x-Early Perspectives

What’s relevant for digital managers today?

…… Part of The Basics series. First published in May 2011 ……


The priorities for the 2011 Digital Workplace Trends survey show that organizations around the world are at an exciting intersection where fragmentation, social energy and business goals are simultaneously colliding and converging. People are rethinking fundamental principles and management of the intranet and digital workplace.

“Top of the top”: new scope, social, business, search

  • 72% of the participants rated “scope of the digital workplace” as a “highly relevant” topic, another 25% rated it “moderately relevant”, leaving only 3% who found it “not or less” relevant.
  • This naturally raises the question of the entry point into the digital workplace, and, not surprisingly “start page strategies” is the number 2 topic.
  • It also raises lots of governance questions, which are also near the top of priorities.
  • Integration of core business processes is a “top of the top”. Looks like intranets are getting serious and becoming essential.
  • Several angles around social media are also high priorities: what, how, benefits.
  • Search strategies have risen significantly after being fairly low on intranet management radar for a couple of years. Interest in meta data is fairly high with 50% calling it “highly relevant”.

Social: “how”, not “whether”

There is strong interest in social media. But only some aspects. People want to know what features are implemented, how they are being used by organizations, and what the benefits are. What’s interesting is there is much less interest in knowing what peoples’ concerns are. In the past, this has always been a topic of great interest. So maybe organizations are settling down and focusing on “how” rather than “whether”.

However, interest is relative low on “value and ROI for social networking” and “social search”. This reflects the fact that most organizations are not yet that far in making social truly part of the digital workplace. “Language and culture issues in social media usage” is even lower.

Mobile still on standby?

Mobile strategies for intranets is considered “highly relevant” by fewer than half the participants. Adding in those who called it “moderately relevant”, we reach the high figure of 90%. I interpret this to mean that many people are thinking about mobile but not yet moving on it.

So, what do you think? Final chance to speak up!

The final survey topics are greatly influenced by the Quick Poll. However, it is not a fully democratic process  :-).  We always include  topics that we feel indicate emerging trends even if they are not at the top of the list of Quick Poll results.

Now is the time to speak up if you have any specific ideas or needs!

Background for people who are not familiar with the annual survey: The purpose of the annual Quick Poll is to find out what intranet and digital workplace managers want to see included in the Digital Workplace Trends survey. The survey, now in its 6th year, was previously called the Global Intranet Trends survey. Just as the role of intranet management has expanded over the past few years, so has the scope of the survey.