How to ensure great user experience for your corporate website

 

766x500digital-transformation

A corporate website needs to offer simple functionality, as well as innovative design that reflects the brand narrative accurately. Juggling these elements, amongst many others, is a difficult task. But ultimately, it all boils down to one thing: user experience. Here, Luke Dodd, Global Digital Specialist at FTSE 100 mining company Anglo American, shares some tips on refining your user experience strategy.

Half a second. A blink of an eye.

That’s how long it takes for someone to form an opinion of your website. It is a matter of milliseconds, and is essentially instantaneous.

However, while this first impression is important to get right – features such as homepage design are critical for this – it’s what follows, the user experience and user journey, that really is make or break for your corporate website.

As Global Digital Specialist for Anglo American, a key responsibility of my role is to ensure that user experience is strong across our digital estate.

But to talk about user experience, it is important to first define what we mean by it.

For me, user experience is the overall experience and satisfaction a visitor has when navigating through your website – therefore, good user experience is where your website has met the exact needs of your user, simply and efficiently.

Sounds simple, but remember, the users that visit your corporate website will all vary in ability and what they are looking for. But they all have one thing in common: they want answers, and quickly.

And those answers are borne from a user’s expectation of your website. By establishing who your key audience groups are [for example, students, NGOs, job-seekers etc…], you can quickly find out what they expect to achieve when visiting your site.

In the spirit of good user experience, I am going to present the remainder of this article in bullet points and lists – providing you guys with ‘quick answers’:

6 questions to test if your website offers good user experience

  1. Does your content provide your users with the information they are looking for?
  2. Are users able to easily use all functionality of your website
  3. Are images and design used to tell your brand story on your website?
  4. Can users find the content they need simply when they need it?
  5. Is content accessible to all across all platforms, devices and abilities?
  6. Is your website reputable?

If you answered ‘yes’ to all of these questions, in my opinion your website offers good user experience. If you answered ‘no’ to any questions, this may be an area to foc

3 top tips to correct inadequate user experience

  1. Gather feedback on your website

Get as much intelligence as you can from your users. Set up user research groups, conduct website surveys and internal interviews with key stakeholders – and then filter through the responses and decide what action is required.

It may be tempting to steam ahead and make changes immediately, but consider all feedback carefully and see how it all fits together before taking action.

  1. Try new [and old] things

If you feel something isn’t working on your website, or it feels clunky to use, try a different approach – whether it is a brand new approach, or a method previously overlooked.

For example, a recent tweak we made was to our website’s navigation. We had introduced a burger menu to the desktop version – but following feedback from both internal and external sources, it was clear that our users were finding it hard to use.

We made the executive decision to move to a dropdown meganav and make all three levels of navigation visible in one glance. This could be seen as a step-back in terms of the evolution of digital navigation when compared to a burger menu, however, it doesn’t matter how swish a new tool is if it doesn’t meet our users’ requirements.

  1. Audit and correct

We perform an annual audit of content and user experience across all of our websites, which occur in tandem with major content updates that align to our results and reporting cycles.

In these audits, we reflect upon the purpose of each section and what they mean to our key audiences, while using analytics to help us figure out what needs to be improved/changed.

Twitter: @LukeDoddComms

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lukedoddcomms

Our journey to digital transformation by Working Out Loud

 

768x350people

With the huge successes of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat etc. has emerged a rapid, evolution of online networking, trusting opinions, sharing right-here-right-now, our thoughts with photos and videos.

This behaviour is becoming increasingly popular inside organisations by using an Enterprise Social Network (ESN) such as Yammer, Jive and Slack to support strategies, projects, tasks and encourage employee engagement, empowerment and advocacy.

The phrase “Working Out Loud” is gathering momentum to describe this change behaviour. Check out Rachel Miller’s popular blog neatly summarising How to Work Out Loud #wol by John Stepper. It asks you these three growth mindset questions: What am I trying to accomplish? Who can help me? How can I contribute to them to deepen our relationship?

My journey to “Working Out Loud” is a story of personal development, openness and helping to improve the way we work. I joined Glaxo, a global healthcare company, in 1991.

Does this ring any bells…? I used a huge WANG computer with floppy disks.  Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) and emails were replacing fax. “Surfing the Internet” became a new idiom.  I created some of the company’s first Microsoft FrontPage intranets. I became fascinated about how to speed up laborious office tasks.

