August, 01 2016

Intranet innovation for future employees

As an intranet manager, you may have been frustrated at times when some employees have lacked digital skills you take for granted or been skeptical about the need to embrace new technologies.

But in a few years, will today’s digital champions be seen as the old dinosaurs who do not want to give up email or MS Word or file system?

For several years now we have been lucky to work closely with your future employees – those 13-14 year olds who are just about to make their selections for GCSEs. At the annual TeenTech® Hampshire event 200 bright students try their hands on in various scientific experiments provided by national and local hi-tech companies. The teams also compete in an app challenge and ideas wall – the events are full of great buzz. Our CEO judges the ideas on three criteria – originality, implementability and usefulness – and as a perk gets to be on the stage with Maggie Philbin, the founder of TeenTech.

What these future digital champions tell us is that they don’t use email, Facebook is for old people, Twitter is fading out and Word and Excel are not part of their daily lives. They are confident with live video chat and recording videos, and definitely multi-tasking. They hold their life on their phone and are quite comfortable in managing multiple online personalities. It appears that they are much more aware of the security threats than many adults.

So what does this mean in the workplace? The rigid organisational structures matter less and a neatly drawn out organisation chart in PowerPoint or Visio is admired the same way we admire ancient hieroglyphs. Instead of written policies and procedures, instructions need to be given in visual format, be that videos or games. Email use will be reduced, and MS Office will not be required by all – although I suspect the old hands will savour them for a while!

The challenge for knowledge managers of many organisations will be how to capture the implicit knowledge when it is not even in an email let alone in memos. It also requires tools to find out which interactions are of permanent value and which ones are just casual noise.

On the other hand, it offers a great opportunity for organisations that are able to harness the multitude of talents amongst its workforce. Put out a call for video presenters, graphic artists, copywriters and you will be surprised how someone in a totally unrelated role will step up to the job.
Share this:
Share this blog post on Facebook Share this blog post on Twitter
Posted by Johanna Leppanen at 12:47
Previous Back to topNext