Changing the intranets conversation

Changing of the guard
An article on the CMS Wire website that has garnered much attention from the intranet community on Twitter and other sites is an article called "Changing the Intranets Conversation"

In the article, the author begins by looking at why modern intranets have so much baggage. From the introduction to the article:

Here’s the crux: We’re overwhelmed, confused and disillusioned by this elusive “intranet” concept. Countless writers have written about intranets for far too long to go back now. So how can we change the conversation? 
Gartner’s term “Digital Workplace” is doing just that: changing the words we use to talk about intranets, even while the concept is as old as the “paperless office.” “Digital Workplace” is Gartner’s shorthand for the many pieces of technology your teams use to work together harmoniously
The author then looks at how organisations can take on the challenge of making their intranets and the tools that they provide their users both more collaborative and more like a digital workplace. The author provides several pieces of advice for organisations in this position.

The first is to establish an open dialogue with your users, this means providing them with the tools and applications that they can use to share their views and opinions. The next tip is to think carefully about whether you should build or buy a solution for providing an intranet to your users. There are definitely benefits to both approaches, but ultimately it will depend on the requirements of the organisation.

This is a thought provoking article, which if you are an intranet manager is definitely worth reading.

Running a virtual race...or two...

POW Virtual Runner 10k medal
For those of you who following my running on Runkeeper or Strava (probably not many) you may have noticed that I've been running a few "virtual" races recently.

These aren't races where you sit on your sofa with a virtual reality headset on and pretend to run, but are in fact races where you receive a medal but you don't attend an actual race. To prove you have run the required distance you can choose to send either a screenshot of the running app you use or of your running watch.

I love the idea of Virtual races opening up races to those individuals who might not be able to attend a race or might not want to. It's definitely a great way to obtain some race medals without having to travel to far from home and being able to do it on your own terms. Some of the Virtual races are also organised so that a percentage of the race entry goes to a charity.

There are two virtual race websites that I have tried out this year. The first of these was Virtual Runner which is the second result if you search for Virtual Running. This is one of the sites that gives a percentage of the entry fee to charities. Charities include Bowel Cancer UK, Ellie's Fund and ABF The Soldiers Charity. This is a great way for individuals to raise money for these charities, without having to try and reach a fundraising target.

SRC (Virtual Running) 5k medal
The other virtual race website I have used is POW Virtual Running this site doesn't donate a percentage of the race fee to charity at the moment. However their September race will be the first when they partner with a charity (MIND) to offer participants the chance to raise money for a very worthy charity.

The final website that I am looking at is the Virtual Running UK website. They offer some free races, with the option to take part in bonus races to get hold of some medals. I hope to take part in their August 5 mile race to earn a very nice looking medal.

Overall I think Virtual Races are a great way to get hold of some medals and if you really want to take it seriously you can do so and push yourself to achieve your best time over the chosen distance.

Intranet resources - June 2015

This is becoming something of a habit now, which is probably a good thing. This month I have found 5 articles on intranets which I found particularly intranet. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

If you're looking for a good introduction to Office 365 groups then you need look no further then an article con the CMS Wire website called "What are Office 365 groups" the reason for the blog post as explained in the introduction is because of the confusion Microsoft have caused with the introduction of these groups. The article looks at when Office 365 groups might be used and the functionality available within them.

Not one, but two blog posts this month on how to use video on your intranet. Both the articles have been published to the JBoye website and are well worth reviewing if you're thinking about using video on your intranet. The first article is called "Intranet video tips & tricks" and pulls together a list of useful resources in relation to videos. The second article is called "How to use video on your intranet" because of course there are plenty of ways to get video wrong!

To finish up this month we have two excellent articles from the team at Intranetizen. The first is an article called "Should you move your intranet into the cloud" although for some intranet managers, it seems to be case of being dragged into the cloud!

The second article from the intranetizen team this month is something that I think will be very useful for a huge number of intranet managers. This is an article called "Top tips for intranet demos" in which Sharon O'Dea looks at the essential elements of an intranet demonstration. There are definitely some important takeaways in this article, but for me the one that really stood out was to "think" before you do anything.