It was 10 years ago when I first used Facebook “for work” – to stay connected to some great people I met whilst on a course in the US.  Success was about sharing and building on our collective knowledge and retaining new friendships. So we turned to Facebook and it’s been instrumental in retaining these connections – and, as we have all experienced, it’s so much more!

By the way, Facebook at Work is currently in beta test so you can clearly see how the power of social networking is influencing the future of work.

In parallel at that time, Glaxo (now GSK) also launched numerous internal social networks ‘vertically’ driven by “command and control” business silos. Over time I became passionate about ESN business value and was appointed as the Corporate Comms Yammer Community Manager. I’m proud of the work I did in this role in partnership with GSK IT, and the GSK Brand Team to make Yammer the sustainable network it is today.

Today, whatever ESN you use, success is about approaching it with the right mindset. For me, it’s Working Out Loud in A Network #wolan

wolan model-MAY2016

My #wolan framework expands on John Stepper’s Working Out Loud mindset and how it can practically be adopted inside organisations working towards digital transformation. #wolan is now endorsed by Microsoft, Digital Workplace Group (DWG) and GSK’s German Works Council.

Let me explain what #wolan can do for your business.  It can help to decrease email dependency; position the ESN business case; create ESN governance; enable ESN adoption; align ESN to strategies & projects and ultimately business value; highlights ESN sustainable success stories; demonstrate your company culture – behaviours and values; demonstrates how ESN can be embedded into apps, processes, systems and tasks; raises the relevance of “business intelligent” hash tags, and a template to create your own framework.

Whilst at GSK and since leaving last year, I’ve experienced and documented the benefits of digital transformation enabled by ESNs in a series of blogs. These explained how you can shift employees from sending random emails with a handful of colleagues and operating in vertical silos to operating in horizontal ESNs that help to generously share work with a purpose, encourage serendipity and offer better ways of working that demonstrate business value.

Look at these ESN success stories in a Sales Team, HR, Factory network, Fundraising, small project teams to employee engagement, advocacy tactics, campaigns and strategies. There is pretty much something for every sector, and scalable to help you on your journey to “Working Out Loud”. Here’s just a snippet of senior leader feedback from these great success stories.

 

Comms “Yammer has been without a doubt the “hero” channel for our employee fundraising. An incredible opportunity for any engagement/advocacy programme, as it enables real time collaboration, healthy competition and celebration of fundraising activities and sharing success fast! Yammer can reach everyone in the company and cuts through the communications noise. It has taken us well beyond one-way push communications and PowerPoint!”  Director, Global Communications & Government Affairs

 

HR “Our Yammer On-Boarding group is a great way to connect new hires with those that have just joined before them and SMEs. Nip and nurture new hires in the bud to encourage a collaborative culture and mind-set.” VP, HR Operations

 

If you’re interested in finding out more about Working Out Loud, come along to one of these forthcoming events:

16 May: IABC UK – Future Fit Communications

5-8 June: IABC World Conference, New Orleans join IABC President NSW Australia, Mark Woodrow, “Working Out Loud” session. Mark is a former Yammer Customer Success Manager.

TBC August: I am working with Kirsty Brown on an event with digital transformation expert Allison Maguire, and Employee Engagement Alliance (EEA) on “Working Out Loud”.

Lesley Crook is a Digital Transformation Consultant

Future Fit Communications: Our speakers

mikeMichael Ambjorn, Founder, AlignYourOrg

Michael Ambjorn is founder of Align Your Org, and passionate about helping changemakers achieve purpose-driven impact. Michael is also International Chair of IABC, the International Association of Business Communicators, and he is the facilitator for IABC’s 2014–17 strategy. Michael has held leadership roles at IBM, Motorola and the 260–year–old Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacture and Commerce (RSA), where he remains an active Fellow.

https://twitter.com/michaelambjorn

https://www.linkedin.com/in/michaelambjorn

https://alignyour.org

babuAshish Babu, Director of Communications – UK & Europe, Tata Consultancy Services

Ashish is responsible for creating and implementing communications programmes across 21 countries. With special focus towards enterprise and consumer technology, he has developed award-winning campaigns such as ElectUK mobile app and the #TCSsuperheroes narrative. Prior to TCS, Ashish was also an integral part of the launch team at Tata Sky (Newscorp & Tata JV) where he developed and implemented a nationwide communications strategy and has held senior roles with global PR agencies when in India.

