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Redesigning Our Intranet


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Until 2017, the intranet homepage of Brookhaven National Laboratory had not been substantially redesigned since 2004. In the intervening 13 years, ideas about web design, content strategy, information architecture, and the function of an employee intranet changed dramatically. Our redesign project addressed the need for an intranet that better served Lab employees as an information resource that made their daily work lives a little easier. This talk reviews how user data was collected and analyzed to arrive at a final product.

Published in: Design
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Redesigning Our Intranet

  1. 1. Data-driven approach
  2. 2. Main Requirements
  3. 3. Aid Employee Productivity
  4. 4. Reduce time spent looking for online resources
  5. 5. Increase employee satisfaction
  6. 6. What should be included ?
  7. 7. Collecting user feedback
  8. 8. Online survey
  9. 9. Face-to-face interviews
  10. 10. Survey objectives were to find… A. What information users most want to see B. How often is the intranet home page used C. What proposed new features would be welcomed. D. How useful/frustrating the current home page is believed to be E. What the most useful features of the current intranet home page are F. What the least useful features of the current intranet home page are G. What the baseline is for post-redesign satisfaction surveys H. Who would be willing to volunteer for in-person interviews
  11. 11. Sample Questions How interested would you be in a personalization feature that would allow you to choose and see links to your favorite/most frequently accessed BNL webpages right on the home page? Indicate your agreement with the statement “the intranet home page is useful to me.” Is the Lab home page set as your default “home”?
  12. 12. User Interviews
  13. 13. Interview script What do you think a home page is for, what’s its purpose? How do you find what you need for your job online? How do you find out what’s happening at the Lab? How easy is it for you find what you’re looking for online? If you were looking for ___ , would you look online first or ask a coworker? Why? What was the last Lab related thing you couldn’t find online? Anything in the last week?
  14. 14. Interview script Have you ever used another institution’s internal home page? What did you like about it? Should our home page be more like that one? When do you consult the internal home page? What are you usually hoping to do there? Did you look at the home page today? Why or why not? Do you think the homepage is designed for people who do the kind of work that you do? If a new design eliminated everything on the current home page, would you miss anything?
  15. 15. Interview script Is there anything you’d like to keep? If you could only keep just one thing, what would it be? If you could change any one thing about the page, what would it be? Think of a time you were really frustrated with our internal website. Tell me about that. What do you wish were on the homepage but isn’t? Would you be willing to login to the intranet home page if you could see information on it that was specifically for you?
  16. 16. Figuring out who to interview
  17. 17. Conducting interviews
  18. 18. Binning interview results O Opinion, Impression B Bad / barrier / complaint Be Behavior (what they do) X Useless to me W Wish / Suggestion U Unknown, I didn’t know... M Motivation (why they do something) L I like it P Preference C Types of content F Feelings
  19. 19. Some verbatim I don't like the search interface; I accidentally search the phone book when I actually want to search the website. It's too easy to screw that up. Make them separate. The page is a bit busy. I’m visual. The information there is not a problem, it’s how it looks. I have no idea what the 'Safety Resources' are in the top corner.
  20. 20. Some verbatim I don't think the homepage is designed for people that do the kind of work I do. because if it was, I'd have the things I need to access right in front of me and it would know who I was and only give me the things I need to access. People have been here such a long time, they know the terminology and where things are located, but as a new person, you just don’t.
  21. 21. Interview conclusions • People confuse the directory and web content search function. The user interface needs improvement • People have a hard time figuring out how to place orders for photos, videos, and graphic services • A to Z site index gets used more frequently as a navigational tool than previously thought • Users would rather try to find an answer online before asking a coworker • Access to the links to PeopleSoft are the most frequently cited reason for opening the homepage
  22. 22. Interview conclusions • Users willing to login in exchange, consider it a good trade off • Classified ads on the homepage are very popular • Entering time card information is one of the most common tasks that staff go to the homepage for • Events Calendar could be clearer. It should show what’s happening tomorrow as well as today • Majority of staff have the homepage set as their browser’s default home • An online guide to Lab acronyms for newcomers (and even some seasoned hands) would be a welcome addition
  23. 23. Online survey results
  24. 24. Did you look at the Lab’s internal home page today for any reason?
  25. 25. Which of the following have you done online within the last 30 days?
  26. 26. How interested would you be in a personalization feature that would allow you to choose and see links to your favorite/most frequently accessed Lab webpages right on the internal home page?
  27. 27. Developing new navigation
  28. 28. Card sorting
  29. 29. ‘Cards’ used in the test
  30. 30. Sample open card sort result
  31. 31. Creating a prototype
  32. 32. Live demo
  33. 33. In conclusion…
  34. 34. Thanks for listening @gary_schroeder