Try a self-managed intranet

In BT I lead a small central team.  I’m responsible for the strategy, governance and standards and how they are applied to content published on BT’s intranet using a menu of templates that I manage.

So who is responsible for publishing, reviewing, updating and removing content?

“You!” is the answer to any publisher in BT.  There is NO central publishing team to do this on behalf of anyone.

Publishers are responsible for any content they own meeting our standards based on business, legal, regulatory and users’ needs. 

They are trained on awareness of publishing standards and how they apply before they publish choosing from a menu of templates that already meet standards.

Automated tools will check content weekly and remind the publishers who own it if it doesn’t meet our standards what needs to be done.  If no action is taken it is escalated to the publisher’s line manager and if action is still not taken, it will be removed from use and deleted.  This avoids users making decisions on out of date content or because it is too difficult to use.

So, the content is owned and managed by every publisher with templates, training and automated tools to make it as easy as possible to meet the standards all users expect so they have a great overall experience.

My team can concentrate on what we can add most value to for BT and our intranet.

6 responses to “Try a self-managed intranet

  1. In 2010 there is a big move away from intranets and towards community tools because most intranets do not have granular control over users and access from outside is limited. Moving to the cloud, SaaS or ASP model allows for faster start up and the sooner an intranet gets populated (by you) the stickier it gets.

    When describing our product I liken our tools to an ecosystem. Many businesses need a way to channel information, products, knowledge through a highly regulated process. So in effect intranets when they need to expand should be considered business ecosystems.

    • Brewster,

      I don’t agree with you about intranets being moved away. it depends what you define intranets as. In BT our intranet has community tools and standards which are applied appropriately to the type of content or application being used.

      I agree about intranets becoming more people centred which (I think) is what you mean by ecosystems.


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  3. Does your model prevent the ability for a reviewer to simply rubberstamp approve a piece of content just to update the review date? This way they can say its been reviewed and it’s out of the way but has circumvented the process of improving the content. In other words, is there a way to have content published that meets standards but adds no value for the user?

    • CJ,

      No it doesn’t prevent the owner who is determined to get round the process. Our process was never meant to be that. Education, training and our standards show clearly what their responsibilities are. Users are very quick to let the owner and me know if something doesn’t feel right – out of date, wrong tone/style, not very usable – so this helps.

      The process was first introduced to remind people to review content 4 weeks in advance and save them having to try to remember when and what to do. Some owners have forgotten that…………..


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