Digital design drives how users interact with your website–and that applies to intranet design as well! We know users of our software solution are especially interested in how to make the design of their intranets intuitive, informative, and eye-catching. So, we want to share four useful tips on how to improve your intranet’s functionality, design, and navigation. Let’s jump right in with all the ways you can be creative with IC’s intranet software!
Tips for brand new intranet design!
Tip 1 – Make use of new features
When you buy IC software, you have a fleet of developers providing new features and functionality to your intranet on a regular basis—so take advantage of this!
Tip 2 – Use a clean, fresh design
When you first go live with your intranet, sometimes it’s good to have a bold design theme, lots of graphics, and a few boxes on the home page for social-fun content. This helps to drum up interest and attract employees to the new intranet.
Nova’s intranet is a great example of using color and eye-catching graphics to keep their intranet looking fresh and interesting to their employees:
Tip 3 – Rethink your navigation
Think Labels. Does a menu item called “General Information” really make it clear for employees what it contains? A menu item labeled “Employee Info, Events & Resources” is something an employee could click on knowing exactly what information is available to them there.
P.S. If your navigation is NOT at the top of the homepage, move it on up. Navigation first!
Tip 4 – Give users some power
Get your employees involved – you might be surprised at their level of responsibility and ability to share valuable information. For example: Suggestion Boxes, Discussion Forums, News, Blogs, and Knowledge Centers are collaborative tools that engage your employees.
Tips when redesigning an existing intranet
We’ve had quite a few clients whose intranets have needed a little TLC after a few years! With IC’s amazing support team, we were able to take their intranet from zero to hero and make it a more useful cornerstone in their organization. Here are some tips on how to renovate your intranet!
Tip 1—Don’t overuse color!
Sometimes too much color can be detrimental to the aesthetics of your intranet—not to mention can create issues with accessibility for people who may have visual impairments. When in doubt, always go for a white background. It’s more modern and helps make your content really pop! If you do want to use a colored background, go for something darker and be sure to create appropriate levels of contrast so that all the important info remains readable to everyone!
Use colors that are on brand and really eye-catching. Blue is good, but reds and oranges can really make your intranet pop, like it does for Golden Valley Bank
Tip 2—Get rid of clutter!
Like we mentioned in the first part of our blog, rely on simple, intuitive navigation—with clear hierarchy of what elements are most important!
Transit Police redesigned their intranet, and in enhancing their design hierarchy, they really made their new intranet easier to navigate and less overwhelming:
Left, before; right, after
Tip 3—Bring in your corporate design elements
Create a sense of familiarity when redesigning your intranet. The best time to do an overhaul of your intranet’s design is during/after a rebranding! Creating a cohesive look between internal and external websites is key to making sure your workforce knows exactly who your brand is—and can help them more quickly acclimate to new branding/logos/color schemes!
A case study in intranet design
Using our intranet software, we can show clients what their intranet would look like with corporate branding incorporated on their site. We love what Range has done with their IC intranet:
- They used their corporate webpage as a template for their intranet theme!
- They incorporated their branding on the intranet and used the navy blue, orange, and light blue colors of their external website to create a strong and familiar identity on their intranet.
- They also helped identify a fun name (C.H.I.R.P) for their intranet to make employees feel even more connected with it (Pro Tip: create an intranet naming contest so employees get a say on what the intranet is called)
How has your intranet grown and changed over the years? We also love to see what our customers are doing with our software, so please feel free to share with our team! And be sure to check out our eBook on this topic, Intranet Design, for some more insight and tips on designing the best intranet for your organization.
Don’t really have an intranet quite yet? Book your free demo here and let our team make everything from set-up to design to create an internal comms strategy a piece of cake!
Note: This blog was previously published in 2011, and was updated and republished in 2022