Looking for a new intranet and wondering whether to use SharePoint? If you’ve searched up ‘intranet sharepoint’ / 'sharepoint intranet' you’re not alone. With so many companies using Microsoft 365, and with SharePoint included in their M365 license, SharePoint is a logical choice for intranet software. SharePoint isn’t just a default however, it’s also a solid option; just ask the 200,000-plus organisations and 190 million people who use SharePoint for their intranets, team sites and content management.
And to add to SharePoint’s appeal, Microsoft has added SharePoint Connections to its offerings.
In this blog post, we'll examine SharePoint in more detail:
It’s over 20 years since the creation of the first intranets. Technology has changed greatly in that time. The way people work from anywhere, at any time with any device has changed the world of work dramatically. Increasingly, the best intranets are business critical tools that people rely on to aid their work.
People are generally more familiar with traditional on-premise or older versions of SharePoint than the modern SharePoint intranet, and the association is usually not a positive one. These older intranets built with SharePoint were relatively static and uninteresting and were primarily used as repositories for company documents. These old intranets areas also infamous for being somewhat tricky to implement and to upgrade, with some intranet projects taking upwards of a year to complete and running into hundreds of thousands of pounds.
This changed when Microsoft overhauled SharePoint and created a new, modern experience with SharePoint Online.
Today, SharePoint has become the platform of choice for many businesses owing to its versatility in document management, collaboration, business process management and its customisable interface.
The modern SharePoint experience includes the release of responsive site templates, new list and library experiences, mobile apps and a broad set of new development frameworks and customization capabilities that align more closely with modern web development practices and the result is an intranet SharePoint platform better suited to modern workplaces.
A modern intranet creates connection at every level of the company. It’s a powerful, central communication tool that’s simple enough for everyone to use. It streamlines the ways in which you interact and work.
For businesses looking to increase collaboration and productivity, SharePoint is a great modern intranet solution that offers essential intranet features such as document management, calendars, and task lists.
Microsoft Viva Connections is a framework through which you can deliver your intranet. Through Microsoft Viva Connections, employees can access internal communications and company resources like policies and benefits, and participate in communities like employee resource groups, from a single customisable app in Microsoft Teams.
As people increasingly use Microsoft Teams as their primary place to communicate and collaborate with colleagues Viva Connections is a way of delivering content even if employees don't log into SharePoint daily.
Microsoft Viva Connections doesn’t have any additional cost, but it does require a SharePoint Online license.
If people are spending more time in Teams, they could miss important company news or updates. By bringing the content from your SharePoint intranet into Viva Connections, you create a richer, more personalised employee experience.
By integrating company communications and news into Teams, Microsoft is aiming to address engagement challenges.
No matter what your role is in the company - a frontline worker or an information worker - Microsoft Viva Connections offers a streamlined experience for tackling important tasks from your mobile.
When considering SharePoint for your intranet, one of the first questions to answer is whether you want to build your intranet internally, or buy it from an external provider. Here are a few things to think about:
There are numerous SharePoint modern intranet product offerings and it’s likely the features are very similar. So it makes sense to focus on your challenges or pain points. Rather than deciding that you need a certain feature or widget or intranet, ask yourself what problems you’re trying to overcome.
How do you find out what your pain points are? Have a cross-section of people from the company participate in a survey or focus groups. Getting leadership involved is crucial.
Examples of challenges you may want your intranet SharePoint to solve:
The final criteria for making a choice is to look at the business value. This starts with your strategy. It’s important to understand how you’re going to measure and maximise the business value of the SharePoint Intranet to the organisation.
Business strategy will often focus on one of three core areas:
1. Productivity: improving corporate performance across the entire company.
2. Innovation: bringing new ideas to life whether it is new products and services or improvements to processes.
3. Competitive advantage: finding ways to set the business apart from your competitors.
In conclusion, a SharePoint intranet is a solid start if you’re looking for a platform that provides a central communication tool, is easy to use, and boosts collaboration and productivity.
However, organisations that are aiming for digital transformation need that objective to be supported with something more than an intranet. A digital workplace platform takes collaboration, communication and productivity to the next level.
Good read: What's the difference between an intranet and a digital workplace?
Built for Microsoft 365, Atlas Intranet and Digital Workplace platform enables better ways of working for the modern enterprise. With Atlas, your employees can find the knowledge, documents, information and tools they need - in seconds - allowing them to focus on doing their best work.
Atlas works hand-in-glove with SharePoint and takes an intranet into the realm of a digital workplace. Power your team's collaboration, knowledge management and employee experience with Atlas, the best intranet for Microsoft 365.
As the developers of Atlas, ClearPeople has given a great deal of thought to what a digital workplace is and what it needs to empower an organisation to do.
Below are some of the features of what we think make a great modern intranet – and more specifically, that makes the Atlas digital workplace stand out from all other intranets.
Want to know more about using Atlas as your intranet? Book a demo now