The sites I use most frequently for the latest news or to order something I want to buy or to help me with a problem e.g. travel directions are not unique sites. There are alternative sites I could choose to use but I don’t. I keep using the same ones. Why is that?
Firstly the site I keep using obviously meets my needs but if we take news sites as an example there are many that provide the latest news. It is not just that it provides me with news, there are other reasons why. A new design may be compelling for the first time and new features may also encourage me but to keep me coming back again and again it needs something more.
It is more likely to be the consistency in the look and feel; navigation to help me find related content quickly; help when I need to find out more e.g. contact the content owner so I am confident that I can rely on what I read as being accurate and up to date. In other words it is a place that is well-managed and applies some form of governance to give me a consistently good experience whenever I use it. That is what keeps me coming back for more.
When I think of some of the great internet sites I use like Amazon, Wikipedia, BBC News, it is because they also have a great governance framework which is the foundation to giving me a great experience every time I visit them. Without it these sites would miss something which would sooner or later make me try an alternative.
The same analogy that I have applied to a web site will also apply to any mobile app, intranet, digital workplace or collaboration tool. The size and complexity of the online space being managed is irrelevant. The same principles of governance will always apply. Those which are well-managed will be used more because they give a more consistent user experience and can be relied upon more to provide whatever you need.
Since 1996 when I first started my journey with intranets, collaboration tools, digital workplaces and mobile workspaces I have appreciated how important it is to have a governance framework that supports its purpose. It can be the crucial factor that causes a quicker adoption, increased usage and higher satisfaction with people to help with their work.
Posted in benefit, best practice, digital workplace, governance, intranet, standards
Tagged benefit, best practice, digital workplace, governance, intranet, standards
I recently posted on how you create a strategy that helps you to implement SharePoint successfully. I then posted on how you to develop the right level of governance to manage SharePoint well. But how do you gain the full benefits that SharePoint offers? And how should you be measure it?
There are three areas you should prioritise:
- Productivity improvements: time saved solving problems using SharePoint instead of meeting in person to do this. There are the costs of travelling avoided too.
- Savings in hardware, support costs and licences from moving content and tools on existing technology to SharePoint.
- Business intelligence can lead to opportunities to increase revenue through quicker responses to sales leads and customer service problems.
You may have other areas. The key is to understand what business benefits you could gain from using SharePoint.
My first-hand experience at BT and from working with clients is that you benefit from using SharePoint. It is your approach which is critical!
You can out more information on how to measure the full value of SharePoint to help you
Posted in benefit, best practice, content management, intranet, SharePoint, SharePoint 2010, value
Tagged benefit, best practice, digital workplace, intranet, sharepoint, sharepoint 2010, value
I have written many blog posts on SharePoint based on my first-hand experience from developing strategies through to the full implementation of features such as TeamSites, MyProfile, etc.
One of the most common requests I get from clients is “How is the best way to manage their intranet while using SharePoint?” This question is asked because SharePoint is a ‘big beast’ and needs a more rigorous and broad governance framework that is good enough for the challenge.
Your approach needs to consider:
- Restricting use: stopping some features from being used e.g. SharePoint Designer
- Encouraging best practice: making sure guidance and training are available
- Preventing problems: checking content before it is published
Each of these approaches can support your governance strategy for
SharePoint. The key is to understand what you need to use SharePoint for most of all.
My first-hand experience at BT and from working with clients is that well planned and managed governance is good enough to gain the benefits from using SharePoint. It is how you approach this which is the critical success factor!
You can out more information on how to build good SharePoint governance to help you.
Posted in benchmark, best practice, content management, digital workplace, governance, intranet, plan, publishing, SharePoint, SharePoint 2010, standards
Tagged benchmark, best practice, bt intranet, content, digital workplace, governance, intranet, plan, publishing, sharepoint 2010, usability standards
Have you recently worked hard making some improvements to your intranet? Did you get recognised within your organisation for your efforts? Are people using your intranet giving great feedback about the changes? If you answered “Yes” to these questions then you should consider sharing your intranet with other professionals to help inspire them!
The Intranet Innovation Awards are the premier awards for intranet professionals. Drawing on the best of intranet work around the world, these awards are unique in their recognition of individual improvements, and not intranets as a whole. Winning intranet professionals obtain widespread visibility, a magnificent glass trophy, and more support within their own organisations.
Now is the time to get your entry in, for your chance to win a lovely glass trophy. The closing date is Friday 6 June 2014.
It is easy to enter, doesn’t require much effort, when you complete the entry form. Check it out, gain that critical external recognition and inspire other intranet professional!
I recently wrote about how you should manage your intranet. A governance framework based on your business requirements is a good approach to take to achieve a well-managed intranet.
