smart workspace

4 Best practices for Managing a modern intranet

Guidelines for managing an intranet (governance) are underestimated, yet this is one of the most important aspects of the digital work environment. The use and management of the intranet stands or falls with this. This post discusses the 4 best practices for governance of an intranet.


Governance is concerned with all processes required for the development and management of the intranet. Furthermore, it governs how (parts of) the intranet are used within the organization. It is important to understand that the intranet will never be a success without some form of official management, even if the platform works intuitively and seems to manage itself.

Best practice 1 - Determine roles and responsibilities

The first step is to determine roles and responsibilities. This can be a difficult discussion. Our experience shows that there is often a lot of debate within organizations about the ownership of the intranet. Often this is claimed by the communications department, but the IT department also sees itself in that role.

Yet there is no one owner. Instead, there is an intranet team consisting of experts in the field of intranet development and management. These are often employees in functional and technical management roles, as well as project managers, content owners, and the (management) sponsor.

Best practice 2 - Setting up an information strategy

An information strategy sets out where information is created, shared and published. This makes it clear who creates the information, who reviews it, and when it is published. It also identifies the goals various functions have for the intranet.

Examples of this are:

  • Can we save a document in a Yammer conversation or Microsoft Group, or place it in a document center?
  • How do we archive information on the intranet? Is this a requirement?

The information strategy should be written clearly to avoid any misunderstandings and then actively promoted to the intranet users. The strategy supports the intranet team in keeping the platform up-to-date and provides clear guidance. The information strategy is, therefore, a vital part of intranet management.

Best practice 3 - Determine information creation

One of the biggest advantages of the intranet is that the user has access to good, relevant and timely information. This information makes the platform social, informative and relevant. It is important not to underestimate this and to clarify who is authorized to place information on the intranet.

Best practice 4 - Communication and collaboration

Your employees create the intranet. That’s why it is important the governance model does not limit or frustrate them. Give employees a voice, for example by offering them space to provide their feedback. Giving them a voice about the function of the intranet will also ensure they get involved in its continual development and improvement.

Collaboration and communication are important. When both of these are stimulated, the platform will grow and the level of employee interest in the intranet will increase in tandem.

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  • Albert Hoitingh
    Albert Hoitingh
    Business consultant Office 365 , Microsoft MVP
    (0)31 347 22 35 25