News Web Part now with Audience Targeting

The latest release of BindTuning News Web Part for SharePoint and Microsoft Teams, features audience targeting. Now it is easier than ever before to target individual news articles to specific individuals or groups.

The News Web Part now gives you more options for your content than what is available “out-of-the-box”. With audience targeting, you have the option of targeting each news article, ensuring that content is properly filtered to users and groups.

News Audience Targeting

You can also choose how you want news to appear on the page. Select one of the numerous layouts available, from basic cards displaying bold titles to a smooth gradient. Change the news title, add a paragraph to your news summary or choose content from a completely different list – you have the control.

News Web Part

The News Web Part is part of our Build feature, a subscription plan that includes 19 web parts for SharePoint. It is optionally available for use as Apps for Microsoft Teams. Simply add it to a tab in Teams and the same filtered news is available to users and groups there, too.

News App for Microsoft Teams

News Web Part with Audience Targeting Available Now

Audience targeting is available now, in release 1.8.6.40 of the News Web Part for SharePoint and Microsoft Teams. Everything you need to upgrade your web part and start targeting news to your audience is available in our documentation. If you are not yet a customer, a 30-day trial is available, too. We invite you to schedule a quick call with Leny Ocanto. She will help you guide you through your BindTuning 30-day trial.

The New BindTuning App: Video Tour & FAQs

The new BindTuning App is live, and we understand that you may need some assistance navigating through some of the new features. Francisca Peixoto, BindTuning Customer & Partner Success Manager, gives you a quick tour of the new app and we’ve lined up your top questions here. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out directly to our team – we’re here to help!

BindTuning App Video Tour

FAQs

Where did my Themes go?

Don’t worry – they are there! Themes are now part of our Design feature. If you previously purchased a perpetual theme license, it will remain as such. Existing themes can be found in your Account under the Design section, in the My Themes tab. There are no changes to your existing licensing, however if you subscribe to our new Design feature, you will get greater access to a wider range of design capabilities – beyond just one theme. Unlimited themes and unlimited customizations!

What will happen if I don’t renew my theme subscription?

If you decide that you do not wish to renew your theme subscription with us, then that theme licensing will be expired and the BindTuning products will be uninstalled and removed from your environment. Please contact our team with any questions about licensing.

Where is the Themes Gallery?

The themes gallery is now available within the BindTuning App. Simply log in and navigate to the Design tab where you’ll see the entire Themes Gallery. Select the design you would like to start with and either install it as it is or customize it to match your brand using BindTuning no-code customizer. When you are ready, it will show as your own in the “My Themes” tab.

Can I purchase more perpetual licenses?

As of November 27, 2019, new perpetual licenses have been discontinued. All new themes require a Design Feature subscription, which gives you unlimited themes and unlimited customizations.

Have questions?, chat with us. We’re here to help!

Will I be able to renew my Enterprise Intranet subscription?

Yes, customers with existing Enterprise Intranet plans (which include 1 Theme customization/year + 1 web part subscription) may opt to renew their previous plan or be upgraded to the Design + Build subscription. Terms & Conditions apply.

Have questions?, chat with us. We’re here to help!

Can I still trial Themes?

Absolutely and it’s easier than ever before! Each account has one, 30-day design trial during which you can try ANY and ALL of the themes as you need. There is a 30-day limit, so be sure to try as many themes as you like during that period of time.

Have questions?, chat with us. We’re here to help!

What about Clutch, Provisioning Engine?

Deploying products is easier than ever before using our BindTuning Deployment. The Clutch desktop app is still available for download from the BindTuning App and you should still use it for automatic deployment of BindTuning products for on-prem environments (including SharePoint 2019!) and for installation of custom templates.

How do I deploy products if I am an on-prem customer?

If you are an on-prem customer, you will be prompted during the installation of any and all products to utilize the desktop provisioning application to complete the installation process. You will be prompted to install it but once installed, it will automatically open ready to deploy your chosen products.

Have questions?, chat with us. We’re here to help!

I had purchased a web parts subscription – where can I find it?

Your Web Parts are now available within the Build Feature. Simply log in and navigate to the Build tab. If you have an active web part subscription, you’ll see all your Web Parts listed there and ready to deploy!

