What Is An Intranet? The Definitive Explanation

The easiest way to define a company intranet is this: it’s a secured internal website that helps employees do their jobs.

The purpose of developing a company intranet has changed drastically over the last decade. The objective has changed from simply storing and broadcasting company information, to creating a collaborative platform that is used to increase efficiency, promote team work and reduces organizational costs.

Modern intranets have become an essential tool for organizational success, particularly as companies grow and expand.

Experts in the field say that while intranets can have countless features, uses and benefits, there are 5 core functions that businesses need, these are:

COLLABORATION: teams must be able to easily work together on projects. With the rise in telecommuting and remote workers, it’s essential for many businesses that people can work together, without physically being together. Rather than work through endless email streams, organizations can have tools where everyone is working in the same digital space.

ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIVITIES: gone are the days where it makes sense for a manager to manually fill out and submit vacation requests or expense reports. Rather than expend valuable human resources, these tasks are now submitted quickly and easily through your company intranet — with a few clicks, forms are submitted for approval to management and subsequently sent off to the appropriate departments for processing.

CONTENT PUBLICATION: modern intranets are designed to be social tools that create the ideal atmosphere for easy publication and employee engagement. With your own publication system, it becomes easier than ever to get your employees engaged and actively creating, publishing and sharing their own content.

INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS: as companies grow, maintaining an internal dialogue becomes increasingly important. When you consider things like corporate news, important updates and new employee announcements, the sheer volume of circulating material can be quite high. With your own intranet, you now have one place where employees will have easy access, and be exposed to, all the pertinent internal communications that management sends out. The best part is that management no longer has to worry about sending them out, because they’ll be housed in one convenient place.

CORPORATE CULTURE: the attitude and actions that result from collaboration, content publication and internal communications play a major role in supporting and maintaining the corporate culture. When employees are engaged, working together, being social and supporting each other, everyone wins. Happy employees are motivated and effective employees, which is what leads to having a fantastic corporate culture that people want to be a part of.