Starting a SharePoint intranet project, whether creating a new intranet or redeveloping an existing one, can be daunting. Alongside strategy and design questions are now a myriad of technology decisions, often exploring uncharted territory within the organisation.
At a basic level, intranets based on SharePoint are just like every other intranet. The same questions of design, structure, management and governance arise, regardless of the technology used to publish the site.
As discussed in the earlier article Promoting the intranet as a service, the intranet should be considered a service, underpinned by a technology product.
SharePoint does, however, introduce some new questions into the intranet planning process. The greatest strength of SharePoint is its breadth of functionality, from content publishing and collaboration, to CRM and application development.
It is this wide range of capabilities that can be so daunting for many teams. Without a clear plan, the results can become a little bit of everything, but no one clear and compelling success.
This article outlines a best-practice methodology for planning SharePoint-based intranet projects. Drawing on the Intranet Roadmap™, it provides a step-by-step approach that every team can take.
The result is confidence from the outset that the project will deliver clear benefits, and an approach that brings together business needs and technology considerations.
Intranet projects on SharePoint need a clear direction
Challenges and opportunities
Intranet projects are not easy at the best of times. Often replacing sprawling legacy sites, they have to meet the needs of a diverse audience with a limited budget and constrained resources.
SharePoint intranets are just like any other technology platform in this respect. Independent of the underlying product, the new intranet needs to be usable for staff, valuable for the business, and easy for the intranet team to maintain.
SharePoint does introduce, however, some particular issues of its own, both positive and negative.
[April article, read the full article]