Providing employees with easy, secure access to applications, systems and documents can boost productivity and better inform decision-making.

Portals have commonly provided a means to achieve this but have traditionally been expensive and complex to implement. Recognising a growing need in the public and private sector for a collaboration gateway, e.com institute has upgraded its proven Homebase Collaboration Suite.
"To remain competitive, businesses must efficiently and effectively create, capture and share their organisational knowledge and expertise," says Schalk Roelofse, manager: information management at e.com institute. "The Homebase Collaboration Suite takes organisations one step beyond traditional portal functionality, however, enabling not only access to applications and business systems but providing a platform for collaboration by combining content, context and process."
The solution removes boundaries between divisions and lines of business, helps with the application of policies, such as governance, increases productivity and collaboration, improves project management and enables document audits and security, explains Roelofse.
The suite contains numerous information management solutions, including Project Administration, Document Management, Security and a BI reporting platform.
Homebase is modular, with a change to the security module, for instance, immediately updating all other modules. Modules can also be developed and added as when required.
"We have engineered the solution to 'trap' or record information in the organisation network and employees' heads – ie, explicit and tacit knowledge," notes Roelofse. "Implemented in a number of environments, the solution has proven itself invaluable. One organisation that deals with complex regulatory scenarios that require high levels of security and access to numerous documents has, for example, found Homebase to be pivotal to its ongoing operations."
Homebase provides a customisable taxonomy on which a knowledge management (KM) strategy can be configured.
"The key to taxonomy design is knowing how and where knowledge is generated, how and where information is used, and how an organisation will 'trap' or
find the knowledge that is generated quickly and effectively," explains Roelofse. "Homebase's taxonomy is not just based on the structure of the business. Instead, it allows users to map organisational structure, systems and data to a matrix that includes functions, divisions, products and people. The matrix makes it easier to locate and access information, while the multiple dimensions allows for easier collaboration."