A company intranet is one of the most effective tools in your arsenal when it comes to collaborative work, knowledge sharing, and deepening employees’ understanding of your workplace, especially in an increasingly digital workforce.
The intranet itself isn't a new concept – some of the earliest intranets were used in offices during the late 90s – but since the COVID-19 pandemic transformed many modern offices into digital workplaces, the role of intranet technology is more important than ever.
With the constant evolution of AI and AR, as well as increased focus on UX, the intranet is evolving. In this blog, we're going to go over 10 employee intranet trends for 2023 and beyond, and take a look at how they'll help streamline and automate the workplaces of the future. Let's get started!
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Artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality (AR) are two rapidly evolving technologies, and both are being increasingly used to improve the efficiency and utility of modern employee intranets. Whether it's using AI and AR to help employees find information quickly and efficiently or using AI-driven chatbots to respond to common questions, the potential for artificial intelligence to transform the workplace is undeniable.
AI-powered intranets are already in use; Atlas , for example, uses AI to improve search efficiency, recommend content based on user needs, run data analytics and performance metrics and personalise the intranet experience.
AI can facilitate cross-lingual communication, helping companies with foreign offices collaborate on projects without the need for a professional translator. In short, the intranets of the future are going to rely much more heavily on AI and help to create truly data-driven technology for the modern workplace.
In recent years, both developers and organisations have recognised the importance of creating an intranet experience that prioritises usability and UX. Not only does ease-of-use streamline day-to-day operations, but it also promotes workplace inclusivity; complicated and technical intranets can be difficult to navigate for older or less tech-savvy employees, and retraining staff is a strain on company time and resources.
By focusing on building a simple, easy-to-navigate intranet, everyone will be able to navigate new technologies intuitively, and employees won't have to go through weeks of training to learn how to use the system.
2023 and people expect to be able to access what they need on any device.
As an increasing number of employees now work remotely or on a hybrid basis, it's important for intranets to be accessible from anywhere, and outside office hours. Without ease of communication between both remote and in-house staff members, collaboration and group projects can be complicated, leading to delays, miscommunications and a lack of team cohesion.
Most popular intranet platforms have already pivoted to mobile, with mobile versions of Slack, SharePoint intranet, Atlas and Asana fully developed for mobile use. If you’re looking at intranet software, the mobile experience is an essential consideration.
The increase in remote work means intranets must be able to support the ever-changing needs of a distributed workplace.
Moving away from traditional on-premises servers and making the switch to cloud-based platforms is going to be essential for any organisation looking to stay on top of changing technologies – especially when it comes to keeping private data safe and secure online.
Cloud-based intranets can provide organisations with an almost unlimited amount of storage and processing power, as well as improved security features such as limited access and data encryption.
Social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are blueprints for organisations looking to build successfully engaging and interactive employee intranets. Many companies are introducing social media-inspired features to incentivise collaboration and communication, as well as simply encouraging employees to use their intranet.
Helpful features could include things like forums, social profiles, collaborative editing tools, multimedia content management systems and even customised, AI-powered news feeds.
In addition to enhanced search functionality, team and department-based segmentation is also going to be encouraged as employee intranets grow both in capacity and content.
Segmentation will mean gathering and grouping content and features according to the different teams within an organisation - allowing employees from HR, finance or marketing to quickly access only the information that's relevant for them. By allowing each team its own dedicated 'homepage', organisations can ensure that employees won't be overloaded with unnecessary content and are able to quickly navigate their intranet for relevant documents or information.
Atlas offers a few ways to target content to specific teams providing a great internal communications platform. With Atlas you can target content and make it a mandatory read, track whether employees have read it and even save it in their quick links so they can refer to it again if necessary.
An excellent productivity booster, ConneX Studio is an Atlas tool that allows teams to set up their workspaces with all the digital tools, templates and links they need for their specific tasks, making it easy to get straight into their work.
Perhaps one of the most important aspects of any employee intranet is search functionality; in 2023 and beyond, enhanced search functionality is going to be the driving force behind intranet innovation.
It's simple: as companies accumulate increased volumes of data, it can become increasingly difficult for people to find the information they need quickly, without having to navigate through pages of irrelevant content. With the integration of AI technology, as well as content tagging and team-based/departmental segmentation, the intranet of the future will aim to boast search functionality as effective, fast, and comprehensive as Google or Wikipedia.
It sounds simple, but superb search functionality has a significant impact on productivity and engagement. We all know how frustrating it is to have to spend your valuable time looking for information instead of focusing on where your skills can really add value.
Atlas Search provides an enterprise search experience that uses AI, machine learning and automation. It collates content across what are usually separate silos of knowledge – documents, SharePoint, Teams and more, helping people find and exchange information from within a single interface.
A truly modern intranet isn't just going to aggregate content and information from senior employees. Any company looking to improve their employee intranet is going to want to open the conversation to all members of the organisation.
This means encouraging and making it easy for each employee to contribute their knowledge and expertise via blog posts, videos, Q&A sessions, in-depth articles and more. By allowing employees to share in a safe and secure environment, organisations can reduce their dependence on external resources, encourage cross-departmental knowledge-sharing and collaboration, and enable each employee to feel valued and listened to in the workplace.
'Gamification' is exactly as it sounds – the process of turning mundane tasks into fun and engaging games. And the gamification of the modern intranet can help create a more inclusive, rewarding digital workplace for employees.
By including rewards like challenge badges and leaderboards – whether it be for completing tasks or simply special recognition – organisations can make everything from onboarding to internal training more enjoyable for employees.
Gamified intranets can also help motivate employees by offering them a sense of accomplishment for achieving even small goals, making them feel valued ( something many employees cite as lacking when polled on job satisfaction1).
Finally, data visualisation is becoming an increasingly important feature for intranets in 2023. By using dashboard displays to provide employees with real-time updates on key performance metrics – whether it be sales figures, customer service reviews, or even the progress of specific projects – intranets become more engaging and immersive for employees.
Data visualisation also makes it easier (and quicker) for employees to digest large amounts of data – nobody wants to read a never-ending block of text just to get to a key figure or data point.
Overall, the employee intranet is going to remain a key feature in the modern workplace, even as the digital workplace itself continues to evolve and change alongside advances in technology.
Perhaps the most meaningful change in intranet technology is going to be the integration of both AI and AR; with the power to customise the user experience for each employee, a company intranet can evolve from a helpful tool into a comprehensive digital workplace.
Is employee knowledge sharing software an investment priority
1 A third of UK employees feel undervalued at work, research reveals
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