Two technological tools for the company: intranet and extranet

intranet vs extranet

Intranet and extranet are indispensable platforms for efficient and collaborative internal and external business processes.

The intranet is a platform that originated in 1995 when it emerged as a simple web page that has evolved into a corporate information system with internal management tools.

The extranet is a word that comes from the combination of extra which means “outside” and net which is a derivation of internet. The word was first used in 1996 by IBM to refer to the documentation and results distribution system of the Atlanta Olympic Games.

The two platforms are complementary and connected in several ways such as in the benefits they provide to a company.


Intranet and extranet: differences, similarities and benefits

In the corporate network these platforms are local, as they fulfil the function of connecting users to a virtual space that they access through a password. Although to access the extranet users must register and use a password with restricted access to certain information or areas of exclusive use for employees. This password must be personal and non-transferable.

A fundamental difference between the two is that on the one hand, the intranet is for the exclusive use of employees. While the extranet is for the use of people outside the company, such as customers and suppliers in relation to employees.

The intranet is for the employees of an organization to communicate, create content, share it, and collaborate with each other. In addition, it maintains organized information about employees, projects, files, the company, business news, make use of self-training areas with e-learning applications, holidays and leave, etc.

Both platforms are easy to use because they employ the principles of the Internet: use of a browser and an e-mail to exchange information, a chat to meet in videoconferences or to send messages, among others. So both make use of devices for real-time connection and generate a fast and productive response.

Employees and outsiders access a virtual space in which they actively communicate and generate the following benefits to the company:

  • Cost reduction
  • Time optimization
  • Maximization of production processes
  • Improvements in customer service
  • Real-time sales monitoring
  • Inventory control
  • Security controls
  • Quick answers to solve problems or issues with the company’s products or services
  • Human resource management, etc.

The implementation of intranet and extranet will depend on the needs and size of the company. In the market there is a wide variety of products that are an alternative in the case of microentrepreneurs, entrepreneurs and self-employed.

These platforms can be developed for educational institutions, cultural, sports and religious organizations; for banking corporations, industries, etc.

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