Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Intranet Software

Use this template to identify critical intranet software requirements and jumpstart your team processes and documentation.

Crafted by
at
Guru
Guru logo
Crafted by Guru
Get these templatesGet the template

The pandemic has changed the way we work forever. Pre-pandemic in the office, you could walk up to a colleague and ask questions about a process or a document you needed to complete a task. Post-pandemic with remote workers at home, everything goes through long email threads. 

This means that tasks aren’t completed on time, employees are frustrated because they can’t access the information they need to work efficiently, and teams are not motivated to show up.

When you consider that 51% of employees are disengaged at work and 85% of employees are motivated by effective corporate communications, it’s clear to see the link between having an internal communication system and employee productivity.

Over time, your company’s intranet becomes the single source of information for employees. Business intranets provide a framework for your employees to work efficiently. It also encourages employee engagement, team collaboration, and communication in a remote workplace. 

Whether you’re in the market for a small-scale intranet software or you need an enterprise solution for a large company, the tips and templates we’re sharing in this article will help you make the right choice when shopping for a business intranet software and ensure your whole team has the information they need to do their best work.

A business intranet makes it easy to reinforce company culture and align teams. Done right, it can increase employee engagement, workplace productivity, and foster relationship building. In fact, Deloitte research shows that companies with strong internal networks are 7% more productive. Intranet software also saves time and money, resulting in significant cost savings estimated at $1 million.

A business intranet makes it easy to reinforce company culture and align teams. Done right, it can increase employee engagement, workplace productivity, and foster relationship building. In fact, Deloitte research shows that companies with strong internal networks are 7% more productive. Intranet software also saves time and money, resulting in significant cost savings estimated at $1 million.

The pandemic has changed the way we work forever. Pre-pandemic in the office, you could walk up to a colleague and ask questions about a process or a document you needed to complete a task. Post-pandemic with remote workers at home, everything goes through long email threads. 

This means that tasks aren’t completed on time, employees are frustrated because they can’t access the information they need to work efficiently, and teams are not motivated to show up.

When you consider that 51% of employees are disengaged at work and 85% of employees are motivated by effective corporate communications, it’s clear to see the link between having an internal communication system and employee productivity.

Over time, your company’s intranet becomes the single source of information for employees. Business intranets provide a framework for your employees to work efficiently. It also encourages employee engagement, team collaboration, and communication in a remote workplace. 

Whether you’re in the market for a small-scale intranet software or you need an enterprise solution for a large company, the tips and templates we’re sharing in this article will help you make the right choice when shopping for a business intranet software and ensure your whole team has the information they need to do their best work.

How to use this Card template

The pandemic has changed the way we work forever. Pre-pandemic in the office, you could walk up to a colleague and ask questions about a process or a document you needed to complete a task. Post-pandemic with remote workers at home, everything goes through long email threads. 

This means that tasks aren’t completed on time, employees are frustrated because they can’t access the information they need to work efficiently, and teams are not motivated to show up.

When you consider that 51% of employees are disengaged at work and 85% of employees are motivated by effective corporate communications, it’s clear to see the link between having an internal communication system and employee productivity.

Over time, your company’s intranet becomes the single source of information for employees. Business intranets provide a framework for your employees to work efficiently. It also encourages employee engagement, team collaboration, and communication in a remote workplace. 

Whether you’re in the market for a small-scale intranet software or you need an enterprise solution for a large company, the tips and templates we’re sharing in this article will help you make the right choice when shopping for a business intranet software and ensure your whole team has the information they need to do their best work.

Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Intranet Software

Use this template to identify critical intranet software requirements and jumpstart your team processes and documentation.

Crafted by
at
Guru
Guru logo
Crafted by Guru
Get the template
Want to start from scratch? Sign up free
Thinking face emoji
What's a Card?
A Card is a bite-sized piece of information to help answer your team's questions.
Here's why bite-sized is best.

What is intranet software?

An intranet software is a private and secure communication platform that can only be accessed by internal employees. 

Your company’s intranet serves as the central access point for internal and external resources that empower your employees to collaborate, communicate, share knowledge and other information.

A business intranet makes it easy to reinforce company culture and align teams. Done right, it can increase employee engagement, workplace productivity, and foster relationship building.

Deloitte research shows that companies with strong internal networks are 7% more productive. Intranet software also saves time and money, resulting in significant cost savings estimated at $1 million.

How do intranets work?

Both the intranet and the internet operate over the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol communications (TCP/IP) standard that connects hosts to users over a network.

In the past, you needed a local area network to connect to a company’s intranet. Thankfully, with modern intranet solutions, companies can connect remotely via intranet platforms like Guru that unify internal communications.

