It can be very easy to get swept up into the hype around the public cloud and how it facilitates easier collaboration between employees. But let's not forget about the pre-cloud tool for employee collaboration -- the intranet.
Intranets were key in the early days of their existence because they enabled digital collaboration before online collaboration via the cloud was even a thing. They allowed organizations to centralize assets in one repository, then control who could access those assets. They also provided quick links to specific tools, and methods to communicate with different employees. None of these needs have disappeared just because the cloud emerged.
we.CONNECT recently shared survey feedback from members of the Intra.NET Reloaded Boston organization. Let’s run down through some of the survey numbers to get a perspective on how intranets are used and what technologies are building them.
- 98% of the companies responded that they had fielded an intranet within their organizations. More than half (52%) of intranets used SharePoint as the platform. The Other category accounted for 15% of the remaining intranet software followed by Jive (7%), Confluence (6%), and custom-built solutions (6%).
- Of those companies, 94% of those intranet deployments have been made company-wide with 34% of those happening between 2010 and 2015. In the three five-year periods prior, 2010, 2005, and 2000 the percentage of companywide intranet deployments were 17%, 15%, and 27% respectively. Since 2015, just 7% of those intranet deployments have occurred.
- 62% of these companies grant everyone access to the intranet including remote workers and at other company locations. Despite that broad level of access only 32% of these companies have more than 90% of their workers actively using the intranet. A total of 41% reported that between 50 and 90% of their workers use the intranet regularly.
When it came to establishing an intranet, several key factors are noted in the survey as influencing the decision to have an intranet and the objectives for using the platform. The top three of each are listed below.
- User experience (54%)
- Easy to adopt for company (52%
- Security (49%)
- Improved communications (78%)
- Sharing knowledge and best practices (69%)
- Employee engagement (64%)
Note: Multiple selections were allowed in this area of the survey.
Low costs factor (35%) and cost savings objective (16%) were both well down on these two lists which suggests that companies were more interested in the collaboration benefits of an intranet versus the cost of implementing and supporting the technology.
However, having an intranet is not a zero-cost solution and nearly half (49%) of the surveyed companies indicated that they have to have an ongoing marketing budget to support intranet projects.