ICRC: worldwide collaborative platform

The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is the largest humanitarian network in the world. Its mission is to alleviate human suffering, protect life and health, and uphold human dignity especially during armed conflicts and other emergencies. ICRC has more than 8500 collaborators, is present in every country and is supported by millions of volunteers.

ICRC staff are located either at headquarters or in the field in one of 80 worldwide delegations, necessitating the exchange of large quantities of information between these locations to manage their activities.
This was done either through Lotus Notes bases or by email and, as a result, information was difficult to control and manage. ICRC wished to optimise and secure these exchanges with a dedicated collaborative platform based on Microsoft SharePoint shared by internal ICRC staff and external partners.


8,000+ Lotus Notes bases to migrate to Sharepoint.
Define the document lifecycle to rationalise the information process.
Ensure adoption of 8,000+ users.
Define the initial rules for information management governance.

Our solution
Content Management

We took several steps to complete this strategic project. The first was to migrate Lotus Notes bases to new ones, which were more structured but still based on this technology. For the second step, we introduced SharePoint 2010 collaborative spaces for new needs for a specific business requirements scope. Once the project’s various sponsors had gone through the lengthy process of validating SharePoint 2010 the last step saw us aligning all collaborative needs on the SharePoint 2013 platform.

We took on a consulting role for the part of the project that dealt with defining the business process, defining new content type and for managing the Lotus Notes to Sharepoint migration tool project. We also provided support to the Information Management Unit in designing and deploying the different collaborative spaces for teams, projects, and events. Finally, we wrote the ICRC’s first set of rules to define information governance.



ICRC collaborators were used to storing documents in Lotus Notes and shared folders. The solution based on Sharepoint 2013 drastically changed user practices and mentalities. Our role was to makedocument centralisation as easy as possible to optimise business processes.


A custom application provided support for migrating unstructured documents from Lotus Notes to Sharepoint 2013. This application applies business rules, metadata mapping, conversion formulas and delegation rules. A widget included in the Lotus Notes Interface makes it easy to migrate documents by drag & drop.


The collaborative platform was quickly accepted by internal staff both at HQ and in the field thanks to its modern and responsive user interface.


We defined a classification data model to structure document storing. Based on this new governance model, end users are more productive when retrieving information whatever its location.


SharePoint introduces a seamless integration with Microsoft Office to simplify document creation and sharing. Now, users create documents based on predefined templates that structure document creation and metadata qualification.