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Sunday, July 28, 2013

SharePoint in the Real World - Information Management - Analysis

Especially when dealing with content management need to know about INFORMATION.

Don't believe me, but believe the MCP's of the world and believe all those (big) technical driven implementations that failed.

You really need to know your information and how it is organized:
  • What information will your intranet, DMS, BI solution, etc contain?
  • Who will be using it and how?
  • How do they access it (...and find)
  • When do they need it

Microsoft set up some starter worksheets that WILL help:
I suggest you use this information and implement in the mother of all enterprise applications: Excel (or even better in a database). Why?

  • Maybe you want to modify your information structure at some point… where within our 1.000 sites did we use this site column? ;-)
  • What happens when we modify our taxonomy?

So again:

Analyse the information that you will put into your SharePoint environment. Write it down and publish it to the people involved.

Information Management - Findability & Data

Information is only usefull if users are able to find or use it (even if they don't even know they are using it - dashboard info for instance)!

Figure out what information you are going to, or is already, store(d) in your environment. Environment - not SharePoint. SharePoint is 'only' the enabler. Next thing you need to do is determine how your users want to find the information they need. Not how you (or your sponsers) want your users to find certain information.

So you need to determine:
Tools & Techniques
Okay so what tools and techniques does SharePoint offer OOB. With OOB I mean everything(!) excluding when you need to call the development team. Don't get scared SharePoint offers a lot like: rss, alert me, CQWP, filter web parts, search (esp 2010 offers a bunch of great new features) but also your navigation and plain and simpel browsing.

Your user is in need of input!
Machine generated alternative text:
They need lots of it. Not because they get a kick out of it but simply because they need it to get the job done.
What kind of data does the average user require?
  • SharePoint data
    • Corporate
      • Legal documents
    • Department
      • Contracts, agreements, SLA's, product info, status reports, agenda's
    • Project
      • Tasks, milestones, estimates, todo's, results (past, current and estimates)
    • Team
      • Again tasks, documents, etc
    • Social
      • Who's who?, Who's available, availability
  • All content that lives in SharePoint
  • Fileshares
  • LOB
  • Any other data that is available via an API