Intranets can be tricky. As the CEO of a digital agency, I often hear from companies who have implemented expensive, complicated intranet platforms that go unused by their employees, despite the potential value of such a system.
A useful intranet can help a business in numerous of ways: It can streamline communication, create operational efficiencies, and generally help coordinate activity to keep teams rowing in the same direction.
Companies often view intranets as products as opposed to solutions — largely because the market is full of pre-built products. These products are typically sold to companies as bundles of features with things like social networking, live chats, forums, and team sites included. The problem with these bundles is that you get all of the features whether you want them all or not, which can make a system feel bloated, confusing, and empty if parts of it go completely unused. This mismatch of features to actual needs can make the purchasing process fundamentally flawed for corporate IT departments.
In many cases, creating a light-weight intranet that is clean and simple by design, intuitive to use, and targeted towards solving a core set of business problems can be a better way to go. By first building a foundational platform, companies can extend the platform with more features as their needs evolve. In our experience, this approach delivers a far greater return on investment than most out-of-the-box solutions.
The key benefits of a purpose-built intranet are:
- Simpler implementation and lower barriers to adoption
- Functionality that targets only the most important issues
- Less training and higher usage rates
- More design freedom to create an experience specifically for your users
See how we used Drupal 8 and industry research to create an intranet that is helping a great company grow quickly.