1. This is a really great post, and I wished I’d had the insight to see the product/service issue before. All consultants work in 2-by-2 matrices, and I’m just starting to think about two other dimensions, the individual and the organisation, and seeing whether Stephen’s approach can be extended in this way.

  2. Sharon

    Excellent advice and aligns well with IT thinking as well and my evolving thinking over many years. I am currently struggling with the closure of an intranet development programme and need to transition the team into a business as usual IT environment. This article is vital to assist my case that maintaining the intranet even in difficult economic times in the UK is more than managing the servers and technology!

  3. Stephen Byrne

    Thank you for the feedback. The idea was inspired from a client meeting where communications asked IT to ‘deliver them an intranet’ and IT believed they could do just that. When the ‘product’, ‘service’ idea was introduced, you could see all the light bulbs go on above peoples heads and they all realised this was a little more involved. I have since found it a very powerful metaphor for conveying what an intranet is really all about.

  4. Michael

    Stephen you’ve hit the nail on the head here. Having a services mentality is critical to ensure your intranet continues to receive investment (resources and funds) after it’s launched.

  5. Yvonne

    Stephen, this is a great post. Thanks. Many people see the intranet as a product and fail to see why we need the intranet in the first place – to provide better service to our staff – ultimately to help them improve their work efficiency and effectiveness. Organisations are constantly reviewing their workplans and staff also have to constantly align their individual workplans and KPIs to the organisational direction. This is a continuous process to help organisations remain relevant and competitive in the market. Intranet (as an enabler) is to help staff remain up to date and also to help them execute their tasks. Thus, such “intranet as a service” mentality is crucial and it has to be on-going service improvement (intranet team to be constantly gathering and reviewing feedback on the intranet and making improvements to enhance user experience).

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Published March 24, 2011

Steve Byrne
Steve Byrne is a specialist in knowledge management, combining this with years of experience as an organisational psychologist. As a senior member of the consulting team, Stephen works with organisations to deliver successful intranets and to resolve information management challenges.