The company intranet is a powerful tool that leading workplaces rely on to operate everyday. Employees use it to work on projects, read company announcements, and find files. Higher-ups and CEOs use the company intranet to connect with staff, and managers use it to track projects and communicate with team members.
Company intranet software is packed with more tools that support your company—from customer support cases to the employee directory.
The purpose of a company intranet is to provide a private, secured online network where employees can create content, communicate, collaborate, manage tasks and events, and develop the company culture. It’s your company’s home-base, team touchpoint, central repository, multifunctional communication tool, and more.
Modern intranet software is flexible and can be used in many ways. A true intranet solution strengthens communication and productivity with internal communication and collaboration tools. To make sure your company intranet is serving your employees, it's crucial to continuously implement new intranet ideas to keep your digital workplace fresh, fun and inspiring.
Here are 36 intranet ideas to create the best company intranet:
Every team—regardless of industry, location, or role—will need to access important files and documents. Your intranet document management system can store anything, from templates and stock photos, to product documents and legal forms. Make your files accessible by using your document management system. Employees can easily find files by typing keywords, searching through content type or author, or date. You can also tag content and promote engagement by encouraging employees to rate what they read.
You might be saying, "Hey Tim! What do I do about the thousands of files I have in another system we were using before our company intranet?" This is an easy fix. Today's leading digital workplaces have intranet integrations with the most on-demand document management systems. This way, you can easily sync important content into your intranet seamlessly.
One of the most effective intranet ideas is to brand your platform. Start with a unique name that fits your company culture—this makes your intranet exciting for your employees, who will be using it everyday.
Naming your company intranet gives it an identity that draws people in and increases adoption. The name will influence the way the intranet is perceived and used within the organization.
Without a unique name, employees are left with "the intranet", or "the network", maybe "the portal", or even the name of the technology provider, such as Communifire. Dubbing your intranet with a name makes your digital workplace part of the organization and creates a buzz.
Once you've made the decision to name your intranet, the next question is:
What should I name it?
Great question. I wrote an entire post to help you. Let's get our creative wheels turning—you can read more here: How to Choose an Intranet Name
Your intranet is the perfect platform for broadcasting your company's successes. Did someone win an award? Did someone get a promotion? Posting these stories is a great way to motivate employees and make each day worthwhile. It also encourages people to reach out to their colleagues to congratulate each other.
In Communifire, admins and peers can show recognition by awarding badges, or shout-outs, for outstanding achievements. There is also a point system feature, where employees accumulate points for notable contributions. This builds positive employee morale, acknowledges members for their accomplishments, and cultivates growth within your company.
The intranet homepage is usually the first page employees see. Use this as an opportunity to inspire and motivate members by creating a beautiful intranet design. With drag-and-drop page building features, you can customize your homepage to fit your brand without any HTML experience. Control the layout of your page so important content and features are exactly where you want them to be—such as your company calendar, daily announcements, third-party tools, a "quick links" section, etc.
Imagine what you want your intranet look to like. Then, make these intranet ideas a reality.
It's important to remember that your intranet solution doesn't have to stay the same. Nothing is set in stone. As your business grows, so will the needs of your intranet. Experiment with different workflows, different intranet designs, and different intranet ideas.
For instance, if you're a CEO and you don't have time for your monthly blog post, try a ghostwriting feature to see how you stay connected with staff—even if you've never used this tool before. If you want to encourage more peer-to-peer recognition, start integrating your intranet recognition programs. Maybe it's as simple as turning on "likes" and comments to see if your employees use it. Once you find something that sticks, the rest will fall into place on its own. Keep experimenting.
The best way to keep your content marketing plan on track is by sticking to a consistent schedule, which also happens to be a great intranet idea, too. Create an internal content calendar for each month. Plan articles you want to share, announcements that can be written beforehand, deadlines, campaigns or company initiatives that you will be promoting.
People care about information that is relevant to them. Put your content team on a schedule to make sure your company intranet is the homebase for what matters most.
Well-designed intranet software is packed with tools that companies need on a daily basis to operate and innovate. (For example, cases and helpdesks for customer support, internal communication and content creation, document management, and more.) Even with all of these intranet tools at your disposal, there's still 3rd party tools that your teams need.
