Microsoft SharePoint 

The need of the hour for organizations from around the world is a superior way to enhance their data management capabilities. They are looking for agile approaches to successfully incorporate winning strategies into end business results. The platform used to implement such strategies would have to come with superior usability, reliability, mobility, speed, effectiveness and safety. One of the most powerful platforms to check all of these boxes is Microsoft’s SharePoint. It is an enterprise-level, web-based, collaborative business platform that works in conjunction with the Microsoft Office 365 suite of products.

SharePoint Overview

SharePoint is a collection of multiple and powerful products, technologies, solutions, applications and programs. It comes with the capabilities to provide multiple and meaningful solutions to several and complex use cases across the organization.

Areas of Usage

  • Document and multimedia management system
  • Enterprise-level social networking
  • Reporting and project management tool
  • Electronic data capture and processing
  • Learning and development tool
  • Task management and calendar
  • Team collaboration 

Features of SharePoint 2021

SharePoint 2021 uses SharePoint, SharePoint On-Premises, and hybrid scenarios to provide an improved user experience to all the businesses using the platform.

Homepage

Create a custom homepage for your organization with SharePoint to give your team a modern experience with intuitive UI and UX. You can identify and follow all of your organization’s sites and get news from them. You can create, manage and modify the sites from the home page. 

Team sites 

SharePoint’s team sites are designed to give an ultra-modern experience and interface to your teams with modern news, quick links and site activity. All of these are optimized for mobile and come with faster site provisioning, in-line editing of the quick start menu among many others that make team sites more collaborative. 

Communication sites 

Communication sites are similar to publishing sites. They use modern pages and do not impose the burden of creating subsites. You can easily create beautiful and mobile-optimized web pages with low-code or no-code experience. Similar to team sites, you can share news, events, showcase products, team, or event, and create our own design based on your requirements.

Lists and libraries 

SharePoint 2021 is all about providing an interactive and intuitive experience. Your team can easily create, upload folders, copy and move files, pin documents, add files as links and do so much more. You can also create custom views, change file info, access previews, and additional details of files, format columns, and add rich location data among others. 

Web parts

The look and feel of web parts have been updated with the latest editions or SharePoint. It is now easy to resize, move, and design custom web parts to make your team’s user experience reflect your brand’s identity.  

Search 

The search feature of SharePoint 2021 is extremely fast and responsive to every character you type. In fact, you can see the results of your search term the moment you type the letters in the search box and it becomes highly contextual to update the results, as you type in the search box. The search results are grouped by type and SharePoint start page, hub sites, communication sites, and modern team sites provide a modern search experience to users.  

Hybrid experience

The SharePoint 2021 and Office 365 allows your team to benefit from both the platforms and gives your team a hybrid experience.

 

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Why Use SharePoint?

Organizations use SharePoint for various aspects of their business purposes depending on their use cases. SharePoint is used by hospitals and health care, pharma, staffing and recruiting, financial services, construction, manufacturing, production, telecom, management consulting, higher education, government administration, and non-profit organizations, and several other industries and sectors.

Imagine those team emails that pile up every now and then and all the documents stored in racks.  It can become more than daunting to respond to or keep a track of them.  SharePoint, with its extremely powerful and versatile document management system, enables individuals and teams to securely store, streamline, organize, share, collaborate and archive their documents, information, content seamlessly and access them on any device or any location anytime. All of this, while being one of the most secure collaborative-platforms in 2021.

Benefits of Using SharePoint 2021

SharePoint 2021 uses SharePoint, SharePoint On-Premises, and hybrid scenarios to provide an improved user experience to all the businesses using the platform.

Effective Communication

With SharePoint 2021, communication of the right information is made extremely easy for every level of your employees. This plays a vital part in making mission-critical decisions. Teams can collaborate irrespective of time and place reliably and securely to do work, interact, and share information. 

Sharing and Tracking 

Teams can share the documents after editing, reviewing, and working on them in real time. It is also complete with information about the people editing the documents and the specific edits that are being made. 