https://twitter.com/ashishb24

https://www.linkedin.com/in/ashish-babu-0b9522

www.tcs.com

ezriEzri Carlebach, consultant, writer, lecturer

Ezri Carlebach is a writer, lecturer, and consultant with over 20 years’ experience in corporate communications, public relations, and internal comms. He has worked for government, non-profit, and FTSE 100 organisations, and now splits his time between Turin, Brussels, and London with a variety of clients. He is also Visiting Lecturer in Public Relations at the University of Greenwich.

https://twitter.com/ezriel

https://www.linkedin.com/in/ezrie

www.ezricarlebach.com

coniKeith Coni, Deputy Director of Capability, Standards & Professional Development, Cabinet Office

Keith led on professional capability for the Government Communications Service (GCS) from March 2015 until April 2016. In this time he introduced a cross-GCS skills survey, covering 4,000 communicators. Prior to this he ran a GCS programme of communication and marketing capability reviews. Keith’s previous roles in government include head of campaigns at Change4Life with the Dept of Health and Cabinet Office Transparency communications. Before joining the Civil Service he was a group account director at McCann-Erickson London, where he worked for seven years on global and national business.

https://twitter.com/KeithConi

https://www.linkedin.com/in/keith-coni-a23b554

https://gcs.civilservice.gov.uk

crookLesley Crook, Internal Digital Strategy Advisor, Enterprise Strategies

Lesley is a digital client adviser at Enterprise Strategies where she designs digital transformation frameworks that decrease email dependency. Prior to joining Enterprise Strategies, Lesley was Internal Digital Communication Manager at GSK where she worked in partnership with IT to deliver many global digital projects. Lesley is experienced in social media, intranet governance, reward & recognition programmes and events management.

https://twitter.com/LAC999

https://www.linkedin.com/in/lesley-crook-5b92098

www.enterprisestrategies.com/

gayGay Flashman, Founder and CEO, Formative Content

Gay is the Founder and CEO of Formative Content, a fast-growing content marketing agency helping corporate clients around the world develop and share high quality content about their businesses. Gay is a journalist with more than 20 years’ experience in television news at Channel 4 News, Channel 5 News and the BBC.

https://twitter.com/g_flashman

https://www.linkedin.com/in/gayflashman

www.formativecontent.com

andyAndy Gibson, Founder, Mind Apples

Andy is a writer, entrepreneur and campaigner specialising in culture change and innovation. He founded the “5-a-day for your mind” campaign, Mindapples, co-founded the education web start-up, School of Everything, and helps organisations innovate through his consultancy, Sociability. His current research interests encompass management theory, leadership, psychology, wellbeing, secular spirituality and the future of work.

https://twitter.com/gandy

https://www.linkedin.com/in/gandrew

www.andrewgibson.org

darrenDarren Lilleker, Associate Professor of Political Communication, Bournemouth University

Dr Darren G. Lilleker is Associate Professor in Political Communication the Faculty of Media and Communication, Bournemouth University. His expertise is in the professionalization and marketization of politics, and the psychological impacts on citizen engagement and participation. The monograph Political Communication and Cognition offers a synthesis of this work. He teaches across the fields of politics and public relations, and outside of work Darren retains his love for rock and punk music and motorbikes.

https://twitter.com/DrDGL

https://www.linkedin.com/in/dlilleker

http://staffprofiles.bournemouth.ac.uk/display/dlilleker

mattMatt O’Neill, Consultant, Futurist.Matt

Futurist Matt O’Neill helps organisations better prepare, predict and execute their positive futures. His approach is centred around collaboration and he’s certain that discovering the future is also a collaborative process. Matt won’t present you with a theoretical strategy which will be left on the shelf while your business is left behind. He will work with you to create a roadmap, supported by rich media, live events and in a generous spirit of curiosity.

https://twitter.com/mattoneill

https://www.linkedin.com/in/mattone

www.modcommslimited.com

unaUna O’Sullivan, Head of Internal Communications – Global Financial Services, KPMG

Una O’Sullivan heads up internal communications for KPMG’s Global Financial Services business. Before that, she led the Global FS knowledge management program, which gives her the advantage of knowing all the rat runs around the business. In her spare time, she plays piano and runs (slowly, in both cases), and is a leader with Scouting Ireland.

