Intranet definition

What is intranet?

"Intranet" is a private network used by an organisation. The primary purpose of an intranet is to help employees to securely communicate among each other, to store information and to help collaboration. Modern intranets use social features that allow employees to create profiles and to submit, like, comment and share posts.

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Uses of intranet

What is intranet used for?

An intranet is an effective way for a company to share company updates, store files, connect employees, and to collaborate with teams or departments across borders. Most intranets are used to increase productivity and employee engagement, or to simply give employees a voice in the company.

Improve productivity and employee engagement

When intranets first became heavily utilized, they were mainly used for top-down communication and file storage. Negative opinions on the effectiveness of an intranet are usually associated with top-down communication. These days, the intranet is made to allow both bottom-up and top-down communication. Top-down is necessary to get employees aligned with the company vision and mission, where bottom-up communication is unmissable for real employee engagement. The best intranet system embraces and allows management and the employees to communicate in an organic fashion. Ultimately, the use of intranets improve productivity.

Curious about the existing types of intranet?
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Benefits of intranet

What are the benefits of intranet?

Whether cloud-based or on-premise intranet, using an intranet allows your company to connect securely across locations and time zones, anytime and anywhere. It is an effective tool for easier internal communication and to bring employees together. Depending on your company security, this means 24/7 access to your organization’s digital environment.

Improve communication with an intranet

Agility is the new century’s buzzword for business success. Adapting fast means acting fast, acting fast means communicating fast. An intranet system brings your company together, no matter where they are. It allows everyone to communicate what’s necessary for greatness – from the CEO to the janitor. Add integrations with your most-used business apps, quick adoption, a user-friendly interface and security, and you have a winning intranet platform for a more agile business. All you need is a web-browser and internet access.

Want to know more about cloud-based intranets? Read about Google intranet solutions and how they can benefit your organization.

Function of intranet

What should an intranet include?

Share files


Search across your organization


Find people in the people directory


Build pages

Collaborate on documents, spreadsheets and slides


Mobile access


Promote employee engagement

Intranet FAQs

Frequently asked questions about intranet

What is an intranet site?

What does intranet mean?

“Intra” stands for “internal” and therefore describes the use of an internal communication tool. The prefix “intra” is also translated to “within” and “inter” translated to “between” or “among”. The meaning of company intranet is therefore: an internal communication tool that is used between employees.

Does intranet need internet?

The Internet is the underlying technology that enables an intranets connectivity. Intranet and internal are usually kept apart to keep the intranet secure. To access the intranet, employee’s computers need to be connected to your organization's local area network (LAN). These computers need to have web browser software for example: Safari, Firefox or Internet Explorer. Firewalls are put up as gatekeepers and to provide security.

What is the difference between internet and intranet?

The internet is a globally-connected network of computers and publically accessible by anybody. The intranet is a local or restricted network and only accessible to people within an organization. Another big difference is that an intranet is a software as a service (SaaS) that can be bought or licensed by a company. The internet is not owned by a single person or organization but companies or governments can own certain bits. 

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