Aerospace business: Mapping intranet capability against future needs

The challenge

A global aerospace business had spent nearly 24 months developing a complex SharePoint intranet on Microsoft Office 365, but had since lost confidence about if they were using the right tools in the right way.

An audit revealed a large code-base which alarmed the business, prompting the question if they should abandon the whole system, or if it could be salvaged and balanced against a tight deadline.

Our solution

The organisation asked Sequel for support, given our close working relationship with them and our work with clients on developing SharePoint and Office 365.

Sequel’s team – with blended knowledge of communications, technology and coding – carried out an intensive day with four workshops and the presentation of the initial findings.

This one-day audit dug into what the business required from the intranet, as well as the needs of individual teams and how the solution was built.

The session revealed that the client had a fairly standard requirement for an intranet focused on communication and information, but that it had grown unchecked. There was a lot of duplication between almost identical site templates and page layouts which was overcomplicating the system.

And although the business comms requirements list was heavily geared towards collaboration going forward, most of this would need to come from Team Sites which had not yet been implemented

A further need for rigid legal compliance and information classification also meant that many of the social tools associated with O365 would not be appropriate in an intranet environment.

The impact

After working with the clients’ developers and the structure of the intranet, we ranked the risks of what they had against what was needed. It hadn’t been a waste of time and money, but there had been too much customisation which meant they were not getting the best out of it.

A forthcoming  new release from Microsoft would give the business exactly what it needed, so our advice was to pause, wait for new developments and build the intranet on the upcoming suite of communication tools.