Why You Need an Intranet

It always surprises me as to how many SME’s have no intranet in place, when they have 10, 20 30 or more people working for them.  How does anything get done?  It is so inefficient to work using POP email accounts and share drives when there are a multitude of technologies available to empower people to work together far more effectively. As a business owner myself, I cannot imagine how my business would run without our intranet.

A well-used intranet is an invaluable business tool.  It doesn’t have to be complicated, you can get a lot done if you even just start with centralising your policies and procedures.  If you run a business and you don’t have one, let us help you build one. Your world will never be the same again!  To give you an idea of how it could add value, we thought we’d share ours with you. We are SharePoint specialists, so we have a SharePoint intranet; but there are other technologies available.  Getting them populated takes the same amount of effort and methodology.


Our home page is called Human Beings because we don’t have resources here.

  • Discussion Board – for knowledge sharing, minutes, and non-urgent company communication, almost 1000 discussions so far
  • Thought of the Week – a motivational message on the Quick Launch (left bar) that we change regularly

Then the icons on the page :

  • New to LC, Start Here – to induct new employees
  • How We Work – all our policies, procedures, standards and guidelines, we have 29 of them
  • Discussion Board Categories – 17 categories to browse through
  • About Us – all the usual things like addresses, VAT numbers, banking details, websites, etc
  • Staff Database – who’s who in the zoo and all their details
  • Client Database – list of active, passive and archived clients, sponsors and business partners
  • Suppliers Database – list of authorised suppliers to staff can order things if I’m not around

Tabs on top….

Jam Jar :

This for all things financials and business management.

  • Sales Pipeline – to track all enquiries for our services
  • Quotes Library – so we know who sent what to whom
  • Expense Claim System – for staff to claim back expenses
  • Invoices – tracks all sent, paid and outstanding invoices with stats; 956 invoices and counting
  • Financial Docs – all bank statements, audited financials, BEE and tax certificates, etc
  • Asset Register – to track all IT and office equipment
  • Marketing and Sales – brochure-ware, logos, flyers, etc

The Legacy Leaving tab consists of Projects, Training, Events and Technical.

  • Special Occasions Calendar – to keep track of the amazing things our clients and staff get up to
  • Timesheets – list to manage time spent on projects, nearly 12 000 hours on their already
  • Things To Do – task list, although, we don’t really use it that much to be honest, we use the rest of the intranet to manage things
  • Projects Database – list of all projects and their statuses per client
  • Project Checklist – list of all the things to cover when working on projects
  • Project Dashboards – tabbed views displaying documents, timesheets, projects for that client, checklists
  • Our Client Intranets – setup and stakeholders of all the intranets we maintain
  • Project Libraries – templated library to use for all project documentation

The Training Portal consists of :

  • Training Day Update – a list to give a rundown of the days proceedings
  • Delegate Database – list of all delegates that attend our training and the eval results they gave
  • Editable Docs – editable versions of user manuals, cheatsheets, posters and tutorials
  • Registers – editable and signed registers library
  • In the Library – list of books we have at the office that staff can borrow
  • What I Learnt – list to submit feedback on any event or training that staff attend so we can all learn from it

 Events ….

We host conferences and awards evenings, and we use SharePoint to track budgets, RSVP’s and event documentation.  We have a budget template that we can re-use for each event, and that way we can keep track of costs so at the following year’s event, we know what to budget for in advance.

Technical ….

This portal hosts all our server documentation, tips, tricks, cool tools; what we call Crackin’ Code and Calculated Columns which we use to sexy up SharePoint, and research links and documents on various versions of SharePoint.

Client Helpdesk Tracker ….

An internal tool for the front-end team to report issues to the back-end team.

Playpen …..

Separate site collection where we can test all the functionality we need to during any research or development phases.

And that’s it.  Our intranet is ever-evolving, as they all should be. Hopefully it gives you some ideas on getting organised.

PS : Yes I know, it’s pink and purple when our company colours are orange, black and white.  I get bored with that, so I change the scheme whenever I feel like it. 🙂

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