Well you did it, you have developed an online presence for your business that positions you where you expect to be on the internet, supporting your business rules and process, congratulations!
For many companies the challenge in realising this initial objective is sure to stifle any interest they may have in pursuing any further enhancement of the website in the near future.
By building a new website on a modern CMS platform like Drupal, you have a foundation that will allow the relatively easy development of a wide range of new features that may assist your business in new ways, one of these components is an Intranet.
The small to medium size enterprise may not be aware of the benefit an Intranet can provide a company, while larger organisations are often the victim of prescriptive Enterprise software solutions that eliminate the flexibility and dynamic content users will be expecting in an Intranet solution.
An Intranet is a network protected from public view though accessible to authenticated users via the World Wide Web. Intranets serve the purpose of enabling collaboration and access to appropriate content for teams of users within an organisation. Access to content on an intranet can be restricted based on roles and privileges. Intranets are secured via a variety of means, most common is the use of a login, though access control is able to be extended to be controlled by IP, Mac address verification and a host of more complex authentication methods including LDAP and active directory integration.
Identify the Business Need
With a mechanism for controlling access in place a company has the ability to then leverage their web platform to provide other services that help streamline their operational objectives. This could be as simple as providing a leave booking system for employees, perhaps publishing process related information associated with a range of different business functions, HR, Finance, Risk and Issue management, really there is no limitation to what can be achieved. Intranets can be useful for the dissemination of company information to a remote workforce without it being made public.
What makes an Intranet Successful?
An Intranet needs to be more than a repository for documentation and your content (like that of your public website), needs to be engaging and encourage the involvement of your team. As many users as possible should be encouraged to contribute to the Intranet content, if your team are empowered to become involved they are more likely to use it.
The intranet should provide a full team directory allowing members to complete and personalise their profile.
A comprehensive search mechanism is key to accessing the data held within your Intranet, this coupled with a well-designed UX will assist in the uptake and ongoing use of the new tool.
Allowing customisation of personal pages and quick link menus, the Intranet can become a useful tool for your staff to access the World Wide web from, giving them the ability to customise their own home page is a simple way of promoting engagement while improving productivity.
A solution for you?
An intranet can be a powerful business tool, as with all new web development projects, considerations needs to be made of the business need the Intranet is addressing. However once established, the benefits to a business can be significant. By leveraging your underlying web platform, barriers to entry are significantly reduced. If you feel an Intranet may be of interest to you, or if you’d like to know more feel free to give the Koda team a call.