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Intranet and comms resources

Creating intranet content: a guide for everyone

I worked with Sam Marshall to write this guide for intranet contributors. It’s the sort of thing you’d share with your extended team / network.

Page thumbnails of Creating Intranet ContentThe guide covers ten common challenges:

  1. Effective headlines: help people choose what to read
  2. Images: attracting interest and conveying meaning
  3. Links: how to link to pages and files
  4. Layout: how to structure articles for scanability
  5. How to help people search for, and find, your content
  6. Content: write for your audience, not for your boss
  7. Documents vs pages: when to use PDF, Word, etc.
  8. Engage: writing to start a conversation
  9. Channels: reach the right audiences
  10. Mobile content.

Each subject is concisely tackled over one or two pages, and we’ve included a checklist at the back, so be sure to download the full guide from the ClearBox website.

Download ‘Creating intranet content’ and share with your (internal) extended comms network

Get the content guide

Content tactics – executing your strategy on the page

I literally toured Europe with this presentation during 2014 / 2015 :) Whether you’ll get enough from the SlideShare, I don’t know – but I’d be happy to present this in person to your team.

Download or bookmark ‘Content tactics’ in SlideShare

Get the SlideShare

Read the Intranätverk write-up of my content tactics presentation, artfully written by Kristian Norling and Tobias Skarhall.

Perfectly practical articles

Below you’ll find links to specific guidance; for intranet and comms related websites, see my links page / blogroll.

Online tools – freakishly easy

If stakeholders pressure you to put a carousel / slider on your intranet’s home page, ‘just like on our website’ without at UX research, send them this infuriating arguement against such poor design choice: “Should I use a carousel?

Smaller Pictures – Maybe your intranet automatically optimises photographs for faster display, but really, you should control the optimisation so that details are not lost from the photo. This incredibly simple web-app let’s you judge by eye and save your image at a smaller file-size.

Compressor – Online tool to smush the file-size of your images down for faster display. You get to see if the quality of yout photo has degraded :)

Small PDF – do everything with Office files and PDFs that you ever wanted. Online.

FormSwift – create and sign documents. Online.

Zamzar – convert almost any file into any other file type.

Noun Project – icons.

Adobe Voice – Slideshows with voice-overs.

Adobe Slate – visual storytelling.

Citation machine – APA MLA references.

Readability score – how easy is your article to read?

Wordcounter – more than total words.

Photoshop online – it’s Photoshop, free, and in your browser. Requires Flash.

Pixlr Editor – edit images in your browser. Wow. Requires Flash.

Vectr – create vector graphics in youe browser, or in the free app.

Canva – make ‘web posters’.

How Secure is My Password?

Password strength checker.

Jotform – online form design and processing.

Tip of my tongue – get that word you can’t think of.

Parts of a speech – will parse your sentences and try to identify nouns, verbs, and adjectives etc.

Content discovery tools and online collaboration tools – curated master lists.


Destination sites and pages

Y’know, places to go on purpose – they pull you in with great ideas and guidance.

Blind Write – keep drafting separate from editing; write blind.

HemmingwayApp – helps you draft and edit communications to be clear.

Expresso-App – also helps draft comms via readability analysis.

IBM’s Watson Bluemix User Modeling – stupid title, clever analysis of your writing’s personality.

Incredibly practical resources from around the web

Ethnography, personas, journey mapping, interviews, by the Cabinet Office.

Interviewing humans, by Erika Hall.

MoSCoW method 0f requirements rating – Must, Should, Could, Won’t.

Seeding content across the social intranet / enterprise social network, by Sacha Greif.

Card sorting, by

Content migration alone is not an effective content strategy, via NNGroup.

Innovation: explore; extract; exploit, by the 100% Open Toolkit.

How to change the name and address of a SharePoint Site, by Ellen van Aken.

Embed Yammer into SharePoint (Video).

First steps in information management – new tools from CILIP.

Search strategy A-Z [PDF; 400KB] – by Martin White, from his research notes page.

Intranet metrics – discovery, satisfaction, and impact [PDF; 800KB] – by Martin White, from his research notes page.

Never ask what they want – three questions to ask in user intereviews – by Charles Liu.

Focusing on top tasks – by Gerry McGovern, of course.

How to conduct a top task analysis – by Jeff Sauro.

Content strategy – by Ben Grose.

Measurement principles – for external comms, but relevant for anything.

When to provide an intranet to your small organisation – by Kara Pernice of NNG.

Adobe Kickbox innovation toolkit.

UNICEF Knowledge Exchange Toolbox.

Annual awards

Want more inspiration?

Intranet and comms links



Design, web design, and UX books, via Five Simple Steps
I’ve got ‘Designing for conversion’, ‘Practical responsive images’, and ‘The craft of words’ (parts 1 and 2).

Web design, via A Book Apart
I’ve got ‘The elements of content strategy’.

The intranet management handbook‘ and ‘Enterprise search‘ via Facet and O’Reilly.

Collaboration and intranet books, via Intranätverk
I’ve got ‘Digital success or digital disaster?’ and ‘Collaborating in a social era’.

Intranet design, via Step Two Designs
I’ve got ‘Essential intranets’, ‘Designing intranets’, and ‘What every intranet team should know’.

Digital Workplace Trends 2015 – The Organization in the Digital Age by Jane McConnell
A massive research effort from Jane, providing insights and direction for enterprises of any size.

Small business intranet guide

I wrote this for Interact. A small intranet, perhaps cloud-based, can streamline processes and save time, frustration, and money.

Intranets for small businessesProductivity is key to your bottom-line. This guide highlights 9 points to help you to increase your efficiency and effectiveness within your small business. These include:

  • How to combat growing pains
  • Reducing reliance on shared drives and email
  • Streamlining productivity
  • Using cloud to get up and running with minimal resource.

Download ‘Intranets for small businesses’

Get the SMB guide

Social networks / social media marketing


Intranet glossary – a work in progress

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