https://twitter.com/Una_hello

https://www.linkedin.com/in/unaosullivan

https://home.kpmg.com/uk/en/home.html

joannaJoanna Osborn, Head of Customer Communications, GE Oil & Gas

https://twitter.com/ge_oilandgas

https://uk.linkedin.com/in/jorosborn

www.geoilandgas.com

susanSusan Walker, Head, AES Communication Research

Communication measurement and employee engagement research specialist Susan wrote the book “Employee Engagement and Communication Research” and ran the IABC online employee Research Academy course. Her background includes internal communication, and heading the human resource and communication research practice at MORI. Susan is an IABC Accredited Business Communicator and last year received the Chairman’s award for dedicated service to IABC.

https://twitter.com/suseew

https://www.linkedin.com/in/susan-walker-9515253

www.commevaluation.com

OUR SPONSORS

Future Fit Communications is kindly supported by:-

abbotScarlettabbott powers conversations that connect, engage and motivate your people to deliver great business results. Passion, energy, originality and fun goes into every piece of work we deliver. @scarlettabbott / www.scarlettabbott.co.uk

commCommunicate magazine – the single voice for corporate communications and stakeholder relations. @communicatemag / www.communicatemagazine.co.uk

pitchPitchPack creates unique marketing and communication collaterals which embed video screens into printed brochures, books and briefing packs. [email protected] / http://bit.ly/pitchpack

The value of a multichannel strategy to communicate effectively with employees

 

shutterstock_170149712

A diverse workforce can be a challenge to reach. Depending on just one channel to communicate to employees will not work. Adopting a multichannel approach will better enable you to engage with all of your employees. To accomplish this, internal communicators need to join the dots between strategy, behaviours and technology, to improve the flow and quality of communication and collaboration.

 

First review your general communication strategy:

 

  • Do you have goals and objectives for your communications? Everything should be aligned with

your company’s business objectives. This includes general goals per campaign, and goals

relating to your internal communications.

 

  • Select the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that measure your success in achieving your goals. Good KPIs to review include content popularity, survey responses, take up of safety initiatives, response to change management, video views, event registrations, or an increase in intranet or social network traffic – to name a few. Match the metrics you use to measure your success to the KPIs you have selected.

 

Conduct a channel audit

 

While you are reviewing channels available to you, also take the time to identify where you need to update your channel technology (such as email and intranet) to technology that saves you time, and delivers the real-time metrics and analytics you need. Having this type of insight will help you assess the channel popularity and audience preferences.

 

Channel strengths – Take a look at the existing communication channels available to you. Understanding their strengths will help you improve how you use each channel to help you reach a diverse workforce.

 

The role of insight and measurement in your success

 

Measurement lets you understand the impact of what you’re doing. Review your access to measurement in each of your channels, and use those selected metrics to help you gain insight into your campaigns. In the selection of metrics you use, try to be consistent in your choice across each of your communication channels. By doing this you are not looking at channels in isolation – you are getting consistent insight into engagement across all channels, allowing you to make decisions based on these insights.

 

For example measure adoption and engagement, collaboration and rich media consumption (video, podcasts), and device consumption (desktop or smartphone). Collate your most influential users and top contributors, plus content, posts, pages and comment trends and popularity.

 

The future is multichannel measurement

 

Having access to individual channel metrics is the first part of your journey. To understand your channel effectiveness you need the ability to measure globally by campaign across all your channels.

 

Taking a multichannel approach – using all your channels to communicate, and measuring across your channels – will empower you to improve your communications going forward and show real business impact to stakeholders.

 

Newsweaver has compiled a PDF that includes insight from a number of communication experts, providing insight into key issues facing communicators right now. Internal Communication today – Insight from the inside

Future fit communications: Connecting trends, strategies and actions

Book tickets here: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/future-fit-communications-connecting-trends-strategies-actions-tickets-23588816786

Learn more about our speakers here: https://iabcemena.com/uk/future-fit-communications-our-speakers/

iabcuk

If a leader’s job is to anticipate the future, and guide their people towards it, a communicator’s job is to spot the trends shaping that future and anticipate what audiences will need. This half-day conference will help you make those connections.

Running on the afternoon of Monday 16th May, the agenda will be split into four key parts and chaired by Michael Ambjorn, International Executive Chair of the IABC.

PART 1: WHAT’S THE BIG IDEA?

  • A look at current and emerging societal, technology and economic trends that will have an impact on our lives and businesses over the coming years. Our speakers:
    • Andy Gibson, Author of A Mind For Business
    • Matt O’Neill, Managing Director, ModComms Ltd

PART 2: SO WHAT IF?

