Governance on the Intranet

03-05-2019 Content governance is one of those frases that IT-consultants say and expect everyone to understand, but what is it really?

In short, content governance is a way to ensure that the content of a site, for example an intranet, is valid and relevant to the readers. With good content governance, you are filtering out old content and perhaps even sending the content author a message that it is time to update the content.

The Danger of Lacking Content Governance
If you do not use content governance, you are in danger of getting an intranet that is unreliable. Your intranet will become a platform where users do not feel they can rely on search results and handbook pages, because the content seems outdated and cluttered. As soon as the feeling of mistrust begins to spread among the users, it will lead to increased resistance against the intranet.

How Do You Get Started with Content Governance?
It all starts with a decision and an anchoring of responsibility in the organization. It is obviously preferable if you can get the management involved in the decision, as they can ensure the resources that it require. The content and the responsibility for the content's maintenance must be placed within the organization. Time must be devoted by to reach this responsibility.

It is obviously preferable if the content management can be done as automatically as possible. You can define revision dates and responsible editors for the content - when the revision date is approaching, the responsible person will automatically be notified and can then update the content.

If your system cannot secure such an automation, you need to be more practical. You can, for example, plan cleanup rounds every 3 months, where you manually review the content and check its relevance.

What If the Intranet Is Already Cluttered?
Content governance is by far the easiest if it is initiated from the start of the intranet, but often you first realize the value of maintaining the content when the intranet has already begun to clutter.

In this case, it's about getting started as quickly as possible, and kick-start the process with a big clean-up round. Here, you can advantageously set some policies that make it easy to choose what is to be deleted, updated and preserved as it is. This can form the basis for a future content governance policy. A suggestion for such rules may be:

  • Content that has not been updated for 3 years must be deleted
  • Handbook articles on the same topics must be merged
  • All policies must be assigned a revision date and a content responsible.

The most important thing in determining such rules is that they are operational.

The Good Content Governance
If you've got the courage to start your journey with content governance, so your intranet can stay relevant and updated, then here are 3 good tips:

  1. Management support - Get management support so that resources are dedicated to the operation of the intranet.
  2. Policy - Establish realistic rules that ensure content is maintained.
  3. Make it operational - Make sure the system supports your policies.

Quick Talk on Content Governance: