Many organisations have some sort of intranet or database where information is stored before they get Colibo. This can both be an advantage and a disadvantage. If the old system is manageable, it makes it a lot easier to work with eg. the new information hierarchy.
Either way, it's a good idea to evaluate the old intranet and consider what works and what doesn't, so that you don't create the same challenges with your new intranet, but work with the opportunities instead. This way, you can reuse what works, and rethink what doesn't. It's a great opportunity to optimize a central part of your internal setup for the better.
This can both work regarding your intranet purpose and goals, but also more specific regarding the information hierarchy in the new intranet, which will be the main focus in this article.
Who knows what works?
First of all, it's not always the case that intranet managers know what works great in the departments and what doesn't. So consider who would be best suited to participate in this process.
You can either pick the key gatekeepers or managers in the departments or even choose some of the end users for input. You can also get your input by doing a survey in the entire organisation, which will give you a more comprehensive picture of the situation and opinions in the organisation. This has potential to be valuable input for the new information hierarchy and, depending on the setup, even as a benchmarking tool later on. Colibo offers assistance in evaluating your internal situation with for example an old intranet. You can choose to evaluate your current setup and use the results to create your new setup with your Colibo installation.
Copy what works great
Once you have figured out what works great, explore how this can be translated into Colibo. For example, if you find out that there are areas on your old intranet (or another content management system), that users find meaningful and use more often than other areas, then explore what it is about this area, that makes it useful. Maybe it is the specific content that is useful in their daily work life, or maybe it is the way the content is structured or presented in a specific way.
Decide whether you should copy it directly to the new intranet and how this would work in Colibo. Or if you should explore if there are elements that would work with different content areas as well. For example, if it is the structure or presentation of content that works well, see if you can copy it in other areas as well. The more information from users about what works great, the better, as it will make the new information hierarchy more adaptable for the users, when the onboarding process begins.
Rethink and change what's not working
First of all, figure out what doesn't work, and then use the good examples to rethink this. For example, why do users get frustrated, when they are looking for a specific document? Is it because it's not available to them in the way they expect, or is the navigation complicated? Does it always have to do with content that is outside of their department? If that is the case, a solution could be to have all departments try to align their way of structuring content, so that users from the entire organisation have the same foundation for navigating through the information hierarchy.
There will always be a transition period, but in the long run, you will avoid frustrated users by aligning your information structure.
Most importantly, you should acknowledge that you are changing from one system or intranet to another. Having that in mind, will make your new intranet process smoother.