It’s that time of year again, where we pull out the crystal ball and predict next year’s intranet trends.
Actually wait, we don't need a crystal ball! As veterans in the intranet software industry we have accumulated enough expertise and wisdom to confidently predict next year’s intranet trends.
So without further ado, here are our predictions for intranets in 2023:
Communication continues to become more human
The pandemic, and the subsequent hybrid and remote work evolution, created space for a more humanized level of communication. When at-home Zoom meetings became a regular occurrence, we were instantly invited into employees’ homes where unmade beds, screaming children, and attention-hungry pets were the norm. Even with the pandemic (mostly) in the rear-view mirror, expect employee communication on intranets to stay informal and continue to be more humanized.
Integrations are important because they allow you to connect your intranet with other tools that support your work. An intranet might not replace other software, but it should integrate with your existing applications. Over the last few years intranet trends have seen integrate with Slack, Microsoft suite and Google. In 2023 we expect intranets to become more complex and integrate with even more applications including Airtable, Miro or Workday.
Empowering content creators
Early intranets—and even some modern SharePoint intranets— were troublesome for many reasons, but mostly because content creation was restricted to burdened IT teams, or those with special powers. As content creation (and security) becomes smarter, and more intuitive, expect intranet management to be decentralized to departments and teams to manage on their own.
Doing more with less
While 2020 highlighted the importance of internal communications, and finally handed comms professionals a seat at the table, it hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing since then. Recent economic instability has once again pointed its finger to marketing and communications teams who have been forced to do more with less. Have no fear though, these are the most creative and clever departments. This simply means they need to be more careful and savvy over the comms tools they invest in. As one of the more exciting intranet trends, we expect the fat to get trimmed on unnecessary tools, with renewed focus on an intranet as a single source of truth.
Intranet content creators no longer have the luxury of just adding content and hoping for the best. They need to stay agile, and constantly be making tweaks. Are in-office employees concerned about the same issues as remote workers? Are comms objectives tied into corporate goals? We expect more frequent pulse surveys to ascertain exactly what employees expect from their workplace. In turn, this will create more frequent updates, which can easily be created with the touch of a button from a mobile device.
Intranets will continue to offer opportunities for targeted communication and personalized homepages. This will not only improve overall internal communication, but will help internal communicators connect with employees on a team and department level. For example a nurse in the cardiac department will need radically different corporate communications – content and channels – than a lab technician working just two floors away in the same facility. Employees will no longer have to delete or ignore irrelevant messages. Intranet content creators can build and scale communication models that allow employees to subscribe to the information they really want and need.
Renewed focus on well-being and engagement
Early hybrid models were about ensuring remote employees had access to information. Expect the coming years to provide a greater level of support and resources in the way of mental health. According to Buffer’s 2022 State of Remote Work, isolation, loneliness, and being able to unplug were identified as the biggest struggles while working remotely. We expect to see intranets populated with more mental health resources, and opportunities for discussion and input into what makes a healthy workplace.
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