The key to building the best cloud-based intranet to suit your organization is to consider what you need to create an effective digital workplace.
Here are 4 essential questions to ask when deciding which intranet software to choose:
- What are the company needs for an intranet (communication tools, information supply, and sharing, knowledge management, easy access, integration of collaborative apps such as Office 365 or Google Workplace, formerly G Suite)?
- How will an intranet benefit the company (cost efficiency, employee engagement, higher retention rate, connecting the workforce)?
- Who will use it (staff, customers, suppliers, media)?
- Is a cloud-based intranet portal the best solution (compared to an on-premise intranet)?
So, why is a cloud-based intranet important? Here are 10 reasons why:
It’s more cost-effective to set up a cloud-based company intranet than an on-premise one. There are no equipment costs or expensive up-front purchases.
This means easier budget management. You only pay a set-up cost and then an agreed monthly fee. There’ll be no unexpected bills due to high employee usage which translates to efficient financial planning for the organization.
A cloud-based intranet is also good news for human resources as it reduces staff costs. There’s no need for a large IT team and often marketing and admin staff can be responsible for the day-to-day running of the intranet.
With a cloud-based intranet, an organization can create a smooth, dynamic employee experience that encourages them to engage, collaborate and communicate. By including branding, style, color, and tone of voice, the cloud-based intranet can be built to adapt to an organization’s specific needs.
It’s easy to integrate a company cloud-based intranet with the popular apps employees use daily and are familiar with. For example, you can select a Google Workspace intranet that’s enhanced with chat, messaging, project management, and news apps.
And as the business expands so can company intranets. Adding apps and tools to enhance the employee experience will ensure a platform that grows as it needs to.
3. 24/7 access everywhere
Another benefit of a cloud-based intranet is that employees can access it anywhere, at any time, and from any device. Compare this with an on-premise intranet, which may fail outside of office hours or during the holidays (resulting in paying high IT staff call-out charges to get it up and running.) The benefits are clear.
24/7 access means employees can connect from whatever time zone they’re in, so they don’t waste time waiting for colleagues on another continent or in another state to wake up. This also benefits flexible workers who may want to connect after-hours. If the office is closed the business can continue to operate, which means higher productivity.
4. Greater security
A cloud intranet offers more security than an on-premise system. A large cloud-based intranet provider is likely to invest more in security systems than a company with an employee intranet.
In the past, IT teams had to set up firewalls to prevent security breaches. This is difficult for remote working and can slow things down. A cloud-based intranet eliminates this issue, as the security with a reputable company is of the highest standard. There’s also a cost-saving here as companies don't need to run to engage expensive security experts if they deal with particularly sensitive information.
5. Quick and easy integration
With a cloud-based intranet, there’s no need to build one from scratch. There are no servers to buy and set up, no code to write, no external IT company to hire – you simply decide what solution is best for your organization and get started.
If you know what you want your cloud-based intranet to include, it can be up and running within a week. You then can add apps to it as you wish.
6. Mobile access
This allows employees to access the intranet wherever they are, which increases engagement and user adoption. If an employee can read your newsfeed when having a coffee or on the way home they’re more likely to share information with friends and family. This form of connection is powerful as it spreads the word as free marketing.
It’s more difficult, if not impossible for employees to connect to an on-premise server with their mobile or tablet when they’re away from the office. So if they can´t connect to the company intranet, they’ll connect to other social media, which means you’ve lost their interaction and potential shares.
7. Effective technology
People expect technology to work proficiently and harmoniously. A website that has a three-second delay in loading can cause visitors to lose interest and click away from the site. The same applies to the company intranet. Employees will only engage and use it if it works perfectly.
A cloud-based intranet relies on powerful servers that can't afford to go down. And if in the unlikely event they do, there’s always a back-up to keep things running smoothly. A standard-sized company can’t afford to have backup servers “just in case,” which is another reason why a cloud-based intranet is a cost-effective solution.
8. Creates an all-in-one platform
Doing everything in one place means employees can achieve goals faster. If they can share files, have a quick message chat, find out what the next company event is, and get project updates all in one place, they’re happy.
All of this gets the job done faster, and gives them more time. And let’s face it, we all need a little more time.
The cloud-based intranet works as a multi-faceted platform for:
- Internal communication
- Employee engagement
- Gaining knowledge
A cloud-based intranet has the power to support this on-demand access to data.
9. Automatic upgrades
Upgrading computing platforms can sometimes be a demanding, time-consuming process. It often has to take place in real-time and can affect users’ working day.
Cloud-based intranet software ensures all the latest upgrades take place automatically. This means the IT department doesn’t have to worry about scheduling upgrades or building in downtime.
Automatic upgrades prevent the need for reboots and testing and ensure the intranet platform is working to its maximum.
10. Faster information supply
It’s important everyone stays up-to-date with the latest company news, project updates, and all-round information. If a remote worker misses an update, they may fall behind in their part of a task. A cloud-based intranet updates everyone at the same time.
This rolling supply of information can also benefit:
- Training – Gives everyone the tools to do their job.
- Regulations – Ensures staff is aware of updates, such as new laws or health and safety regulations.
- Emergencies – Keeps everyone informed with timely, accurate information.
From cost-effectiveness to keeping employees informed and connected, a cloud-based intranet is an investment that pays off in the long run.