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Isabelle Houdaille
Isabelle Houdaille

28 September 2023

Une personne derrière un ordinateur affichant du contenu

At a time when internal communicators are increasingly called upon in organizations on key issues such as productivity, talent retention and innovation, it's important to understand how to effectively activate the levers of digital communication to fully engage employees.

This series of three articles dedicated to corporate intranets offers practical solutions for optimizing your internal communications and increasing the impact of your intranet.

  • Organize and animate your intranet by placing content at the heart of your strategy
  • Choose engaging content formats to capture your readers' attention
  • Setting up a suitable contributions model


In this first article, we'll look at why and how content plays an essential role in engagement.

Hot content: an opportunity to capture attention

Hot content refers to recent information or updates, usually in the following areas linked to current events or events in progress which aim to keep employees informed. If you wish to capture your audience's attention, build loyalty and encourage engagement in a short space of timevIn this way, "hot" content will certainly be at the top of your priorities, unlike "cold" content, which is used for reference purposes and whose value is more long-term.

Graphique formats éditoriaux dans l'intranet

Among this "hot" content, "News" occupies a prominent place on the intranet, as the following points out Intranet and Internal Digital Observatory.

Hot content can deal with important announcements related to company news such as management announcements and organizational changes, strategic objectives and financial results, policy changes, program launches, offers or new services...


They can also cover more "hands-on" topics such as commercial successes, projects and team life, internal initiatives, new arrivals, portraits, announcements and results of games and competitio


This content, because it echoes what's happening in the field, highlight the projects, teams and employees who make and tell the company's story through their commitment. This type of content conveys a certain level of emotion (pride, surprise, joy, approval...) and is therefore particularly to stimulate the curiosity and attention of employees who are tempted to react spontaneously with "likes", "comments" and "shares".

Cold content: structuring data for onboarding and building loyalty

Employés engagés au bureau

To stimulate engagement, "hot" content is often favored on the intranet because of its immediate link with current events. This is partly true! However, we mustn't neglect "cold" content, as it is just as important as "hot" content to integrate new arrivals and more generally, support and make life easier for employees in their day-to-day tasks.

There are two reasons for this:

  • First and foremost, cold content allows you to discover and learn more about general and specific company topics : the company's mission and values, its programs and commitments, its activities and business lines, and more. This information provides shared understanding of corporate values and culture. They strengthen commitment for all those who share these same references.
  • Secondly, interest sparks commitment. In other words, the more useful and relevant the content is perceived to be to readers, the more likely they will be to return to the intranet on a regular basis!
    Therefore, it is the service aspect of the intranet, focused on user needsthat generates retention and commitment. It is therefore important for intranets to provide direct access, with just one or a few clicks, to content and reference databases (organization, HR, etc.), as well as to business applications.

The need for a well thought-out intranet information architecture

The design of your intranet architecture is important for guarantee an optimal user experience. The way in which content is arranged, through the menus, the submenus and intern pages, it shapes the way information is perceived, and has a direct impact on user satisfaction and commitment.

So if you have an intranet development or redesign project, take the time to ask yourself the right questions and understand the needs of all stakeholders whether it's management, the various professions, support functions or employees...

un homme écrit sur un post it

Ask yourself some essential questions: What is the purpose of the intranet? What are your strategic and operational objectives? Are there specific user groups and pathways to be taken into account? What information is crucial to communicate, and at what level of detail? Can you guarantee that the information is reliable and up-to-date? How should sections be organized to balance business and employee needs?

The answers to these questions will guide the information structure and navigation principles of your intranet. This in-depth reflection is essential to transform your intranet into a useful and popular communication channel au sein de votre organisation.


This process of (re)defining content and sections also represents a valuable opportunity to align your intranet with your company's global strategy. For example, if your company promotes values such as autonomy and cross-functionality, it's worth considering the integration of headings such as "Support" or "How do I...?" in the menus, to facilitate access to essential resources and services. You should also think carefully about the order of the tabs, as this will have a significant impact on the user experience.

Capture menu intranet dormakaba
Capture menu intranet visa

Examples of intranet menus
Each menu reflects the company's culture and, depending on the organization and order of the sections, provides
focus on corporate information, business lines, collaboration, etc.
Source: Intranet and Digital Workplace Awards


In conclusion, both "hot" and "cold" content are powerful tools for boosting your intranet's impact, commitment and employee satisfaction, and variety of content and editorial formats are essential to capture readers' attention and maintain their interest over time.

It should be remembered, however, that alignment between content offering, strategy and organizational culture remains essential to make your intranet the cornerstone of your digital communications strategy. To achieve this, you need to it's imperative to question stakeholders and involve them in the development of editorial strategy and content creationfrom top management to the business lines, from the network of contributors to the employees.

The choice of a more decentralized communication, more rooted in local communities and businesses allows you to encourage all employees to learn, share and get involved at their own levelin the organization.

Isabelle Houdaille<br><p id="mr-formation">Senior consultant</p>
Isabelle Houdaille

Senior consultant

Isabelle Houdaille is a consultant in internal digital transformation and a facilitator in collective dynamics. She is passionate about all topics related to employee experience, commitment, communication and service design.


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