Modern company intranet software will integrate with many systems you use today. And for external platforms without integrations, use your launchpad to link to external tools. Employees love this intranet idea because everything important is a click away. By organizing everyday tools in your digital workplace, you organize everyday tasks for your people.
A consistent brand identity is important for your business—and the color scheme of your company intranet should reflect it. That doesn't mean you can't get playful. If your company observes holidays throughout the year, switch up your color scheme to celebrate. You can also get creative and add imagery and colors to welcome new seasons.
Getting playful with your colors will catch your people's attention, keep spirits high, and refresh your entire intranet experience. There are so many options—consider brainstorming intranet ideas with your entire staff by creating a poll or discussion forum.
Most people use their intranet calendars to schedule meetings and company deadlines, but there are so many other events you can plan and showcase on your calendars. Here's a few ideas:
This is a wonderful opportunity to connect remote teams if you have employees who live in the same area. It's also just as beneficial for companies who work in the same office everyday—social events build stronger relationships.
(Tip- Here's another highly recommended intranet idea: segment your calendars. Every department should have their own calendar to organize internal projects, deadlines, and meetings. And your company calendar should track important dates that impacts everyone.)
Take your events calendar a step further and post photo albums from team gatherings on your company intranet. This does a couple things:
This is a quick and easy intranet idea to improve employee engagement and make your culture stronger.
There's no getting around it: everyone uses text-heavy content. The downfall is that after reading page after page loaded with words, mental fatigue kicks in and it gets hard to retain information. No manager wants this.
A simple intranet idea to make information more exciting and your employees more focused, is to add images inside your content. Incorporate visual context to your subject matter and break up the flow of your text. You'll also boost engagement with images. The web is a treasure trove of images, so use this to your advantage.
Have you ever tried to navigate through a jumbled intranet? If you haven't, then trust me, you don't want this for your employees. When a company intranet is outdated, unorganized, and difficult to get from point A to point B, it slows down productivity. You're also left with frustrated employees who do not have the resources they need to do their best work.
Your employees need a sleek and modern company intranet design with intuitive navigation, so it's easy to get stuff done. Aesthetically speaking, consider using white space, smooth lines, and plenty of strong boundaries. Leading intranet software also gives you the ability to customize your intranet navigation bar, so you have control over the entire user experience for your digital workplace.
It's easy to get wrapped up in work and not pay attention to things outside of the daily to-do list. Give your staff incentive to take part in meaningful conversations and create valuable content. Hold an intranet contest and offer prizes. You can, for example, reward the most active user a $20 gift card on a weekly or monthly basis.
Gamification in the workplace is also an effective way to boost engagement on your company intranet. By implementing friendly competitions that also promote positive contributions to your company, you are bringing people together, boosting morale, and increasing productivity.
There are many options here, so think of ways you haven't used your company intranet, then get your people communicating and collaborating.
"Throwback Thursday" is one of the most popular hashtags used on social media platforms. Consider implementing a #TBT themed Thursday to add a couple laughs each week. Or, you can do a #PhotoFriday, #MondayMeals, or something more specific to your company culture. Use your company intranet to shine a spotlight on your special day. Create a space or a discussion forum where employees can share their posts. You can even dedicate a gallery on the homepage—an easy addition to your intranet design if you have page builder pages.
Inspiration motivates employees and keeps them on track. And there are plenty of ways to develop an inspiring social community. One great company intranet idea is to post inspiring employee engagement quotes in your digital workplace. This is a thoughtful way to encourage the very best out of your employees and helps them start the day off on the right foot.
The main homepage is a practical place to post your quote, or you can encourage directors to post their own quotes on their space homepages. We recommend posting one quote every day or week, but don't overdo it!
Hiring within your company is super beneficial and can save you money. When you hire internally, the candidate already has an understanding of the lay of the land, and a proven track record of excelling in your company. You also have confidence in their recommendations and training is significantly easier.
If you're looking to fill a new job, here's an idea: try posting in your company intranet. Turn a discussion forum into an internal job board. Post job openings, share updates, and spread the word.
When you tag your content, searching for information in your company intranet becomes easier. Add tags such as "marketing", "internal documentation", and other categories that will help your employees find what they need. This is an effective way to manage intranet content, which saves time for your entire organization.
