How does ikno help with employee satisfaction and retention?

The leading elements to employee satisfaction and retention always center around workers feeling like 'valued contributors' to the organization's success.  That umbrella term boils down to a few simple components, specifically;

  • being trusted
  • having the tools and autonomy to do the work they were hired to do
  • having access to information or being 'in the know'
  • having access to senior managers
  • having opportunity to succeed and grow in the organization

Meet these needs and you will have taken a major step towards retaining your most valuable assets.

How?  Well, one tool has steadily gained prominence in the last decade; one which if fully leveraged, can directly address these employee needs.

Part megaphone, part filing cabinet... part workspace and part directory, the Employee Intranet is fast becoming an indispensable information management solution for every organization.  But more than that.... it can be a critical key to employee engagement and empowerment.

When designed, built, and utilized correctly, an intranet can help mitigate information overload and provide employees with the access, autonomy, and knowledge they need to be successful in their jobs.  What's more, it gives CEOs a powerful device through which they can realize measurable productivity gains and competitive benefits, and provide managers an avenue through which they can share successes, reinforce positive actions, recognize performance and demonstrate appreciation – in short, value their workers.

Will a well executed intranet be a panacea?  Will it make every employee feel valued?  Will it guarantee your employees will work for you forever?  Nope - It's just one important component in the overall employee satisfaction matrix.  One that, by managing, organizing and optimizing information, makes work easier, saves time, and engages employees in the overall success of the organization; allowing employees to not only meet your measures of success, but theirs too.

 

How can ikno unburden the IT department?

One of the issues (and sometimes fears) IT managers have with any intranet is, 'How much admin, service, and maintenance time is it going to cost me each week, month or year?

Well... If it's the right platform, the answer should be, 'Pretty damn little time.' In fact, the properly designed and configured intranet should require nothing more than a couple of updates over the course of a year.

It should liberate IT from having to serve as a funnel for which nearly every request must pass. It should be open, easy to administer for every department and eliminate central governance or need for IT "ownership" or control. It should be a BIG time save for the IT team every day, week and month.

How can ikno help with mitigate information overload?

Information overload is real, invasive and getting worse every day. And the successful businesses of the future will need to employ proactive measures to help employees manage and mitigate it.

I don't do it often but every once in a while I will check my cell phone bill and specifically look at the quantity of text messages for a given month -- and every time, I think to myself... there is NO WAY that number can be right! It is... and I am a comparatively low user with others on my plan.

Just now, I checked to see how many email messages I have archived in just one of my client folders for work done in 2015 -- over 1,500. And that's just email with content or information I thought necessary or beneficial to save... who knows how many I deleted.

But quantity is, at best, only half of the equation because when an email or text is sent, more often than not, the expectation of the sender is not just that the message was received and read, but that it will be understood, acknowledged and acted upon. That expectation, while not unreasonable for the client, manager or business partner who sent it, is becoming more and more untenable for the recipient, and employees must resort to their own system of triage in order to cope with the deluge of demands.

Whether the message hails from an internal or external customer, when the inbox gets out of control the recipient is forced to scan, prioritize, and queue each one -- using their experience and best judgment to decide when and how best to respond. And in that process employees will, unintentionally, miss a few emails with some important information.

Installing a high function, yet easy-to-use company intranet is one of the best tools management can employ to mitigate information overload. Our ikno platform and the internal communications system on which it is based will provide employees easy access to the information they need to perform their functions and eliminate the need for countless internal email exchanges

How can ikno cut down on your email?

If you're a manager, you are probably pretty used to sending emails cc’ing your department or even the entire company when you have an important message that everyone needs to know. But how do you know if people actually read the email?  And what's worse than a hundred plus reply-all messages to your "everyone" email? 

Well, whether it’s crickets you hear or hundreds of replies, there is a better way to send out your department or company-wide messages... an intranet! 

  1. Make sure your intranet has a section for your company-wide posts that clearly communicates that this is ‘must know’ information for your employees. That way, employees will be able to easily see what’s most important when they log on to the intranet.
  2. Get to the point with your Headline. Nothing gets ignored faster than a boring headline. Spend a little time to engage the reader and entice them to click on your post. Your audience will appreciate the teaser and be more likely to click through to read more. Plus, more descriptive text will help employees search for the post in the future more easily.
  3. Ask for feedback. Be sure that your intranet has the option to leave comments on your posts. It is important that your intranet is not a ‘top down’ communication tool but also a ‘bottom up’ and end to end. Also, give the reader the opportunity to comment and add an option for them to ‘like’ your intranet post.

ikno does it all.

