Why Proactive HR Teams are Involving IT in the Benefits Microsite Process

By Gregory Yanez

Maximize efficiency and minimize headaches by involving IT in the benefits microsite process from the beginning—a proactive move by HR teams that will pay off in the long run.

While some HR teams may think that creating a microsite with an outside vendor will be easier than working with their internal IT department, we have found that involving IT in the process from the beginning can lead to many benefits. It’s understandable that IT has a lot of other responsibilities and projects, but it’s important not to completely leave them out of the microsite process, even when working with a web partner like ourselves. HR teams tend to think of the microsite’s content and functionality from the employee’s point of view, which is great and necessary. But it’s also important to consider the technical requirements that make that content work on the back end, and that’s where IT can be your microsite’s best friend. 

They help with questions like:

1. Who Owns Domain Names for the Microsite?

When we start working on a new microsite project with our HR partners, one of the first things we ask is who will be responsible for keeping track of important technical details like domain name renewals and DNS settings. If the client’s IT department is involved in the project, they can make sure that this information is kept in-house, even if staff members who were originally involved in the project move on to other roles. This makes it more likely that the microsite will live on even when staff members change. 

2. How Secure Should the Content Be?

When it comes to keeping company content safe, there are always rules and regulations to follow. And who better to help with that than the IT department? They’re the experts when it comes to keeping things secure. Even if the content is meant to be public, there might be some security concerns that you’re not aware of. By getting IT involved early on, HR can make sure all the right measures are in place to protect sensitive employee information like personal and financial data. This can help avoid data breaches and keep the company out of hot water legally and reputation-wise. Plus, IT can make sure the company stays compliant with all the relevant data protection laws.

3. How Will the Microsite Fit in the Chain of Authorization?

If the microsite is only meant to be seen by employees, then IT has you covered. Keeping the external microsite as secure as the client’s intranet usually involves a complex process of authorization that will determine how an external vendor, like us, will go about building the site. We need to know which authorization method IT prefers and whether they’ve already set up a way to pass that information. 

Ultimately, a good third-party vendor will want to work with IT, because they know that IT is the key to keeping the website secure. If a vendor doesn’t ask these kinds of questions at the start of the microsite building process, that’s a red flag. Pay attention to whether a vendor is taking the time to ask about IT’s preferences and procedures because that’s a good indication of whether they’re going to take security seriously.