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How to Leverage Search to Bring the Consumer Experience to your Internal Organization

How to Leverage Search to Bring the Consumer Experience to your Internal Organization

Cara Heimbaugh

4 mins read

Tue, Dec 12, '23  

No results. Those two words can be incredibly frustrating when attempting to locate an answer or information across any website or mobile app. It’s even more painful when the information you’re seeking is to support an important work-related task or project. 

Consumers in general expect intuitive and accurate search results, and the data proves it. Looking specifically at retail (thought we can apply the same logic to other search-related experiences), one Harris Poll found that:

  • 76% users report that an unsuccessful search resulted in making a purchase, with 48% purchasing elsewhere.
  • 99% of users agree that they are at least somewhat likely to return to a website if it has a good search function. 
  • Nine in 10 consumers say a good search function is “very important” or “absolutely essential,” with 97% agreeing that their favorite websites are ones where they can quickly find what they are looking for.

The data all comes down to one key underlying truth– that search experiences, whether good or bad, affect engagement rates. And when it comes to internal audiences, the impact is no different. It’s time to translate these external lessons and drive stronger engagement within intranets, as well.

Delivering on Intranet Expectations

Every employee is also a consumer. They experience the digital world outside the bounds of their employment, so being able to bring this same consumer-like experience to the workplace will make a positive impact. Through an effective intranet, and applying the same approach as the examples above can increase engagement and encourage all-over organizational alignment.

A good intranet search experience can transform some of the most acute pain points of an intranet into reasons that employees want to continue and increase engagement. 

Stronger Information Control

Most businesses house large amounts of information and data across dozens (or more) of sources. Attempting to manage and sift through that amount of information with little more than a keyword creates frustration and drains resources through wasted time and lost productivity. McKinsey reports that the average worker spends 1.8 hours daily searching for the information and assets they need to do their job. That’s more than a full work day every week. Translate that into compensation for the employee and compound it with the loss of productivity for revenue-generating tasks, and it’s clear that a quality search experience can reduce that loss through the harnessing of that information Everest.

Answers, Not Results

Imagine you ask a friend “What’s the name of the bookstore you like?” They likely won’t respond by giving you a list of book shops nearby; they’ll give you the name of the bookstore. This is the difference between traditional intranet searches versus an elevated, AI-powered on. 

Even when you have a keyword and a clear idea of what you’re looking for, the best outcome that one gets back from a standard intranet search is a list of results. From there, it’s an investigation to find the specific assets that work best for the user. Intelligent, AI-powered Search has the power to take you a step closer to information by providing clear, accurate, curated answers to actual questions, not simply a list of possible sources to find that answer. 

Access to Search Metrics

As content and information piles up in intranet spaces, it’s sometimes difficult to know which assets can be retired or archived, which content is searched for more frequently, or how to optimize content for the site. When your intranet search function has analytics capabilities, organizations can dissect activity and continually work to curate their environment, pruning unused resources and developing new assets that will drive their business forward.

Greater Support for Hybrid and Remote Workers

The only thing more frustrating than going back and forth with coworkers and an outdated intranet  to search for information at the office is doing the same thing remotely. An intuitive search experience helps support hybrid and remote employees by elevating their self-service opportunities and keeping productivity and momentum flowing both in the office and at home.

Higher Content Quality

Research shows that 83% of employees say that they create or recreate documents that they cannot locate quickly. Not only does this equate to lost productivity, but it can also dilute the quality of the content itself, and leads to information chaos when duplicative assets exist. When users can quickly find high-quality content they need, it affirms more uniformity and organizational alignment while, at the same time, reducing frustration and unnecessary workload. 

The rate at which data and information is growing is exponential. Knowledge workers need to have the ability to find what they need in order to be as efficient as possible, and businesses need to have the ability to optimize their employees’ experience, as well as bring alignment across the entire organization. An intranet with an intelligent search function can help mitigate many of these pain points while simultaneously adding value at the organization and user levels, alike. 

Is your organization struggling with information overload?

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