SharePoint promises a secure place to store, organize, share, and access information from almost any device via all popular web browsers. In theory, it’s a great goal. In practice, many IT departments are struggling to realize the true value of their SharePoint investment.
Why the disconnect? The biggest issue with successfully deploying SharePoint is when companies do not commit fully to using it as their defacto source for enterprise information. In fact, nearly three out of four of SharePoint’s 125 million users say they don’t have access to external data repositories within SharePoint. That means they can’t get to everyday data such as email, CRM, document management systems, and ERP data held in legacy applications.
What’s the remedy? Here are five simple tips that will help enterprises immediately realize the benefits of their SharePoint investments:
1) Incorporate External File Stores
Enterprise indexing is the key to incorporating structured and unstructured data within SharePoint without having to physically integrate the actual data itself (this can include DMS, CRM, ERP, email, scanned files and cloud apps). This simple fix provides users access from a single location.
2) Virtual Migration
Indexing data where it currently resides and then making it available from within SharePoint allows IT departments to virtually migrate content. That’s important because most organizations have a wealth of legacy data (held, for example, in repositories like Lotus Notes) that employees need to access from time to time, but are time consuming, expensive and difficult to physically move or convert.
3) SharePoint Consolidation
It is possible to federate multiple SharePoint sites without converting anything – whether bringing multiple sites together or upgrading to a new version. The benefit is that users will have seamless access to information that may have previously been spread across multiple sites from a single point.
4) Keep It Simple and Easy to Use
By simply exercising the first three points, the SharePoint interface employees know and understand is retained – there’s nothing new for them to learn.
5) Reduce Project Risk
With enterprise indexing there’s no need for custom coding or expensive integration (not to mention the elimination of data migration and conversion), so IT departments can significantly lower the risks that the SharePoint project might fail. With these simple fixes, SharePoint becomes easier to deploy and use – all while increasing ROI.
To learn more about maximizing your SharePoint investment through enterprise search download this eBook.