The Best Alternative to SharePoint for Your Credit Union

Just like any other financial institution, credit unions have an essential need for good internal communications (IC). Effective IC practices help ensure that everyone in the credit union knows about critical initiatives, new directives, procedures, and policies. Knowledge sharing and collaboration are also important, as these processes help to break down internal information silos and boost employee engagement.

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A credit union must also be responsive and able to meet customer demands in an economy where consumers expect services to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

All of these demands simply cannot be met by paper-based communications and business processes – and traditional digital solutions like email are also ineffective and slow.

As a result, many institutions turn to Microsoft’s mass-market solution – SharePoint. However, as we shall see, this may not be the best choice.

Why Sharepoint may not be the ideal solution for your credit union

Microsoft SharePoint is a combined content management system (CMS), collaboration suite, web application platform, and social network. After Microsoft retired SharePoint 2016, the company revamped the product, adding new automation and custom app features that integrate it more fully into the current Microsoft Azure toolset.

While providing a functional solution at an economical price level, the on-premises version of SharePoint does not easily migrate to SharePoint Online. Customization is often hard to implement, limiting the options of users who require integrated and extensible content management or collaboration tools. At the same time, SharePoint’s insistence on providing a multitude of both collaboration and content management features can overwhelm users who simply require a solution for one process or the other.

SharePoint users must effectively make a commitment to Microsoft Azure. This limitation introduces a specific learning curve and can be inconvenient for businesses that wish to implement content management or collaboration tools outside the Microsoft cloud environment.

Regulatory demands may also impose challenges on credit unions that choose SharePoint, as US users looking to migrate fully to the cloud may be hampered by federal compliance issues.

What your credit union needs from an internal communications and collaboration solution

In seeking out a SharePoint alternative, credit unions need to bear a number of important issues and required features in mind. These include the following.

Flexibility in Deployment Options

Flexibility in Deployment Options

While many credit unions may still rely on on-premises content and data storage, there remains a need for collaboration and communications tools that harness the power of the cloud. This makes a business intranet a viable SharePoint alternative for your credit union.

For example, the Claromentis intranet software and internal communications platform provides two hosting options. There’s a cloud-based intranet solution, which includes software, installation, Google hosting, backups, and more in one monthly subscription. Alternatively, your credit union can pay a one-off fee for the intranet solution and deploy it on your own internal servers

Adaptability and integration

While the Microsoft SharePoint platform may be all you need for dealing with Word docs or Excel spreadsheets, it’s likely that your credit union will have to interact with vendors, suppliers, and clients who operate on a range of business platforms.

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Your SharePoint alternative therefore requires strong integration capabilities – typically via its own native resources, and/or through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Such integration will enable your credit union to manage important information, documents, and resources across various platforms and services.

Compliance protection

Compliance protection

A solution with strong integration, comprehensive features, and a substantial knowledge base will also help your credit union adhere to a range of compliance standards. For example, if you have loans or refinancing arrangements with institutions in the healthcare sector, the Claromentis platform has a range of security features and procedures in place to protect your intranet data in real time, and is HIPAA, ISO 9001:2015, and ISO 27001 compliant.

Project management and monitoring capabilities

Microsoft Sharepoint was not designed for project management, and its tools can only provide limited visibility into the work of teams and business units. By contrast, an intranet solution like Claromentis provides extensive project management functionality, such as knowledge base creation, collaboration spaces, and the ability to target content for specific teams.

Automation of routine tasks

Automation of routine tasks

Manual data entry and information management presents the danger of human error – mistakes that your credit union can ill afford in an environment where stringent demands are coming from both your client base and regulatory frameworks. Automation helps to eliminate this risk, and to streamline and optimize loan approval processes and other workflows in the banking and finance arena.

For example, the Claromentis intranet platform features intuitive drag & drop mechanisms that empower users to build feature-rich intranet solutions and productivity platforms that combine e-forms and automated workflows, targeted employee communications, learning and development tools, and project and task management.

A solution for the modern workplace

In today’s business landscape, employees of credit unions may be operating from a diverse range of cities, states, or nations. Your communications and collaboration solution must therefore be capable of connecting and keeping track of all your workers and stakeholders and ensuring that they have access to all the information and resources that they need to stay up to date with developments within the credit union and the larger environment.

A solution for the modern workplace

They should also have on-demand access to the knowledge, search facilities, resources, and support they need to effectively provide the loan, refinancing, and other financial services that your credit union provides.

Here at Claromentis, our intranet and mobile app work in harmony with our e-learning, e-forms & workflows, and project management features, providing teams with an integrated digital workplace to call home. In line with contemporary requirements, Claromentis provides multi-lingual capabilities, enabling the deployment of our intranet platform to users in their own local language.

To find out more about how Claromentis can provide the best SharePoint alternative for your credit union, book a demo with our experts.

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