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Most of the time, I get question from new friends who work in other technologies that "SharePoint is for Content Management/WebSite Creation?". Well, it's common because SharePoint is sucessor of Microsoft Content Management Server (CMS) which dedicatedly used for Web Content Management. SharePoint Portal 2001 predominantly focus on Content Management feature, whereas the later releases came with more features. It's very easy to create Colloboration portal with SharePoint in Minutes where it requires couple of months to develop in .Net from scratch.

What extra I get in SharePoint?
Let me rephrase this question as "Apart from Content Management what else I can do with SharePoint?" It's not so simple to explain all features in few lines. SharePoint can be used as intranet portal where each teams can have their own sites that has their project related tasks, announcements, blogs, wikis and more.

I have thousands of documents/records. May I use SharePoint?
Yes. SharePoint can be used as document/records repository which typically called as Libraries. Many IT/Non-IT companies use SharePoint for KM(Knowledge Management). Even built-in/custom workflows can be attached to those libraries for review and approval process. Meta Data can be added to the libraries and can be enforced to maintain organization standards. The document libraries can be opened with Windows Explorer and copy/move/delete documents just like a windows folder. Even users can upload documents just by send mail to the configured site mail id with document as attachment.

SharePoint Workspace (formerly called as Microsoft Groove) allows to take copy of all documents to local PC(ie. Take content to offline). Users can update the documents and it can be synchronized when connect to the network. This avoids network connectivity all the time to access content.

I have huge content from different sources. May I use SharePoint to consolidate those data and available for search?
Yes. SharePoint can be used a search center and it has own search crawling process that reads data from SharePoint sites/external data sources and create indexes. The external sources can be shared folders(File Shares), Exchange public folders, Lotus Notes and even Internet websites. Most importantly security is ensured here. ie Users can see contents on which they have access.

I need to watch how my organization running. May I get help with SharePoint?
Yes. Business Intelligence is highly important for any business and SharePoint provides rich BI feature. CXOs can have their own Dashboards, Scorecards which has KPIs(Key Performance Indicators). KPIs are helpful to view the data with indicators rather as Numbers. SharePoint 2010 Business Intelligence features allows to get data from external sources like SAP, Siebel, DB2, SQL Server and display on SharePoint site. So all the required content is about just one click far. Even content can be written back to external sources (ie. Read and Write).

I need Wikipedia site for my organization. Can SharePoint help me?
Yes. SharePoint provides powerful Wiki feature that can be used from small organizations to large enterprises. Creating a New Wiki site and give access to all users won't take more than a hour.

I need to simulate Yahoo profiles for my organization. SharePoint has any feature for that?
Yes. SharePoint has User Profile site which can take details from LDAP and display in a single profile page. SharePoint site can be integrated with Communicator and users can search other users, know their presence, communicate with them. SharePoint 2010 provides social networking features like activity feeds, Tags and Notes.

I need a site for our Helpdesk team to manage Issues. How can SharePoint help?
SharePoint provides the feasibility to install custom Application Templates which are available on Microsoft site to download. With Help Desk site template, SharePoint provides rich Helpdesk site features for helpdesk representatives to manage user issues. Managers can view helpdesk representatives response time and other metrics as required.

Download SharePoint 2010 Application Templates : http://techsolutions.net/Blog/tabid/65/EntryId/17/Fab-40-Templates-for-MOSS-2010.aspx
Download SharePoint 2007/WSS 3.0 Application Templates : http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=aae4cb5a-91d2-4f1b-9a45-3bb894e218f8&displaylang=en

posted on Tuesday, November 23, 2010 5:45 PM

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