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Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources

Pages: 224
ISBN: 1-56607-080-5
Published: February 2000

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About the report

A Valuable Corporate Solution

The escalation of intranet, extranet, and Internet resources is inundating corporations with information. Enterprise portals allow companies to contain and control this information overload while exploiting Internet ubiquity and instant access to information resources. At a time when companies are seriously considering business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce, the enterprise portal has emerged as a tool to contain and control information flow from within an enterprise.

CTR's newest report, Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources, discusses this new development and examines how the enterprise portal transforms static, disparate, and scattered intranets into standard and easy-to-use gateways to corporate information sources. The most effective portals also provide single-point, customized access to structured and unstructured data, such as manuals, documents, e-mail, and Web sites.

Enterprise Portal Benefits

An enterprise portal transforms a general-purpose PC into a self-service desktop that provides users with a quick, flexible gateway to corporate data. This report explains how portals, which include basic productivity tools such as word processors, spreadsheets, and groupware systems, are enhanced with collaborative applications, including chat, forums, and calendaring, that improve communications and minimize redundant efforts.

The enterprise portal's most significant benefit is supplying relevant knowledge to facilitate decision-making. Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources discusses this benefit and explores many others:

  • Leveraging intranets and extranets. The portal aggregates, categorizes, and delivers pertinent content to critical business audiences while lowering operating costs, increasing sales, facilitating better customer service, and making the supply chain more efficient.
  • Built-in security. Because individual users must be authorized, enterprise portals offer another level of corporate security.
  • Support of multiple corporate functions. The enterprise portal unifies disparate parts of the enterprise, including accounting, forecasting, and marketing.
  • Competitive advantage. Without an enterprise portal, valuable information is locked away in poorly integrated data repositories. Only companies that can access timely information on markets, sales performance, and customer satisfaction via an enterprise portal can develop an advantage over competitors.

This report demonstrates how corporate employees glean advantages from an enterprise portal. The portal focuses specifically on information relevant to a given task and is designed to improve worker productivity. In addition, the report offers management strategies for controlling and monitoring individual employee activity via an enterprise portal.

Why Companies Must Improve Their Cyberacts

Corporations often establish Web sites, intranets, and extranets to stay abreast of current trends. In the process, they create a costly and difficult-to-manage information overload. Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources analyzes the enterprise portal as an organized tool to optimize corporate information resources and reengineer operations to maximize the return on investment (ROI) from e-commerce business processes.

Portal Implementation

Implementing an enterprise portal is complex and involves a significant amount of planning and design. The report outlines the process of establishing an enterprise portal, from creating an initial advisory team to ensuring that employees use the portal once it is completed.

Corporations must decide which type of enterprise portal most effectively addresses their information needs. This report details these and many other specific portal categories, including business intelligence (BI), supply chain portals, Web content management portals, expertise portals, and telecommuting portals.

Business-to-Business E-commerce Tools

Once enterprise portals become more widely implemented, they will propel the emergence of the virtual corporation. Forrester Research predicts that Internet commerce (I-commerce) will increase from $48 billion in 1998 to approximately $1.3 trillion by 2003. Specialized portals unite suppliers and buyers in virtual marketplace communities. Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources discusses these revolutionary initiatives.

The Portal Market

Although still in its initial stages, the portal market is developing rapidly because of its potential to impact business. New ventures and products are created daily. Many software firms with existing products that perform some Web functions will reposition them as enterprise portals to take advantage of the industry hype. This report examines the latest and most viable products available.

Enterprise portal services help decision-makers wade through the inundated portal market by cost-effectively evaluating the portal concept and testing a variety of software products. The report also offers case studies of early enterprise portal implementations.

Despite their brief existence, enterprise portals already represent an exaggerated phenomenon. Behind all the promotional verbiage, however, a useful e-commerce tool with a long life cycle exists within the enterprise portal. Implementing Enterprise Portals: Integration Strategies for Intranet, Extranet, and Internet Resources separates the hype from the potential value so managers and administrators can decide when to implement a portal, where to implement first, and how to most effectively approach such a task.

Report contents

Executive Summary

  • What Constitutes an Enterprise Portal
  • Toward the Interactive Enterprise
  • Business-to-Business (B2B) E-commerce Escalates
  • The Unquestionable Benefits
  • Choosing Development Tools
  • Why Companies Must Improve Their Cyberacts

What Is an Enterprise Portal?

  • The Solution to Information Overload and Latency
  • A Meeting Place Center
  • A Knowledge Sharing Facilitator
  • A B2B E-commerce Development Tool

Enterprise Portal Categories

  • Business Intelligence (BI) Portals
  • Supply Chain Portals
  • Expertise Portals
  • Web Content Management Portals
  • Telecommuting Portals

Enterprise Portal Functions

  • Leveraging Intranets and Extranets
  • Dynamic Integration
  • E-commerce Readiness
  • Scalability
  • Web Directory

Enterprise Portal Benefits

  • The Changing PC User Interface
  • Aggregation of Information Sources
  • BI Data Presentation
  • Real-time Visibility
  • Competitive Advantages
  • Return on Investment (ROI)
  • The Advertising Advantage

The Anatomy of an Enterprise Portal

  • A Doorway into Intranets
  • Knowledge versus Information
  • Built-in Security
  • Enterprise Portals versus Data Warehousing

Conventional Portal Features

  • Consumer versus Corporate Portals
  • Advantages of General Portals
  • Disadvantages of Directories

Enterprise Resource Planning

  • Portal Capabilities of Future Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems

Enterprise Portal Development Strategies

  • How to Build a Corporate Portal
  • Simplifying Use
  • Selecting Portal Software

The Extensible Markup Language Standard

  • The Critical B2B E-Commerce Requirement
  • How Extensible Markup Language (XML) Works
  • Integrating Massive Legacy Knowledge Bases
  • Using XML in Enterprise Portals

Enterprise Portal Development Tools and Vendors

  • A Rush to Market
  • Enterprise Portal Development Tool Categories
  • New and Established Vendors


  • Enterprise Portal Services
  • Economics of an Enterprise Portal
  • IBM Web Site Development Assistance
  • The Testing Option
  • Hosting a Branded Corporate Site

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