Early adopters of your company intranet are the people who will contribute meaningful content and conversations and show the value to other colleagues—without even trying. In short, these are the individuals who can take your intranet to new heights.
Identify who they are and make them community leaders. You can do this a couple ways—highlight "User of the Month" on your homepage, award a kudos, or use your points and recognition feature to give much deserved acknowledgement. Others will notice.
People have questions—it's part of life and learning. Particularly when employees are taking on new projects, new to the job, or learning how to use the company intranet, a Q&A forum is a quick and efficient way to answer questions.
It's also a great way to have a living resource always available for your people. No matter what time of day, answers are one click away. You can also create intranet discussion forums for important questions that need their own home to store detailed responses. Your Q&A forum should not replace the role of managers, who should be checking in with their team members as well.
Employees want to share their feedback about your company intranet—things they enjoy and things they don't. By collecting their intranet ideas and suggestions, you can make tweaks to your intranet design with the confidence that your employees support these enhancements. You also have the opportunity to brainstorm new examples of intranet ideas for the future. Do this by creating a survey or posting a forum thread. Empowering your employees to have a voice in your company boosts morale and helps you develop a stronger company culture.
(If you're interested, here are some more employee engagement ideas.)
We all have stressful workweeks, especially when deadlines are creeping up. It's amazing how far a quick laugh can go.
Use your company intranet to ease tension and spread some laughter. Post a funny video, comical quote, or add a goofy GIF to an announcement. We've touched on this intranet idea already, but don't be afraid to add some humor to your digital workplace. Your intranet is built for humans, not robots.
There are so many benefits to employee profiles. For starters, they put a face to a name. Particularly for large companies, the employee directory helps people track down who they need and connects colleagues on a human level.
That's why for our #22 company intranet idea, we encourage you to use your employee profiles! Think outside the box and customize your profile questions. Ask about favorite musicians, personal hobbies, or most random memory. Then, have your staff complete their profiles. Everyone's employee profile should showcase their professional achievements and their role in the company, and also show who they are. People want to interact with humans, not computers.
There's no warmer welcome than introducing a new employee to the entire company on your intranet. The social tools—likes, comments, and messenger—makes your company intranet the perfect place to connect new team members with staff. Create a post on the homepage and share a link to his or her profile for further networking. It's an easy gesture and immediately demonstrates to new employees that the intranet is the main tool used to communicate throughout your company.
A strong internal communication system is a game changer for collaboration. This brings us to intranet idea #24: use your company intranet to have meaningful conversations. Your intranet has one-on-one chats, group messages, comments, and discussion threads. Bypassing the back-and-forth of emails and encouraging colleagues to ask questions in a quick, personalized manner, builds relationships between teams, departments, and employees. Check out this blog post to learn how to get employees to start online discussions on your intranet.
Video is an effective way to train new employees because training videos combine verbal and visual instruction, and are always available for future reference. Use your company intranet to onboard new hires—you'll make life easier for your managers and for your new employees.
This is more than just an intranet idea. Incorporating training videos becomes part of your intranet training strategy. Here's a couple other benefits:
Be sure to organize everything by space or tags, so your training videos are always accessible for whoever needs them.
Your company intranet is where employees find important information, no matter where they are. Although these days most content is digital, some companies still use paper. If this is the case, upload these documents into your digital workplace. This way, your employees can access these documents anywhere.
You not only save paper, but it's also a safer bet that you will never lose important content. Scanning and uploading documents can take time, but it's well worth it.
Your company intranet supports and connects employees to each other and to their work. It also builds a stronger community and empowers employees to take charge in their role. One way to combine all four of these intranet benefits is to encourage employees to publish their own content on the intranet. Wikis and knowledge base articles are some of the types of content people can create. (A WYSIWYG editor lets anyone create and publish content without coding experience.)
Always encourage your people to contribute to your intranet community if they feel they have something valuable to share.
While we're on the topic of content, no one is a better authority over your company than you. Your company intranet should reflect that with valuable, timely, and relevant information to help departments do their jobs well. Encourage department heads to post helpful articles, case studies, and make sure documents are updated. By providing teams with content they care about, the intranet becomes a place they want to go to.
