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Intranet teams need to use their time wisely. It is very easy to fall into the trap of dealing with urgent requests and problems, never actually making any progress.
Effective intranet teams must plan up front how they will spend their time to deliver both short term and long term benefits to their organisations.
The rule of thumb for intranet resources is:
- 30% effort for day-to-day maintenance
- 40% effort for projects and new initiatives
- 30% effort managing relationships with staff and stakeholders
For a team of one this can mean devoting one day a week to managing relationships with staff and stakeholders. In a team of 5 these responsibilities can be split between different roles.
30% effort for day-to-day maintenance
Day-to-day maintenance can include:
- publishing and maintaining content
- providing support for publishers
- fixing technical problems
- assessing search logs
- maintaining the home page
- reviewing content areas with owners
- creating graphics
If day-to-day maintenance of the intranet absorbs excessive amounts of the team’s time the intranet will never progress. This can lead to the the team becoming disengaged and experiencing a never ending workload.
To achieve the 30% target teams may need to:
- move some publishing to business areas
- automate repetitive tasks
40% effort for projects and new initiatives
Intranets are a journey and every intranet is constantly evolving in parallel with the organisation. Most improvements occur as part of a new project or initiative.
Projects and new iniatives can include:
- adding a new content area to the intranet
- redesigning information architecture
- implementing a new content management system
- incorporating collaboration tools
- improving search results
Projects are where intranet teams build the most credibility. Each time the intranet is improved teams must ensure there are tangible and visible benefits. All changes must be managed, communicated and celebrated.
30% effort managing relationships
Good relationships underpin every successful intranet. The intranet team is the often the ‘enabler’ with the expert knowledge to manage the intranet and bring it all together. However this cannot be done without partnering other areas of the business.
Relationships also provide the opportunity to identify opportunities where the intranet can support business iniatives.
The key to these relationships is to understand:
- what staff need
- how the organisation works
- what is currently important to the organisation
The key areas that relationships need to be managed with are:
- the teams manager(s)
- site owners
- technical teams
Relationships are two-way connections between the team and others. Effective relationships benefit everyone involved.
Teams should assess their current situations: where is the team spending most time? Where should time be spent?