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Intranets must be simply social

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Intranets have always been the ultimate challenge for an organisation, be it from a technical point of view, from the information design, productivity wise or socially. People who love their intranet are scarce. This has to change, the focus must be on people, content and ease of use. Ploneintranet is an effort by 12 Plone companies from Europe and the US, addressing the issue that an intranet solution must be more than just the sum of its add-ons.

The talk gives
° an overview on the background of PloneIntranet
° its philosophy
° where it heads to
° how to quickly set it up yourself
° and how to get involved.

Published in: Internet
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Intranets must be simply social

  1. 1. Intranet „An intranet is an internal website that helps the company to get things done“ Intranets
  2. 2. Tasks of an intranet • Content (manuals, guidelines, …) • Communication (Company news…) • Interaction (Travel expense forms…) • Collaboration (Shared workspaces…) • Cultural (Organise activities…) Source: James Robertson - Step two designs
  3. 3. In reality • Often centrally steered • Often only the first two items - Content and Communication • Communication is done without emotion
  4. 4. How does communication happen? • 7 staff • 14 staff • 140 staff
  5. 5. Typical wishes mentioned by staff • More communication down the chain of command • Understanding of strategic decisions • Don’t know what’s happening „up there“ • Feeling to be detached from company communication Source: James Robertson - Step two designs
  6. 6. Do we employ humans or machines?
  7. 7. A simple intranet sim ply
  8. 8. What Plone is good at • Use it „out of the box“ with small adjustments • This is how Plone got great, together with TTW • Somehow, deep down, I want this still, just on a bigger scale
  9. 9. What Plone also is good at • New UI with Plone as backend • Challenge: UI is a project on its own • Downside: Reusability get’s less and less, as more and more is customer specific
  10. 10. What Plone is not so good at • Intensive change of the UI • Consistent experience between add ons • Plone is no UI framework or UI platform N otPlone’s fault!
  11. 11. Complexity is an issue • Similar to „The Traveling Salesman Integrator“ problem • Take Plone alone - works fine • Take Plone and install more and more add ons - 
 > complexity grows into the uncontrollable. • What we want: 
 Take Plone, control the UI and the add ons.
  12. 12. • Are people in need of an intranet? Yes! • Do people know that they are? No! • Do people want to work with an intranet? Hell, no! They have to. • So we need to change that by giving them a good experience. • How do we give a good experience? Many Add ons? Fancy Design? High configurability? • A good experience is simple, reduced, effective, quick, intuitive.
  13. 13. How we did Intranets in the past Plone Add on Add on Add on Add on Design Add on
  14. 14. This is how we do PloneIntranet now Plone Add on Add on Add on Add on DesignAdd on Add on
  15. 15. Positioning Ploneintranet? • Target group vector: Developer vs End User • Software vector: Platform vs Product
  16. 16. Software: Platform • As flexible as possible, as little constraints as possible • Generic structure that fits most use cases • Configurable slots to allow change • Emphasis is placed on extendability, configurability
  17. 17. Software: Product • Design is created with Users in mind and explicit use cases • Complexity is reduced by stripping away not needed controls • Emphasis is put on a given feature set, control, maintainability
  18. 18. Target: Developer • Develop first, then make it nice • Typically done when you have many developers and few designers • Emphasis put on a solid backend architecture, reusability, stability
  19. 19. Target: End User • Make it nice, then develop for it • Typically done when you have many designers and few developers • Emphasis put on the end user
  20. 20. DESIGNER (USER) DEVELOPER PLATFORM PRODUCT Thoughtfarmer Jostle PloneIntranet Plone 5 Wordpress Bitrix
  21. 21. „Design First“ puts the „End User First“
  22. 22. „Design First“ Process • Product Owner, Designer and Developer sit and detail the requirements for a feature • Design produces a clickable prototype • Prototype is tested with users, stakeholders and by developers, get’s adjusted • Prototype is accepted and is passed to developers as the specification • Designers are supporting development on the way
  23. 23. Benefits • A lot of the interaction is already done in the front end • The design prototype is also directly the diazo theme • Designers and Developers talk more • Result is closer to the user • Developer’s focus moves back to the backend
  24. 24. Challenges • Developers don’t design anymore • Designers and Developers have to talk together • Design decisions can have an impact on the backend architecture which must be addressed by developers
  25. 25. Social Intranet „An intranet that helps people to get stuff done.“ social
  26. 26. „Social intranets connect every piece of information to a living, breathing person, and help people connect with each other. The people layer permeates the entire site and makes every page more human.“ Source: thoughtfarmer blog on intranet
  27. 27. We need two things for that • Real people need to create content (Authorship) • Content needs to be connected to people (Connections)
  28. 28. Aspects of a social intranet • Personalised Dashboards and Newsfeeds • Video • Document libraries • Activity streams • Group representation • Staff profiles • Mobile
  29. 29. „The social intranet turns a static information library into a lively forum for information.“
  30. 30. How do I get Plone Intranet?
  31. 31. The Plone Intranet Consortium • A loose association of plone companies • Committed to sharing and the design first approach • Financing design and qa is shared • Any company can join • Working still in a project centric fashion
  32. 32. There are 2 editions, why? • Design First approach needs protection - no free for all • Project based work model conflicts with product based work model • If we don’t sustain the product, it will become yet another unsupported add on. • Still all is fully GPL • Delayed release cycle - like „closed betas“
  33. 33. Plone Intranet • Community Edition • See http://www.quaive.com • Version 1.2 is just around the corner • New apps, tons of small improvements, speed ups, latest Plone • Design First Approach
  34. 34. Quaive Social Intranet • Projects, Milestones, Cases • Notifications • Concurrent Editing • Taxonomy Browser • Slidebank • LDAP / Active Directory • Audit Log • Migration support • Supported Edition • Targeted at Enterprise market • Focus on Support and Service
  35. 35. Connecting technology and organisational change • Consulting offer • Understand your organisation • Develop information architecture • Deliver Quaive • Analyse impact for continuous improvement • Get help and support
  36. 36. Roadmap • 1.1 late spring 2017 • 1.2 autumn 2017 (now)
 Features done
 See „upcoming release“ on quaive.com • 1.3 spring 2018
 planned
 

  37. 37. Upcoming Features • Concurrent Editing of Office Documents • Zapier Integration • Notification Center • Legal Contracts App • Push Notifications
  38. 38. How to get in touch • http://quaive.com • You can book a demo • You can subscribe to our mailing list • You can just send us a note • You can get a free playground if you like to try it out • You can just mail me
  39. 39. http://www.quaive.com Get in touch! pilz@syslab.com - @alexpilz Alexander Pilz
  40. 40. „It just doesn’t work if you don’t do the design first approach.“ And in case I didn’t say it clear enough: Get in touch: @alexpilz - pilz@syslab.com - https://quaive.com - https://syslab.com

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