Intranet is a term used to describe a private computing network that designed to only serve the needs of a given organization. The main difference that it has with the more commonly used term internet is that it represents a closed network of computers that is closed to unauthorized users. It was mainly developed at first to be used by educational organizations but soon gained major traction with private organizations as well.
It is not to be confused with extranet which are networks that provide a more open access to customers and interested third parties. For that reason, many intranet networks are protected by serious encryptions as well as firewalls that enable them to really restrict the number and origin of the people who have access to their network.
But it doesn’t just represent a company’s website either. Instead, it is a technological infrastructure that enables the company to process, share and organize all the information that said company needs. The main purpose of an intranet network is to reduce the cost of operation as well as the time and effort required to accomplish the necessary tasks within the company.
Obviously, operating such a network requires a very efficient and highly personalized piece of software to best suit the company’s needs. These software programs are designed to provide the necessary tools to the company employees to facilitate various processes such as sales, customer relationships, productivity and management.
They can also be used for effectively sharing information between the different parts of the organization. If many employees need to share information on a regular basis because they are working on a project together, a private forum or discussion board might be integrated into the system.
Another thing that can be done with intranet software is to track and measure the activity of all parties who use the intranet network. That way, organisations are able to track user activity and how the information is getting shared so that they are able to optimize the different systems they have in place and get a better return on their investment. This is ultimately great for organisations that are continuously striving to improve their efficiency and improve their service.
In most cases, the intranet software will only be accessible to people within the organisation. However, with the proper software options, certain parts of the intranet can be ultimately opened up to customers (or the general public) who have a need to track or better understand what they are getting out of their relationship with the organisation in question.
Many large organisations actually have their own team that builds and manages their intranet software. That way, they have a tighter control on just what is happening in terms of the way their employees share information and get their work done as well as in how their customers are being served. Most of the time this task falls onto the communications department (or the equivalent).
There are many benefits that can come from using a powerful and effective intranet software solution. These can range from better control of employee activity all the way to improving relationships with customers.
One of the main attractions in the eyes of the company who uses it is obviously the ability to improve the productivity of their workforce. By providing tools and applications that enable them to attribute tasks more easily and more quickly, they can make better use of everybody’s time. Also, it enables the employees to access the information they need to get their job done faster. This is reflected by not only the improved access to the information in question but also by the better organization and structure of that information.
Improved communication between all parties is also a very attractive benefit of a good intranet software solution. This obviously allows everybody who is working on a given project to be up to date on the most current information and strategies established by the upper management.
This is also great for companies that require communication between multiple locations. Some larger organizations actually own several buildings (sometimes with different purposes entirely) that are sometimes in entirely different countries. Effective information exchange between multiple locations becomes an absolute must.
Such an intranet software will mainly use email or direct chat to exchange information between parties. This cuts down on the usage of the more traditional telephone which ends up saving massive amounts of money for the company. This is especially true for organisations that have locations in different cities, states or countries because it eliminates the cost of long distance phone calls.
Of course, most of these intranet infrastructures are entirely customized to the company in question because not two companies have precisely the same needs. In turn, this really helps them better serve the end customer more quickly and effectively. This is fantastic for companies who rely a lot on repeat sales from a more static base of customers because it allows them to tailor their service much more closely to their needs.
Also, whenever there is a change in company policy, in the laws that govern the way the company operates or just a change to optimize the productivity or return on investment of the company, these changes can be propagated very quickly across all the locations. All the employees and parties affected by such changes can be kept up to date and implement the changes as fast as possible. This is especially important for when changes are made to comply with newly implement laws in different countries of operation.
All in all an good and efficient intranet software solution is absolutely imperative for any company who is looking to optimize their processes as well as make better use of their employees and resources. What’s best is that these solutions can be fully customized to the company who is going to be using the software. That means that they can ultimately communicate better within the company as well as with any customers and also between different branches and locations that the company might have. This ends up saving time and money on all fronts.