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  • Yeap Boon Toh

Is Microsoft SharePoint Useful?

Updated: Apr 22, 2021

MS SharePoint has been around since 2001. The product has been slowly evolving to and now a part of Microsoft Enterprise offerings and Office 365. The world's most popular collaboration and document management system, SharePoint is used by over 190 million people across the globe.

SharePoint is one of the most commonly deploy enterprise systems in the market and is use by many organization - from large to small businesses. It is also commonly implemented for departmental use and in some cases, by the entire organization.

Share and manage content, knowledge, and applications to empower teamwork, quickly find information, and seamlessly collaborate across the organization.” -

Over the years, IPS have implemented many SharePoint projects. The platform is enormously adaptable and the usages differs from one organization to another. According to Microsoft there are almost 250,000 organizations that uses SharePoint in one form to another. While the number of users can be staggering for an enterprise software, the reason can be due to the basic offering SharePoint has. Off the shelves, it is a document management system. However, it can also be customized for business application and process automation. In short, SharePoint is like a "swiss army knife" for the enterprise and here are some of the successful implementation we have with SharePoint.

  • As a Document Management or Records Management.

  • Storage for documents digitized using Kodak scanners - to archive paper documents.

  • Intranet Portals with News, Staff Directory, Leave Application, Requisition Approval, etc.

  • Integration with Sitecore CMS - for exposing content management to the web portal.

  • Process Approval for plant maintenance and manufacturing.

  • Opportunity tracking in a Construction business.

  • ISO filing and versioning.

  • Multisite Intranet for a conglomerate group of companies.

  • Data leakage prevention (DLP) and Rights management with online viewer.

  • Team sites for inter-department collaboration.

Up side of using SharePoint

SharePoint is easily accessible to your organization. You can subscribe to Office 365 (the Cloud version of SharePoint) which allows you have straight access upon signing up. The use and concept of "Library" and "List" is easily understood especially when your organization has experience in some form of centralized document access and control. There are also many training and references available online for new users to get familiarize with SharePoint.

The built-in features such as forms, workflow and sites allows quick solutions to collaboration and automation. For extensive usage, you might want to consider the on-site or locally hosted SharePoint. This version of SharePoint usually involved higher cost of investment such as purchase of license and servers. The advantage of on-site version is the greater flexibility for customization. However, extensive customization would require programming and technical knowledge. You can always engage external SharePoint vendor to assist you on this.

The flipside

SharePoint has also it's downside. The fact that SharePoint can get many things done, the user can start to be ambitious to put more into this platform. This often can end up overwhelming the IT to provide the necessary support and customization. The cost can also start to drive up especially when you have basic cloud version of SharePoint has limited capabilities and requires upgrade to the more advance version.

Overall Goodness

Our advice for those that embarks into SharePoint to start small. It the usage is persistent (that means it lasted over a year of continuous usage) and it drive value to the user (time vs. cost), then consider expanding your SharePoint to other part of your organization. If you run into trouble, you can always contact us to help you out.

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