Local Microsoft development company, Provoke Solutions has been acknowledged for their work on the Ministry of Transport intranet which has been named as one of the top ten intranets in the world.
Intranets have seen a surge of interest by corporations and governments alike as a crucial way to deliver critical information to the workforce. It also provides a key communication tool and way of collaborating across the organisations departments.
The Nielsen Norman Group, based in California, runs the Intranet Design Annual, coveted by software firms, companies and government as the authoritative source for best practise in intranet design and user experience.
Nielson Norman Group have been releasing a “10 Best Intranets of the Year” list since 2001 and say that this is the first time a New Zealand designed solution has ever made the grade.
The 10 best-designed intranets for 2008 list are:
- Bank of America, US
- Bankinter S.A., Spain
- Barnes & Noble, US
- British Airways, UK
- Campbell Soup Company, US
- Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corporation, US
- IKEA North America Service, LLC, US
- Ministry of Transport, New Zealand
- New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, Australia
- SAP AG, Germany
The Ministry of Transport intranet supports around 200 central government workers enabling them to post their own news content with a sound information architecture which all contribute to.
According to selector Jakob Nielson, consistent design and integrated information architecture are becoming standard on good intranets, to be awarded a place for this years list candidates had to show they could also deliver productivity tools, employee self-service, access to knowledgeable people (as opposed to “knowledge management”) and better-presented company news. Evidently Provoke’s MoT solution ticked all the boxes.
“User Centered Design is not a new concept in website or intranet design,” comments Zef Fugaz, head of the Provoke design team. “I guess we just want to do it better than it’s currently being done. For us usability design is not an add-on, it’s integral to what we do. It’s amazing to have our work recognized at this level.”
In 2007 Provoke Solutions won two Microsoft Partner Awards (for Business Productivity and Partner Solution of the Year) and the NZIM/Eagle Technology Young Executive of the year awarded to company director Mason Pratt.
The company started as a boutique Wellington software shop six years ago and while it has been growing steadily during this time the previous twelve months has been a period of rapid growth with an Auckland office opening last August.