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Modern Intranet

Intranet Modernization Using Office 365 to Support Your Digital Transformation Initiative

Enterprises have high aspirations for modernizing their intranets. They’re no longer designed simply as internal-facing websites where employees find out company news, access company policies and launch applications for processes, directly or indirectly related to their work. The digital modern workplace requires transformational rethinking of the intranet’s role and its purpose to support digital transformation.

Let’s start by discussing what an intranet is:

The intranet is a destination inside an organization with relevant information and tools for employees to be more creative, productive, and collaborative, leading to improved business results.

The key drivers of the next generation intranet are:

  • Consumerization of technology
  • Blurring lines between consumer and business
  • Social interaction / collaboration
  • Agility and innovation
  • New ways of working
  • Information available anytime on any device
  • Need to find information easily and quickly
  • Office 365 becoming the standard modern workplace tool
  • Improving efficiency
  • Promote Ideation

Recently, more and more organizations have set aside budgets to transform their intranet as a key initiative to support their digital transformation efforts using the Microsoft Office 365 platform.

Many organizations underestimate the work that needs to go into developing an intranet, as they think it’s a simple website with content.  An intranet is a very critical application of an organization and needs to be created and managed properly.

The following elements are must have for a successful intranet:

Modern User Interface (UI)

According to a digital marketing report1, 48% of people cited a website’s design as the number one factor in deciding the credibility of a business and 38% of people said they will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive. While this holds true for websites, it is also applicable for modern Intranets.

A faulty intranet UI is one of the primary reasons for poor engagement. Any effort to improve the UI must consider the organization’s prevailing branding guidelines and other mandatory compliances, such as W3C, WCAG etc. A responsive design that allows resizing of content on any screen (desktop, tablet, mobile) is also an essential feature of any intranet.


Content plays a key role in user engagement. Content that is interesting, relevant and discoverable will boost employee engagement and collaboration.

A newly revamped intranet is not intended to replace all systems, rather it will enable informational integration with other systems.


Corporate intranets require modern technology with content management capabilities, a social platform, modern programming language and framework support, and integration capabilities.


Establishing good governance practices is critical to the success and adoption of any intranet.  The depth/scope of the level of governance depends on the company culture and industry.  As your company Intranet becomes antiquated, it is extremely likely that the entire system requires a revision in permissions guidelines and security features. In today’s Cloud era, digital governance has become a key area of concern and many organizations are struggling with an obsolete system that is leaving the organization’s information open to manipulation.

Innovate, Inform and Engage with Office 365

Intranet Modernization Using Office 365 to Support Your Digital Transformation Initiative

Office 365’s cloud-based solution is an ideal platform for building your next-generation intranet. Whether you are migrating from SharePoint On-Premises, another product, or creating a new intranet site from scratch, SharePoint Online provides the tools for creating a modern connected workplace that will transform your organization.

Key features of SharePoint Online and integrated Office 365 apps:

  • Communication sites with responsive UI across all your devices
  • Hub sites for grouping sites across the enterprise
  • Team Sites for Collaboration
  • Intelligent content discovery
  • Security and Compliance including DLP
  • Extranet Capable
  • Azure Active Directory
  • App Integration
    • Yammer
    • Power BI Reports and Dashboards
    • Microsoft Stream for Embedding Video
    • MS Power Apps for your business processes
    • Microsoft Flow for workflows
    • Microsoft Forms
    • OneDrive
  • Page Level Features
    • Hero, News, Events and Document Web Parts for an engaging, modern UI
    • File Viewer web part for embedding numerous document types
    • Embed web part for displaying content from other sites
    • People web part with intelligent contact card
    • Bing Maps, weather web parts
    • Quick Chart

Netwoven is an Enterprise Information Management company specializing in Microsoft Cloud.  Netwoven works with both Large and medium sized organizations to help deliverable their digital transformation initiatives.

Our team of experts include Information Architects, Office 365 Specialists, Business Analysts, Project Managers, UI/UX Designers, Developers, and Governance specialists.

We work with our clients to help in the following areas for building a modern intranet:

  • Discovery
  • Ideation
  • Development
  • Information Architecture
  • Persona Creation
  • Wireframes and Visual Design
  • Data Migration
  • Project Management

1Coats, B. (2017, April 26). 20 Web Design Facts Small Business Owners Should Know [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://www.bluecorona.com/blog/20-web-design-facts-small-business-owners/

Niraj Tenany

About Niraj Tenany

Niraj is Chief Executive Officer and a Co-founder of Netwoven, responsible for the strategic vision and direction. Niraj has been working with Fortune 500 companies to implement large-scale enterprise systems for the past 25 years.

Prior to founding Netwoven, Niraj led a profitable Enterprise Applications Consulting Practice at Microsoft. His team implemented large scale deployments of enterprise applications like Siebel, Ariba, and SAP with Fortune 500 customers. Niraj’s team also led the design and implementation of OLAP solutions based on the Microsoft platform. Prior to joining Microsoft, Niraj led a profitable Business Intelligence Consulting practice with Oracle Consulting Services.

Niraj has also worked with startup organizations in senior management positions. Niraj was the Director of Consulting Services at Zaplet, a Kleiner Perkins funded company.

Niraj holds a BS in Computer Science from Birla Institute of Technology, India, an MS in Computer Science from State University of New York (SUNY), and an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business in North Carolina.


3 replies on “Intranet Modernization Using Office 365 to Support Your Digital Transformation Initiative”

I know that intranet can remove the communication gap and can help employees to interact efficiently. I do not understand how this point makes sense ‘Blurring lines between consumer and business’. I am not sure about how consumers are going to get involved in the intranet. Can you please explain this?

When you say intranet is ” Blurring lines between consumer and business” – what do you exactly mean ? How can a consumer be a user of Intranet ? If they can, how is access/license managed ?
Again, the phrase “Consumerization of technology” leaves quite a vague impression : any technology is intended for consumerization – arn’t they ?

Coming to enterprise intranet , it should have capability to handshake multiple and complex legacy systems securely. We have found SharePoint a lightweight vehicle for intranet and still evolving. There exist many obstructing factors to sail SharePoint as a comprehensive complex intranet solution…from our recent past experience. Cost is another impeding factor…

We sometimes feel Microsoft products have lost directions and they are confused on strategies to fight with its prime cloud rival. This is ominous for us as its license holders.

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