Why Get an Intranet?
By Mark Anderson, CEO/CFO | Posted November 20, 2017
Intranets are increasing in popularity due to the wide range of benefits they offer. Essentially a private computer network, an intranet lets companies create a manageable, secure version of the Internet within their corporate walls. They can use it to store, organize and disseminate information about their business, internal processes and industry. For many businesses, intranets are a necessary component of competing in today's marketplace.
But for companies that still don’t have an intranet, here are six good reasons why they should get one.
#1: Provides convenient access to your corporate information
Intranets offer the ultimate access to a wide variety of corporate information. They give employees digital, 24-7 availability to information. They can access the portal whenever they need to using a PC or mobile device, which gives them greater flexibility with their work. Staff can log into the secure system and view a plethora of information about their company’s policies, procedures, products, services and rates as well as internal and industry news.
Essentially, intranets create a centralized place where employees can go to get the most up-to-date and accurate details about their company. So whenever they pull up information on the portal, they have the confidence of knowing it’s the latest version. And unlike with paper files, intranet users can conveniently browse through departmental pages for direct access to the kind of content that’s geared for their interests.
#2: Makes it easier for employees to do their job
Most organizations, whether they’re for-profit or non-profit, are looking for ways to make it easier for workers to do their jobs. Intranets fit the bill. They give employees easy access to the kind of information they need to perform their duties. For example, sales people can benefit from getting instant access to information about products, services and rates to facilitate their job.
Intranets also include a variety of tools that employees can use to get more work done—and do it more effectively. The search feature, for instance, helps workers find the information they need so they can get back to the task at hand. Electronic forms, calendars, profiles and other tools can also enhance employees’ busy work environment.
#3: Saves resources
Intranets give organizations the ability to save money, time and other resources. Because intranets allow information to be organized, archived and distributed electronically, there’s no need to produce hardcopies of things like policy manuals, employee directories and rate sheets. This reduces ink, paper and other printing costs—plus it saves trees and helps the environment.
As a less tangible benefit, intranets improve efficiency because they place information at users’ fingertips and save time. The faster employees can access the information they need, the more productive they can be, which ultimately impacts the company’s bottom line.
#4: Improves communication and collaboration
Intranets are not only the ideal information tool, but they also promote communication and collaboration. They serve as a hub for sharing corporate content and other information with employees. And administrators can use intranets to efficiently communicate internally, instead of pushing out mass emails.
Intranet portals also create an environment that fosters collaboration between employees. They can interact with each other in real time no matter where they’re located and keep team members updated on the progress of their work. Employees can use the files, documents, links and other features of intranets to minimize internal emails and enhance their collaborative efforts.
#5: Boosts employee engagement
Employee engagement is a priority for most organizations, no matter what type and size they are. And it’s no wonder why. Research shows that employees who are engaged—those who are more interested and excited—perform better at work. And engaged companies outperform their competitors in many areas. They have higher customer ratings, quality, productivity and profitability as well as lower safety incidents, theft, turnover, and absenteeism.
So what do intranets have to do with engagement? A lot because they come with an array of features that can help employees become more involved. Having easier access to corporate information can make workers more competent and effective while doing their jobs—which can make them feel more confident, satisfied and engaged. Features like recognition, feedback and surveys can make employees feel more appreciated, which can also boost morale and engagement.
#6: Enhances compliance
Complying with government regulations is a constant challenge for organizations. But intranets can make the process easier because they help organize documentation in one central place. This makes it possible for regulatory inspectors to be able to quickly access the information they require. And because the information is contained inside a secure environment, there’s a better chance that it will be accurate, available and ready when it’s needed for an audit. For example, updates on corporate policies and procedure are clearly tracked in the system. So are activities related to scheduling, monitoring and reporting employee training.
Obviously, intranets can be an invaluable resource for all types of organizations. I’ve just touched on a few reasons why, but I encourage you to explore the idea further and see how an intranet can benefit your company.
|Previously:||Outsourcing the Development of an Enterprise Content Management System||Next:||Is a Board Portal Secure?|