Are there changes to my Web Parts subscription?

There are no changes to the licensing for Web Parts, except that Teams is now separately priced as a Teams add-on to the Build Feature. Soon a Teams tab will be available within the BindTuning app, enabling you to start a trial of the Teams add-on.

Have questions?, chat with us. We’re here to help!

What are Starter Kits?

Starter Kits are what was previously known as Templates, but they’ve been rebranded and are FREE for existing users with active Design and Build feature licenses. BindTuning Starter Kits are ready-to-launch, packaged scenarios with sample pages and demo content that feature our themes and web parts. In a few clicks you’ve got a repeatable scenario to use over and over again.

The new Design and Build subscriptions and changes to the BindTuning App make the Starter Kits so easy to install! If you have an active Design and Build feature licenses, go ahead and deploy your first starter kit, in one single step. If you are not currently an active subscriber, we will automatically generate a 30-day trial for you. Starter Kits for Teams are coming soon – look for an announcement from us very soon!

Where are the Teams Apps?

Soon to be released, look for a Teams Icon in the navigation bar of the BindTuning App soon!

Do I need Build subscription?

Yes, to unlock Teams Add-on you must have the Build subscription. Teams is tied to SharePoint so you need to have the Build subscription prior to using Teams Apps.

Is there anything else new in the BindTuning App I should know about?

We’ve not only made changes to the features and subscription plans but we made it easier to get the support you need within the app. Here are a few helpful changes:

  • Quick access to the Help Center from the Navigation bar – all the information you need to successfully use BindTuning products.
  • New Chat directly from the App!
  • Check support ticket history and other useful account information – subscription, invoices, etc.
  • Coming soon! Teammates. One account, but multiple users. Now your coworkers can work as a Design Team, share products and delegate admin permissions!

Feel free to chat with us if you have any questions. We’re here to help!

Introducing the New BindTuning App

We’ve built up a loyal customer base by making SharePoint intranet design and development easy. Then we extended that same thinking to Microsoft Teams. Now we’ve made building and maintaining your company’s digital workplace easier than ever with our new BindTuning App.

The BindTuning App

Starting this week, you’ll find some changes in your BindTuning account. It has undergone a major upgrade. Easier than ever before to design, build and get started in SharePoint and Microsoft Teams. Our new BindTuning App does more than manage your account, it is the hub for everything you need for your digital workplace. One, unified experience for the admin behind the scenes who is building a unified experience for their users.

BindTuning App

Check out what’s new

Self-service provisioning is at the heart of our new app. Not separately priced, but integrated into all our products. Deploying products is no longer referred to as Clutch (the noun), but it is still clutch (the verb) in that it is so easy to deploy, update and maintain every BindTuning product. Get Seamless INSTALLATION of all Office 365 Themes, Web Parts, Microsoft Teams Apps and our Starter Kits (formerly called templates).

Deploy

New Subscription Plan. Flexible pricing plans giving you easier access to just the features you need. Need to design and build? Extend functionality to Teams? Or maybe jump start with a Starter Kit. Each plan allows you to add or remove products as your needs define. Priced separately, giving you the flexibility to build and GROW your solution.

Unlimited Themes. Unlimited edits. Yep, you heard me right. Our Design subscription gives you access to not just one, but ALL themes and the capability to change them as often as you want. Complete design freedom!

Microsoft Teams Add-On. Get a unified experience across your entire workplace, including Microsoft Teams when you add Teams to your Build subscription. So easy to manage within the app, simply add it when you are ready. Repeatable, structured starter kits are coming soon, too. Pre-packaged scenarios with sample tabs, theme and demo content you can build on.

Get Started Today

The BETA BindTuning App is available right now. Simply log in or create an account to get started. Sign up for news to get alerts from us on new products, webinars and helpful tricks and tricks. If you need any assistance, our team is available to help out!

New! Track Stock Funds with Stocks Ticker Web Part

We’re pleased to announce that stock funds can now be tracked using the Stocks Ticker Web Part!

Available today for immediate download, our Stocks Ticker web part now supports the tracking of stock or equity/mutual funds in addition to stock market conditions. This feature was one of the top requested feature from our user community for the web part. so our team has implemented support for funds in the latest release. Real-time trading information provided from either IEX or World Trading Data can easily be displayed on your company intranet or on a Microsoft Teams tab.

