7 Intranet Myths Debunked
A few weeks ago, we put together a blog post debunking common digital transformation myths. You can read that blog post here. We thought it would be fun to turn it into a series. This time, we decided to tackle common myths about Intranets. In the age of digital transformation, Intranets are getting a digital makeover. Like all other technology, the way Intranets are used is changing in response to the constantly evolving digital world. As a result, so much of what was thought about Intranets before isn’t necessarily the case anymore. Here are 7 Intranet myths DEBUNKED.
Myth #1 : Intranets are no longer relevant.
The idea that Intranets are no longer relevant is a common one. And the phrase “Intranets are dead,” is spoken often. Maybe, to some extent, there is some truth to that statement. Intranets in their traditional form are done for. But, Intranets in their current form are alive and well. How? Because businesses have taken the traditional Intranet and evolved it into digital workplaces and virtual office buildings. Which means that Intranets are still extremely relevant, they are just being used in different, but exciting ways. And as long as the world continues to change, we will continue to see people innovating and evolving Intranet technology to keep up with the digital world.
Myth # 2 : Intranets are static.
This may have been the case 5 years ago, and maybe even 2 years ago. But with all the technological advances made in the last few years, Intranets now have the ability to change and grow with their organization. There are interactive features available like customizable content, drag and drop menu building, responsive designs, easy to use branding tools, etc. Intranets are now a more flexible and dynamic collaboration workspace for employees. Of course this all hinges on whether your business has a good, effective Intranet.
Myth # 3 : Intranets are solely IT’s responsibility.
Again, with the amazing features available now, Intranets no longer have to be solely IT’s responsibility. With the Intranet solutions available now that no longer require coding knowledge, businesses are able to take control of setup, personalization, content, etc. It’s easier to give all departments ownership. And that is an important development. Because while IT has a lot of software and technical knowledge, they don’t always know what end users need. If end users are able to take more ownership, adoption rates and productivity rates increase.
Myth # 4 : Intranets shouldn’t be social.
The way people do work is changing. According to a recent survey by Gallup, 43 percent of employed Americans said they spent at least some time working remotely. With more people working remotely, opinions about social Intranets are changing. Here is Brightstarr’s recent experience: “The ability to crowd source an idea, gather feedback, or quickly find an answer to a pressing business question has the potential to transform the way you do business. Our experience has genuinely been that organizations with active and engaged social networks are actually more effective.” The pros of social Intranets include increased employee engagement and company wide collaboration. This is the new norm, with McKinsey finding that by using social technologies, companies can raise productivity by an amazing 20 to 25 percent. An important point to note here is that any social Intranet should have control features, that allow organizations to monitor conversations and usage.
Myth # 5 : Intranets are not for small businesses.
Historically Intranets have been a technology that mostly larger businesses have used. But recently SharePoint, which is the common Intranet for most business, integrated with Office 365. This integration has made SharePoint Intranets easier to manage, opening up more opportunities for smaller businesses, especially if you have a lot of people working from home (See Myth # 4). In addition, it’s a common belief that it just isn’t worth it for smaller businesses to invest in an Intranet. But in this digital world, it’s easy for a business to outgrow their current collaboration and file sharing systems. With the shift towards a digital workplace, it is more and more lucrative for all sized organizations to invest in an Intranet portal.
Myth # 6 : Hosting on-prem is always the best decision.
The Cloud is actually becoming more popular for organizations for three reasons: security, ease of use and cost. But the point of this isn’t to advocate for one type of hosting over the other. Intranet portals and digital workplaces are different for each company, based on the individual needs of the organization. Hosting on-prem might be the way to go for a handful of businesses, but that doesn’t mean it is the best course of action for every company. Do what is right for your organization. Outline your businesses needs and weigh all the costs and benefits of both on-prem and cloud before making your decision.
Myth # 7 : The last step is to launch your Intranet.
In a sense yes, your Intranet is set up and ready to go and all that is left is to start using it. But having an Intranet is a never ending process. That isn’t to say that Intranets are a daunting task that never finish. Instead, think of it as a continuously evolving process. There are always more things you can do to ensure that your Intranet is effective and will continue to be effective. Things like user training, getting feedback, measuring adoption, measuring efficiencey, etc. You should be constantly monitoring your Intranet’s success and making changes as necessary.
Intranets should be powerful tools that help your organization rather than hinder it. Don’t let these myths get in the way of your business having a successful Intranet portal. Consider these Intranet myths DEBUNKED! Look for out the next blog post in our debunked series.
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