When talking about intranet portals from end users perspective, the most important “feature” for them is content. Yes, a Silverlight photo gallery is very cool but employees are visiting intranet to find more information about company, to perform their jobs better ([:)]), etc…
While consulting customers on intranet solution architecture, I always advise them Web 2.0 concepts. When you are building intranet solution on SharePoint 2007 (or any other CMS solution); you should allow maximum number of employees to create content. In such a case your intranet site will become like Wikipedia. The key for Wikipedia’s success was the ability to have virtually unlimited number of authors from all over the globe.
You might ask: “How many is many, and how many is too many?“ Well, it all depends on your company’s profile and internal organization, but anyone who has a computer and knows how to use Word is a potential contributor to an intranet site.
What are key benefits of this Web2.0/open approach? Instead of having just a small percentage of employees contributing, you will allow anyone that has something to say to be creative. On some sites like: policies, procedures, quality control, legal, etc. you will retain control, but when we are talking about general news, projects, information, events – what could go wrong?
If you are using SharePoint 2007 as your intranet platform, you can enjoy benefits of SharePoint platform to establish content approval, versioning, alerts and identity integration to track all modifications. I already wrote about using blogs as infrastructure for your intranet portal, but you can also use wikis, integration with email or regular pages to achieve the same result.