Track and monitor market conditions that are relevant to your business. It’s easy to add funds using our simple settings panel.

Learn More

Available now. Be sure to sign in to your BindTuning account to download the latest update for Stocks Ticker. Learn more about the Stocks Ticker Web Part, one of 19+ web parts from BindTuning or schedule a demo with our team.

5 tips for internal adoption of your Intranet

Driving intranet adoption is ultimately the goal of every intranet. Your intranet can act as a perfect hub for your employees searching for the latest business updates, breaking news, technology advancements, product upgrades, service enhancements, employee certifications & motivations.

#1 Make the intranet personal

The saying “One size fits all” is not suitable for your own intranet. Not all the employees want to read about the same topics or view the same content on their feed. Therefore, having your intranet personalized to their preferences will drive employee’s engagement.

Below are some ways to help you with it:

  • Personalized bookmarks
  • Tailored employee workspaces
  • Customizable employee profiles
  • Open company message boards.
  • The option of following colleagues
  • Employee status updates

Learn how we created a Future-Proof Intranet for Super Bock with Employee Feedback.

#2 Make intranet adoption easy

Intuitive navigation

Your global navigation should easily direct employees to the primary areas of your intranet with ease and clarity. The traditional “department-oriented navigation” may not be the best option. Often employees don’t know which department is responsible for the task they’re trying to accomplish. You can facilitate navigation by adding “skill centers” or organizing by employee’s needs.

Additionally, navigation must be consistent. Ensure that main navigation remains the same, both in structure and look and feel, even across departments. This will create a fast learning curve, and users will always know how to navigate the intranet.

Accurate intranet search

This can be done with one-click search filters, visual preview displays of search results (Search-term suggestion queries right below the search box while users are typing) and advanced intranet options to customize searches.

Interactive tutorials

Very often we assume that once your new product goes live, it will be easy to navigate it. From the creator perspective it is because you worked with in every step. But for someone that’s seeing it for the first time it might be a great help to have some tutorials. Start with a small explanation of how to work with the intranet and where they can always go to, whenever they have doubts in how to navigate it.

Get your employees involved

To create an intranet that mirrors users needs, what better than having feedback from the actual users? Improve their user experience by involving them during the creative process. In the homepage, add a survey to gather suggestions. You may be surprised by the ideas on how to improve the overall experience, so make sure to integrate valid feedback. Employee’s engagement is crucial for good internal communication. For that, you must listen to their concerns and improvement ideas.

#3 Make your intranet your employees work hub

Make the intranet the “go-to resource”. The centralized library for all approved documents and every daily assigned tasks. With an intranet, it is easy to share specific project details, get quick status updates and communicate the same to everyone on the team for rapid project understanding and delivering.
Boost intranet adoption and build a strong organizational culture and transform your platform into an essential business solution with vibrant and rewarding user experiences.

BindTuning and City of Kirkland

Read one of our Successful Customer Stories. City of Kirkland Creates User-Friendly Site, to Improve How Citizens and Employees Connect and Collaborate.

#4 Make your digital workplace collaborative

Engaged employees are a company’s most valuable asset. When employees feel valued for their contribution, they are more motivated and definitely more productive. But, the bigger the workforce, the harder it is to recognize individual achievements.

It’s the digital reflection of your workplace: a place to be seen and hear where contributions are rewarded and engaged employees spread their passion.

#5 Make the intranet fun!

Incorporating FUN into your intranet is simple. And there are so many ways to engage employees and improve intranet adoption. For example: to share company events, employee travel photos, news and other updates.

Introduce a reward and recognition scheme where employees can recognize their colleagues’ achievements. They could do it with digital badges that can be redeemed towards awards and incentives.

Our extensive offer of pre-templated workplaces – ready to deploy in less than 10 minutes – along with our subscription plans, can be the solution for your intranet. All very easy to maintain with a team ready to support you in every step.

Start your Journey today! Learn how to create a truly modern digital workplace, transforming employees’ daily activities while driving employee engagement and employee productivity.

