Intranets evolve along with organizations to become portals for all business tools, organizational knowledge and memory. They are a digital reflection of the “real” organization and they form part of the organization’s social fabric, serving as a medium for collaboration and sharing of information.
As intranets become more embedded in business processes, they become increasingly business critical and more vital decisions are taken on the basis of its content. Users will embrace this medium as part of their daily organizational life if they perceive it to be trustworthy and use it with confidence. Therefore, management’s role is to design an appropriate governance system for content publishing which will assure users of its quality.
This project aims at developing a framework to assess the level of trust in intranets. We analyse intranets while they are in the course of winning user confidence, checking the formal and informal mechanism employed to institutionalise intranets in organizations. We analyse how different patterns of risks require different combinations of formal and informal mechanisms.
Alliance & Leicester are partners in this project. Alliance & Leicester’s intranet implementation offers a valuable case study in intranet adoption. This project has two stages. In the first stage, we interview key intranet stakeholders to understand their aspirations for intranet design in terms of the formal and informal systems governing intranet management. In the second stage, we interview users and run a company wide survey to scrutinise user’s perception of that intranet design.
We aim at developing a general framework for assessing the level of trust in intranet use. This framework can then be used to benchmark various organizational intranets against best practice. Organizations using this framework will benefit by gaining insights into the effectiveness of their intranet governance system and into areas where they can be improved.
This project is led by James Backhouse, Director of Information Systems Integrity Group and is funded through Enterprise LSE. Alliance and Leicester are represented on the project team by Audrey Philbrooks, Group Intranet Manager.
The project gratefully acknowledge the support of Paul Miller of the Intranet Benchmark Forum in establishing this project.
John Baptista has been appointed as the Research Officer for this project.
21 December, 2004