Some of the functions of an intranet include:

  • A company wiki or document repository where employees share or find documents for work assignments
  • An internal social network that fosters personal relationships in the workplace
  • A collaborative workspace where employees work together on projects 
  • Employee onboarding platform to train new employees and help them onboard at their own pace
  • Updated internal knowledge base to keep employees on the same page with expert-verified information

What are the benefits of using intranet software?

Improve internal communication

The Cost of Poor Communication Report estimates that the average organization loses $62.4 million per year in lost productivity as a result of communication barriers.

Rather than long email threads that go on forever, intranets make it easier for everyone to communicate quickly.

Memos circulate faster, your favorite apps (like Slack) are integrated, and feedback is shared in real-time.

Simplify employee onboarding

According to Forbes, 20% of new employees leave within 45 days. That’s because poor onboarding leads to lower employee engagement, lower confidence, and a lack of trust in the company.

Modern intranet platforms streamline the new hire onboarding process. Your new team members feel welcomed and equipped to do their job. 

Productivity soars when information is easy to find. Rather than navigating multiple solutions, employee onboarding software like Guru makes it easier for new employees to access onboarding knowledge from a central platform. 

Make it easier to find information 

The average employee is only productive for 2 hours and 53 minutes per day. Finding information is one of the things that cause distractions at work. When interruptions happen, it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back on track.

The simple act of placing all your company knowledge in a centralized platform improves productivity. It allows your employees to focus on work instead of wasting time digging through digital drives, outdated manuals, or scattered Google documents. 

Encourage knowledge sharing 

Data silos make information inaccessible to other departments. 

These are the negative implications of not having a knowledge-sharing culture:

  • Inefficiencies inhibit productivity
  • Technical knowledge is limited to few people in the organization
  • Information and data can be duplicated and later conflict, increasing both storage costs and confusion. 


Contrast with these benefits of internal knowledge sharing:

  • Prioritizing knowledge sharing encourages employees to collaborate and receive feedback. Employees are more open to ask questions and receive feedback without fear
  • Increased innovation as ideas flow freely when team members unlock their creativity
  • Retain institutional knowledge and close knowledge gaps that exist in your organization
  • Save time trying to reinvent the wheel because solutions already exist

Build an internal collaborative culture 

Companies that use interactive intranets have seen a 20% rise in productivity and a 24% reduction in staff turnover. 

Modern intranets also function as a centralized platform where employees can collaborate on projects. They eliminate physical boundaries that hinder teamwork and replace them with intranet features like enterprise search, people directories, process documentation, and other applications that make collaboration and communication easy.

Intranets also integrate with social platforms like Slack and Microsoft teams that reduce internal emails and improve instant feedback with features like group chats, instant messaging, and video conferencing.

See all of Guru's integrations.

When employees are encouraged to speak up, help each other more, and collaborate, there is an opportunity for a positive corporate culture that leads to an engaged workforce.

Reduce synchronous communications

Synchronous communication takes place in real-time between two or more people. Examples include video conferencing and phone calls. Basically, it requires an immediate response to a question. It’s a lot of pressure to always be “present” even when you don’t feel like it.

Modern intranets should make it easy to adopt an asynchronous communication setup, giving everyone access to information in real time without requiring an actual person to answer a question, and allowing the team to ditch the large group meetings that suck up time from multiple calendars, communicate better with each other and spend more time on revenue-generating tasks.

Enhance employee experience 

More companies are shifting to an employee-centric workplace. A Deloitte study shows that 88% of employees and 94% of executives believe a distinct workplace culture leads to business success.

Employers have an incentive to provide great working environments for their employees, and it’s easier to feel like part of a company culture when you use an intranet that encourages active communication and keeps employees connected to their teams. 

Motivate employees 

There are many ways that a company intranet motivates employees. Rather than hoard knowledge, managers and senior employees use process documentation to share knowledge.

Gamification features on an intranet can lead to friendly competitions where standout employees are recognized for positive behavior or reaching a laudable milestone. You can award employee badges or even offer an Employee of the Month reward within your intranet. 

Build a knowledge-driven culture 

Employees have to feel comfortable if you want to encourage knowledge-sharing, collaboration and asking for feedback. There’s got to be an open culture that encourages sharing opinions and thoughts even when it’s not what you want to hear. In fact, 87% of people want to work for a transparent company.

Capture the knowledge-driven culture opportunity to help your entire team do their best work—learn more.