Encouraging everyone to post information is the first step. Keeping tabs on its impact is the next step. Surveys and forums are excellent options to get direct feedback from staff, but it's also valuable to keep an eye on analytics. Identify what your employees are viewing and if they like it by the number of "likes", "shares", "sentiment", and comments a post receives—all tracked in your analytics tool.
If you decide to refresh your platform, whether it's a new intranet design or internal communication strategy, this data will give you a better idea about what's working and what needs improvement.
If you have a lot of departments, such as sales, marketing, and IT, you'll want to segment your company intranet so your teams are organized. Here enters digital workspaces (or spaces).
Digital workspaces is where internal teams have their own space on the intranet to organize people, documents, and projects in one easy-to-use place. You can make them private to members of a space or public to everyone on the intranet.
If a space is public, employees in other teams can easily see what's new in other departments. This is a great way to curb department silos.
When people trust their company, believe in their company's core values, and feel supported by their leadership, employees are happier to do their jobs. This intranet idea is for higher-ups and executives—let's continue this relationship of trust and transparency by communicating consistently with staff members.
The company intranet is the perfect place for higher-ups to do this. Share news, announce company changes, or post a thoughtful weekly note, directly to employees. By consistently engaging with your entire staff, your employees will be more engaged with their work because they feel valued. Communication in large and widespread workforces can be a challenge—if this is your company, take this suggestion back to your team.
Department silos can happen in the same building. If your business is entirely remote or has remote teams, the couple hundred or thousands of miles that separate employees can add more challenges when it comes to engagement.
Use your company intranet and it's strong social features to eliminate these barriers. Create a space for remote members to post photos, videos, and jokes. Continue to recognize outstanding behavior with gamification features. Implement weekly or monthly team building exercises through video meetings to play games—a particularly fun intranet idea. Share weekly Spotify playlists. Punderdome, a pun card game, only requires a manager to have the cards while other members work in teams. This is one of many games you can schedule throughout the year.
Your company intranet is designed to connect every employee, no matter the distance. Use its features to build stronger relationships and happier team members.
If you want more information about connecting remote teams, check out this blog post: Axero's 8 Rules for Working Remotely and Functioning Well as a Team.
There are some departments or employees that need their own space to privately discuss topics and share information. Use the permission settings in your company intranet to make this easier.
Managers, or anybody working on confidential tasks, will have a secure place to openly collaborate and discuss topics. You also eliminate a bunch of platforms that can complicate collaboration, such as as email, chat, and Dropbox. Now, users can accomplish all of their tasks in one place. Edit unfinished documents, discuss department plans, or share files in one private hub.
If your company intranet doesn't have a mobile app, you're missing out on a huge feature that many employees want. These days, accessibility isn't a request; it's an expectation. When users are on the go, they want to carry their work with them.
Perhaps a staff member is at a work convention and doesn't have a laptop handy. Or maybe an unexpected meeting popped up and you need the name of a person who worked on a project.
Regardless of the situation, your digital workplace should fit in the palm of your hands. As long as the mobile intranet design is easy to navigate and has essential features, your staff will never be too far from their desk.
Intranet software is evolving everyday. Platforms such as Communifire consistently releases updates and new features to improve productivity and user happiness.
Pay attention to emerging internal communication trends and feedback from your employees. Sometimes it's not the content that is lacking but the tools. As your company's needs expand, make sure your company intranet is growing with it.
Every CEO and manager wants their company intranet to be the ultimate source of productivity and collaboration. Because when great things are happening on the intranet, great things are happening in the company. One of the most helpful intranet ideas we can share with you is this: take a deep breath and set realistic expectations. Flexible intranet software will help you accomplish all of your goals, but don't take on too many changes at once.
Start with one area—maybe you want to revamp your intranet design, or maybe you want to test out tools your company hasn't used yet. This is a great way to move forward and make sure you're doing it right every step of the way.
Improving your company intranet is an exciting project that also improves how your employees work together and do their jobs. Feel free to use these intranet ideas, or come up with your own and share them in the comment section below. Include your employees throughout this process and pay attention to what works best for your company. Success is right around the corner.
Tim is president and co-founder of Axero Solutions, a leading intranet software vendor. He's also a bestselling author of Who the Hell Wants to Work for You? Mastering Employee Engagement. Tim’s been featured in Fortune, Forbes, TIME, Inc Magazine, Entrepreneur, CNBC, Today, and other leading publications.
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