Pioneering a digital workspace for Scottish Natural Heritage
- New digital workspace delivered on-time, on-budget
- News articles see engagement increases of up to 80 per cent
- Mandatory staff reading up from 30 per cent to 85 per cent
- 250 per cent increase in dwell time for social collaboration space
Funded by the Scottish Government, Scottish Natural Heritage’s (SNH) mission is to promote, care for, improve, and sustainably use Scotland’s wildlife, habitats and landscapes.
Unproductive working practices and few opportunities for two-way engagement were proving a problem for Scottish Natural Heritage. Finding relevant content quickly was also a daily struggle. Meanwhile, the communications team was struggling to provide timely updates on key news and business critical updates.
With a legacy of siloed systems, Scottish Natural Heritage needed an integrated digital workplace that would make daily tasks simpler and would support more flexible working practices.
With the government’s emphasis on services built using open standards, Scottish Natural Heritage was looking for an open and flexible intranet to deliver a joined-up digital strategy that could support organisational change. But with limited budget and staffing resources, SNH decided SharePoint was not the right solution for its needs.
Looking for a single technology to bring its website and intranet projects closer together, SNH selected Atrium, an open-source, Drupal platform that serves as the foundation for building complex intranets, extranets, and community portals. “Atrium became our technology of choice because it presented the option to have an open-source, out-the-box intranet configured to meet our immediate needs, while serving our future digital ambitions.” Says Martin Stubbs-Partridge, communications officer, SNH
The next challenge was finding the right supplier to help build and implement an Atrium solution tailored to the organisation’s needs. With its focus on the problems SNH wanted to overcome, at a cost it could afford, Inviqa (formerly iKOS) stood out as SNH’s technology supplier of choice.
Inviqa’s work with Scottish Natural Heritage formed three phases:
- Discovery: workshops with key stakeholders to gain a deep understanding of the project goals and how success would be measured to help prioritise and inform decisions
- Atrium customisation and implementation
- Integration of various disparate systems and data sources to provide superior user experience.
Take a look at this video tour for a feel of how the new intranet works.
Transforming the workplace
Thanks to the collaboration, Scottish Natural Heritage now has a digital workplace that is driving immediate ROI savings and uncovering longer term opportunities.
On its first day of launch the workspace received 2,200 visits from 659 users spending an average 16 minutes per session – with a total 9,600 visits secured in the first week.
Key achievements year-on-year include an increase in overall dwell time, as well as a 250 per cent increase in average dwell time for the ‘Social Room’ collaboration space. SNH also saw a 50 per cent increase in number of visits to the internal information library, securing an average session length of 12 minutes. The site also secured an average 4.5 page views per session, and compliance with mandatory read articles grew from 30 per cent to 85 per cent. “Inviqa fully met our needs and a lot more besides!” Says Partridge. “Our most important content is now found, reviewed, and communicated from a single source of truth.”
The new workplace puts users at the heart, allowing them to get things done, work together better, feel a greater part of Scottish Natural Heritage and be more digitally connected.
Key features of the intranet include a homepage that shows organisation-wide content, such as news from the press centre and featured blog posts, and an information library offering easy search and filtering by category to access the organisation’s most important content.
Thanks to complex data integrations from Inviqa and SNH’s internal software and infrastructure teams, SNH colleagues no longer struggle to connect with one another. A staff directory enables colleagues to find a specific person by name or other criteria, such as department, location and skill. And finding relevant information is less of a headache. The most important content within the document management system is now more easily searchable and supportive of the organisation’s authentication and authorisation needs.
Exceeding expectations, the project has also led to the trialling of Agile working practices at SNH, according to Martin Stubbs-Partridge: “Agile was not only completely new to me and my colleagues in internal communications, but also to the organisation! Since launching the intranet other teams have begun to trial Agile practices through the use of Trello. To overcome security and information management concerns Inviqa helped us develop an integrated Kanban Board. We’re now able to securely introduce Kanban practices across a greater number of pilot teams reaping benefits way beyond the original scope of the intranet project’”