An intranet can help you achieve the goal of transparency and open work. With tools like Guru, anyone can contribute, comment or like anything that’s shared within your workplace. Shared knowledge is verified by experts and regularly updated to ensure it remains the single source of truth within your organization.

When you encourage your employees to open up at work, they build stronger relationships with their teammates that lead to trust, innovation, and productivity.

What features should intranet software have? 

  1. Notification 

Choose an intranet system with responsive notification alerts. It should notify your employees when a teammate shares information that’s relevant to their job. Examples include department or company news, daily tasks sent through a workflow, or answers to a question they asked.

  1. Commenting abilities 

One of the main reasons for implementing intranets is to work and communicate faster as a team. An intranet software tool allows for threaded communication such as commenting on wikis or company forums. 

The intranet should be designed to encourage participation and sharing of ideas which lead to faster solutions.

Comments should be marked as resolved so knowledge articles are kept tidy and readers won’t be confused with comments that have already been addressed.

  1. Chat integration 

Messaging is one the best ways for employees to discuss ideas, projects and get the information they need quickly. Chat integration saves time spent on waiting for emails and provides a central platform for employees to reach out when they need help

Including chat integration with intranet software makes problem-solving quicker. No need to jump on a meeting when you can communicate in Slack. 

Bonus points if your intranet lets you carry out Slack actions like capturing knowledge or sharing answers from the knowledge base. Other messaging functions to look for include group chats, robust search options, and file-sharing.

  1. Intuitive search 

As your company grows, it becomes difficult to get information. An intuitive search makes it easier and faster to find everything from staff information to documents and past articles. 

When you use an intranet with poor search functions, employees spend more time looking for resources which leads to frustration and dissatisfaction with your company’s intranet. 

The search function should save time and help employees to navigate the intranet to find what they need.

  1. A single source of truth 

Your business intranet must function as the single source of truth for employees to trust and accept it. Most traditional intranets fail because they became a dumping ground for outdated documents.

Guru mitigates this problem by suggesting experts in the department who can verify information on your intranet. Guru also sends out notifications to update information at specified intervals to ensure that the content on your intranet is always relevant and accurate. 

  1. Mobile app 

Nearly five billion people own a smartphone. Choose an intranet with a mobile app so employees can stay connected irrespective of the device they’re using. 

A mobile app allows employees to receive important updates which makes them more responsive to situations as they come up.

When the intranet is easily accessible, it keeps team members productive which translates to higher revenue for your organization. 

  1. Responsive design 

Digital Strategy Consulting reports that 60% of employees use apps on their mobile devices for work-related activity. Fierce Mobile IT adds that 71% of employees spend over 2 hours a week accessing company information on mobile.

Implementing mobile responsive designs ensures that employees have a great user experience regardless of the device they’re using. Whether they’re home or away from their desktop, employees can log in to their workplace to consume information and interact seamlessly.

  1. Great user experience 

Engagement suffers without a good digital experience. Digital experience includes intuitive layout, the usability of the intranet platform, third-party integrations, incorporating internal branding, and balancing social interactions with work-related content. A great digital experience makes employees excited to use the intranet and put their stamp on it.

  1. Document management 

Document management is one feature that must be a staple in every intranet platform. Since you’re cultivating a culture of knowledge sharing, it’s important to have an integrated platform that makes it easy to create, edit, share, and delete documents within an organization.

  1. Company wiki and file management 

An internal wiki is a core function of an intranet because it allows employees to collaboratively add, edit and maintain content that is relevant to your business. Where traditional intranets are unintuitive and overly complex, internal wikis like Guru make it easy to search, edit and navigate within a content hierarchy.

When you implement a company wiki, your team spends less time looking for information and more time being productive.

It’s important to choose an intranet that integrates with other knowledge management tools, allows interlinking between wiki pages, and provides permissions and access management.

  1. Analytics to improve performance

Your intranet solution should provide insight into how and where knowledge is used and the impact of company knowledge on employee performance.

You can use analytics to track which content is viewed the most, what undocumented topics employees are searching for, and if your team finds published content helpful or not.

  1.  Organizational chart 

To facilitate long-term planning, organizational charts must be accessible so everyone knows who is in charge of specific functions and who does what. Organizational charts come in handy when multiple departments need to collaborate on large projects.

10 Intranet Software Solutions To Choose From

Guru 

About Guru

Guru is your internal wiki that makes it easy to create, share and find expert-approved knowledge. Rather than documents living in different places, Guru captures the information you need wherever it exists. 

From Slack threads to Google Docs, Asana projects, and inside the minds of your most experienced employees, your company info and expertise becomes the single source of truth.

How does Guru differ from other intranet software?

