Posts Tagged ‘design’
Intranet design has come a long way in recent years, especially with the advancement of social networking tools, user-centered design, and mobile access. If you’re interested in what other intranets are doing and keeping your intranet fresh and usable, you should read Nielsen/Norman Group’s post and report on the 10 Best Intranets of 2010.
The 10 winning intranets for 2010 include:
- Enbridge, Inc., a leader in energy transportation and distribution in North America (Canada)
- GE, a diversified technology, media, and financial services company (US)
- Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), a nonprofit medical research organization (US)
- Huron Consulting Group, a consulting company (US)
- Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), a NASA Center that manages robotic spacecraft exploration of Earth, the solar system, and the universe (US)
- The MITRE Corporation, a not-for-profit organization managing four federally funded research and development centers (US)
- SCANA Corp., a Fortune 500 energy-based holding company (US)
- Trend Micro, Inc., a leader in Internet content security (Japan)
- URS Corporation, a leading provider of engineering, construction, and technical services for public agencies and private sector companies (US)
- Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Walmart), a retailer with more than 8,000 retail units under 53 different banners in 15 countries (US)
- median company size among winners was 6,350 employees
- average team size this year was 14 people, which is 27% higher than the average team size in 2006
- 30% of the intranets had special mobile features
- social network features on winning intranets include social features for employees as individuals, as well as workgroup support and other features that encourage work-related connection
- trend of CEO blogs on better intranets
- winning intranets encouraged users to try out new and improved features
- 40% of winning companies designed intranet features with the explicit goal of addressing unexpected emergencies
While the Alertbox posting has some of the high-level findings, the nitty gritty detail is, of course, in the full report. It’s available for download for $224 (single license), and at 449 pages with 198 full-color screenshots it promises to be well worth the nominal price tag.
We just finished presenting the second webinar in a five-part series on Creating a Successful Law Firm Intranet. This time the topic was intranet design, and we included the five areas of intranet design as well as a law firm case study. My part of the presentation focused on requirements, project plans, and staffing. Laurie Southerton talked about architecture and visual design. Meredith Williams gave us an inside look at the design process within her firm, Baker Donelson. Add that all together, and the session was jam-packed with great information!
In fact, one question we couldn’t get to during the presentation was directed at Laurie, and I’ve provided her answer below.
Question: Where can I find more information or references about visual design?
Laurie’s answer: This is the part of designing an intranet that people like best and usually have a very strong opinion about what it should look like. Working with a good visual designer (whether from your in-house team or with a contract designer) can make a difference between a blah site and a great site.
My favorite book to use with management and teams is a short, simple, easy-to-read book by author Steven Krug – Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability.” It has a great chapter on “Design 101,” and one on “Desinging the Home Page.”
I also recommend the following links for more information about visual design:
- http://webstyleguide.com – online and available in book format. One of the best references for web design I have found.
- http://www.useit.com/books/visualbooks.html – list of books recommended by Jakob Nielsen, web usability guru.
- http://www.lukew.com/resources/links_visual.html – Another good list of books recommended by Luke Wroblewski, a renowned web interface designer.
Thanks for the tips, Laurie!
More information will be posted soon about registration for the next sessions in our Creating a Successful Law Firm Intranet series: develop, rollout, and maintain/measure. Stay tuned!