[thelist] Teaching Fish to staff!!!

Steve Cook sck at biljettpoolen.se
Tue Oct 3 09:55:25 CDT 2000

I've been noticing an interesting phenomenon lately. As part of my job, I go
around and talk a lot to our clients. Almost all of them (at least the ones
I talk to) have large Intranets.  Almost all of them are complaining that
the reasons they first created Intranets no longer apply. Originally the
Intranet was intended as somewhere to put all the information that you
*really* wanted your staff to see. Over time however, the Intranet grew.
Perhaps several Intranets sprung up. Eventually, the amount of information
made the Intranet more like an internal internet than a centralised
information repository.

So many of these companies now have the same problems that sites on the web
have. They are desparate for eyeballs. Think about Ericsson for instance,
whoc estimate that they have 10,000 internal web SITES!!! (Yup, sites, not

This is creating demand for a new type of Intranet. Some companies are
creating meta intranet sites that crawl the rest of the Intranet and help
users navigate / categorise / monitor this information. Others are creating
"official" centralised sites, which employees are expected to check into
regularly if they wish to keep up with company info.

Still others are acting like portals - which is where I come in :-) I should
explain that my usual WAP .sig I use for evolt is my personal mail .sig. I
work for a Swedish company who sell tickets to events. We have a business to
business service and a strong part of what we offer is an extranet site
tailored to our clients wishes. They then link to this from their Intranet,
allowing their staff to buy from us on the company account (if the tickets
are for work use) or paying themselves (some companies even set up an
account for the employees to use for themselves as a form of bonus!).

Tada! Instant added value to an official company staff Intranet. 

Of course, there's more to it than that, but there's the gist (I don't want
to give away ALL of my boss' business strategy!). I must admit I was a
little sceptical in the beginning, but it's quite amazing how
enthusiastically the concept is received. Hence the intro to this mail - I
truly think this is a new phenomenom within business. Adding value to large
Intranets is something that companies will start to pay for more and more.
Remember where you heard it first :-)

Other than that. I agree with Martin's comments. Add value to the Intranet
rather than trying to dictate that people use it. However, be aware that
it's no longer a case of "Build it and they will come".


(p.s. We're working on an upgraded site, so don't be surprised if you think
"Ewww - I wouldn't let a site that looks that ugly within 100 yards of *my*

(p.p.s. Couldn't resist the subject title change!)

   WapWarp - http://wapwarp.com
 Wap-Dev - http://www.wap-dev.net
 Cookstour - http://cookstour.org

> Required reading for anyone working on intranets:
> http://www.cluetrain.com/
> >make sure there's "something in it for them" when they use the online
> >stuff -- for example, update the online versions of all 
> those out-of-date
> >paper manuals, and make them easier to use than the paper versions

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