Why Intranet - Microsoft SharePoint

IOTAP a SharePoint Development, Migration & Consulting Company has been working with the SharePoint platform for over 10 years now and is a Microsoft gold certified partner for delivering excellence on the Microsoft enterprise platform. IOTAP’s SharePoint team has an average experience of 7.5 years and has worked for numerous clients across the globe on hundreds of implementations & migrations on SharePoint.

In most organizations Information is “King” - Over the years Information has more than doubled in organizations. Offices, departments and employees are spread across continents which makes discovering and sharing content difficult and thus effecting decision making and productivity. To retain employee productivity collaboration is key.

An Intranet document management system based on the Microsoft SharePoint platform’s sole purpose is to make users engage in better communication, collaboration and productivity. An Intranet takes much of what is good about the World Wide Web and uses it to help companies collaborate internally. More recently this enterprise social software has bridged the personal-business divide, and begun to give employees a voice and platform. According to Gartner, enterprise portals are on CIO's lists of top ten technology focus areas and Forrester Research reports strong growth in intranet development and usage.

Customer Problem

Lack of good organization and governance

Most organizations are still using old fashioned file shares to store documents, with some using nothing more than the Windows ‘My Documents’ folder. These elementary file stores make it impossible to organize files in a useful way. Not only are concepts like metadata unheard of in these environments, but even well thought out folder and file structures are near impossible to maintain. Files are located in numerous local stores and access is patchy - policies simply cannot be enforced.

Limited collaborative working

Most organizations use desktop applications to create files, local folders to store them, and emails to share them. In these environments collaborative working is almost impossible. Users cannot access the same file, multiple versions exist in different locations and coordination of any activity is extremely difficult.

Ineffective search

A consequence of the type of file-share systems described above is a lack of adequate search. Documents on local machines and even file-shares simply cannot take advantage of the sort of search and retrieval technology that many users now expect and require.

Customer Solution IOTAP’s Microsoft SharePoint Intranet 

Enterprise class organization and governance

SharePoint supports content types to control the organization and governance of documents. Content classification helps define and control the following:

Content types, when configured correctly and used in conjunction with sites, document libraries, and views, allow a user-friendly document structure to be created, enforced, and maintained. Content types also help enforce good governance of documents, by defining records and information management rules.

Full collaborative working

SharePoint 2010, and SharePoint 2013 in particular, supports full collaborative working, using a number of tools:

  • SharePoint sites and document libraries support user integration, allowing users to be contacted directly from the SharePoint interface where their name appears next to a document. This integration can be expanded with Microsoft Lync allowing real time conversations to be conducted.
  • Version control, version history, and check in/out allow controlled collaborative working on documents.
  • Office Web Apps, and the Microsoft Office 2013 suite, supports online and offline collaborative working including real time co-authoring of documents.

OneDrive for Business provides a dedicated personal storage space for documents, and allows external users to be invited in to view and/ or edit content. Offline sync allows collaboration to continue when there is no Internet connection.

Fully featured search 

The SharePoint 2013 search engine comes packed with a number of powerful content and people features. It also includes a range of document specific functionality:

  •   The search engine indexes all file content - Results are automatically security trimmed Full document ‘hover’ preview (within search results, for Office and PDF documents) Inline content pulled directly through in search results
  •   Icons to identify file formats Other useful features include:
    •   Major and minor version, with full history and comments
    •   Check in and out
    •   Approval workflows
  •   Close integration with Microsoft Office