The group intranet system expands into an internal communication super channel and transforms from a data warehouse into a tool.

In Finland, the common intranet in the field of judicial administration links approximately 160 agencies and their almost 11,000 users under the same medium and technology. This giant of an intranet system has gradually become an electronic desk for public employees. It provides information, encourages participation, inspires and serves the internal communication needs within the entire administrative branch and as a daily work aid of individual public employees.

The judicial administration intranet provided by Abako was introduced at the beginning of 2014. The intranet and its services are annually developed and expanded to meet the changed needs. According to information service manager Aki Hietanen, the central goal of the project has been developing and rationalizing internal communication while gaining cost savings.

– And we have succeeded in this. Instead of ten separate intranets, now we have only one common channel. Via that channel, we can easily and extensively reach the sought-after operators throughout the entire administrative branch, from sectors and agencies down to the individual public employee. Unnecessary e-mail traffic is a thing of the past.

– Also the users’ attitude towards the intranet has changed. Now it is seen more clearly as a common tool instead of merely as a place for obtaining additional information.

In Hietanen’s opinion, this common intranet is a step towards the electronic desk of a public employee where the employees can directly access all the functions and applications they need. The next step in this direction could be, for example, connecting e-mail, calendar and case management as part of the intranet.

Social Media Services as Part of the Intranet

The new tool of the Finnish Judicial Administration is one of the largest intranets in Finland. Abako delivered the system created on the Stato platform within the agreed 10-month schedule.

– The users hoped for ease of use, speed and social media-type services. For instance, online forums intended for various specific groups, Wiki-type information sharing and blogs emerged from user requests. Stato already included practical tools for the implementation of these, notes Hietanen.

Findability and Work Efficiency Go Hand in Hand

In a large intranet, the findability of information is emphasized. Since all the content within the intranet is classified, the advanced search and keyword classification help the user to find what they are looking for. Work efficiency is enhanced by the fact that the user can rely on always having the updated version of the document available.

The system related to the access rights of the Finnish Judicial Administration was revamped at the same time as the intranet project. When there are many intranet users who have various roles as information users and producers, access right management is also put to a test.

– Quite a large amount of development work was done for the access rights. This was advanced by the fact that Stato includes a wide range of pre-conceptualized access right management functions, Hietanen states.

The Internet-Intranet Fusions Are Coming

In the field of Finnish judicial administration, there are some 20 websites in use. Monitoring the new content updated on the sites daily is not possible without an unreasonable amount of work – and in the future, will not even be necessary.

– As an example development project, we are exploring the automatic utilization of online content on the intranet. When we have the same supplier for both services, we have a good foundation for automation For instance, online administration could include an “also publish this on the intranet” button, and clicking it would send the content to the job queue and towards the correct location, says Hietanen.

– For administrators, the similar production environments of the intranet and internet deliver significant benefits, since mainly the same persons update both.

Direct Connections, Quick Changes

The judicial administration intranet was designed in collaboration with the users, and it has also been developed by the same principle after its implementation. During the first year of use, nearly twenty version updates were performed, among other things.

Abako’s implementation training for the intranet provided a direct channel for user feedback. In the workshop-type training, the users performed tasks which are a real part of their work and tested how the intranet served their specific needs.

– In a large organization, requests and development suggestions are given daily, and we can implement the desired changes quickly, if necessary. The whole time, we have a direct connection to our intranet provider, which is a significant benefit, remarks Hietanen.

During implementation, Stato did well in loading tests and charmed users with its ease of use. The intranet is clear and modern, and it adapts to the user’s needs. The system offers various participation opportunities and interactivity to all users.

The principle of user-oriented design was applied to the system development by taking the needs of users and ways of use comprehensively into account. Ease of use and fluency are some of the most important features of the system. The intranet also includes multifaceted data processing, organizing, classification, search, and maintenance tools, as well as metadata tools.