Intranets are such an important organizational asset so choosing the right solution is a critical decision. How do you select a solution that aligns with your organization’s strategic goals and achieves the following benefits?:
- Increase employee engagement
- Support organizational change
- Facilitate collaboration
- Encourage innovation
- Improve processes
- Improve customer service
- Manage and evaluate risk
- Provide useful information across the organization
- Reduce organizational costs
Elcom’s Intranet Evaluation Guide has been designed to help you choose the right intranet by outlining the six key elements of making a buyers decision, ensuring you find an intranet that meets your organization’s needs. The guide also provides a useful checklist, questions to consider and tips and tricks that will make your intranet evaluation and decision process as simple as possible.
The Guide follows six key elements:
- Foundations & Strategy
- Determine Intranet Capabilities
- Assess Potential Solutions
- Decision Making
- Technical Perspective
- Tips & Evaluation
This article will outline the fifth & sixth elements to continue to guide you during your intranet decision. Check out the first and second articles which outline the first 4 steps of an intranet evaluation.
The complete and free Intranet Evaluation Guide can be downloaded here.
5. Intranet Tech
Your IT department should be involved in the intranet solution decision making process. Beyond organizational requirements, your intranet solution should also meet certain technical standards in order for the platform to be used efficiently. Even if the solution is cloud-based, your technical intranet team should perform their own evaluation before any software purchase.
Here are some of the key technical aspects which need to be considered in an intranet evaluation:
- On-premises vs cloud
- Requirements and compatibility
- Internal IT
Security standards should be met to ensure information is fully protected.
On-premises vs Cloud
Your organization’s data security policies will determine whether you need an on-premises solution, a cloud-based solution or something in between (hybrid).
Intranet Requirements and Compatibility
Software and hardware specifications should be taken into account before a decision is made. Ask the vendor how servers will be set up, what operating system will be used and how the database system will be managed to ensure the solution is compatible with your existing technology.
You want your intranet solution to easily integrate with your existing technology (HR system, document management and other software) so as not to cause long disruptions to workflows. Before going ahead with an intranet installation, ask the vendor to ensure integration will be a smooth process.
Internal IT Team
How will your internal IT team manage the solution? Will extra staff be needed? Your IT team are going to work hand-in-hand with your intranet vendor so it’s absolutely essential that they like and understand how to use the solution to meet organizational goals and how to improve and update it where necessary.
You want an intranet solution that will grow and change as your organization does. Consider future strategic plans. Will your new intranet solution be able to keep up?
Check out the full Intranet Evaluation Guide for more technical considerations before you choose a solution.
6. Intranet Evaluation Tips
There’s a lot to consider when making a decision about intranet solutions. Here are some final tips to keep you on the right track:
- Choose a vendor that understands your requirements and sees you as a long-term partner
- Make a decision based on your needs, size and budget
- Be objective when you read reviews by industry peers
- Consider the solution that will fit with your future objectives and goals
- Be wary of beta solutions
- Take your time to reach a decision
To help you even further, the Guide includes an Intranet Solution Comparison Framework which makes comparing intranets easier. The spreadsheet offers a customizable framework based on the points discussed in the Guide and these summary articles.
We hope these articles help you with your intranet solution decision. Get your free copy of the Intranet Evaluation Guide now for extra information and a comparison framework to ensure you buy an intranet solution that meets the current and ongoing needs of your organization.
You might also be interested in Intranet Success: 3 Considerations for a successful intranet.