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What Are The Pros And Cons Of Ready-To-Go Intranet Solutions?

 

Having the right collaboration platform can take your company from just one of many players in your industry to the leader of the pack and boost productivity and engagement.

As you assess your options, ask yourself:

  • Is your intranet being used as effectively as it could be?
  • Do you have the best possible intranet?
  • Is there an easier way?

The answers to these questions will lead you to one simple question: what are the pros and cons of ready-to-go intranets? Here are the answers to your most challenging questions.

Pro: Speed of delivery

Setting up a customized intranet can take between four and six months and incur significant capital expenditures. On the other hand, a ready-to-go option can be up and running within a month or two. Less time spent on building will allow your team to focus on what’s important to you: content and process.

You can focus on process, capturing the knowledge, and doing all the things you need to do from your internal standpoint. You get better employee engagement and the ability to focus only on what’s important.

Pro: A reduction in long-term and short-term costs

Out-of-the-box intranets require limited upfront costs. Instead, there’s an annual cost that’s spread out over a period of time. If you’re familiar with traditional models available five years ago, you’ll be impressed by the low upfront cost. In fact, it’s as little as a third or a quarter of the cost of customized solutions.

Not only are the upfront costs low, but by utilizing these turnkey services you’ll also reduce maintenance costs. Your total savings will vary based on a number of factors that will be specific to you, but here’s a simple way to look at it: fewer people + fewer servers = lower maintenance costs.

Con: Lack of flexibility for custom solutions

Any IT expert with experience working on these out-of-the-box solutions will tell you that lack of flexibility may be a con – but it’s often not. It’s true that some companies have unique needs in the first phases of implementing their intranet. However, these needs are more often than not covered in today’s ready-to-go intranet solutions. One way to think about it is that if you choose a customized version you may be without restrictions – but you’re also without a roadmap.

Second, this initial “lack of flexibility” can become a pro as time goes on. The reality is that the factors that make a company need these custom solutions come with a lot of upkeep. Your IT staff will be responsible for constantly monitoring the latest technology, upgrading and migrating content and providing updates to your intranet. On the other hand, when a third party handles it, all you have to do is get set up, keep your content up-to-date, and trust the professionals with the technology platform. The reality is that more flexibility up front can lead to more rigidity over time, as you’re stuck choosing between a costly update or living with a quickly outdated intranet. Turnkey intranet options prevent these issues.

Con: You have to learn who you can trust

When you have your intranet created in-house you’ll know who handles it and can assure that everyone involved meets your high standards. Once again, this is a con that may initially seem like an issue, but when considered on a long-term basis you’ll come out ahead when you choose a turnkey intranet.

Why? Because you’ll have specialists working on your platform. When you utilize your in-house talent to work on these issues, they’re dealing with at least a handful of other projects for your company – and often more. They simply don’t have the resources, expertise, or time to focus solely on keeping your intranet up to date. On the other hand, choosing a ready-made product means you’ll get instant updates as the industry changes. In short: you get quality services you’ll quickly learn to trust.

Check out OneWindow Workplace, our new turnkey social intranet. Or to learn more about how you could benefit from a ready-to-go corporate intranet solution, download our free tip sheet, 5 Signs A Ready-To-Go Intranet Is Right For Your Firm.

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