Flexible Solution for all 

SharePoint is available to be installed and used on Cloud, on-premises, and hybrid environments. The platform can be used as a standalone solution or with Microsoft Office 365 depending upon organizational needs. The SharePoint Online Service is apt for small, medium, large enterprises. Whereas SharePoint Online can help companies to reduce IT and Hardware involvement. Used along with Office 365 enterprise subscriptions or as an on-premise solution, organizations can take the maximum benefits that fit their needs.

Cost-effectiveness 

SharePoint seamlessly integrates several of an enterprise’s solutions into a single, manageable system that helps organizations to provide solutions to various use cases. In addition to this, the development costs, IT infrastructure costs and management costs are reduced by simply implementing one SharePoint platform with its endless evolving capabilities. Its features have successfully allowed organizations to develop applications and manage operations reducing the overall cost of ownership (TCO).

Seamless Deployment

One of the biggest benefits of the platform is that, with SharePoint’s powerful APIs and web services, the platform can be integrated into almost any legacy systems and other old or existing or any new software and technologies.  

Corporate Portal 

With the powerful intranet, internet, and extranet capabilities and features, your organization can use the powerful platform to use SharePoint not only as a website but as a power-packed intelligent, and interactive corporate portal. Corporate portals can save various business information and business functions in the form of sites and intranet portals to allow the various stakeholders of the organization to be informed and aware.  

Modern intranet

SharePoint’s modern intranet makes it very easy for organizations to create landing pages, corporate communication portals, departmental sites such as IT, Marketing, HR, Finance, Sales departments.

Better User Experience 

SharePoint brings an ultra-high-end experience with site collections that are associated with a hub that contains elements as navigation, branding, publishing, search, sharing, and permissions, multilingual, performance. 

Productivity

SharePoint integrates seamlessly with legacy systems, existing software, technologies, and web applications, through web services and integrating-APIs. SharePoint analytics, business intelligence and workflows are designed and optimized to help organizations gain insights while automating the business process to increase productivity.

 

Collaboration 

Collaboration in SharePoint helps organizations to create relevant communication KPIs, metrics, systems, tools, structured and organized processes, roles and responsibilities, and interactions among relevant people.

Improved Information Management 

Organizations can allow limited access to relevant employees to improve information security. This makes it easy for collaborators to search in document libraries and access documents securely with the relevant permissions, check for version information and metadata to know who and when someone has worked on the same document, and track the changes made. 

Customization and scalability

The SharePoint platform is a collection of products, software, technologies that make it easy for your organization to scale operations. Organizations can, therefore, benefit from the capabilities of SharePoint to build functionalities and customize the platform as per their business needs.

 

Central Administration 

SharePoint configurations, systems settings and security can be monitored and controlled from a centralized SharePoint console. This makes backup, restoration, upgrades, and other deeper control mechanisms are seamlessly conducted by the administration at the central level.

Reporting

SharePoint allows your team to effortlessly track, record, schedule and analyze various information-sharing aspects.  SharePoint reporting tools also allow for a comprehensive overview of the SharePoint environment to the stakeholders of SharePoint.

 

Better ROI 

SharePoint is an extremely economical way to share, organize, and collaborate. Organizations can drastically improve their ROI with team collaboration, content, knowledge and document management, employee communities, automation of workflow and processes, corporate intranet, effective corporate communications, branding.

 

SharePoint Apps

When it comes to mobile usage, SharePoint 2021 app comes as both a stand-alone and mobile app. The extremely powerful application helps employees to search and discover relevant content such as communication sites, news posts, and other related sites.

Standalone App

The SharePoint standalone app comes as a separate application that resolves the business need. Your team can download the app from the public SharePoint store from their organization’s internal catalogue and platform and install them on the SharePoint sites. 

Mobile App

Microsoft SharePoint comes with a mobile app to access a limited number of permitted sites, files, and collaborate with your teammates and work on tasks on the go. Employees can effortlessly access websites, news, records, and collaborate within the organization in a secure way. 