Why do we call it ikno?

Believe it or not, naming an intranet is an important element to its success and adoption. The name needs to be easy to remember and ideally, reinforce its reason for being. 

We named our intranet platform ikno (pronounced "I - Know") because an intranet is, more than anything, about knowledge and knowledge sharing. Over time, your intranet becomes the repository of the collective knowledge, and reflection of the productivity of your company. A properly designed internet organizes that information and provides easier access to it. 

Our platform offers greater transparency and gives users unprecedented access to information... access to knowledge, and we like the positive association of users stating "I Know" that is reinforced when users refer to the site, "Did you see the post on ikno? Friday is a jeans day!"  And let's face it, there's not much worse than having an employee say, "I don't know."

ikno is your...   Internal - Knowledge - Network - Organized

Ideas for personalizing your employee profiles on ikno

Did you know that you can customize your company's profile page settings with additional fields? Here's a list of recommendations to get your wheels turning!

Professional Profile

Previous Job 1:

Title/Position:

Previous Job 2:

Title/Position:

LinkedIn:

Facebook:

Twitter:

Professional Designations:

Awards/Recognition:

Group Memberships:

Volunteerism:

 

Personal Profile

Education:

Hometown:

Birthday: DD/MM

Family/Names:

Pets/Names:

Favorite Color:

Favorite Songs:

Favorite Movies:

Favorite TV:

Favorite Books:

Likes:

Dislikes:

Activities & Hobbies:

About Me:

 

Sample Intranet Launch Email

Welcome to ikno – a social media style intranet platform that was created to help you be more productive, more knowledgeable about your company, and more connected to your co-workers.

ikno is simple and fun to use and was designed to provide you with the information you want and need to do your job -- without overwhelming you with communications that don't affect you. And while it won't replace email, you should soon find that your inbox is a bit less full.

Most existing [intranet or share drive] content has moved over to ikno and is organized by department, with new content, in the form of Department News and Blog Posts available to you every day.

Over time, ikno will house vast amounts of useful company data and it will all be accessible to you on your desktop tablet and smartphone, and searchable through the ikno search function. Just like Google, you'll simply type in your search term and ikno will return a list of related news and blog posts and links to documents.

But there is much much more ikno can do for you! You’ll soon be receiving a handy user guide from your manager that will walk you through the ikno user interface. Please follow the step-by-step instructions to help familiarize yourself with ikno's functions and content.

In no time you and your co-workers will relying on ikno to share, learn and keep connected. Let us know what you think!

 

ikno User Guide

Getting Started: Create Your Account

  • Your manager will invite you to access ikno and you will receive an email with a link to activate your account and set your password
  • If you’ve already set up your password, open your Web Browser and enter your company ikno URL: ex. https://*yourcompany*.iknointranet.com

  • Login with your username and password. If you forget your password, you can click “Forgot Password” and reset it.

 

Profile: Create/Edit your Profile

  • Click the little pencil icon in the top left corner of your screen next to your name
  • Click the “Choose File” button on the left side right below your company logo

  • From the open dialog box, select your photo [.jpg file] and click the “Open” button

    • Your photo should now appear on your Profile page

  • In the center column of your screen, enter your professional and personal information in each of the fields

  • When complete, click the “Save” button at the bottom of the page

  • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

 

Status Updates: Enter your current status

  • Click the box “What are you working on” in the top center of your screen
  • Type in your current status and press enter

    • Sample status updates might be:

      • “I’m working in the Boston office today”

      • “I am out on customer appointments”

      • “I’m responding to an RFP”

    • Or post about anything else you may be working on for the day

  • Your status update will automatically clear after 24hrs – so update it every day. You can also overwrite your status if you want to change it throughout the day.

  • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

 

Search Function: Find company information

  • Click “Search” in the center of your screen below the navigation bar
  • Type “policy” in the search field

    • Below the search bar you will see a list of any news or blog posts that reference the term “policy”

    • Click on the link to access the news or blog post of your choice

  • Type an employee’s name in the search field

    • Below the search bar you will see a list of any news or blog posts, or any employees that reference that name.

