First the disclaimer! I have known David Gilroy and Andrew Gray, the founders of Conscious Solutions, for quite a long time. David and I worked together on an intranet implementation in Kuwait a few years ago in which we set up an intranet in under a week despite David having a temperature that was probably higher than the ambient air temperature!  We ought to have entered it for the Guiness Book of Records. How we came to be working in Kuwait is a long story but that can wait until my autobiography.

This post has been prompted by the excellent series of profiles of intranet products that have been published recently by the Intranetizen team. This seems to be a growing market as companies look around for something more manageable than SharePoint but not such a development exercise as using a web CMS. Conscious Solutions use the Intranet DASHBOARD software which was developed in Australia some years ago and now claims to have over 1 million users – at least in terms of seats. One of the benefits of using an intranet product (I prefer to call them intranet suites) is that your organisation joins a community of customers with some common interests. Conscious Solutions take this one stage further by targeting the UK legal sector and selling a range of software applications to law firms up and down the country. This has the benefit that the sales team and the implementation team speak the language of the sector and know the difference between a tort and a tart. Conscious Solutions have also developed a range of related services for the legal sector, including Customer Relationship Management software, web site design and digital marketing consultancy.

The intranet product/suite market is growing rapidly and it’s not difficult to see why. Companies like Conscious Solutions not only understand intranets but also understand the opportunities and challenges of intranet development in small and medium-sized businesses.  The challenge for the company of working in such a well-defined sector is that any failure to deliver will quickly get around the community so exceeding customer expectations is a good strategy and judging from the client list it is one that clearly Conscious Solutions excels at.

Martin White