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SharePoint Deployment Options

SharePoint is a collaboration platform that is designed to fit the requirements of any organization irrespective of the size of the organization and the place and time to work.

Please find the deployment options below

  • SharePoint on-premises
  • SharePoint Online with Microsoft Office 365
  • SharePoint Hybrid 

On-premises Deployment

Several sectors from government organizations, finance companies, healthcare, production, and manufacturing organizations generally deal with sensitive data that cannot be stored elsewhere except on-premises. These organizations can easily customize SharePoint and maintain their own governance policies for accessing the platform for information, internally and externally, extracts project reports. 

Online Deployment 

The organizations going for SharePoint online have to buy a license to use SharePoint Online. Microsoft takes care of the necessary infrastructure in its data centres and applies patches regularly. The company also ensures latency reduction, high network bandwidth, disaster recovery capability with industry compliance standards and Active Directory for authentication. 

Hybrid deployment 

With the hybrid deployment option, your organization can benefit from the features of both SharePoint On-Premises and SharePoint Online. The authentication for the deployment can be on the Active directory on-premises or Active directory online based on your preference and usage. Organizations are required to follow the compliance rules based on regulatory authorities of various countries.  

 

SharePoint Pricing

SharePoint Online can be licensed per user and your organization will be charged for the same. Organizations can choose a standalone solution or combine it with Office 365. The pricing is as low as $5 per user per month.

SharePoint Licensing

The Intranet sites for your organization are licensed using a Server/CAL (Client Access License) model.

SharePoint Standard CAL: for the core capabilities of SharePoint. 

SharePoint Enterprise CAL: for the enterprise-level, full capabilities of SharePoint

Microsoft SharePoint Online is available as a standalone platform but can also be coupled with Microsoft Office 365

It comes with two plans depending on the requirement of your organization.

Plans 1 and 2

The first one starts from $5 per user per month and the second one starts from $10 per user per month.

Please find the pricing for Office 365 Enterprise below:

  1. E1: $8 per user per month
  2. E3: $10 per user per month
  3. E5: $35 per user per month

Roles in SharePoint

Product owner: 

The product owner is responsible for the platform and assigns the different roles.

Business owner: 

A business owner is the one who decides how SharePoint is implemented in an organization.

Farm server administrator:

The farm server admin takes charge of the hardware that supports the platform.

Farm system administrator:

The farm system admin is responsible for the operating system that runs SharePoint.

Contributors:

Contributors are teammates who collaborate with each other and make use of the SharePoint environment

SharePoint trainees:

The new recruits who need training on the platform from senior members

SharePoint power user:

The primary user of the SharePoint

SharePoint developer:

The developer optimizes and implements the SharePoint application as per the enterprise’s need to increase the productivity

SharePoint business analyst:

The business analyst evaluates and analyses the organization’s workflow and suggests how to implement SharePoint 

SharePoint QA analyst:

The QA analyst plays a crucial role in the organization during the implementation of SharePoint.

User administrator:

The user admin is responsible for users and groups, resetting passwords, managing service requests, and monitoring the service health of the platform for seamless usage.

The Future and Scope of SharePoint

SharePoint takes file sharing and collaboration to a whole other level on any device. It is a content management, collaborative, and extensible platform that can drastically increase the productivity of your team. The scope and utility of SharePoint are encouraging and promising, and the business reflection for the platform is a reflection of the same. SharePoint is built on ASP.NET, WCF, & .net and allows professionals from a wide background to benefit from its features. 

Final verdict

SharePoint can be easily accessed regardless of the time, place, and device. SharePoint 2021 is a platform that enables and empowers people to transform the way they work. It ensures that the existing IT investments, structured processes, and compliance are taken enough care of. SharePoint provides a modern experience and an integrated platform, collaborative environment, and procedures that meet the needs of the businesses. SharePoint helps people and businesses to optimize the way they do their work and enables them to improve their agility, innovation and growth. 

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