The modern intranet marketplace is a competitive one. There are many fine intranet platforms out there, each with their particular strengths and weaknesses. But for all of us, there's no avoiding the 800-pound gorilla in the room - Microsoft SharePoint. At SMLWRLD, we spend a lot of time talking about SharePoint, and we thought it might be worth discussing the features, pros and cons of this digital behemoth.
We are, naturally, a little biased in our attitude towards the market-leading tool, but we genuinely do like Microsoft and their vast portfolio of software - we use much of it ourselves in our day-to-day work, and after all, our SMLWLRD platform is based entirely on a Microsoft tech stack, including our Azure cloud hosting.
So here is our run-down of the beast that is SharePoint and how it compares to our SMLWRLD Unlimited platform for enterprise-level intranets.
To supplement these pros and cons, here are some questions that we are commonly asked, along with our responses:
Q. SharePoint is great for editing and collaborating on documents via Word/Excel Online etc. Can you do that on SMLWRLD Unlimited too?
A. What Microsoft has developed with their online tools such as Word/Excel is outstanding. We'd never try to compete with that. We do, however integrate seamlessly with your O365 environment via SSO, so while we'd recommend "living" documents to be stored there (via OneDrive, Teams or the free SharePoint online), we can offer seamless links from your SMLWRLD Unlimited intranet - taking advantage of our much better search, useability and overall user experience. The vast majority of enterprise content is not under live collaboration. For this our powerful content management tools (including full Digital Asset Management and document versioning) offer the best solution for efficiently storing - and finding again - your vast amount of static internal knowledge.
Q. We use SharePoint - it's Microsoft after all, and seems like a safe bet. Why shouldn’t we just carry on with it?
A. You know the old saying: “No one ever got fired for buying IBM”, which wouldn’t be said seriously these days. Microsoft may seem like the safe choice, but how's that working out for you? SharePoint can be done well, but it requires an enormous amount of effort from a dedicated team, without which it can become a free-for-all of duplicated and messy content. Add to this the lack of any consistent navigational structure (SharePoint is based on a hierarchy of Sites, which can quickly become a rabbit-warren of clicking around and getting lost) and a terrible search (sorry Microsoft, but it's so hard to find what you are looking for using the search), and organisations can quickly start to suffer from serious information paralysis. SMLWRLD Unlimited intranets are designed and built fully bespoke for each organisation. We spend a substantial amount of time with every customer researching and interviewing stakeholders and staff. We then apply our expertise in UX and service design to create a simple and durable information architecture which pervades the entire intranet. Users never get lost and can quickly find the information they require. Our search works too.
SMLWRLD’s new SaaS intranets start at £180/annum for SMEs. Pricing for enterprises with over 100 users will vary. A 30% reduction on all pricing plans is available for public sector and not for profit organisations. A full breakdown of pricing can be found on the SMLWRLD pricing page.
SMLWRLD is a London-based SaaS intranet provider, with team members working around the globe. In addition to delivering seamless internal communications, knowledge management, collaboration and transactional tools, SMLWRLD intranets are a vital tool for businesses in their quest for sustainability, staff wellbeing and greater Corporate Social Responsibility. To find out more, contact SMLWRLD Managing Director Dan Jones at email@example.com or on +44 (0)207 502 3591.
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