How to Build an Intranet with WordPress

According to a study conducted by The McKinsey Global Institute, company productivity increases by 20-25% when employees feel connected. So, what’s the best way to ensure that your employees’ voices are heard and they feel connected to the business? One way is to implement and effectively use a company intranet.

At Moove, we’re big advocates of offering a digital space for employees to collaborate, interact and communicate within a company. In fact, one of the services that we offer is bespoke WordPress intranet development.

In this post, we share our knowledge of how to build a company intranet using WordPress.

What is an intranet and why use WordPress to build one?

An intranet is a computer-based network that is self-contained within a company or enterprise. It uses Internet protocol technology to create an interface for users to share information.

In laymen’s terms, it’s like a private Internet for a company.

So why build an intranet with WordPress?

WordPress is one of the most popular website hosting platforms in the world. Even if your company website wasn’t built using WordPress, there’s no reason it can’t be used to host your local intranet.

It’s also one of the most flexible, versatile platforms you’ll find and for a lot of businesses, it’s already a familiar tool. Most companies need one to enable the sharing of documents, to handle internal communication and provide access to training materials – all of this can be achieved using the most basic WordPress functions.

And if your company needs something a little more advanced, the open source nature of WordPress means it can match any propriety intranet provider in terms of functionality and user experience.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of using WordPress to build an intranet is the customization it offers. A skilled WordPress development team can tailor your intranet to suit the needs of your company, meaning you don’t need to pay for features that you don’t use as is the case with some providers. With WordPress, there are no monthly subscription fees and your entire intranet can be set up at a minimal cost.

Adding features and functionality to your intranet

It can be tempting to opt for an all-singing-all-dancing Intranet with a whole host of features and functions, but before you do, think about what your company actually needs. Is a time-tracking feature actually necessary? Will a company calendar really replace the board in the kitchen?

The purpose of an intranet is to ease workflow and communication, so take some time to think about what features your team actually need and will use. Some features that you could consider include:

  • A team directory with names, job titles and contact details
  • A discussion forum for work and non-work related topics
  • An instant private messaging system
  • A knowledge base with training documents and videos
  • Workflow management tools like report templates

Given that WordPress is open source, there are already a number of features and plugins that you can use to shape your intranet. Some of our favourites here at Moove include:

WordPress Multisite

We’ve already written a post about the benefits of WordPress Multisite and it deserves a mention here too, given that it enables you to create a network of websites from the one WordPress install. It can be particularly beneficial to intranets as you can set up separate ‘areas’ within the network, specifically for different departments.

BuddyPress

One of the best plugins for a company intranet is BuddyPress. It enables you to create any type of community from a social network to an employee directory. With BuddyPress, you can easily create member profiles, show activity streams, create user groups and set up instant messaging.

BBPress

This plugin enables you to create discussion forums. One of the strongest features of BBPress is its simplicity, meaning that it works with any design and can be integrated with many other add-ons in the WordPress library.

Given its versatility, WordPress is one of the best platforms to use for building a company intranet. A skilled WordPress agency like Moove can custom build one to your exact specifications, meeting the needs of your company and your employees.

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