The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark launches new SharePoint intranet
On-prem – users first
USING WIZDOM TO REACH THE RIGHT PEOPLE
The IT and Communications departments from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark (MFA), have launched their new intranet, named, UMbrella.
With this launch, MFA have created a united intranet platform, bringing employees together on a global scale, across the 103 Embassies, Multilateral Missions, Consulates General, Innovation Centers, and Trade offices that are part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.
Overview - Delivering personalized content with a user-centered approach
For MFA’s on-prem intranet, our partner, Netcompany, has delivered a solution on the Wizdom platform to provide a strong communication and management tool, that will be used on a global scale.
Wizdom, based on Microsoft SharePoint, was used to create targeted communications, dependent on user groups and locations.
Based on intranet user research, finding the right people information quickly was high up on the list of specifications, along with finding ways to help users interacting with the solution once it was made.
Keeping users’ needs top of mind, MFA’s new intranet delivers:
- Fast and easy access to relevant content and internal resources.
- Relevant information through the deliverance of content through better search and tagging.
- Personalized news feed and improved knowledge sharing through news channels and customized subscriptions.
- Clear distinction between which policies & procedures that are need to know and nice to know.
Peter Parker, IT Architect at Wizdom
Designing one solution for multiple organizations and languages
MFA is unique in the respect of the way the organization is organized. Each embassy functions as a smaller organization, representing Denmark, providing consular services to Danish nationals and promoting trade and export through consultancy work and developing partnerships. To this end, each embassy has their own intranet site for local knowledge sharing and collaboration.
The overall, global intranet home page shows relevant information depending on the user. One-third of employees within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, don’t speak Danish. Due to this, the intranet is now in English, and only news targeted at Danish employees is in Danish, so no one feels excluded.
Organizing for optimal information search
MFA’s intranet contains a lot of information and tools. For this reason, it was vital to create a solution that makes it simple for users to know which information they need to read and how to find it.
This was solved by implementing a mega menu navigation bar combined with a task-based information architecture.
Also, there was a huge undertaking on the part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark in making the people directory user-friendly and in getting people to fill in their profile information. Making it easy to find the relevant person for a given situation.
The combination of all the above parts helped to create a structured and ordered solution.
"One united intranet platform, bringing together all employees across the entire MFA.”
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark
The intranet’s top menu lays the foundation for an intranet navigation that enables easy access to services and information.
Added to this, a Corporate News section includes video news and news from senior management. In the “My News” section, a personalized news feed shows relevant news from each employees’ areas of interests, local unit or project groups.
Being able to find people information, as mentioned, is an important factor within the MFA’s intranet solution. To cater for this, a Profile completion section, where users can update their profile on MySite was created.
Included within the solution is a Directory search bar, where users can search for colleagues or departments, filter search results for a refined search experience, and search for people by job function. In combination with the Directory search bar, there is a Directory landing page for all departments, containing a clear overview of all employees in the department, and the team they belong to.
Another important part of the new intranet was policies. Being a governmental and diplomatic organization, policies must be governed very carefully. To cater to this need, as part of the new intranet implementation, every document created on a policies page is automatically tagged correctly. This is also mirrored in the search so users can clearly see the context of documents appearing in the search result. This has a knock-on effect of displaying better search results overall.
1. Extensive profile information with CVs.
2. Policies & Procedures: Categorized by the means of tags. Relevant and must-read policies are highlighted.
3. Mega menu containing a great overview of the intranet.
4. Interactive map with a graphic overview of all MFA representations in the world. Hover over the map will show the address of the embassy. Users can also find embassies by search. Clicking on an embassy takes users to an embassy landing page.
5. An intro feature on UMbrella pages with step-by-step guidance shows users how to use the functionality on the page in question.
6. Service portal helps users operate functions of MFA’s intranet with navigation guidelines, editorial guidelines, and FAQs.
7. Good UX and IA experience taking users and editors by hand and guiding them to thoroughly understand the new intranet.
Launching a global intranet
After you have built an intranet, you need to make sure people use it. To help with the adoption, MFA created a massive launch campaign. The campaign started before the intranet was even built.
A competition was held to find a name for the intranet and so the concept of UMbrella was born. UMbrella was the clear winner when the competition was completed, with the symbolism of the umbrella representing all organizational units and sub brands in the ministry, e.g. Consular Services, Danida or The Trade Council under one unified group.
The First two letters, UM, were capitalized as a nod to the Danish name of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Denmark: Udenrigsministeriet.
Creating hype and informative materials around the launch, helped bring the intranet concept away from an abstract concept, into one that was understandable. Users could clearly see how they could use and benefit from the new intranet.
Launch party (box of initiatives)
- Video with use cases on how people in different roles and regions can be part of the new intranet and find the information they need.
- Party with UMbrella cake.
- People wearing umbreallas as hats welcomed people to work with croissants at the day of the official intranet launch.
- Posters highlighting benefits of the new intranet was displayed up until launch.
- A whole page was created within the intranet on how to use the new solution.
About the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Denmark
The Danish Foreign Service comprises the Ministry in Copenhagen and a global network abroad of Embassies, Consulates-General and Trade Commissions.
Read more about the the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Denmark
Netcompany is a pure-play IT services company delivering business-critical strategic IT projects that accelerate customers’ digital transformation through digital platforms, core systems and infrastructure services.
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