    • Click on the link to access the news or blog post of your choice

    • Note: As each employee fills out his/her profile they will become “Active” and searchable

  • Note: At the far right of the search bar you may select from several search options

  • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

 

News Feed: Information All Employees are Expected to Know

  • From your Dashboard, move your mouse pointer over any News headline and click on it
    • View that News post, and enter your own comment, if you wish, at the bottom and then click the “Share” button

    • Scroll to the top of the post and on the upper right, click the “Thumbs Up” icon to “like” this post

  • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

 

 

Blog Feed:

  • From your Dashboard, scroll down the page to the “Blog” section. Move your mouse pointer over any Blog headline and click on it
    • View the Blog post, and enter your own comment, if you wish to give feedback, ask a question of offer information, at the bottom and click the “Share” button

    • Scroll to the top of the post and on the upper right, click the “Heart” icon to “favorite” this post

  • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

 

Top Navigation Bar: Quickly access all areas of iKNO

  • Employee Directory

    • From your Dashboard, click on the “Directory” tab

    • From the list of employee’s, select one

    • View that employee’s Profile page

    • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

  • Departments

    • From your Dashboard, click on the “Department” tab

    • Notice from the dropdown menu you can access all departments on ikno

    • Click on any department or category and visit that page

    • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

  • Calendar

    • From your Dashboard, click on the “Calendar” tab

    • Notice events can be displayed in both list and calendar format

    • In  grid display, each block can display events scheduled for that day

    • Click any event listing to view the post detailing that event

    • If there are many items on the calendar you may click one or more of the sort buttons on the left side navigation to limit the display to the designated category

    • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

  • Survey

    • From your Dashboard, click on the “Survey” tab

    • Enter your response to the survey

    • Click “Dashboard” in the top menu and return to your home page

Left Column Navigation: Events and Status

  • Events
    • From your Dashboard the 5 most recent Events are posted to keep you up to date

    • Click on any event to find more detail

  • Status

    • From your Dashboard the Status feature displays a chronological listing

    • To view a specific employee’s status you may also visit that individual’s profile page

10 ideas for engaging intranet content

Here are some questions to help you determine types of content you may wish to publish prior to ikno going live within your organization. Keep in mind you are posting information that must also engage and strive to help employees better understand and perform their job function. 

Think about the following:

  1. What is the mission or function of your team? Blog about your team, their primary responsibilities and how they serve internal/external customers.
  2. What are your business-lines objectives? Blog about how your team’s work supports the organization's strategic plan, projects or initiatives.
  3. What common questions do you ask in the course of doing your job? Ask those responsible for answering your questions to post a blog with FAQs
  4. What common questions do colleagues and/or customers ask you? Post FAQs for your own area to cut down repeat questions.
  5. What information does your department/group need to best do its job? Ask those individuals who provide your group information to post all documents, forms, policies, procedures etc.
  6. What information does your department/group have that other departments rely on and need regular access/updates to? Your team should post all documents, forms, policies, procedures etc.
  7. What projects are you and your group currently working on? Publish Blog posts updating the progress of your projects.
  8. What recent accomplishments or major contributions to company goals has your group achieved?
  9. Recognize your team via Blog posts.
  10.  Identify every major document you touch/use during the course of your work and publish a Blog post for each with a brief description of its use and attaching the doc.

Best Practices for Making Your Intranet Posts Engaging

Now that you've written (and rewritten) and proofed what you've written, you want to structure your page so your points are formatted for the online environment. Remember, since it’s often more difficult to read on-screen, you have to take special care to make it easier for your readers to absorb your information.

Content and Style

  • Provide useful information
  • Most people use the web to find information that they can actually use. Make sure that your readers will find your information useful. This means useful for them... not just useful for you
  • Typically, the more specific, the more useful
  • General overview information is fine, and can be extremely helpful. But when people want to act on the information you provide don't just give them a hint, give them all the information they require in order to act, right at the top
  • If the reader can't figure it out immediately, chances are they'll go someplace else
  • It's best to do this at the top of the page, so people can see what they'll get without scrolling
  • People will scroll, but only if they think there's something of interest to them below
  • Make it personal and write conversationally
  • To make it more personal, your tone and writing style should be more casual, more conversational - Not only is this friendlier, but it's also easier to read.

