A portal is best described as a safe personalized website that enables a business to connect with users, whether employees, customers, or even suppliers. A portal allows a business to solve user needs better through easier and faster access to what the user is most likely to be searching for.
There are many benefits that accrue to businesses that use self-service portals for clients. Faster access to information increases customer satisfaction. The company can also collect useful data on user experiences and use that to further improve the portal’s utility. In fact, a great portal can prove to be a source of a competitive edge by being easy and efficient to use.
To delve further into this, here are seven reasons employees and customers love portals.
Customer and Employee Portals Allow for Self-Service
Through a portal, a business can place useful information they expect a user to require. This can be through how-to videos or an FAQ section. They can also distribute ad hoc information when new events or circumstances occur. As a result, customers do not always have to call in during office hours to make inquiries. New employees can go through the onboarding process easily and at their own pace. Having portals puts power in the hands of users and allows them to learn at their own pace.
It Allows the Business to Keep Accurate Records
Every user has a profile section where their official details are stored. This way, the user is confident that the business keeps an accurate record. Whenever any details change, the user can update them or request the business to do so. This will often be a change of address or banking information. This approach eliminates paperwork and saves time too.
Portals Create a Sense of Community
Customers do not just love buying products from a company. If a product is good, customers want to feel as part of a community of users. Portals can help foster this feeling. For instance, through a portal, the business can share blog posts, thought leadership articles, video interviews with company leaders, insight into products under development and so on. Such content helps generate and sustain interest in the company. It is quite like social media content, but in an exclusive environment that makes customers feel as part of a big family.
Portals Allow Employees to Plan for Future Roles
An employee portal that gives people the chance to see new openings within the company is a great way to keep employees motivated. People can see what positions are available, the amount of experience required, the job descriptions and so forth. People can gather the skills and academic qualifications necessary to shoot for them. Such preparation might lead them to future roles within the company or even externally. Still, the portal serves as a testament to a company’s commitment to helping people advance their careers.
Portals Increase Data Security
Portals today are likely to use cloud storage, which is safe and fast to retrieve information from. The business can confidently assure users that any information shared and stored on the portal is safe and will only provide them a good user experience. Besides safety, portals help to minimize the environmental impact of storing user information by eliminating paperwork in the workflow. The impact is big when you consider banks, insurance companies, or even investment companies that serve tens of millions of users.
A Portal Helps Track Applications and Orders
One of the most useful things a portal does is enable users to keep track of their activity. For instance, a customer may consider making an order but is not ready to pay for it yet. They could log off and return later to complete the purchase. Similarly, a new job application may take an employee several sessions. With a portal, they will not lose whatever progress they made during previous sessions. It eases the pressure to get everything done in on sitting, thus adding to the quality of user experience on a company’s website.
An Employees Portal Allow Engagement with HR
Whenever employees cannot find answers to their questions from the resources within the portal, they can launch a ticket to the relevant department. Most times, this will be a question relating to the working conditions directed at the HR department.
The portal is created in such a way that employees can attach documents relevant to their issue if they need to. Another good thing about portals allows employees to track the progress of an issue or a case they have raised. It creates a feeling of transparency in the organization, which adds to job satisfaction levels.
Portals are also an excellent platform to conduct performance reviews. It is possible for supervisors to create infographics and charts to summarize quantifiable performance metrics during reviews. These charts can be automated so that employees can keep track of their goals as the year progresses.
What Makes a Good Portal?
What should companies focus on when creating portals for their employees and customers? First, they must decide on the key functionalities the portal must have. Should it be able to host videos? Will people need to make applications through the portal? Will people send real-time messages there?
Once these have been decided, the focus should move to create an easy-to-navigate platform. It should be intuitive with call-to-action buttons placed strategically. It should feel as easy as using a mobile phone. The portal should also be cloud-based so that it’s fast on all devices users decide to log on from.
Customer portals should be optimized for search engines because they can help generate traffic and business. Once people navigate to your website, a pleasant experience will keep them there longer, which also affects the search engine rankings positively. Good portals should also leverage the power of social media by enabling users to share articles they read, useful videos watched, or any other content.
If your company needs help in creating a business portal for customers or even a HR portal, check out Transcendent Software’s services. We are an IT solutions company with over 2 decades of helping businesses figure out the best solutions to improve their workflow. We will assist with the entire process of development to integration and deployment.