If you have multiple contributors on your team, you need a way to share internal resources, documentation, feedback, and more. You might be able to use temporary tools and email for a while, but storing everything in one place can save you countless hours. This is where the WordPress intranet comes in.
An intranet enables you to consolidate your production tools and all the information your team needs. When you have a single repository where your contributors can access everything they need and collaborate on existing resources, you can build a more collaborative environment and be more efficient.
In this article, we’ll define what an intranet is and discuss how creating an intranet can benefit you or your business. We’ll also show you how to use two WordPress plugins to build your own WordPress intranet. Let’s dive in!
What is an intranet?
One Intranet A network that only people in an organization can access. It’s usually private, and most companies use them as a way to securely transmit or share information online without going through a public website.
For example, let’s say your business has its own wiki full of information that only people on your physical network can access. That’s an intranet.If you take that setup and make it accessible to people on the outside network (albeit with some protection), then you have extranet.
Why do you need an intranet?
Whichever method you choose, an intranet can bring you the following benefits:
- It is safe. Intranets are secure by definition because people outside your network cannot access them.
- You can use it to improve communication. With an intranet, your colleagues can communicate instantly using company-specific media.
- It helps simplify collaboration. Ideally, your team will use your intranet to coordinate work and stay connected.
- It’s great for storing files. With an intranet, essential files never leave your network, and they’re all kept in the same place.
Intranets are great tools, but we only recommend them for businesses over a certain size. For example, if you’re running a one- or two-person operation, it usually doesn’t make sense to set up an entire intranet. On the other hand, if you have 10 or 20 people working together, then the WordPress intranet can come into play.
Of course, there are no hard and fast rules about what types of businesses should create an intranet. We recommend that you use your own judgment and review the tools below to see if they are right for your team.
How to Set Up a WordPress Intranet Using a Plugin
As you probably know, the basic functionality of WordPress can be extended to do just about anything you can imagine. To illustrate, we’ll cover the tools you need to turn a simple WordPress site into a fully functional intranet.
Step 1: Set up a local WordPress site
Earlier, we talked about the difference between an intranet and an extranet. If you want to create a WordPress intranet, you need to set up a local WordPress site (instead of using a public-facing web hosting provider). By definition, a local website can only be accessed by people on your network, which is perfect for an intranet.
In the past, we’ve discussed several tools that can be used to create local websites for Windows, OS X, and Linux systems. You can choose any of them, depending on the OS used by the local server. Then, follow one of our simple guides to install WordPress locally and have your website up and running.
Step 2: Create an Intranet Hub with BuddyPress
Partner Press is a social networking plugin that can turn any WordPress site into a powerful community hub, which is why we recommend it for your WordPress intranet.
Community features such as private boards and messaging between users are at the heart of any successful intranet, making this plugin ideal for the task. Additionally, with BuddyPress, your team members will be able to set up their own profiles, create groups and track each other’s activities.
To get started, log in to the local website you just created for your WordPress intranet.navigation Plugins > Add New And use the search option to find BuddyPress. Click Install, then activate the plugin. After that, you will be redirected to the welcome screen.
have a big start using button near the top of the screen. Select it now to start configuring your new BuddyPress community.
In the next screen, you can decide what features you want your WordPress intranet to have. By default, every BuddyPress site provides extended profiles, activity streams, and notifications. We also recommend enabling private messages, friend connections, and user groups (so your members can come together to discuss specific projects):
After enabling the desired options, click Save Settings and jump to options Label. All of BuddyPress’s default configurations are perfect for intranets.However, you may also want to enable Allows active stream comments on blog and forum posts under function Event settings. Using this option, your intranet members will be able to comment on your published posts using the BuddyPress system instead of WordPress’ default functionality.
Now your intranet is ready to use! If you hover over the profile tab in the upper right corner of the screen, you’ll see several new options:
click ActivityFor example, you can add new statuses that other members can view and comment on.
Once everyone else on your team is signed up, you can start creating custom groups, discussing upcoming projects, and more.
Step 3: Secure Your WordPress Intranet with an All-in-One Intranet
Now you have an intranet set up on your local website, which means only people on your physical network can access it.However, if you want to be safe, you can use plugins like All-in-one intranet.
What this tool does is make your local website completely private, so only logged in members can see updates from your community.To use it, install the plugin, then go to Settings > All-in-one Intranet:
On this page, enable the option to read Force the site to be completely private, which will be responsible for securing your intranet.
then move on Login redirect Settings, then enter the URL you want users to be sent to when they log in:
For this setup, we recommend using the URL of your home page or your Activity stream.
Lastly, you can enable the force logout option so people can’t stay logged in to the intranet indefinitely. This is a great option for increased security:
Personally, we think setting the force logout to a few hours is enough, but you can configure this option however you want. Once done, save your settings. That’s it – your secure WordPress intranet is up and running!
To keep your organization productive, you need a secure repository of guides, resources, and documentation. You also need an easy way for team members to communicate. Building an intranet is one of the easiest ways to enable your employees and collaborators to find the information they need, and Work together more effectively.
In this article, we covered the basics of intranets, what they are, why you should use them, and how to create a WordPress intranet. Do you have any questions about setting up your WordPress intranet? Let’s discuss them in the comments section below!