Formatting

  • Always start with the headline—everyone reads them. Condense your most important point down to a one or two-line headline
  • Give 'em the gist of it in the opening paragraph. Distill longer documents down to their most important facts by creating a "summary" at the start of each article/post
  • Use ‘Subheads’ because readers skim headings looking for specific topics If you started by creating an outline, your outline headings will automatically become subheads.
  • Format headings as separate lines—or as a lead-in sentence to a paragraph. Bold text stands out. It's best to use it sparingly, such as for lead-in headings at the start of a paragraph. Bold words scattered inside the text can be confusing.
  • Use italics for emphasis – but not too often. Italics help your reader “hear” the same emphasis you intended. Italics can help make your text sound more conversational. For example, when you read the previous sentence, you emphasized the word "sound" because it was in italics. That can make a big difference in the meaning of what you write. While they can be overused, in general they help ensure that people read things the way you intended.
  • Here are the same words in the same sentence, but italics give each different meanings:
    • I said I liked it.
    • I said I liked it.
    • I said I liked it.
    • I said I liked it.
    • I said I liked it.
  • People read bulleted text. Condense important points to bulleted lists. Repeat your most important info using “call outs” or “pull quotes” - quotes set larger and often in a different typeface

Best Practices for Writing Posts on Your Intranet

Your computer screen is a far different medium than printed- paper. As such, we read web pages in a different way than we do a newspaper or other paper document.

Rather than reading every word, people tend to scan web pages. A recent study by the Nielsen Norman Group found that “79 percent of test users always scanned any new page they came across; only 16 percent read word-by-word.”

Users also read information displayed on screens 25% slower than they read paper-based documents. Consequently, information on web pages should be condensed by 50% of their print counterparts.

While there are many things to keep in mind, for most web writers, there are certain areas in particular that deserve attention. More than the printed page, web pages need to be designed to be scanned quickly, with frequent rest stops for the eye – after all, you want to ensure people read what you’ve taken the trouble to write.

Writing style

  • Be succinct: text should be limited to 50% of the words you would write in print
  • Writing should follow the ‘inverted pyramid format’ with the most important content at the beginning
  • Use simple sentences and limit the use of metaphors
  • Use humor with caution
  • Use correct spelling and grammar
  • Use plain English when creating links, headings, site names, and forms
  • Avoid jargon

Page elements

  • All pages must include the writer/owner’s name (as an active email link at the bottom), accompanied by their company/department name
  • Each item should include the date at the top
  • Links to other pages should be referred to by name (do not use just the URL)
  • Each page must have clear titles/headlines for proper indexing and bookmarking

Format

  • Content should be left justified, except for callouts/pull quotes
  • Paragraphs should be separated by single spaces
  • Avoid long, continuous blocks of text -- and encourage scanning by breaking up text using short paragraphs, sub-headings, bullets, and call-outs
  • Headlines and listings should be limited to 75 characters including spaces
  • Sentences must be ‘tight’ and limited to 20 to 40 words per sentence (though complex topics may demand more)
  • Explain acronyms – always write out the proper name when it first appears with the acronym in brackets
  • Limit scrolling on a home page or section page – content should not run more than one or two screens
  • All links should be underlined and in blue when not activated and highlighted purple after visited
  • Do not underline text - underlining is reserved for links
  • Do not use ALL CAPS or italics for more than a few words as they are difficult to read

Checklist to complete before you launch ikno to your whole company

To ensure the best chances of 100% engagement, we recommend that all items must be completed prior to company-wide roll-out

  • All Content Admins have successfully logged on and completed the following:
    • Completed their Employee Profile
    • Completed the Survey
  • All Departments have published at least two News Posts with fresh/new content
  • All Departments have published at least three Blog Posts with fresh/new content
  • All Departments have published at least three FAQs Blogs about their functional area(s)
  • All Departments have migrated all prior intranet or Share Drive content to the ikno platform
  • Searched for another Admin using employee search function
    • Via letter of last name
    • Via advanced search
    • Used Site Search function to search for:
      • A News Post
      • A Blog Post
      • An FAQ
      • Commonly needed/used form or document
      • Reported any operational or technical issues found when completing the above