Part of your business requirements will need your organisation to comply any laws that apply in any country you operate in. A strong governance framework will help avoid the risks of non-compliance with all legal requirements in the most effective way. It is better to look at the bigger picture and be consistent rather than have a local, fragmented, approach.
Factors you need to consider are:
- The impact on your organisation’s brand and reputation if it is non-compliant with a legal requirement. Is it really a risk worth taking? Can you foresee all the fallout from the publicity?
- It is not something you should just pay ‘lip service’ to. You need to be serious about meeting not just the letter of the law but the spirit of it too. It can have many positive benefits if approached in the right manner rather than seen as inconvenient and a hindrance.
- Living the values of your organisation by being able to demonstrate that employees are respected by your intranet complying with all legal requirements. This may also encourage people to join your organisation rather than a competitor.
My first-hand experience and from working with clients is that intranets that are legally compliant by using best practice examples have a positive impact on your organisation and your intranet role. It is how you approach this which is the critical success factor!
You can out more information to help your intranet avoid the legal risks.
Are you going to one of the best conferences in Sweden for 2014? I’m talking about Intranatverk 2014 of course!
Intranätverk is an intranet conference for those of you who want more than presentations. You will help to create an engaging, fun and participating conference, where everyone can learn from each other.
Intranätverk 2014 takes place, 20-22 May, 2014 in Gothenburg, Sweden at Folkets Hus Konferens.
- 20 May is swedish intranet day, all presentations in Swedish.
- 21 May is the international intranet day and the presentations will be in English.
- 22 May is the workshop day, with workshops by Tony Byrne and Martin White.
Intranätverk in numbers:
The delegates will be intranet managers, editors, architects, communication as well as digital managers and IT specialists from the business side.
The conference is arranged because there is a need to network, listen, learn and share knowledge amongst intranet professionals. There is also a lack of really good intranet related conferences in Sweden, where you can learn and share experiences.
This conference is founded and organised by Kristian Norling. Kristian has been working with intranets since 2001 (almost as long as me!) and over the years he has experienced and participated in a lot of great conferences. This knowledge and experience, together with your knowledge and experience and that of all the participants and speakers, will make Intranätverk 2014 even better than in 2013.
Sadly I won’t be able to make it this year but last year at Intranetverk 2013 I had the privilege to:
- participate as a delegate listening to other great speakers on subjects including intranets, mobile, and SharePoint 2013
- present on the benefits of a digital workplace
- help delegates with a governance workshop
It was a great conference and I am sure Intranätverk 2014 will be one you should not miss.
After you have developed a clear intranet strategy as explained in my post ‘How to develop an intranet strategy‘ you then need to follow this with an implementation plan, publishing standards and a governance framework.
While every intranet is different there are some common factors that need to be considered so your intranet supports your business requirements:
- The size of your organisation will affect how you manage your intranet. If it is based in one location and you know everyone by their first name then it is likely you can manage your intranet on your own. If it has many thousands of people in many locations you will need a different approach and involve other people to help you manage your intranet.
- The type of organisation will affect how you manage your intranet. Is it streamlined on administration, informal decision-making? Or is it more formalised, committee driven, when making decisions on how publishing standards and intranet roles and responsibilities?
- The culture of your organisation will affect how you manage your intranet. Is it a very top down, command and control, culture with feedback discouraged? Or is it more open, democratic and consensual? Whether it is either or a mix of both will influence your approach to managing your intranet.
My first-hand experience and from working with clients is that intranets can be managed well no matter what size, type or culture your organisation has. It is how you approach this which is the critical success factor!
You can out more information on how to manage your intranet to help you.
Posted in best practice, content management, governance, help, intranet, plan, publishing, standards, strategy, training, value
Tagged best practice, content, governance, help, intranet, plan, publishing, standards, strategy, usability standards, value
Recently I posted on how to develop an intranet strategy and how to develop a digital workplace strategy. One of the key factors either strategy must consider is the growing needs of people who use mobile devices to access information needed to help with their work. I believe it is so important that it justifies its own strategy to help achieve the full benefits.
When developing a strategy for people who are mobile it is important you consider the following factors:
- Research with mobile workers what exactly their requirements are. Don’t guess! And don’t accept the experience is good enough just because the content or app can be accessed from mobile devices.
- Involve mobile workers in testing as you develop your intranet to make sure it will be a good experience for mobile devices before it is launched. Don’t assume it will just be alright on the day.
- Be clear how many different operating systems your organisation can justify supporting. While wanting to support the different operating systems for mobile devices it is stupid to aim to support every system. A balance between IT costs and capabilities with mobile users’ needs to be agreed.
- Decide on your approach to responsive or device specific designs for mobile users. Do you want/need to publish the same content in more than one place? Is the management of one piece of content too heavy for all types of devices that need to access it?
There are some key principles which you can apply to help you create a mobile strategy for your organisation. Find out more information on how to develop a mobile strategy.