Designing Extranets with SharePoint

Keeping your company more closely connected to customers, suppliers and business partners

Companies are like people in that change typically happens from the inside out. If you want to improve your company’s overall efficiency and productivity, first you have to resolve internal issues and then work outwards.
In many ways, SharePoint extranet can be considered a natural progression of your intranet system. In other words, the same internal benefits you experience with well-designed intranet portals — such as enhanced communication, collaboration, document and process management, and business intelligence — can also be applied to your external relationships with a well-engineered extranet platform.

Tangible Benefits of SharePoint-based Extranets

Businesses and organizations who can effectively utilize SharePoint’s extranet designer tools can experience substantial improvements in several critical business areas, including:

  • Customer Service. Integrate customer service features such as progress tracking, online documentation, and self-service query resolution in order to better manage the increasingly higher demand for quality customer service without over-taxing your available resources.
  • Marketing. Provide extranet users access to your very latest and greatest offerings. Extranet portals provide a centralized, up-to-date catalogue of your relevant products, services and prices, which helps ensure your brand is represented the right way.
  • Error Reduction. Enable document management features on your orders, invoices and other business processes to avoid costly mistakes.
  • Streamlined Transactions. Integrate extranet portals with other enterprise applications in order to streamline transactions and maximize the efficiency of your organization.
  • Information Sharing. Quickly and easily exchange sales reports and large volumes of data with third-party contacts, such as your business partners, suppliers, vendors, buyer, etc.
  • Collaboration.   Extranet tools like shared calendars and group project management features make collaborating with your external relationships effortless.

Shape Your Extranet Experience with an IA Expert

While many organizations can benefit greatly from SharePoint-based extranets, deploying an extranet solution that is functional and tailor-suited to your meet your business goals takes careful planning and design.

To ensure the success and security of your extranet platform, specific considerations must be addressed like authentication, platform requirements, which version of SharePoint you require, licensing costs, network infrastructure, and most importantly data security.

SharePoint consultants at Innovative Architects will gladly work with your IT department or process managers to evaluate your current infrastructure and make sure your company is taking full advantage of the sharing and self-service features offered by the Microsoft extranet platform.

As a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner since 2005, IA’s team of SharePoint experts helps businesses equip the sharing and self-service features of their extranet platform. We have years of experience helping our clients achieve the full advantage of their technology investments while working closely with our customers to complete knowledge transfer and training.

When you are ready to learn how to leverage SharePoint solutions to help achieve your business goals, call us at 770.623.5734 to get the conversation started or fill out our form to request more information.