Intranet teams need to be technology savvy

It might seem obvious but if you're managing an Intranet, you're going to need to have some experience with technology. However increasingly Intranets are being managed outside of the IT Team. This is a good development, however it does mean that there can be gaps in the Knowledge of the team managing the Intranet.

So how can someone gain technical knowledge in area they might not be familiar with? Well James Robertson has some suggestion in his post Intranets teams need technology savvy the following are some of James's suggestions:

  • Reading blogs and websites that cover general technology trends from a business perspective.
  • Gaining hands-on training with key tools, to an administrator (not developer) level.
  • Attending conferences and events that explore intranet and technology topics.
  • Tracking what other organisations have done from a technical perspective.
  • Building a productive relationship with IT, to allow constructive two-way dialogue and knowledge sharing.
  • Hiring team members with a greater level of technical knowledge or comfort.
  • Sticking at it! Not being afraid to ask questions, or to keep asking for more information until things make sense. 
When I joined my latest firm I had very little experience of managing an Intranet aside from publishing content. So it was somewhat of an upward learning curve trying to understand how the different systems worked together and to be honest I'm still learning. Having an understanding of what is happening more generally is very useful as you can begin to work on ideas for your own Intranet. Attending Conferences and events is also very useful, especially as you'll likely to meet other individuals in a similar position to yourself. I'd also suggest signing up to Twitter if you haven't already (why not!) and searching for Intranet managers or Intranet professionals, there are plenty on there and they're normally happy for people to contact them with questions. There are also a lot of groups on LinkedIn which are specifically for Intranet managers, which are well worth signing up to. One of the most important points James makes is about building a productive relationship with IT. This is essential if you want to get anything done on your Intranet. A bad working relationship can mean that you struggle to have updates and changes approved or resource made available.

Have you recently taken over the management of an Intranet, if so how did you get up to speed?