovement and updating to adapt to changing business needs and improve current business processes.

The most important thing to remember is that if you want to create a great intranet user experience, you need to invest time in understanding your overall business objectives and the needs of your users. Utilisie your intranet steering committee to create a solution that fits your business adn everyone within it.

I hope this has provided you with some insight on how best to ensure your intranet responds to user needs and fulfills the needs of the business. To help further, SORCE have created a guide to managing your intranet which may offer further insight into your intranet journey and the importance of understanding your user’s requirements. To find out more and learn how SORCE has helped other organisations, book your place at one of our free Showcase events.