How to create an intranet is a question many business owners ask, whether it's for a company of fewer than a dozen employees or a big corporation with hundreds of workers. An intranet is a network that is completely self-contained and is set up through a few interlocking local networks. It follows the same protocols as the Internet, including HTTP and tunneling (private messages in a public network).
Should I go DIY or hire a consultant?
The decision whether to build your own intranet setup depends on several factors. For a smaller operation, a computer-savvy person can set up an intranet in a short time and for minimum money. However, for any kind of technological powerhouse operation with advanced computer networking, bringing in a consultant is usually the best and safest bet. A consultant can build up the intranet exactly to your specifications, but you'll also pay a hefty price.
For those business owners interested in setting up an intranet, consider the purchase of software that walks you through the setup process. There are options for customizing templates, and this software even provides pre-designed mechanisms to further customize the setup. The setup and installation is generally straightforward. Also don't forget hardware. The hardware needed to set up an intranet for a business includes some kind of server, along with connectors like Ethernet cables.
How should the intranet function?
Just as important as physically setting up an intranet, a business owner must determine how the intranet will be utilized. A considerable amount of planning should go into the design and setup of the intranet system. When creating the intranet for a company, it's important to define the purpose of the intranet and the goals to be reached.
You will also need to determine the security and safety of the data, decide who will do upkeep on the site and figure out the level of activity employees will have. For example, one type of intranet could simply be a collection of all the employee handbooks and an open forum for employees to ask questions and receive answers on company policy. Another intranet may be set up to act as an extensive corporate headquarters for employees, with printable forms available, an employee list, social networking capability and anonymous feedback.