How to Build The Perfect SharePoint Intranet?
SharePoint 2016 has brought with it major improvements. However, it’s being said that the platform does often struggle when it comes to user adoption. The fact is that companies as well as end users often struggle while going to implement it in a way that’s relevant for their organization.
So, what is the way to ensure that a SharePoint Intranet is perfect? As no organization has the same attributes, several best practice rules do apply to every situation. Once these are right, you are on the right way to Intranet excellence. Let’s know how to build the perfect SharePoint Intranet.
Gather the Requirements
Prior to starting creation of SharePoint Intranet, you should know what you actually require from it. The Intranet though is quite often commissioned by various people that are high up in the business. All of these people have just one specific viewpoint on the way Intranet works.
Moreover, you need to coordinate with regular end users for knowing about –
- How they work
- What they do
- What their expectations are from a communications & collaboration platform.
Lay More Focus on Functionality
SharePoint does allow you customize it in the way you want. Some organizations do get obsessed with putting their company logo and branding and throughout Intranet, and so spend fewer time focusing on functionality. Following should be your main priorities –
- How will be the pages structured
- How users will navigate
- How can changes be made to make finding stuff easier
Though an attractive theme does add a lot of value, it should be the second priority.
A majority of SharePoint Intranets fail as they get stale. You must ensure that your Intranet gets regularly refreshed as well as updated. Also, the information contained in it should remain relevant & usable. Make it a priority to fill the same with updated guides and relevant information about the company. You can also add communications about the latest achievements of the business.
Making it Social
SharePoint now easily integrates with Yammer – the popular enterprise social network (ESN) of Microsoft. ESNs allow users to speak to one another as well as work in natural & interactive manner. Individuals have their own profiles that simply means that a ‘people search’ will feel more human. Features like @mentions and ‘likes’ render using Intranet much more engaging.
Employees these days are ever more mobile. SharePoint manages this absolutely well as Microsoft is focused on ‘mobile-first’ economy. SharePoint dedicated hosting does offer the facility of anytime, anywhere access. However, let’s talk about customizing SharePoint first rather than dedicated SharePoint hosting.
If you are customizing SharePoint too much, most of these features would become less mobile friendly.
Have an Attractive Front Page
Undoubtedly, the home page of your SharePoint Intranet is where your employees start with in the day and finally end too. So, it becomes highly crucial to have fresh, regularly updated content in the front page. You can add a list of links to all relevant areas within your Intranet too.
Ensure Metadata is Right
Having a well-defined and proper metadata taxonomy is extremely crucial. Applying metadata intelligently allows your employees to find documents much faster using SharePoint’s search engine. So, make sure to spend time in understanding metadata as well as planning your approach.
Give Practical Training to Users
In your SharePoint Intranet, users should be able to not just upload but make changes, and add relevant content. So, you can provide useful, practical training to your colleagues on the way of doing specific tasks.
That’s how you can build the perfect SharePoint Intranet. As far as deriving the most out of it is concerned, SharePoint Cloud hosting can definitely help.