Internal communications

Guru improves employee communication and makes information accessible to everyone when they need it. Use Guru’s Knowledge Alert to cut through messaging fatigue and ensure your employees receive your most important updates.

Product enablement

From product ideation to collecting customer feedback, Guru gives product teams a single source of truth for product knowledge

Rather than answering the same questions repeatedly, managers and company experts can share their expertise and ensure that product information is always verified by subject matter experts and updated regularly.

Also, customer-facing teams now have the confidence to quickly find answers in your company intranet software and answer questions accurately.

Employee onboarding

Guru’s employee onboarding software levels the playing field for new hires to easily find the information they need to become productive team members.

Instead of rushing the onboarding process or overwhelming employees with information, you can empower employees to onboard at their own pace. It’s cheaper, faster and more efficient. 

Managers can automate onboarding, track employee progress, consolidate company knowledge to eliminate confusion and fill knowledge gaps in your onboarding process.

Blink 

Access to key information could save patients’ lives. Blink keeps frontline workers up to date with data relevant to their profession. The information helps healthcare providers stay on top of transit, logistics, and facilities management. Blink replaces boring articles on your intranet with engaging content from the front-line. 

Microsoft SharePoint 

Microsoft SharePoint serves as a mobile intranet for small businesses and enterprises alike. Microsoft SharePoint offers a variety of building blocks to create a company intranet. 

With SharePoint, your employees can create functional intranet pages quickly without coding knowledge. SharePoint also allows storage, retrieval, archiving, searching, and management of electronic documents.

See how Guru and Sharepoint compare

Yammer 

Yammer is an internal private social network that lets teams collaborate across geographies, departments, and business applications. You can purchase Yammer alongside Microsoft Office 365 or as a standalone product.

For small team collaboration, Yammer enables the creation and joining of private/public groups along with the ability to share updates within the group.

Key features include enterprise microblogging, file sharing, company directory, content tagging, and private messaging. 

Simpplr 

Simpplr is a cloud-native intranet software focused on providing a user experience that is easy to use. Think of Simpplr as a digital workspace where colleagues can share events and work progress.

Simpplr uses adaptive personalization to push relevant content to the right people at the right time. The content is personalized for every employee so they can see business news, native videos, and events that matter to them. 

Staffbase 

Staffbase is an internal communications app for large organizations. Staffbase provides a central platform for employees to ideate, create and publish content. You can customize the app with branded properties and use push notifications to send relevant information to employees.

Jostle 

Jostle is a social networking and remote intranet solution that offers user-friendly visualization to simplify complex processes. 

Employees can discuss topics, share ideas and collaborate in a closed or open environment. Use team matrixes to see who handles a specific task. You can also filter employees by department, location, or other smart search filters.

Top features of Jostle include direct resource management, employee directory, and integration with Google Drive and OneDrive.

Workvivo 

Workvivo is an employee engagement platform that combines the functions of an intranet, social network, and employee app to offer a wholesome digital experience. Top features of Workvivo include news feed, survey customization, employee pulse surveys, and peer recognition.

Claromentis 

Claromentis is a digital workplace that offers employees an interactive space for collaboration, communication, knowledge sharing, and task management.  

Claromentis is designed to unify all the tools employees use so they stay connected with their work wherever they are. Claromentis combines modern intranet solutions with e-learning, e-forms, and project management.

Samepage 

Samepage is a social intranet software that offers real-time document collaboration with file sharing, internal communication, and task management. 

Top features of Samepage include task board, folder roles, documentation, content chat, spreadsheets, and mindmaps

Workplace by Facebook 

Workplace by Facebook is a communication tool that connects both remote and in-office employees together. It’s like your regular Facebook feed but with a dashboard that works as a corporate intranet. 

Employees can like each other’s work progress, send private messages, share live videos, and keep each other in the loop. Workplace by Facebook also includes an internal library for your employees to find internal resources from one central location.

Top features include live video broadcasts, groups, knowledge library, news feed, and integrations with tools like Google Drive and Office365.

Choose an intranet software that supports your workflow 

An intranet ensures efficient workflows through engaging content, communication channels, and a collaborative culture that encourages knowledge-sharing.

When choosing an intranet software, write down the must-have features and nice-to-have features you need. Prioritize intranet solutions that offer AI-powered search functionality, intelligent notifications, CMS, and integrations with other applications in your workflow.

Choose an intranet software that is scalable and grows with your team. If you’ll require API and customizable coding, it’s also important to ask. Request a demo to take the intranet for a test run before committing to a paid plan.


Crafted by
at
Guru
Guru logo
Crafted by Guru
Get the templateGet these templates