Starting an organization-wide intranet can be a daunting project, especially because each team, department, and employee within the organization has different needs and priorities. We’ve written on questions you should ask when starting a SharePoint intranet, steps to take, and misconceptions to be aware of, but wanted to give personal perspective from Total Solutions’ experts who’ve been working in the industry for years. What do the clients ask for? What is key in ensuring the intranet is useful and money and time spent building it won’t go to waste? Keep reading for our team’s top tips and advice when starting a SharePoint Online Intranet.

1. Starting a SharePoint Intranet as a M365 Lead Consultant:

SharePoint Intranets should be designed for informing and engaging an organization’s employees. Designing a successful intranet, first and foremost, requires knowing what the key organizational goals are, and it’s of great importance when designing or maintaining an intranet to involve people who are actually going to be using it.

Patrick Drews

2. Starting a SharePoint Intranet as a M365 Associate:

Over the course of an intranet build sprint, we put together our best understanding of what our clients have asked for, but upon seeing the result, things can change. Some pieces are more perfect than could be imagined and might inspire a bit of further development. Others look great but simply won’t be used by enough people in the organization to justify the space they may take up on a page and/or the time they will take to maintain. That’s why, to me, it’s incredibly important for us to be working closely with our clients as we iterate so we can ensure what we’re building will be as useful as possible for them and their teams.

Vishnu Venugopal
SharePoint Intranet tips
Figure 1 – SharePoint Intranet Layout

3. Building a SharePoint Intranet as a M365 Consultant:

When building an intranet, the focus on USABILITY is paramount! You wouldn’t use a potato masher to peel a potato, right? In that same way, technical solutions should add value. An intranet is for the ‘internal customer’, whether it’s that associate needing to connect more closely to processes of their business unit, the newbie ramping up after onboarding, or the executive communicating business growth and infrastructure changes. Build a site with connectivity to tools and information, that’s scalable and caters to the organization and collaboration of a company’s present and future states. Don’t just build it so they show up, make them want to stick around for what’s next.

Kendall Mitchell

4. Designing a SharePoint Intranet as a Product Design Consultant:

Through the lens of a solution owner, our main goal is to understand the big picture when developing an intranet. We empower our clients to think creatively through various workshops and design sessions to better understand the needs of the organization. From there, working iteratively while developing an intranet allows us to incorporate feedback until client satisfaction has been met.

Derek Knauss

Thanks for checking out Starting a SharePoint Intranet: Tips and Advice! If you’re looking to start a SharePoint Online intranet for your organization, and need expert guidance, contact us at info@totalsol.com, or check out our Intranet Jumpstart Offer where we take you through the design process and build the intranet for you.