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All Things Social

Mike Pascucci

Social Intranets - Part 1

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I have read a lot of talk over the past few weeks around Social Networking behind the corporate firewall. I have read pros and cons from both sides of the fence, and I understand where most people are coming from. But at the same time, I truly do not get how a business refuses to embrace new functionality for their employees to leverage professionally - just like email in the past. The pros definitely outweigh the cons (if there are any), IMO.

For the most part intranets of the past failed to provide for an interactive experience for the employees who visited it. Intranets were very stagnant and bland. Most employees went to them to find a vacation request form, or the year's Holiday schedule, or to find where someone was located, or their telephone extension. The employee's reasons were very targeted, which is why I believe that they failed. The intranet was a place to find information, and once that information was found, it was very easy to leave and never return, until you needed something specific in the future. Email seemed to be the normal way for a business to communicate to their employees, as well as for employees to communicate with one another. Documents were sent back and forth, with numerous versions floating around. I wonder how much time was wasted compiling these documents and how much information was lost in doing so. I also wonder how much strain was put on email servers with all of these documents changing hands time and time again.

Needless to say these are just a couple of reasons that I believe that the Corporate Intranets of the past failed, and why Social Intranets are here to stay. I am not about to list the endless reasons as to why it is important for a business to embrace this change, but I would like to comment on how I use our Intranet. I am thinking that this will be the first post in a series that will be dedicated towards this subject.


The Ektron Intranet, or eIntranet as we call it, is my current homepage. When I log in at work in the morning, it is the first page that I see. It highlights a ton of important information for me to review, messages from Management, tweets that mention Ektron, activity steam information from other employees, most recent announcements, up-coming events, corporate news, who the on-call individuals are, and if I am logged in, it also highlights messages that are important for me to immediately review (My Alerts). We can discuss the "personalization" in a later post when I highlight the Social Functionality.


I am sure that if you manage Marketing, corporate communications, or PR team that you understand the importance of having every employee set this up as their home page and have the ability to reach them on a daily basis. Employees are no longer just going there to find information, information is being highlighted and presented to them - important information that they should know. It becomes a portal or a destination for your employees, not just a place to visit and leave. The information above is what we have decided to highlight, but you can manage the content and the organization of that content the way that you need to in order to accomplish your goals. I have included a screenshot of our eIntranet for your reference. Now all of the content within this screenshot is sample content, but it should give you a good idea of how a business can format their page behind their firewalls in order to communicate out to their employees and engage them. The Engagement and Social aspect will come in the next post. What do you think? Can you business and employees benefit from this? 

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Hi Mike, I really liked your post.

I look forward to part 2.




Thanks for the comment and glad that you liked the post. I will follow up early next week with Part II.

Mike P | @mikepascucci

Mike Pascucci provides insight on all things associated with social media and online community management. Based on his experiences, he'll share past, current and potential future best practices concerning implementations and strategies.

Mike Pascucci

Mike Pascucci's current position at Ektron - a flexible, scalable, WCM solution provider - provides him the opportunity to discuss and develop Social strategies for corporations that either have failed in the past, or are afraid of failing in their new initiatives. Whether it includes an Enterprise Social Strategy or one that is External, leveraging the likes of Twitter and/or Facebook, Mike can help you navigate the waters. He has been part of the "Social Software" revolution for over 10 years, including 5+ years at eBay where he held numerous Community roles - Manager, Product Manager, and International Consultant.


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