Schedule a ½ hour consultation

We cannot wait to hear from you.

Build these 5 cool team spaces right now in Microsoft Teams

You’ve made the transition to Microsoft Teams, but if all you are using it for is chats and meetings, then you’re only using a small portion of the features. Teams is incredibly powerful for team building – way better than Skype for Business. And with BindTuning web parts for Teams, you can boost the usage of this powerful tool to create really cool communication spaces that unite organizations, partners and cross-functional teams. Here are 5 great things you can build today in minutes.

1. Company News Space

BindTuning News web part

Still sending a monthly email newsletter? Put an end to long emails with a short shelf-life. Instead put your company news where your audience spends the bulk of their time – in Microsoft Teams. It’s as easy as using the BindTuning News web part. Let’s show you how we implemented it here at BindTuning.

Beginning this month, all of our Partner Program news is now in Microsoft Teams, driving our partners to our shared collaboration space. We simply posted an announcement in the conversations tab and when a partner clicks on Partner News, they’ll see every news item displayed in blocks, along with the date. The BindTuning News web part is simple to set up and provides several customizable page layouts. You can link to new articles, blog content, external content, really anything. Fresh content is curated all month long and accessible to users on-demand.

BindTuning News Web Part

2. Corporate Images Space

BindTuning Image Gallery web part

No more pixelated images, when your corporate logos are accessible in Microsoft Teams. Create an easily accessible image gallery, where users can quickly access your company branded images, in the size and specifications they need. Using the BindTuning Image Gallery web part display thumbnail images of logos and provide image search capabilities as well.

BindTuning Image Gallery web part

3. Team Communication (FAQ) Space

BindTuning Accordion web part

Give users the answers they need with a dynamic accordion list, displayed in a tab in Microsoft Teams. Incredibly useful for any kind of FAQ’s – new product announcements, information about acquisitions, mergers or even details about the holiday party. For educators it is especially useful to address new student concerns. The BindTuning Accordion web part consolidates and organizes large volumes of information and the search bar makes finding the right information effortless.

BindTuning Accordion web part

4. Trade Show Team Space

BindTuning People web part BindTuning Alerts web part

Give your corporate travelers access to everything they need in Teams. Microsoft Teams is incredibly easy to access from mobile devices, so why not use it to coordinate attendees at events. Create a quick directory of your booth staff, speakers, attendees using BindTuning People web part.

BindTuning People web part

While you are building a trade show space in Microsoft Teams, make sure the team gets easy access to alerts during the event. Alerts are quickly consolidated on one tab for easy access from Teams with BindTuning Alerts web part.

BindTuning Alerts web part

5. Corporate Training Space

BindTuning Filters web part

Create a space for specialized training events. Using the BindTuning Filters web part, give users the ability to filter training offerings by any number of filters. For our Partners, we created a tab in Teams where they can access previously recorded meetings and training sessions, on-demand.

BindTuning Filters web part

Get started in Teams

It’s easy to get started. Create an account and download a free 30-day trial of the BindTuning web parts for Teams. You get ALL of the web parts during the trial period – everything you need to build the above scenarios plus many more. Installation is straightforward with detailed instructions on how to install the web parts to Teams.

Hope this gave you some inspiration! We’d love to hear from you – let us know what you build in Microsoft Teams! For more information about Microsoft Teams, schedule a quick 1/2 hour demo:

Schedule a MS Teams Demo

Goodbye Skype for Business, Hello Microsoft Teams

On Tuesday, July 30 Microsoft announced that Skype for Business will be retired and replaced by Microsoft Teams. For some maybe a surprise, but for others not so much…

Skype for Business Meme

By the time you read this, you’ve probably heard the news: Skype for Business has gotten the golden handshake. For some of you, this news doesn’t change a thing – you retired use of Skype for Business months ago. Yet for others all it does is reinforce what you already knew – it is time to move on and Microsoft Teams is officially the new kid in town. For existing Skype for Business users it seems like a long way away – July 31, 2021.

So why should you care now?

