As multimedia information systems begin to infiltrate organizations, there arises a need to capture and disseminate knowledge about how to develop them. Little is thus far known about the realities of multimedia systems development practice, or about how the development of multimedia systems compares to that of 'traditional' information systems. Herein are discussed the findings of a survey of multimedia developers in Ireland. Practitioners generally agree that systematic approaches are desirable in order to beneficially add structure to development processes, but they are predominantly using their own in-house methods rather than those prescribed in the literature. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.