  • A quickfire #Rapido session with 5 speakers each taking 5 minutes (and not a second longer) to share their thoughts on what’s hot, and what’s not, in the future of corporate communications. Curated by the incomparable Ezri Carlebach. Our speakers:-
  • Una O’Sullivan, Head of Internal Communications – Global Financial Services, KPMG
  • Darren Lilleker, Associate Professor of Political Communication, Bournemouth University
  • Gay Flashman, Founder & CEO, Formative Content
  • Lesley Crook, Client Advisor, Enterprise Strategies
  • Susan Walker, Head, AES Communication Research

Part 3: From talk to walk – what do the big ideas mean to your business?

  • Michael Ambjorn will lead a reflection on the earlier #Rapido session and a panel-audience discussion of the role communications professionals play in making their organisations future-fit. Our panelists:-
  • Andy Gibson, Author of A Mind For Business
  • Matt O’Neill, Managing Director, ModComms Ltd
  • Ashish Babu, Director of Communications – UK & Europe, Tata Consultancy Services
  • Joanna Osborn, Head of Customer Communications, GE Oil & Gas
  • Keith Coni, Deputy Director of Capability, Standards & Professional Development, Cabinet Office

Part 4: What next?

  • A group sharing of key learnings, next-step resources, shared objectives and individual action plans. Be prepared to roll up your sleeves and transform the big ideas into a plan that works for you. After the event we will curate and share all of these outputs.

Never has seeing the bigger picture been so important for communications practitioners and this IABC conference is all about connecting you with the ideas, people and impetus that can help you make a difference back in the business – both immediately and in the long term.

Come and join the debate.

AGENDA

1.30pm            Registration

2.00pm            Welcome from Michael Ambjorn, International Executive Chair, IABC

2.10pm             A healthy mind for a healthy business

Andy Gibson, Author of A Mind For Business

2.35pm           Three trends set to change the world of business communication

Matt O’Neill, Managing Director, ModComms Ltd

 

3.00pm            Break

3.20pm            Rapido sessions with Ezri Carlebach:-

  • The three-legged stool: internal communications, knowledge management and marketing – Una O’Sullivan, Head of Internal Communications – Global Financial Services, KPMG
  • Citizen / consumer activism on social media; never mind what or how, let’s focus on why – Darren Lilleker, Associate Professor of Political Communication, Bournemouth University
  • 5 ways communicators can thrive in our hyper-connected world – Gay Flashman, Founder & CEO, Formative Content
  • Enterprise Social Networking (ESN). What’s the business value? – Lesley Crook, Client Advisor, Enterprise Strategies
  • Organisational broadcast: the past. Employee voice: the present – Susan Walker, Head, AES Communication Research

4.00pm            Panel discussion with:-

  • Andy Gibson, Author of A Mind For Business
  • Matt O’Neill, Managing Director, ModComms Ltd
  • Ashish Babu, Director of Communications – UK & Europe, Tata Consultancy Services
  • Joanna Osborn, Head of Customer Communications, GE Oil & Gas
  • Keith Coni, Deputy Director of Capability, Standards & Professional Development, Cabinet Office

4.30pm            What next? Group discussion on next steps and action plans

5.00pm            Wrap up and networking drinks

VENUE

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Conference Centre
1 Victoria Street
London
SW1H 0ET

Nearest tubes: Victoria, St James and Westminster

 

PARTNERS

Future Fit Communications is supported by:-

abbot

Scarlettabbott powers conversations that connect, engage and motivate your people to deliver great business results. Passion, energy, originality and fun goes into every piece of work we deliver.

@scarlettabbott / www.scarlettabbott.co.uk

 comm

Communicate Magazine – the single voice for corporate communications and stakeholder relations.

@communicatemag / www.communicatemagazine.co.uk

pitch

PitchPack creates unique marketing and communication collaterals which embed video screens into printed brochures, books and briefing packs.

[email protected] / http://bit.ly/pitchpack

 

TICKETS AND BOOKING

Ticket prices:-

  • IABC member – £50
  • IABC non-member – £100
  • IABC member + non member (booked together) – £100

Book at https://futurefitcomms.eventbrite.co.uk

The IABC is a not-for-profit organisation. Money from ticket sales will be used to cover the cost of running the event and invested back into IABC member initiatives.

ABOUT IABC UK

IABC UK is the local chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators – the global organisation for people working in business communications. It offers members a global forum to develop professional skills, share knowledge of and develop best practice in communications and to discuss important issues affecting the profession.