With the swift development of technology, some people might think that intranets are a thing of the past. After all, as a business owner, you can probably find dozens of different ways to improve communication and engagement within your organization. These include cloud-based solutions, video and chat platforms, a variety of apps available on the market, and so on. So, where is the place of intranets in all this?
As Bulletproof cybersecurity experts told us, the safety of your business should be your main priority while making any kind of decision for your company. Considering that intranet solutions are private by definition, it might look like the perfect option to keep all the sensitive information safe, even considering the flawed human mind and the possibility of human error. However, is the decision as simple as this?
By reading this article, you will learn what an intranet is and how it might still be relevant to your organization.
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An Intranet is a private network within your organization that allows secure communication for you and your employees. Intranet software appeared along with the internet in the 1990s, the main difference being that they are private (and therefore - secure), while the internet is a public, accessible network.
Because of the safety it provides, a company intranet is mainly used to exchange information, updates, data storage, or managing workflows. You might have also heard about an extranet, which is basically an intranet but accessible to anyone you allow from outside your organization, e.g., your customers or business partners.
If you’re a fan of other digital solutions, it might not be the time to give up intranets just yet, as they can be easily integrated with some apps and tools.
Improved Employee Productivity
Intranets offer smooth a top-down and bottom-up communication tool. It will help you keep your employees and their work aligned with the company culture - values, vision, and mission - while also improving information flow between individual workers and departments. It leads to faster decision-making processes, which might contribute to increased sales. Not to mention that it can eliminate the need for at least some meetings, so it will save everyone’s time as well.
Moreover, the modern intranet includes such features as creating profiles and sharing files as employees do on social media. It will make it easier for everyone to get to know each other, understand everyone’s role in an organisation, and quickly figure out who to contact in case of a specific problem. As an owner, you can also collect vital feedback that will help your company grow and thrive.
It is essential to create an efficient digital workplace, especially considering the growing popularity of remote work.
Easy and Secure Data Storage
Any business owner knows the hustle of managing all the information and files among different platforms and tools. Having an intranet will help you organize it all and store it in one place, easily and quickly accessible to anyone who might need it. Furthermore, all communications and information exchanges are saved in an intranet, so nothing will get lost.
As such, a dedicated intranet can be an excellent alternative to document and content management systems.
Improved Employee Experience
Thanks to an intranet, your HR team will be able to onboard new employees more smoothly, leading to increased employee satisfaction. Easy access to company information, better internal communication and collaboration tools, and improved problem-solving processes will also reduce stress and frustration. It might all contribute to your employees’ loyalty and dedication, and as such, to their productivity.
Additionally, an intranet can be a hopeful tool for recognition and rewards, which are both necessary to keep your employees happy and satisfied.
You can also go for something called social intranet - software designed to focus on emphasizing social networking.
Are There Any Disadvantages to an Intranet?
An Intranet Can Still Be Hacked
Even though an intranet is a secure private network, a hacker can use social engineering tactics to get inside, especially if your dedicated solution works on old-school platforms and systems. That’s why it’s vital to have an intranet designed to your preferences, needs, and possible risks.
You Will Need an IT Administrator
To make sure that your intranet is working smoothly and is always up to date, you will probably need someone to oversee it. What’s more, intranets usually require specialists who know all the system’s intricacies, so it can’t be just anyone.
It Might Add Up to Information Overload
Due to digitalization, we are all being bombarded with information every step of the way. Professional life is no exception here. So, if your company already uses a variety of tools you can’t give up, introducing an intranet might only add up to the pile of information your employees need to get through every day.
As you can see, there are many considerable advantages to using an intranet solution. It can help you provide easy and secure data storage, serve as a content management system and improve communication and workflow, contributing to your employee’s productivity and satisfaction. Sounds like something that will allow your company to thrive, right?
However, even the best solutions can prove faulty if you approach them from the wrong angle. For the intranet to serve you well, you need to make sure it is designed to your needs and preferences. Moreover, you have to be sure that it is something your business can actually benefit from.
We hope this article will help you get your head around the notion of an intranet so that you can make a well-thought, profitable decision.
About Author: This article is written by our marketing team at HR Cloud. HR Cloud is a leading provider of HR solutions, including recruiting, onboarding, employee engagement, and intranet software. Our aim is to help your company improve employee engagement, employee productivity, and to save you valuable time!