Can we build it?

Chatting through an idea with Paul Miller (CEO and Founder of IBF) last Friday regarding a feature on IBF 24. Although I’m not a great fan (in fact no fan at all) of makeover shows I’m musing around the thought of giving an intranet site a makeover in 24 hours, or even build it from new! Here’s the plan. Thinking of finding a company that is willing to have their intranet built in 24 hours though the collective wisdom of the intranet world (i.e the audience of IBF 24). Would need to find a software vendor willing to provide the technical platform, and over the course of the 24 hour event, get the audience to determine the navigation, structure, governance model and adoption process of getting the site ready, minus the content. It will be the best intranet ever built or a Frankenstein – but the thought is exciting and challenging? Anyone out there fancy helping me with getting this thought into something practical?



14 thoughts on “Can we build it?

  1. Much as I would enjoy the sport of it, are we sending the wrong message here? Surely the goal of IBF, etc is to spread the idea of identifying and following best practice?

  2. Yes – we can. We could provide our IntelliEnterprise Intranet Platform. We just released the free adenin Intranet Modeler – a wireframing tool allowing to prototype a complete Intranet probably in less than 12 hours. The wireframe could be converted into a real, custom intranet site within minutes.

  3. If you want to do it right that’s to say go beyond the pure technical challenge, why not do a baseline user survey on the present intranet, build the new one, then after 6 months of usage, do another user survey.I like the idea. We often spend too much time "analysing needs" when there are a lot of obvious good practices out there. However, much of the so-called analysis phase is really the "getting everyone on board" phase. It would be an interesting experiment to rebuild the intranet without consulting users. However, doing it in the context of IBF 24 is more a test of the collective knowledge of the intranet managers than anything else. Unless you do a user survey pre and post-experiment, I think the activity has primarily entertainment value. If you do involve users, and their feedback is positive, then you might just blow a lot of consultants and agencies out of the water! I like the idea!

  4. Thanks for the comments everyone. For me the appeal is using the collective wisdom of the intranet crowd. Businesses are changing, reinventing themselves etc and within the ‘online world’ we preach about social media etc, however, the processes we use to garner evidence, build and develop doesn’t appear to have any relationship with what with the changing business model. It could be because it works, or it could be no-one is prepared to experiement. The experiment, and it would be just that, could either (as Jane suggest) blow a whole industry of consultants out of the water or in fact confirm the value of these agencies. As mentioned before, the appeal or value for me would be to ignite/excite the intranet managers of the world to participate and get heads around thinking of new ways to develop. I regularly use Linkedin, Twitter etc to solve minor issues. Why not tryit with a major one..building a whole new intranet!

  5. Totally agree, Mark. Count me in if you and IBF think I have a role to play in helping with this. I like the adventurous spirit of it very much!

  6. <table cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" border="0" ><tr><td valign="top" style="font: inherit;">@marktilbury<BR><BR>—</td></tr></table>

  7. Sorry for the delay in response to all these comments. Been doing some thinking behind gettting this featured on IBF 24??’m looking at a ‘make over’ format. We find a company willing to have their intranet built by the intranet global community. Need to think of the tasks/processes that would make entertaining and education viewing over the 24 hours of IBF 24. ??Off the top of the head I’m thinking of breaking the process down into 8 parts including: ??determine sponsorhip and governnacelooking at IAbuilding the sitelooking atadoption process etc etc etc with all the input/decisons coming from the ‘wisdom’ of the intranet global community’. From a softwear perspective I imagine we would need a hosting platform (maybe some guranntee with the company to provide something free for 6 -12 months?); the resource to build and amend over the 24 hour show. Any further ideas I’m happy to entertain. Remember – this is about collective thnking and reinventing the way we do things around here

  8. I built the framework for the ESB International Intranet back in about 2003 in a single working day including navigation, templating, alternate views, and a number of applications including bulletin board, for sale and a couple of others (maybe a staff search)CMS = Obtree (Whoosh!)

  9. Oh, and good luck getting a crowd to agree ‘anything’ together. How will you measure opinion? You could always use Google Wave for collaborative documentation and voting. You’re certiainly going to need vocal input rather than typed otherwise you’re in danger of creating the biggest ’email thread’ in history while comments pass back and forward.

  10. Also, Intranets are very cultural – what works for one organisation won’t work for another (this I’m sure has been proven several times over). There’s a danger you’ll get good advice from some people based on their own experiences that just won’t appeal to the Intranet users

  11. Oh, and you’ll need a very flexible/simple markup model to be able to integrate changes and idea rapidly – this does not even sound like fun even it was purely an exercise in collaborative design

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