team member sitting in front of computer and smiling

What is SharePoint?

We hear this question quite a bit. So let's talk about it. SharePoint is a platform that includes both a cloud file document library as well as an internal website for collaboration. You can collaborate and share information across the organization, quickly, safely, and securely. Whether you are looking for a place to store cloud document, collaborate, and co-author on files SharePoint has you covered. You can even have a beautiful Intranet that we like to call a landing site.

There are many features and tools available in SharePoint, and that is probably what makes it seem 'complex'. The wide variety of tools and features that are automatically included in SharePoint is what makes it so great for all small and medium sized business.

This blog will have a look at why having a good understanding of SharePoint is essential for user adoption as well as for the company, how to get you started, and talk about why training is so important for adoption.

A storage location and so much more!

One of the first reasons that springs to mind is that SharePoint is not a typical old network share or NAS. It is also not just another cloud storage. SharePoint is light years above the other cloud storage applications like Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive.

SharePoint will offer many other features. Amongst them:

  • Version history
  • Co-authoring
  • Custom metadata columns
  • Variety of content types (Including QuickBooks!)
  • Labels (sensitivity and retention)
  • Sharing (externally and internally)
  • Workflows through Power Automate
  • Email and text alerts

And many more!

Real Life Example

Imagine upper management chose SharePoint Online as your new Document Management System, and the file migrations will take place over the next few weeks. Now you are in the situation where it is going to happen but what do you do next? You can't just hope for the best , can you? Below is can example of what could transpire:

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How to Implement SharePoint the Right Way:

1. Identify SharePoint Champions

Some internal users may have some SharePoint experience already. Identify those users as they can be great resources:

  • They can be Site Owners for their Teams or SharePoint sites,
  • They could help other users with training in the organization
  • They can be great for providing suggestions on how to build out your tenant to meet their needs

2. Users and admin roles

When we look at SharePoint management, there are three distinct roles: Users, Super Users, and Administrators. These three levels won't have the same responsibilities. It is important to choose the right users for these roles as they will be crucial to helping build out and maintain your SharePoint infrastructure.

Looking at the list from the most privileged to the least:

  1. SharePoint Site Collection Administrator
  2. SharePoint Site Owner
  3. SharePoint User (MembersVisitors, etc...)

3. Basic training

Start with basic training is crucial. Breaking trainings down per group or per department/office is a great place to start. Trainings are usually an hour in length using Microsoft Teams to allow them to use the tools that have been implemented. This allows them to learn fast enough, and practice the new ways of working to complete their daily tasks. Therefore, plan the topics for each training session to be efficient and always leave time at the end for questions.

Here is a list of recommended points to hit on during basic training:

  • Understanding SharePoint lists and document libraries
  • Creating, uploading, downloading, deleting documents in SharePoint
  • Sharing documents or a Site (internally and externally)
  • How to find additional options like version history
  • Understanding metadata and SharePoint columns
  • Creating custom views
  • Restoring deleted documents in the user's Recycle Bin or in site settings
  • Understanding how Search works when trying to find files
  • Difference between OneDrive and SharePoint and how they are connected
  • How to sync SharePoint files to your File Explorer or Finder

4. Advanced training

If your users or administrators already know how to perform the items from the list above, then they could potentially act as Site Owners for their team sites and folders.

Note that giving internal users advanced training and a greater role involves more responsibilities. Site Owners will need to also take care of the security aspect by managing site permissions, adding and removing users from their site for example. They may also need to act as support for other site members.

Advanced training can include the following:

  • Understanding permission inheritance and how to break it on a folder or document library level
  • Managing SharePoint permissions
  • Managing site settings (lists, libraries, site)
  • Co-authoring
  • Create flows using Power Automate
  • Create, edit, and customize SharePoint pages including adding webparts and quick links
  • Customize document views
  • Restore deleted items from the Recycle Bin
  • Enabling or disabling site features
  • Creating new SharePoint sites and Hub Sites

Why You Need SharePoint Training

Microsoft has put a lot of effort and energy into making SharePoint the best place to store your cloud documents. On top of that Microsoft also includes SharePoint storage in your Microsoft licensing. Building SharePoint sites correctly and having trainings will make the implementation much smoother and comfort the users especially if SharePoint is new to them. At Netlogic Computer we always using trainings and highly recommend you do as well.

Having an expert explain how to do things in SharePoint will only not only put your users at ease, it will also ensure that you are using Microsoft 365 to its fullest extent.

If you are looking for a Microsoft partner to complete these trainings, reach out to us today!