Teams not only does what Skype for Business does, but the best part is that it is fully integrated into Office 365 and driving a new way of working within companies that have already made the shift. Like us. We’ve adopted Teams into our organization in ways we never imagined. Initially we jumped between Slack, Skype and Teams communications. But, our ability to collaborate in Teams became so powerful, it was obvious those other apps had reached their “use-by” date. “Can we move this meeting to Teams?” became the norm and now it’s the first place we go for team communications.

Microsoft Teams, better together with BindTuning

It was a no-brainer to extend our entire product line to Teams. And because of the way we build our products, Teams is included at no additional cost with every Enterprise Intranet subscription. Our provisioning engine makes deployment to Office 365, SharePoint and to Microsoft Teams really smooth. Web parts, themes and pre-configured templates are all easy to install, scale and maintain current.

Team Directory in Microsoft Teams

Install our web parts for SharePoint Online and you automatically make them available for use in Teams giving your users a unified, consistent experience that goes way beyond what is available by default, out of the box.

Try building team directory in Skype for business? Display images from your last trade show in Skype? The same look and feel you have in SharePoint is mirrored in Teams where users spend the bulk of their workday. Where the data is stored isn’t relevant. Giving users easy access to it is!

See it for yourself. Microsoft Teams is better together with BindTuning. Joao Ferreira, our SharePoint Team leader gives you a tour of our products fully integrated into Microsoft Teams. Check it out here:

Goodbye Skype for Business, hello Microsoft Teams and BindTuning

Retirement may be a few years away, but today is the day to start looking ahead. Confidence in Teams is the driving force behind Microsoft’s announcement yesterday. And the studies and resources and sheer buzz in the industry is all you need to know that this makes good practical business sense.

Schedule a ½ hour consultation with our experts to learn more about BindTuning for Microsoft Teams.

Display your Social Media in SharePoint

It’s a glorious day for corporate communications and marketing managers! Today, I am happy to introduce you to our latest feature for SharePoint – the Social Web Part and our Social Hub Template.

Go ahead and gather up all your social feeds – Twitter, Yammer, Instagram and even Pinterest – and drop them on any SharePoint page with our latest web part – Social. You control how they look – choose how many Tweets to show, display Facebook events, friends, even your Facebook cover photo.

“We just installed it today and our Marketing Department loves it, great work!” – Brian Zwart, IT Manager, American Engineering Testing, Inc.

Adding social feeds with Social Web Part requires no coding. Simply enter your profile, display settings into the web part panel and it’s live on your site. So easy, anyone can set it up in a matter of minutes.

The Social Web Part is available now in both the Enterprise Intranet and Enterprise Intranet + Automation subscription plans. Our subscription plans entitle you to new product updates (like Social) as soon as we roll them out. Take it for a 30-day spin. Simply open a BindTuning account to get started!

But wait…there’s more!

Starting today, we are making available at no additional charge, the Social Media Hub Template – a very cool starter kit, designed specifically for your social media needs for both Modern and Classic SharePoint.

Social Hub in Modern SharePoint

Give your users a complete snapshot of your company’s social media presence on one, beautifully designed page. Drop in YouTube and other videos using our Responsive Video web part. With the Social Hub page template, your social media presence will be shared with your entire organization in less time than it takes to get your morning coffee and blueberry scone (yes, I’m hungry).

Social Hub in Classic SharePoint

Get the Social Hub Template NOW

Download the Social Hub Template by simply creating an account on BindTuning.com. ALL of our templates are available to you for no charge, including the Social Hub. After you create your account, simply navigate to the “My Downloads” tab and go to Templates. There you’ll find Social Hub and all our free templates that will give you a jump start on your intranet. Deployed in minutes, using our provisioning engine.

How to manually edit a SharePoint wsp file

Today, one of our most-read blog posts gets an update. MVP Joao Ferreira offers a new method (and free software!) to manually modify a WSP file, eliminating the hassles of adware pop-ups.

UPDATE

Over the years, I’ve received feedback about adware being added to computers during the installation process of the third-party software. I recently tried to install this software and my antivirus automatically popped up saying that the file was not safe. To eliminate this issue for good, I have built a specific application to repackage all the files inside of the WSP solution.

New WSP Repackage Software

A WSP is nothing more than a CAB file that contains a few XML files linking to the resources that will be copied to SharePoint. CAB files can be easily opened with a zip tool like 7zip but most software does not compress files in the CAB format.

