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Extra Organizational portals

1 October 2010

We've discussed organizational portals in length and are quite acquainted with them. For instance, we know that organizational portals serve as a platform for displaying business knowledge and information that enables sharing, accessibility and performing actions in a way that supports business decisions. The most common solution in this context involves a platform that is based on the intra-organizational network and cannot be viewed from outside the organization.

What is, therefore, the extra-organizational portal?

Like the organizational portal, this platform is based on displaying business information and knowledge while sharing information and making it accessible. The only difference is the location. An extra-organizational portal is set on the internet rather than the intra-organizational network. Nevertheless, it does not resemble a website targeted at the general public; it is meant for organizational workers.

When should we set up an extra-organizational portal?

  • When there is no intra-organizational network

  • Geographical distribution- many organizations have branches distanced from company headquarters and therefore are not connected to the network.

  • When there the intra-organizational network is separated from the internet, yet the required information can be found on the internet- Some organizations, out of data security concerns, separate their intra-organizational network from the internet (for example, financial institutions, public offices, security institutions). In these cases, the organization uses separate computers to prevent "wandering" from one network to the other. When organizations need to use updated information from the internet they have no choice but to set-up the portal in an extra-organizational network, i.e. the internet.

Implications that should be taken into consideration when deciding on setting up an extra-organizational portal:

Having an Extra-organizational implies that the information we display might be exposed to external parties that aren’t part of the organization. Even if we secure the extra-organizational and require logging in with a username and password, we can't be sure that the data is indeed secure. We've all heard of the pentagon computers being hacked…

We should, therefore, display on this portal only data that does not present a risk to the organization or the public: personal privacy, political-security, business-competition, etc.

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