10 Best Intranets of 2009

Technology Platform: Unification Begins

In all previous years, the only conclusion regarding technology was that there was no universal platform for designing good intranets. Winners typically used an extraordinarily wide diversity of implementation packages.

Although this conclusion continues to hold this year, it is less pronounced.

Among the winning intranets, many are built on a single intranet platform that integrates most of the supporting features they need — including a content management system (CMS) and search. Some winners supplement their main platform with a few selected tools for specialized purposes — mainly Web analytics. If we were to hazard a prediction, it would be that traffic statistics, search log analysis, and other analytics tools will be substantially beefed up and integrated in future releases of the main intranet software platforms.

In total, the 10 winners were built on 26 different products — substantially fewer than the 41 used in 2008 or the 49 used in 2007. Most impressively, fully half of the winning intranets used SharePoint, especially the recent MOSS platform (Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007). As the following chart shows, SharePoint use has grown dramatically in recent years. This is particularly impressive given that, from 2003–2006, the winning intranets didn’t use earlier versions of SharePoint at all.

Microsoft SharePoint has seen substantially increased use among well-designed intranets in recent years.
(In 2007, Microsoft’s own intranet was a winner, and they obviously used their own software, so the 2007
dot should be a notch lower if you consider only third-party projects.)


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