Tip: If you don’t use third-party compressors you can rename your WSP and change the extension to ZIP, this way you will be able to extract the files using Windows built-in compressor tool.

The WSP Repackage is easy to use, you just need to select the folder where all the files are located, select the output directory and provide the name to the WSP file, in a matter of seconds the compressed WSP solution will be ready.

SharePoint WSP Repackage

The WSP Repackage will only compress the files. If you want to add or remove files to the solution, make sure that you reference them in the XML files otherwise they might be ignored when you deploy the solution or you can get an activation error.

A tool like this is useful in scenarios where you need to edit a solution or web part and you don’t have access to the Visual Studio project.

Tip: Errors are common when editing a WSP Solution, if you leave the WSP Repackage open while testing you only need to click repackage to generate a new WSP.

How can this be useful with BindTuning Themes?

If you want to apply a CSS change to a theme and have several site collections where the theme is installed the fastest way to do it is to modify the WSP, instead of manually modifying the CSS using the SharePoint designer for each site collection. Of course, this is only relevant for Classic SharePoint themes, as our new themes settings panel for Modern themes makes CSS advanced coding effortless. Learn more about it here.

I made this software open source and you can have access to the entire project from GitHub. Here are the links to the software and solution:

Download WSP Repackage
Explore Solution on GitHub

Baking a Successful Digital Workplace

Learn how to create a truly modern digital workplace, transforming employees’ daily activities while driving employee engagement and employee productivity. The perfect intranet – just follow the recipe!

I’ve been working in the tech industry for over 20 years and dedicated to building successful intranets for the past 10. Over all these years, I’ve faced the same set of recurring issues with pretty much every company:

  • They are not happy with their existing intranet.
  • Employees are simply not engaged with it.

Employee engagement, and intranet adoption are major concerns for corporate communications departments as they ultimately either make or break the creative potential and productivity of their workforce. It is a well-known fact that employees feel empowered to do a better job when provided with powerful and modern tools, maximizing their engagement and satisfaction.

Years ago, corporations were merely physical places, but today’s distributed and hyper-connected world imposes new requirements on the workplace. Work happens anywhere, at any time, and employees need to communicate and collaborate, sharing information across the organization, while on-the-go and on multi-devices.

Baking the Perfect Digital Workplace

Although every company is unique in its processes and requirements, there is typically an underlying method – let’s call it a recipe – we can all follow when planning, building and deploying a company’s future digital workplace, keeping in mind that the key success factor resides in bringing people together towards a common vision. Let’s start cooking!

Ingredients

  • A detailed list of employee requirements.
  • An aligned management team to the corporate intranet vision.
  • Best-in class technology toolbox.
  • A strong brand identity.

Directions

#1 Understand your employee’s needs.

If the intranet is meant to satiate the people, then we must know our users and deeply understand their needs and expectations. Start with an aligned management team and drive an initial set of tasks that consolidate a list of major unaddressed or poorly implemented user requirements. Be sure to whisk in these prospective tasks:

  • Define the list of key project stakeholders; these will globally represent your user base, so select wisely.
  • Appoint a project owner (typically a communications, marketing or IT manager) to gather requirements from the stakeholders.

Refine the list of requirements, not to be based on features, but in the processes you want to address. This is key to creating a solution that is intuitive and that addresses real problems. Write down requirements in the form “As a [user role] I need to [task] in order to [detailed task]” – this helps define requirements as a list of employee’s needs.

#2 Set and share the vision.

Once you’ve gathered your first ingredient – a strong list of requirements – the next step is setting a global vision for your intranet, as it will be crucial for baking an efficient strategy.

The intranet vision provides a clear, global definition of the road ahead. But most importantly, the vision must be shared by management and key stakeholders and employee engagement is critical in implementing it. During this step, gently fold in the following:

  • Create the business vision. This includes the strategic goals, strategic internal communication for the intranet, editorial style and high-level technical recommendations. Vision is a long-term goal, so make sure it is future proof.
  • Set attainable limits. Dreaming is easy, and a lot of companies fall in the trap of aiming for the stars. A strong vision must also be implementable, cost-effective, and deliverable in an optimal timeframe. The 80/20 rule also applies to building an intranet. Pragmatically aim for 80% of your goals; the remaining 20% may cost you an extra 80%.
  • Involve top management and key stakeholders. This is a crucial part of this recipe and, if not correctly executed, can jeopardize the success of the final result. All key parts, from all areas in your organization, must be involved in this process and committed to implementing the shared vision, from IT to HR or Marketing. This will ensure that, along the development phase, everyone will be working towards the same goal.

