Joomla intranet for the Belgian Police

Belgium, being the small country it is, counts no less then 194 police zones, a lot of those have their own intranet. After the release of Joomla 1.5 in 2008 most police zones took the plunge and started using Joomla 1.5.

In 2012 the Belgian Police asked us to develop the proof-of-concept for a multi-site intranet based on Joomla 1.5 containing features specifically targeted towards their needs.

Problem definition

Thanks to Joomla’s huge extensions directory Police zones were able to start their own intranet with a limited amount of technical knowledge and budget. But over the years feature requirements kept increasing and the available Joomla extensions were not 100% compliant.

Key objectives

  • Activity log
  • Custom template
  • Downloads directory
  • Multi-site setup
  • News with categories, comments and subscribe functionality
  • Simple calendar
  • Single Sign-On

What we did

The proof-of-concept intranet was built using Joomla 1.5 and our in-house developed Timble Platform.

The biggest difference between existing Joomla powered intranets and the newly developed intranet is that it contains only required functionalities. By stepping away from downloadable Joomla extensions we also increased usability, ease of maintenance and continued growth.

The intranet aimed to be a high level blueprint for the development with web technologies inside the Police organisation. Based on modern, user focused and open source technologies. Solutions are build in a such a way they can be continually upgraded, changed and reintegrated to keep up with new feature requirements.

Demo

Try it yourself at intranet.openpolice.be:

  • Username: demo
  • Password: police

Community

Alongside the actual development of the intranet, we also actively worked to encourage this new approach across Police departments.

One of the ways this was done was by building and maintaining an active and open community of developers. Anyone should be able to contribute to the intranet, both inside and outside of the Police boundaries. This removes the fear of proprietary lock-in and creates a large ecosystem that spans across the whole organisation.