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The Power of a Custom Intranet App for Your Workforce

The Power of a Custom Intranet App for Your Workforce

Cara Heimbaugh

5 mins read

Fri, Apr 12, '24  

The role of an intranet is multi-faceted, and they are a necessary core to improving operational efficiency. But intranets, typically seen as a desktop-based application, are witnessing a new era, as remote and hybrid employee scenarios are on the rise. A high-quality intranet mobile app can deliver critical updates, streamline communication channels, and foster a sense of connection, regardless of location. Investing in a mobile intranet app isn't just a perk; it's a strategic move to thrive in today's dynamic work environment.

As a business leader navigating the implementation of a new intranet mobile app, there are a number of considerations, including not only intranet vendor selection, but the level of customization of the app, as well. Is it worth the extra effort and resources to create an on-brand, customized intranet app experience for your workforce? Let’s take a look at the benefits of taking this route, and how the success of your intranet–and your organization–can be impacted by a dynamic, custom mobile app intranet experience. 

Is a Mobile App for Our Intranet Even Necessary?

Depending on the size, industry, and the core uses for your intranet, a mobile app may not be something that is as high of a priority for some businesses. But for some key industries, successful adoption of a mobile app for your intranet can significantly increase organizational efficiency and alignment, as well as create a more engaged and informed workforce. Last year in 2023, disengaged employees cost $1.9T in lost productivity, so providing an intranet experience that works for your users–all your users–is pivotal in amplifying the impact of an intranet for central knowledge, communication, and collaboration. 

Why a Custom App?

When approaching a mobile app project for your intranet, an organization can choose to use the intranet vendor software to host their new mobile app, meaning the name in app stores and the logo are that of the vendor, not the actual business. When a business selects an intranet vendor that allows them to host their own application, it means that they can name the app and create the imagery of the app in alignment with their actual brand. 

There are specific benefits to having a custom app, and it all boils down to user experience. In this digital age, users–whether they are shopping, using social media, or at work–expect an experience that is user-friendly, appealing, and that mirrors what they are accustomed to from their other favorite apps and websites. 

Let’s explore the top three ways a custom app has the power to be the impactful supplemental intranet channel for your business. 

Induces Greater Adoption

Without a mobile app option for an intranet, users are restricted to having access to important business information when they are in an office, at a desk, and/or have a laptop or desktop device. When it comes to certain types of workers, like frontline and deskless workers, a mobile app may be the only option they have to connect often (or at all) with coworkers, top-down vital information, or files that are necessary for their job. This means that ensuring that your intranet mobile app is as engaging as possible is vital to create the strongest network of alignment and help employees feel as though they are a part of a larger purpose, not isolated from the rest of the organization. Having an app that is recognizable lowers the barrier of entry and opens information access doors for workers where they had been previously closed.

Provides IT Control 

When an orgnization hosts its own mobile app, it provides a level of customization and control for IT and engineering teams that creates a smoother experience internally. Self-hosting allows your IT and engineering teams to have complete control over the app's infrastructure and codebase, meaning they can tailor the app to integrate seamlessly with existing systems, customize functionalities to meet specific needs, and deploy updates and bug fixes on their own schedule. It also allows for tailoring the app's features and functionalities to perfectly align with your unique brand, business needs, and workflows. 

IT teams can also manage the app's infrastructure and resources to ensure optimal performance for your user base. This allows them to scale the app up or down as needed, accommodating growth and fluctuations in user traffic, providing scalability or performance control, potentially leading to bottlenecks or sluggish performance during peak usage times. 

Additionally, you maintain complete control over your data security. This can be crucial for companies handling sensitive information, as you can ensure data remains within your own infrastructure and adheres to your specific security protocols.  While self-hosting may require a larger initial investment, the long-term benefits of customization and data security can outweigh the convenience of a hosted solution.

Caters to Use Case Preference

Let’s face it–there are certain tasks within an intranet that are better suited for a desktop and some that are better suited for mobile app use. To create intranet pages and channels, write articles,or  edit UX designs, a desktop situation is likely best. But mobile apps have a propensity to provide super simple scrolling ability during breaks, commutes, or on-the-go. Having intranet access options allows users to always have a way to access information, but also the power to self-delineate how and when they want to use the platform and create user habits that stick and cultivate strong adoption. 

Promotes Employee Brand Loyalty

The goal of an intranet mobile app is to supplement the need for access to important information, when employees are on-the-go. So having a custom app can incent users to be more engaged and feel a connection to the company brand. In fact, 64% of consumers say that their loyalty to a brand increases when they feel connected, so companies should be seeking to engage their employees as much as they should their target customer audiences. 

McKinsey identified nine elements across three key areas–social, work, and organization–that impacted employee loyalty. The strongest predictors of a positive experience were the social aspects, including quality relationships with leaders, trust, caring teams, and organizational social climate (e.g., respect and inclusion). They found that employees with a positive experience in these areas were 8x more likely to stay with their current company and 4x more committed than those with a negative experience. 

An intranet speaks to the heart of this trend. Intranets connect employees socially, but also to important information that affects that work and with the central organization through news, announcements, and more. Providing a positive experience for all employees with a branded and customized mobile app–especially the ones who may feel the most isolated from information and colleagues– is a solid business move toward total organizational and cultural alignment.

You can learn more about the Happeo mobile app in our Help Center, or request your own Happeo demo.

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