I had the pleasure of being the closing session for DEX 2022, run online by Step Two in October 2022.
It was a super-practical session that explored how two decades of intranet best practices (many of which have been defined by Step Two) apply to the many intranets being built in SharePoint Online (Modern). The session also draws on the many client projects that Step Two has been conducting in SharePoint Online.
Key topics covered:
- Four fundamentals of successful intranets: usable, findable, valuable and governed.
- For each of these areas, the session talks through intranet best practices for “traditional” and then shows how they apply to SPO intranets.
- Key UX/HCD techniques, such as task-based user testing (as described in Designing Intranets), apply equally to traditional and SPO intranets.
- An important difference is that instead of creating a traditional “information architecture“, this gets split into a separate navigation experience plus SharePoint site architecture.`
- Intranets should be more than just useful, they should be “essential”.
- The five purposes of modern intranets provides a useful framework for thinking about both traditional and SPO intranets.
- Award-winning examples show how SharePoint solutions can go beyond the domain of traditional intranets, such as the SP Group and MassMutual.
- Microsoft Viva is giving intranet and digital workplace teams an increasingly rich toolbox of capabilities to deliver business value.
- Governance is even more critical for SPO intranets although it tends to get applied at a site level, rather than individual sections or pages.
- The Intranet Operating Model provides a practical approach for establishing governance that works well for SPO intranets.
The key takeaway: while it’s important to ‘go with the grain’ of how SharePoint Online works, there are still key considerations to ensure that SPO intranets are usable, findable, valuable and governed.
Of course, reach out if our consulting team can help you deliver a great SharePoint Modern site! After all, we’re doing so many SPO intranet projects already, what’s one more ;-)