Let’s face it, nowadays there’s an app for pretty much every business function you can think of. Whether it’s cloud computing, collaboration, communication and messaging apps, customer relationship management software or project management tools, there’s a SaaS solution out there. Why not take a look at your PC or smartphone now and count up the number of apps you have. Chances are it’s quite a few, and while all these apps will certainly get the job done, together they can make for a cumbersome and challenging user experience. Having multiple screens and different apps open all the time, usually also requiring individual sign-on and passwords, is unwieldy at best and at worst is a counterproductive time-waster. What’s more, often these apps work in isolation and it’s impossible to share information or data, making for significant duplication of effort. Imagine then what it would be like to instead have a single platform with all the same great tools and features, which all employees can access 24/7. Pie in the sky, right? Well, actually that’s the very real possibility that’s on offer with a cloud intranet solution. You can do away with all those different and often divergent SaaS solutions and instead enjoy the same advantages in a single integrated intranet platform. Sounds interesting? Carry on reading to find out the top 5 ways an intranet solution can add value to your business.
1. Improve Internal Communications
Internal communications is a perennial pain point for lots of businesses and yet it’s now more important than ever to get it right.
According to data from the US Census, the average 500+ employee company has over 12.5 office locations. In addition, the latest statistics tell us that 4.7 million employees in the US work from home at least half the time. This trend is only set to increase as regular work-at-home, among the non-self-employed population, has grown by 159 percent since 2005.
In this context, finding ways to connect with employees, share information, and improve internal communications should be a priority. And an intranet platform offers a solution.
For the global recruitment agency, RWR Group, with 17 office locations throughout the world, internal communications was indeed a priority. After researching SaaS options available in the marketplace, RWR Group selected the MyHub intranet as the perfect solution.
‘It’s a one-stop-shop,’ explains Jessica Fisher of Group Operations at RWR. ‘We thought it would mainly address the communication need, but it has centralized all our business processes in one location and we use it as a central library of information with all our how to guides, policies and processes as well as HR forms.’
And like RWR you too can use an intranet to improve internal communications in your business. Here are just a few of the ways in which the intranet can make a difference:
- Provide a platform for sharing news: Whether it’s the latest corporate or team updates, the intranet news feed works much like those on Twitter or Facebook. Every time the user logs on a digest of news and content is displayed, which can be customized by user preference or job role. Fast and convenient, it means that all employees receive the same consistent messages delivered at the right time. You can even schedule updates so that they are posted at a time that makes sense locally.
- Developing two-way conversations: Internal communications isn’t just about staff members passively receiving information; it also involves engaging in genuine dialogue with employees. Intranets allow staff members to comment on and share news items, while blogs and forums provide employees with a corporate voice and the opportunity to interact directly with senior leaders.
- Connecting staff members: Social intranet features such as user profiles and biographies plus individual or site activity walls provide a means for employees to connect with each other. So, if a staff member needs help preparing an important tender, they can directly source internal expertise. Knowledge experts will be more visible and staff will find it easier to connect with their colleagues. Quite simply, the intranet will become a central hub where employees go to share insights, join the conversation and connect with their peers.
2. Help Employees Share Information
Email or shared folders are still the main information management tools for lots of companies. This was certainly the case for Idaho Lottery. With employees spread around the large state, and sales reps regularly out on the road, the ability to securely and easily share information was the pain point driving the selection of the MyHub intranet solution.
‘We used email as our main communication tool but found that it wasn’t working for us anymore,’ advises Jennifer Quinno-Miller, Management Assistant/Human Resources at Idaho Lottery.
However, concerns around cybercrime and the possibility of hackers accessing sensitive information meant that employees out in the field couldn’t access via the network the data they needed to be really effective.
‘With the MyHub intranet all our information is now in one central place. Staff can directly and securely source and access anything they need, even if they’re away from the office,’ says Jennifer.
As Idaho Lottery discovered, sharing information on the intranet is easy. A simple user interface, intuitive site navigation and advanced search functionality means that staff can quickly find data and source information. What’s more, staff can be confident that the information they are accessing on the intranet is the very latest.
And for those employees who are telecommuting or out on the road, the mobile-optimized MyHub business intranet solution ensures they have at their fingertips the same great tools and functionality as head office-based staff.
3. Streamline Business Processes
How many times has an important business process gone awry in your organization? Maybe a form has been misplaced or misfiled, or a crucial task has been buried in an overflowing inbox. It’s a familiar story across businesses nationwide. An intranet solution can solve that problem for you.
Using the intranet’s fully customizable forms builder, you can easily create your own online forms. That’s exactly what MyHub customer Turnbull Hill Lawyers has done.
‘We’ve made good use of the intranet’s forms builder. I have built three forms now and it has definitely made it easier to manage things like submissions for repayment of expenses as well as travel expenses, says Turnbull Hill’s Melissa Burrows. ‘We’ve got a much more streamlined process in place now and have better oversight of where things are at in the system.’
