Creating an effective intranet knowledge base

By Karleen Murphy
September 28, 2018
4 min read

What is an intranet knowledge base? How to set up a knowledge base? How to apply permissions using two methods? What are the best practices for the intranet knowledge base? Get all your answers here!

An intranet knowledge base is an effective way to store information on your private network. Content in your intranet knowledge base can easily be searched for and retrieved by your employees using the various Enterprise Search tools built into your intranet.  The information you store in your intranet knowledge base can be a simple FAQ about the company or commonly asked questions by employees.

Setting up your intranet knowledge base

Learn how to set up your intranet knowledge base

You can have a single knowledge base on your intranet software or multiple knowledge bases on each one of your Department Sites. A best practice for any intranet is giving ownership of sites and applications to those who want or have the most relevant company news. Therefore, if possible, separating your knowledge base’s by Department Site will ensure your information is more robust and accurate.

Applying for knowledge base permissions

It is possible to create an intranet knowledge base to allow anyone to post FAQs on your company intranet. However, the difficulty with this is that when there is no ownership over the application, information tends to become disorganized, out of date, or even inaccurate.

The following two methods result in the most effective intranet knowledge base management:

1) Assign one person in charge of adding FAQs to your knowledge base

This person is in charge of their departmental knowledge base application. They take frequently asked questions from employees and post them along with the answers to the intranet site. Any time an update or change needs to be made to the knowledge base, this person is the go-to resource to make that happen. Having one person with access to the intranet knowledge base eliminates having a free-for-all on your intranet, where information and content can quickly become too difficult to manage.

2) Open up your application, but add an approval manager

This option allows for a more collaborative knowledge base while still ensuring the application is maintained by one person. An open application means any employee can post an article to the knowledge base. Yet, the posting first gets sent to the application approval manager before showing up on the site. This gives intranet users the freedom to post what they want in your intranet knowledge base but still addresses the risk of having your content become disorganized and hard to manage.

Allowing for feedback

Turning on the ratings and comments feature allows employees to give their feedback on certain knowledge base articles and ensures that the information on the intranet is accurate and up to date.  Any comments made on an article will alert the application owner so that they can go in and update the article for accuracy. 

This is a great way to promote communication and collaboration on your intranet knowledge base. Employees can comment their ideas for future knowledge base articles or offer feedback on existing information in the knowledge base, which will also improve employee engagement.

Using the HTML Field

The title of your article should be your knowledge base question, while the answer should be placed into an HTML field.  This will allow you to embed images, icons and a large amount of text right on your page.  As shown below, this will also allow for content to be displayed in the preview pane of your search results, reducing the number of clicks necessary for your employees to find the answers they need.  You can also attach an uploaded file to your intranet knowledge base article with additional information, and the search will index all content within your uploaded file as well when returning search results.

Intranet Knowledge Base - Search Results

Do you have examples of your own intranet knowledge base? Don’t be afraid to contact us, we’d love to hear more.

By Karleen Murphy

Karleen is a former IC teammate.