National Geographic Launches Next-Generation CMS Intranet, Fueled by Social Tools

McLEAN, VA — Celerity, a business acceleration consultancy, recently created a digital "home base" for National Geographic employees worldwide."ngConnect", a highly visual, social and content-relevant CMS intranet experience, has made employee self service and collaboration easy and exciting. With this new internal communications platform, the company’s 2,000 employees can interact with one another—whether from just down the hall or across the world on a mobile device—using real-time information exchanges andsocial collaboration tools.

To make the new employee intranet intuitive, Celerity’s user experience (UX) designers focused on best-of-breed social enterprise components that allow employees to have open, real-time conversations, follow/like one another’s customizable profiles, and build common circles. Integration tools with LinkedIn allow employees to automatically load basic contact and background information, and add non-traditional directory information like skills, interests, and languages. Employees can easily collaborate using a micro-blogging tool or by sharing and promoting posts, pictures and videos. Search features allow employees to target and connect with colleagues based on their profile information.

Built on Ektron’s CMS platform (Celerity is an Ektron Partner), the site also boasts distributed content capabilities so users can easily generate and maintain relevant content. Employees can provide feedback and ideas on defined topics using online forms, and access curated content on their home page through an external news feed. And thanks to Celerity’s site administrator enhancements, everything from background image to promotional banners and organizational charts can be managed via the CMS.

Even the HR section is engaging and customized. An interactive employee lifecycle infographic tracks an employee’s career experience and provides access to support resources, and a custom events module offers user-friendly registration and RSVP capabilities for limited learning management functionality.

“We are thrilled with the new CMS intranet Celerity helped us build,” said Keelin Vaccaro, Director of Internal Communications at National Geographic. “Our employees are now interacting and engaging in entirely new—and more relevant—ways. Celerity’s problem-solving techniques and collaborative partnering strategy helped us make informed project decisions each step of the way.”

This project reflects a growing trend in the corporate world of using social media technology to build more productive, networked enterprises. To learn more about Celerity's work on this project, view our case study here or read our blog post about developing engaging intranets.


About Celerity
Celerity is a business acceleration consultancy devoted to helping companies break through key stuck points and solve critical problems. We deliver proven solutions in four main areas: technology adoption and integration, business process efficiency, strategy and alignment and talent. Headquartered in McLean, VA, Celerity operates nine regional offices with more than 600 employees and $83 million in revenue.


Jenifer Kern
Director of Marketing, Celerity
T: 703.848.1900