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Robert Folan
Sep 22, 2023
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Optimizely For you Intranet

Having been at Optimizely and in the CMS industry for nearly 16 years I have seen clients’ intranet requirements go from a simple site just to house information that is easily accessible by employees, to a social media site that is the single hub of communication for a company, back again now to a simple site that just houses information.  I feel both extremes miss the point.

An intranet at its core is a website.  The only difference between a public facing website and an intranet is the audience.  But increasingly both audiences are expecting the same thing.  A website that looks good, is easy to navigate, but most importantly the site understands its visitors’ goals, and gives them relevant content. Aside from this not much has changed, we all want an Intranet that will provide self-service for our employees to improve productivity.  But we need it to be secure, integrated, and flexible to adapt to today’s ever-changing world.

The technology behind the CMS has evolved.  It has made the Intranet not only a great place to share general or organizational information, but also shares tailored information for employees. Specific content and messaging can be targeted at different employees based on location, title, role, or interest.  This can now be automated as well, making it even easier to provide these tailored experiences.  Beyond that the Intranet can be a resource for information within the company.  Departments like HR can be assured that an employee has viewed content required by company policy and can encourage actions for those who have not.  IT can see what people are searching for and what devices they are using.  Education\Enablement can see what the topics of interest in the company are and can adjust their content creation appropriately.  All this while assuring sensitive content does not fall into the wrong hands, and allowing employees to in the systems they are accustomed to through integrations.

(Image: Unique views vs volume of topic graph in Content Intelligence)


AI and Data have made these capabilities scalable and streamlined.  Optimizely’s Data Platform can gather information about how your employees are interacting digitally with the company in the same way it gathers information about customers.  Optimizely’s Content Intelligence can deliver targeted content to employees and provide insight into consumption and interest, this helps organizations spend time creating content that your employees need just like on your public facing websites.

(Image: User profile event tracking in Optimizely’s Data Platform)

Intranets need to provide four basic functions.  The ability for your site visitor to find what they are looking for quickly: Search.  An experience that is tailored to their needs and wants: Personalization.  The ability for your audience to provide feedback on the experience and information you are providing them: Social Engagement.  The ability to interact with internal systems, providing a single source of truth: Integrations.  Securing these integrations and data to ensure access to based on roles and responsibilities in the organization: Security.  Finally, you need to provide an easy way to create or add content to the intranet that keeps the information provided relevant and up to date: CMS.

As the Intranets of the world move forward, there will be an ever-increasing demand for tailored experiences, Integrations, Security, and as always fresh content.  Employees want engaging experiences, the same they experience today in their personal lives.  With the Optimizely DXP, it is easier now more than ever to deliver this experience. No longer do we need to create segments to deliver a tailored experience, we can use AI.  No longer is it a one-way street when it comes to data, we can gather much more information now about our employees and their preferences.  All this can lead to a better understanding of the employee and through this a better experience! 


Image: Funnel Graph of Form Submissions in Optimizely’s Data Platform)

Remember, an intranet is just a website.  The only difference is the audience.  Create a simple way to manage and update content easily (CMS).  Make sure the content is easy to find (Search).  Personalize the messaging (Content Intelligence) and provide a way to give feedback (Social tools).  Finally gather data and iterate on your findings. (Optimizely’s Data Platform and experimentation).

Sep 22, 2023


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