A great Intranet is a balance of both talk and task, combining a managed communication strategy with effective processes.

Talking about it

Talk is your communication strategy, it uses information based applications to keep users up to date in the business communication stream. PR, News, Annual Results or Corporate Events are all obvious parts of the talk function. Anything that is returning simple informative content, is a talk function, even though in some cases these might be performed by task based application.

Performing tasks

Task is your process driven functionality, it’s the way you use your intranet to effectively process tasks you repeat over periods of time, the key is repetition. It’s any repetitive task that can be be recorded, then modeled into a formula to create a quicker, less taxing, more efficient processes that allows the user to be more discerning with their time.

Tasks are where you get the real cost saving benefits on Intranets, you should be able to measure value on tasks by doing simple user costs per second and multiplying it by the tame saved.

I call the the identification of task based wins, “Killer Opportunities”, when you go back to your steering committee to talk about your successful Intranet, much of the ROI discussion is going to based be around the results achieved by those Killer Opportunities.

Tasks allow you to truly measure your output.

Collaboration

Collaboration is a symbiosis of both talk and task, allowing users to communicate and act on certain tasks or functions in more informed or meaningful way.

To successfully leverage a collaborative environment, you need to have identified, created, and deployed a task driven intranet. There’s no true return in creating a social environment that doesn’t benefit the user by making their job easier or more efficient.

Collaboration without tasks is just more talk.