Thank you for Inviting me. I come from Netlife Research. User experience company in Oslo, Norway. Big clients in Scandinavia. Of course big in Norway and Big in the US are two different things. But I have understood that we have some of the same challenges when we build intranets.
The land famous for these ugly creatures - the trolls. Most intranets in Norway look like these.
This guy - the polar bear.
You probably knew that, but what you maybe did not know is that we have great beaches. Actually some of the best beaches in Europe. To bad that it never is warm enough to use them.
I don´t know if this is new to you but we also have a rich design-tradition. Going back to the fifties and inspired by functionalism. Take the Opera in Oslo as an example. It is beautiful, yet functional. You can walk on the roof.
So Scandinavian design is about Practical beauty. It is minimalistic and it is about making things easy to use. Enough said about this. Now, let us talk about Intranets and how on earth this is related to Scandinavian design.
In my speech I will use examples from mainly
First let me talk about some ways in which we fail when we make and maintain our intranets. Do we really fail? Not according to the company managers. Not according to the intranet editor. But still we fail. According to the users. If you can relate to these fails we have a bridge from Norway to the US. If not just sit back and think «These Scandinavians can´t do anything right».
Bain and company asked 362 companies if they where customer focused and what kind of experience they delivered to their customers. 95% said they where customer focused. 80% said the delivered a superior experience to the customers. Then they asked the customers of these companies the same questions......
8% percent said the companies delivered a superior experience.
Do we have a delivery gap for intranets? I have never seen this kind of survey done for intranets but I would really like to. When I talk to users they have bad names for their intranets. When I talk to managers they think they are so good.
We have trouble getting the empolyees to use the intranet. That is a sign. A bad one..
The first HUGE problem is the content. Your intranet is way too big.
Our intranets looks like this. A messy room where we put all our documents and content. It is almost impossible to find something here, except for the person who put it here. And it is getting bigger..
We focus on production and not maintenance. Because production is visible. Everybody see the news you made today, but nobody saw that you updated and rewrote 10 instructions which saves the company time and cash every day. I have worked with companies where internal communications needs to produce 5 news-stories each day instead of fixing their rotten content.
The content failure has gone so far that some people takes somewhat extreme actions.
5000 pages 22 departments 100 publishers
We design empty structures and fill them afterwards. Not Latin.
So everybody has their space on the intranet. The intranets in Norway are democratic experiments. Even in the projects we have a lot of interesting discussions in the intranet-projects. Compromise.
This is from a real project.
So, how do we fix this.
This is not very scandinavian. We love democracy. But democracy never built a good intranet.
To make it more fun we add buns. I guess it would be Muffins or Cupcakes here in the US.
And it works. This is from a Norwegian telecom site. We deleted 80% of the pages and the sales went up with 80%
So we should have a diet for intranets.
How do you evaluate the content? How well written is the content? Does it use difficult language? Is it to long etc? AND how relevant is it. Do we have a documented task which it solves AND a strategic goal which it fulfills? If it is Irrelevant we delete it anyhow. Turn the statistics upside down.
The purpose of content is to help people complete tasks.
To often we thinnk of information as important in itself. It is´nt We have to fint out what people really want.
We need to remember that we are not that important to this guy. We have to give him something useful. He does not have time for «reading» the intranet?
The users will use the intranet to solve task. All too many companies don´t know which.
This is often solved in a very poor way. In a HR handbook or 14 pages you have to scroll through. That is not what the employees need.
They need recipes, not articles.
So when we where researching what people in DNB wanted to know about Work hours. It was three things: How long do I have to work? When and how do I order Pizza if I work overtime and What do I get paid?
The same when we present how you ret your refunds when you have paid for something job-related.
We stay with this navigation pattern from the late nineties. It did not work well then and it still dont
If you are lucky it would even be like this..
If we do not prioritize for the user, they will be lost. This is a result of us all becoming the slaves of our own structure.
What you need here is to navigate in years and months. so you can open and close these bars.
Most intranets are not designed, they are installed or «set up».
They still looks like internal newspapers. Which is ok if that is what you want to give the users.
But the ambitions of most intranets goes way beyond the internal magazine.
Solution: Still a Newspaper. With articles, article list etc. The Content Management Systems are still best at what they were made for: Building sites for online newspapers.
another designproblem is that we tend to trust the vendors when they say «Out of the box». Microsoft must have spent millions on user research before making this function som why should we change it. They probably did, but it is still crap.
Newsgator. Is this a Unix logfile? About 10% is used for the message. The rest is functionality which people doesn´t understand.
This is Sharepoint search - not for human beings.
fitts law says the time it takes to click on something is a function of the distance to the object you are trying to click on and the size of it. Most designers have forgotten this law. It is ok to make things as small as possible.
You can click anywhere here.
Designthinking is of course much more than the visual stuff. We have started to spread the intranets out in the organizations. Here we project the intranet on the wall in the canteen so everybody can see what is happening on the microblog.
11 okt 2012_new_york_intranet_global
Intranets - theScandinavian way Jostein Magnussen
14905 voices 1. Find people (by name, skill or workplace) 2. Use tools (register work hours, project management...) 3. Find employee info (salary...) 4. News (important news!)Source: Gerry McGovern, Netlife Research and others. 14,905 answers from multiple countries and companies
Making a purchase 1. People work together in pairsGet people to follow internal procedures 2. They pick a page and fill outSave money the form togetherAll employees 3. Each pair presents their completed form to the whole groupHow do I purchase something?Access to database of suppliersPurchasing, contracts, suppliers