As mentioned in a previous post, I’m just putting the finishing touches to a handbook on the topic of using social technology behind the firewall to make an organisation more interactive, collaborative, better at learning, and that sort of thing.
I’m quite proud of the first line in it:
Has there ever been an intranet that didn’t suck?
We haven’t decided yet just how it is going to be published, other than giving it to customers as part of projects we are working on, but I’m sure it will be available in some form to everyone in the near future.
As a taster for what’s included, here’s a brief outline of the contents. If you’re interested in finding out more, or would like to get hold of it once it is finished, do let me know in the comments or by email.
expertnet – "The United States General Services Administration (GSA) and the White House Open Government Initiative are soliciting your feedback on a concept for next generation citizen consultation, namely a government-wide software tool and process to elicit expert public participation"
Newsroom: the backstory – "Early feedback on the prototype from journalists was positive, the Press Office got a nice-looking tool which required literally zero additional work beyond emailing over their contact list, and Neil got one of his much-loved quick wins – and within SiteCore too."
When Public Servants Make the Difference – "However, as one of the secret sauces of Singapore’s success is trusting its own employees, so almost all gov 2.0 success stories in the Western world share the same ingredient, i.e. they come from the intuition and the willingness to innovate of people who work in government."
And The Long Sought Replacement For Email Is . . . | Forrester Blogs – "Enterprise 2.0 enthusiasts (count me in) have argued for several years that Email’s manifest deficiencies could and would be overcome with open, social, and dynamic 2.0-based communication and collaboration tools. However, there’s also long been the recognition that Email – or rather, Email users – would not go down without a fight."
Designing the Big (Civil) Society – it’s DIY time – "But in my experience, whether it’s a group of activists, social entrepreneurs or local government officers, you can’t assume people will easily start co-designing new stuff together – particularly if that involves adding technology. People need to get to know and trust each other, tell stories about what’s worked and what hasn’t, filter inspirational ideas against local realities, think about who does what, where the money comes from, and so on. That’s particularly difficult when you are doing that with less funds then before – as will certainly be the case."
The Future of Open Data Looks Like…Github? – "the future to me in this area seems clear: we’re going to see transformation of datasets incorporated into the marketplaces. As the demand for public data increases, the market will demand higher quality, easier to work with data."
Government needs a SkunkWorks – "What's stopping us spooling up a Skunkworks? Nothing but the momentum which continues to carry us down the old path. It's inertia, but, as I said, we're at the dawn of something new. Personally, I'm confident that all manner of things which would have been difficult before will now become possible."
Intranet design is maturing and reaping the rewards of continuous quality improvement for traditional features, while embracing new trends like mobile access, emergency preparedness, and user/employee-contributed content.
Ideas of enterprise 2.0 are leaking into intranet design, and quite right too.
As per this post, I’m focusing a lot of my attention this year on what goes on within organisations. I dare say that few councils and other government organisations have interactive – and mobile – intranets as discussed by Nielson.
I want to explore what technology people are using and what the barriers are to adoption – and then think about what the solutions might look like.
I’m on the lookout for stories about collaboration and innovation in this space within public services – like the stuff Carl Haggerty is up to in Devon. If you have any examples, drop me a line, or leave a comment.