Can a SharePoint intranet increase employee engagement?

I’ve talked about engagement within the context of the intranet before. In fact, I co-wrote a white paper on the topic and posted about that back in June (you can download the white paper from that post).

SharePoint Pro Magazine asked me to cover the topic for them as well. In that new post on engagement and your intranet I offer several additional examples of how to get employees engaged using your intranet.

Remember, engagement is about action. It isn’t just about awareness or acceptance. If employees don’t act, if they don’t deliver above and beyond performance, then you aren’t getting true engagement.

The great thing about using the intranet for engagement is that tasks drive usage and adoption. It’s a wonderful cycle of task completion–usage–engagement. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. More on using business processes to drive adoption in a future post.

P.S. On a personal note:

Yesterday morning I participated in the 9-11 Memorial Stair Climb at Red Rocks. It was moving and inspiring. Many of the approximately 2,000 people participating were fire fighters in full gear. You can’t not feel the emotion when you climb along side them. Some of them have their locators turned on and pinging, which was eerie in the fog. For those who came from lower altitude, it was a real accomplishment.

At the end, Kelly Werthmann herself (CBS4 reporter) took this shot of me and my husband. Her article explains more and has some other great photos. If you ever get the chance to do the climb, I highly recommend it. It’s engagement in its fullest expression.

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Catching up on measuring social and embedding governance

This blog was down for a bit while we moved all our websites, blogs and email to a new host (sayonara #Machighway).  Now that we’re back up and running, I’ve got some catching up to do on two important topics.

Measuring social

First, measuring social. It’s a question I get frequently. Measuring social is different than the metrics we typically use for overall intranet ROI. When proving ROI across the intranet or entire digital workplace, we typically look at metrics in these three categories:

  1. Business metrics (e.g., money saved by reducing printing cost, increase in online training registrations, reduced errors in HR enrollment or form completion, costs savings through collaborative ideation)
  2. Communication metrics (e.g., comprehension of important topics, access to decision-making information, ability to find internal experts)
  3. Usage metrics (e.g., visits, visit duration, entry and exit pages, most visited sites/pages)

Social is different because its value is in participation. This doesn’t mean everyone has to do all the same types of participation. Some can post, others can comment, while still others can rate or vote. Meanwhile, the persistent majority will simply read. And that’s just fine. It’s this dynamic of participation that alters how we measure social and its benefits to the organization.

So, I wrote a more detailed post on measuring social for SharePoint Pro Magazine. Check it out and let me know how you are measuring social. It’s an evolution and no one person has all the right answers.

 Make SharePoint do the remembering for you

We all have too much to remember. Making intranet governance stick is hard to do unless you make your platform do some of the governing for you. SharePoint can do a lot for you in this area if you take the time to configure it.

That’s why I wrote a post for SharePoint Pro Magazine on embedding governance in your SharePoint intranet. If you’ve got the licenses for SharePoint (here’s hoping you’ve got that all right with Microsoft), you may as well get SharePoint to do a lot of your thinking for you.

If you are already embedding  governance in your SharePoint intranet, tell me what things you are doing. What are you making SharePoint responsible for remembering? And what are you doing with all that free time?

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How to create SharePoint taxonomy governance

This week I’ve written a piece for SharePoint Pro Magazine about:

How to create SharePoint taxonomy governance

Ironically, I’m in Chicago this week to chair ALI’s Intranet and Digital Workplace Summit, where I know taxonomy will come up. It always does.

Most of the time it’s in the context of improving search. This morning I spoke with one conference attendee who has no search capability on the company intranet. This is not altogether surprising.

In a recent client assignment, we helped the client identify that they had about 30 different, unique and totally separate intranets. Only one of these had global search. Some had no or very limited search.

So, as an aside to my post linked above, for taxonomy to work at all, you have to invest in search tools. And, for those students in this morning’s workshop on governance, taxonomy is one of those things that deserves central control. You’ll get more ROI out of your investment in taxonomy if your user’s search experience is consistent across the entire enterprise.

Now, go forth and tag!