Employee searching for information on the intranet.


Ask employees what they would change about internal commuication and one thing they always mention is search.

"The search function on our intranet doesn't work very well," an employee will say. 

Another will chime in, "It's so hard to find what I'm looking for."

Since search is so frequently a pain point, it's important that you add this to your short list of issues of address. How to get started? Understand what employees seek when they search.

For example, research shows that people who search for information on the internet fit into one of the following three categories:

  • Answer Me searchers want exactly what they ask for, and no more, delivered in a way that allows them to get to it as directly as possible. 
  • Educate Me searchers want 360 degrees of understanding, and multiple perspectives on critical topics. They will search until their goal is achieved, which may stretch over long periods of time and through related topics. 
  • Inspire Me searchers are looking for surprises, have open minds and want to be led. 

Why is this important? Employees are seeking information in different ways, depending on their interest in a topic. So marketing advice is also relevant to how we provide communication internally:

  • For Answer Me searchers, who want just enough, we need to put information front and center, in a way that provides quick, easy-to-find answers.
  • For Educate Me searchers, create messaging that is informative, in addition to providing a way to learn more about the topic from multiple angles.
  • For Inspire Me searchers, we need to offer choice and be creative.

As always, one size does not fit all, and the more we understand employees’ preferences, the better we can design communication that meets their needs.

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