What Is an Intranet? A Quick Reference Guide

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July 25, 2019
3 min read
what is an intranet

Software selection can be intimidating, especially when starting from square one. Needing to learn the basics behind the software platform you are searching for, such as “what is an intranet?”, can be an overwhelming task. As you and your software selection committee commence your intranet selection journey and seek to define your intranet and business requirements, having a handy guide on essential definitions of commonly used terms within the intranet software industry can be invaluable.

Setting the Baseline for Success

This article is aimed to assist in getting you and your committee on the same page with common intranet industry terms, so you can work from a communal understanding when evaluating and selecting an intranet software platform. Please use this quick reference guide as a resource to help you as you evaluate different intranet solutions, in order to understand the use case for intranet software and intranet features along your path to intranet selection and deployment success.

Here are the top 10 essential definitions you will use during your software selection process:

What is an Intranet & Other Common Terms

1. Intranet: a network-based website with restricted access for specific members, usually limited to a corporation – employees and other contacts with granted authorization – used to share information, streamline collaboration and automate business tasks within a secure environment.

2. Content Management: an intranet application that organizes the collection, management, and publication of information including permissions, archiving, and collaboration.

3. Corporate Social Networking: an intranet application that enables employees to engage and collaborate through the site through commenting & rating, posting wall messages, status updates, following colleagues activities/feeds, instant chatting, answering quick polls and creating other community activities such as buy & sell forums, recipe centers and online photo albums.

4. Document Management/Repository: an intranet application that stores, tracks and manages documents including setting policy revisions, publishing & admin roles, permissions, review dates, archiving and read confirmation.

5. E-Forms: an intranet application that provides a platform to build electronic forms as a means to eliminate paper driven-tasks including the creation of surveys, tests, mileage log forms, embedded spreadsheets, formulas, triggers, workflows, and routing.

6. Enterprise Search: an intranet application that structures and indexes data and documents within the intranet, which can be performed through content tagging, full text document indexing and meta data searching, to retrieve relevant data/documents upon query request.

7. Extranet Users: users that access the intranet from outside the network which are given limited access to specific areas of the intranet site or are built extranet only areas of the intranet by the intranet administrator.

8. Homepage: the entry point into the intranet that generally showcases company news items, frequently used company resources, and popular/relevant content often organized by widgets with easy architecture and display options.

9. Mobile Intranet: the mobile entry gateway to your intranet which can be accessed through a mobile device using the same web address as your current intranet site or can be specifically enabled mobile intranet site to provide quick access to high-traffic users areas including employee directory, employee workspaces, employee walls, bookmarks, alerts and enterprise search.

10. Security Permissioning: an intranet feature that can set view, access, edit and publish permissions to certain data, documents, folders, pages and sites on the intranet by intranet administrators which can be defined per user, per role, per group, per department, etc.

What is a…?

In need of other intranet terms defined to aid in your intranet software selection search? Please let us know, we would be happy to add to this quick reference guide. Please send us an email at [email protected].

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IC transforms businesses with state-of-the-art internal comms software. Since 1999, we have connected workers to their organization's goals and each other. Adopting our purpose-built software has led to measurable successes for our customers: productivity increases, turnover decreases, and better employee experiences.