Martin White blogged yesterday about Watching an organisation reorganise – implications for IA and search, which shared the incredible animation created by Autodesk Research:
This shows the evolution of Autodesk’s organisational structure over a span of 1498 days. This is best explained by the Autodesk research blog post. (I’d also strongly recommend changing the video to HD resolution, and watching it full screen, ideally in a darkened room.)
It’s a hypnotic display, not unlike you’d imagine the birth of the universe to look like (if it was possible to see such a thing).
What it highlights in absolute terms, however, is how foolish it is to structure the intranet along organisational lines.
I don’t imagine Autodesk is a uniquely dynamic organisation, and our clients are constantly restructuring, albeit in a less visible way.
To keep the intranet up-to-date in the face of these changes is impractical, from a time, resources and cost perspective. Yet the organisational still does broadly the same things throughout the reorganisations (with the exception of major purchases or divestments).
So let’s stop taking the “easy” path of creating navigation that matches business units, and move to a functionally-structured intranet supported by rich collaboration and social tools.