Faster, more accurate and error-free, the intranet can also automatically route the online form to the appropriate staff member for action. So, if you’re business is looking to introduce more efficient and effective working practices, then streamlining business processes on the intranet will make a big difference.
4. Improve Employee Productivity
Another benefit offered by your intranet solution is increased productivity across the board. The intranet will quickly become the central activity hub for staff members; it’s the place they go to complete all work-related tasks. And the single sign-on, integrated nature of the platform naturally supports enhanced productivity.
The one-stop-shop offered by the intranet certainly appealed to Lee Adkins of Amplified Solutions, a real estate recruitment consultancy. Previously, Lee had been using a range of platforms including DropBox, Google Drive and YouTube; however, managing the sheer number was become too complex a job and that’s not to mention the challenges of all those different passwords!
For Lee, the MyHub intranet by contrast ‘is pretty darn easy.’ He continues, ‘The platform itself is intuitive and straightforward to use plus the ongoing support from MyHub has been amazing – really hands-on.’
So, when it comes to more efficient and effective operations, the intranet is hard to beat and will lead to increased productivity as the following benefits are realized:
- reduced dependency on email and paper processes
- more efficient sourcing and sharing of information
- faster, more accurate online business processes
- increased opportunities for collaboration and joint working
- improved interaction and connections between staff members regardless of location
- enhanced internal communications
- better opportunities for the sharing and management of organizational knowledge
- the integrated nature of the platform saves time and effort for staff.
5. Increase Employee Engagement
It makes sense that employees who are happy at work and feel valued and appreciated will have a better output and be more productive. It’s also logical that these same employees tend to have a longer tenure in the job.
You are probably already familiar with those statistics from Gallup about the importance of employee engagement. For example, companies with highly engaged employees have 21 percent greater profitability. Or what about this statistic: disengaged employees costs US companies up to $550 billion a year.
These are indeed startling facts and while you no doubt agree that employee engagement is intrinsically a good idea, do you know how to go about achieving it in your company? Often businesses struggle with the practicalities of employee engagement and what it means in practice.
An intranet solution presents a wealth of possibilities when it comes to kick-starting employee engagement:
- Interactive news blogs and pages to begin two-way conversations between staff and management
- Online quizzes and surveys to canvas employee’s views and opinions on a whole raft of corporate issues – from the revamped company logo, new marketing strategy or even the location of the next team social get-together
- Corporate calendars provide staff with a centralized single point of truth when it comes to important deadlines, events or meetings both internal and external
- Staff recognition scheme – feeling valued, appreciated and recognized for a job well done is an important aspect of employee engagement. The intranet is the perfect place to publicize a staff recognition scheme. It could be as simple as a shout-out on the intranet news feed or a more formalized program of employee or team of the month. Whatever you opt for, the public thank you and recognition will help to improve employee engagement all round
- Online learning opportunities – investing in employees’ continuing professional development is another sure-fire way to impact on employee engagement. It provides additional confirmation of just how important staff are to the business. Plus you will benefit from the improved knowledge and skills those staff members can utilize in the workplace. The intranet opens up a whole world of opportunities for training and development including:
- mentoring and secondment initiatives
- external distance learning options
- knowledge-based quizzes
So, don’t restrict yourself to traditional classroom-style learning, be imaginative in your approach. Furthermore, the 24/7, flexible nature of the intranet means that staff can log in and learn at a time and a place that fits in with their family and work commitments.
For Best Western Hotels in Scandinavia, the MyHub intranet has ticked a number of important boxes. The group has over 150 hotels situated in Sweden, Denmark and Norway and a head office in the US. Director of Hotel Development, Tommy Evin, explains the difference the platform has made: ‘The MyHub intranet has led to improved communication, collaboration and engagement across hotels operating throughout the region.’
Intranet Solution Take The Next Step?
If having a single technological platform to get things done while also enjoying the additional great benefits on offer appeals to your business, then the MyHub intranet solution could be just what your company needs.
And unlike some of the other SaaS software and apps out there, the MyHub intranet offers complete transparency overcharges making it a very cost-effective option. For a fixed monthly fee you get unlimited data storage and unlimited users. It as simple as that. There are no hidden extras or unexpected fees. We understand how important cost certainty is to businesses and that’s why we are totally upfront about our pricing structure.
If you are ready to take the next step and find out more, then get in touch. I’d be happy to take you on a free demo and walk you through our intranet software. You can assess whether the great tools and features are a good match for your business. You can also see for yourself just how easy it is to set up and manage on an ongoing basis.
And for added peace of mind, we also offer a 14-day no-obligation free trial period.
This was certainly a winning point for Lee Adkins and Amplified Solutions: ‘The ability to mess around with the software in advance was really helpful,’ explains Lee. He was able to really test out the intranet’s functionality and features. And it also meant that Lee could be certain the MyHub intranet software addressed the company’s needs before he signed on the dotted line.
So, contact us today and get your business started on enjoying the same great benefits as Lee and the hundreds of other MyHub customers across the globe.