#3 Select the best technical toolbox.

Now that you have mixed the first ingredients, it’s time to season your intranet by selecting the best technology platform for your organization.

Feel free to generously sprinkle the solution with the tools employees need to do their jobs while using the corporate intranet, and although these may vary depending on the company size and industry, some categories are common to most intranet scenarios:

  • Communication (Corporate/departmental/team News, Blogs, Notifications).
  • Collaboration (Teams, Communities, Wikis).
  • Productivity (Business Applications, Messaging, Calendars, Documents, Media/Video, other tools).
  • Links (Stocks, Weather, Cafeteria, other resources).
  • People (Employee directory, Rich individual profile, Organizational chart).
  • Always on-the-go (Support for Desktop/Laptop, Tablet, Smart phone).

Several factors can influence the decision of selecting the technical toolbox, but here are a few you should consider:

Integrate with existing systems. With a myriad of systems in place, companies are usually complicated worlds to live in, with employees juggling multiple balls at a time. Your co-workers are already checking email, sharing files, using internal communication tools. Make sure to select a platform that seamlessly integrates with your existing systems. For companies relying on Windows, selecting Office 365 is the natural choice and best option, ensuring a hassle-free integration path.

Create emotional connections with effective use of corporate branding. The corporate brand reflects your company’s values, principles, and mission, and it is key to employee engagement and team building, as well as for engaging employees as strong brand ambassadors. When selecting the intranet’s platform, make sure it supports the ability to easily reflect the company’s brand, by incorporating elements like the company’s color palette, typography, logo rules or navigation rules. Simple color changes may not be sufficient, as employees tend to refer to the company’s online presence as the reference. I built my business on branding – BindTuning Themes for SharePoint are a leading resource for companies that know the power a branding and visual consistency can do for employee engagement and employee productivity.

Select tools that look good. A good UI/UX (user interface/user experience) not only looks good, but also provides you options to address key experience factors like rich and structured navigation options, rich visual elements – so you can properly structure content areas –, and also improved search functionality. At BindTuning, we not only give users a modern digital user interface, but the tools themselves are easy to use, requiring little to no skills and definitely no coding.

Go for quick and impactful wins. Gone are the days when companies would spend months, even more than a year, developing the company’s intranet to later discover, maybe in less than a year’s time, the intranet was already outdated, and a new version had to be implemented. In an agile world, companies must focus on delivering more and faster, so customizable low code solutions tend to be a smart choice. BindTuning templates enable our clients to prototype a modern digital workplace in less than 10 minutes and with our subscription plans, keep their sites fresh and updated.

Plan for the future. Select tools with a clear and continued update roadmap. Underlying platforms, like for example Office 365, have now very short release cycles, with new releases coming out every few weeks. Your toolbox must be up to this challenge. Select tools and companies that are agile responding to change, and that have proved to be innovative in the marketplace. Make your intranet future-proof!

Bake and Serve

As you are “baking” your new intranet experience, it is key to continuously communicate these improvements to your employee base. Past negative experiences may have left your colleagues feeling burned on new intranet experiences, so getting everyone involved by communicating effectively, is crucial for employee productivity.

Communicate the launch globally to the company, and make sure to provide users with tools to comment on pages and functionality, giving them the opportunity to also suggest minor improvements. An intranet is never finalized! Rather it is a work in progress, a living part of your company, that grows and evolves as your business imposes new requirements. Be open to change.

This is a recipe you should review continuously. You want your modern digital workplace to be a useful tool for years to come, so keeping it updated, not only with fresh content but also with new, exciting and useful features will make it stick in time.

Oh, and there is no single, infallible recipe to building the perfect intranet ;) I am sure you will add your own flavor, seasonings to make it tasty for your business! Bon Appetit!