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How to gauge (and improve) your ROI

How to gauge (and improve) your ROI

Jonathan Davies


See how an intranet works

Learn how an intranet works with this short video.

12 mins read

Mon, Sep 4, '23  

Your intranet should be a powerhouse for your business, not just another tool in the shed. But how do you make sure it's performing as it should?

That's where intranet benchmarking comes into play. By measuring your intranet’s performance against specific standards, you can see where it shines and where it might need a tune-up.

Consider this guide your roadmap to benchmarking your intranet’s performance and ability to deliver a return on investment. We’ll dive into which intranet metrics really matter, break down how to accurately calculate your ROI, and highlight how tools like Happeo analytics can make a significant difference.

Metrics to measure for intranet benchmarking

When assessing your intranet's performance, knowing what you're looking for is essential. Not all metrics are equal; focusing on the right ones can make the difference between a thriving intranet and one that falls short.

Here, we've rounded up the most impactful intranet metrics to help you accurately gauge your intranet's effectiveness.

Content reach

One of the key markers for intranet success is how far your content spreads within the organization. Tracking content reach is one way to do this. Content reach measures the number of users who are using your intranet for a specified period of time.

There are many ways to measure content reach, such as how often employees browse specific kinds of content. Sources show that when your intranet is the main news source (but not the only one), it often reaches 50% to 75% of employees. When it is the sole channel, that reach can be as high as 90%.

You can also use intranet benchmarking to uncover the specific types of content that get the most reach across the company and within different departments. According to an analysis of over 16,000 news and blog posts across 80 high-performing intranets, the most popular types of content include:

  1. CEO updates
  2. Strategy notes
  3. Conferences
  4. Fun news
  5. Project news
  6. Payroll & benefits
  7. Company news
  8. Charity
  9. Clubs
  10. Employee news

Active users, devices, and usage time

One of the truest indicators of your intranet's relevance is the number of active users and their time on the platform. When employees stay logged in longer, it indicates they find the content valuable, relevant, and engaging. If they quickly leave, however, it's a hint the platform may not be meeting their needs.

Today's workforce is mobile, so understanding how intranet usage is distributed geographically and by device can help you spot information flow issues. Whether remote workers logging in from a distant location or in-office staff accessing from a workstation, each has distinct behaviors.

To make the most of distributed teams, we recommend monitoring the following intranet usage and experience metrics:

  • Percentage of mobile site users: This tells you how many employees rely on mobile access.
  • Devices being used: Are your users primarily on desktops, smartphones, or tablets?
  • User locations: This is essential to understand remote work patterns and usage patterns location.
  • Tasks completed on mobile: Which tasks are employees comfortable completing on smaller screens?
  • Areas accessed on different devices: Are there specific parts of the intranet that mobile users prefer and vice versa?

Clicks, comments, and shares

Simply counting logins won't give you the whole story of your employee intranet performance. Focus on their interactions after logging in to get a genuine sense of how employees engage with the platform. This includes the clicks they make, the comments they leave, and the content they choose to share.

Engagement metrics like these give you insights into the depth of connection employees feel with the content. An article might have many views, but if it spurs conversation and employees share it, it's likely having a real impact.

Key engagement metrics to keep an eye on include:

  • Reaction clicks: These include “likes,” “loves,” and even “dislikes.”
  • Tagging of coworkers: Tags reflect active collaboration and social connection.
  • Comments: Comments are pivotal for interaction, especially on blogs, news stories, and critical announcements.
  • Article click-through rates: This rate measures how compelling your content links are.
  • Content creation: Track the number of users actively adding to the intranet, whether through articles, updates, or other mediums.
  • Team interaction levels: Measure engagement and patterns within specific user groups to find your power users.

Employee satisfaction

Employee satisfaction is a pivotal indicator of an effective employee intranet, as it directly impacts productivity and overall company experience. Anonymous intranet surveys can provide insights into how your workforce perceives the intranet. Questions can range from ease of navigation to the effectiveness of collaboration tools for remote and in-office employees.

Satisfaction metrics and employee feedback ensure the intranet serves its functional purpose and enhances the overall employee experience. Key measures of satisfaction include:

  • Survey results: Regularly gauge feelings and get feedback for enhancement through simple surveys.
  • Feedback collection: Continuous feedback offers a qualitative look into user satisfaction.
  • Customer Loyalty Score: How likely are users to recommend the intranet to peers?
  • Employee Net Promoter Score: The eNPS assesses how likely employees are to recommend their workplace to others.
  • Customer Effort Score: Use the CES to determine how easy it is to complete tasks on the intranet.

Productivity and time management

Your company intranet is an effective vehicle for productivity. A telling study by the Nielson Norman Group pinpointed that companies with 10,000 users on low-usability intranets could face higher productivity costs of $15 million annually compared to high-rated intranets.

In addition, a study by McKinsey found that employees spend up to 1.8 hours per day — or 9.3 hours per week — searching and gathering information. That’s more than a whole workday wasted.

For intranet benchmarking that focuses on productivity and time management, consider analyzing metrics like:

  • Time efficiency: Monitor how long specific tasks took before and after intranet implementation.
  • Search metrics: Track the time employees spend searching for documents and the success rate of these searches.
  • IT assistance: Count the number of calls to IT concerning the intranet.
  • Help Desk Usage: Monitor how often users access the Help Desk on the intranet.
  • Operational improvements: Showing measurable improvements such as a “25% reduction in hours spent on expense reports” or a “13-minute decrease in typical response time” demonstrates the value of an intranet.

Channel engagement

Ensuring that your communication channels effectively reach and engage your team is crucial for optimal collaboration and productivity. Focusing on channel metrics allows you to continually refine your communication strategies, ensuring channels remain effective and aligned with team needs.

For a better understanding of channel engagement and how to improve it, keep track of the following metrics:

  • Active users per channel: Track the number of team members actively using and participating in different channels.
  • Live channels count: Monitor the total number of active channels to gauge the breadth of communication.
  • Device preference: Analyze the split between desktop and mobile access to understand user preferences and optimize platform accessibility.
  • Individual channel metrics: Look at statistics for each channel to understand its reach, effectiveness and identify areas of improvement.
  • Post engagement: Assess the interaction levels on individual posts within channels, which provides insight into content resonance.
  • Interaction trends: Observe patterns in how team members engage with posts, comments, and other channel features.

How to measure intranet ROI

Measuring intranet return on investment (ROI) is challenging because there are many variables, such as company size, nature of work, and industry specifics. A direct comparison with other platforms can also be misleading as you may not be comparing similar products.

Instead, focus on establishing an internal baseline for intranet benchmarking. Establish your KPI targets by measuring your launch baseline, comparing this period to the previous year, or using historical trends. Using this baseline, you can define intranet KPI targets for monitoring.

Improve your intranet ROI with Happeo analytics

Compared to other intranet benchmarking tools, Happeo's advanced analytics provide detailed insights into user activity, usage trends, and engagement.

Dive deep into search analytics, understanding users' needs and search efficiency. Measure the impact of your internal communications, gauge the reach of your content, and identify top influencers in your network with intranet metrics that matter.

With Happeo, you're not just viewing data but refining your intranet and optimizing user experience.

Want to see how Happeo can help improve your intranet ROI? Contact us today to book a demo!