IntraTeam Event 2015 – intranet maturity at last?

by | Feb 27, 2015 | Conferences, Intranets, Reviews

It was a case of standing room only at the opening of the IntraTeam Event 2015 on 25 February, with a distinct buzz in the room about the conference that was about to start. The workshops on the previous day were a major contributor to this buzz as it was clear that both the mix and quality were excellent. I attended Ed Dale’s search workshop and made a great many notes trying to capture Ed’s experience of search management at EY and the contributions from the participants. Luckily there is still time for me to add and revise the final text of the 2nd edition of Enterprise Search!

The opening paper was given by James Robinson, resplendent in the new StepTwo corporate identity. His subject was the value of design thinking in intranet development, very well illustrated with examples drawn from the 2014 Intranet Innovation Awards. James has already uploaded his presentation to the StepTwo website. The conference then split into three tracks, and as always I wanted to be in at least two tracks at the same time. At one point during the conference I was sitting listening to an excellent presentation but on looking at the tweets from the adjacent room wished I was there in person. Both Sam Marshall and Sam Driessen blogged many of the papers and  you will find many more tweets and blog posts via the #IEC15 tag so I’m not even going to try to emulate them but take an overall look at IEC15.

The balance of the topics covered was first rate. New to IEC this year was knowledge management, with some thoughtful papers on from David Gurteen and Dave Snowden. To get a sense of Dave Snowden’s approach to KM do watch his short video on options for managing children’s birthday parties. The picture that emerged from the presentations and the discussions was a confidence in the value of intranets to an organisation, a pride in the business impact of what had already been delivered and a clear vision of what still needed to be accomplished. In general I sensed that organisations were being a little more forthcoming with resources for intranet development but still in the dark ages with regard to search. There were very good papers on search this year from Ed Dale, Helen Lippell, Charlie Hull and Andreas Hallgren. As always the conference organisation was excellent. I especially liked the small high tables in the coffee/exhibitors room around which participants could gather to exchange ideas but also easily move on to another group. These tables were also used for a themed breakout session, though I felt very lonely at the search table! SharePoint concerns were often close to the surface, with far too much IT push and very limited understanding of the challenges of migration.

This year, for the first time, the presentations were videoed and will be up on the IntraTeam site in due course. However you only really get the benefit of the event from being there so book out 1-3 March 2016 for IEC16. I, like I suspect all the delegates, emerged into the blue skies of Copenhagen with a renewed sense of commitment to increase the impact of intranets on business operations with an awareness of some of the wider issues of social media adoption, collaboration, digital workplaces and knowledge management.

Martin White