Digital Workspace | A performHR Case Study

Digital Workspace | A performHR Case Study

Will Haywood – Lead SharePoint Consultant

"performHR have been working with Will and the Forsythes Technology team for over 18 months now, and it has been an absolute pleasure. Will came into our organisation to scope a solution that would fit our unique system needs and our culture, made recommendations of what that could include, and since delivering, has provided our team with invaluable support. A warm thank you for your expertise, design skill, and fantastic service.”

Darren & Hannah at performHR

performHR is an outsourced HR provider based in Newcastle. With over 30 employees located across the East Coast of Australia, it is unlikely to find more than a handful of the team in the same office at one time.

This model of a virtual workforce has traditionally been solved using remote terminal servers and virtual private networks (VPNs) to allow team members to access the local shared data drives and applications.

Instead performHR decided to eschew this model due to the expense, inflexibility and poor user experience it provided and push into a 100% cloud based model primarily using Software as a Service (SaaS) applications for their core business application suite. Office 365 inclusive of Exchange, SharePoint and Yammer being an integral part of this.

We met performHR around 18 months ago where they were seeking out assistance with SharePoint.

Through a consultation process we prioritised out a number of initial projects:

  1. Client Document storage and governance enhancements
  2. Alignment of SharePoint platform to performHR core values
  3. Security and Governance overhaul

Client Documents

Many organisations, especially ones using older mapped drives or shared folders would know how unorganised their documents are due to changing business needs and changes to team members who store and utilise the data in these drives. While some employees recognise and try to sort through the chaos, ultimately a systematic approach is required with buy in from the entire organisation to remedy the issue.

A key failing of shared drives is the lack of governance around the creation and storage of data where it fails to provide any templating. This is often a catalyst for companies to look to a more robust document management system such as SharePoint to assist.

With performHR, we scoped out a new folder structure for their client data and built an automated way of generating this structure whenever a new client was onboarded. It also offers the flexibility to add some of the extra functions that are not as common across all clients.

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We were also able to automate the migration of the data from their existing folder structure into the new one with some migration tools and some custom scripts to take care of some of the more eccentric data.

Alignment of SharePoint to PerformHR Core Values

The second stage involved taking SharePoint from simply a number of folders of documents to a more integrated platfrom for performHR. The default interfaces and styling options available in SharePoint are quite limited, so breaking away from these is a common step and one that can really transform an intranet into something the company is proud of and part of its internal culture.

We ran a number of sessions in the PerformHR office with team members from a wide cross-section of departmental areas to gather as many ideas as possible for what functionality the front page would contain. Common ideas such as what the navigation would look like and link to, colours, headings, widgets (or webparts in SharePoint speak), and where they would go, came out and were thrown around.

We decided to focus on enablement and allowing the page to be the start point for any task that would be required by the team. This includes a multi-level navigation system, links to other cloud software services in use, upcoming corporate events and quick links to documents that the user had most recently been using anywhere in SharePoint or OneDrive.

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Security and Governance

Lack of security and governance is a common theme when looking at an older shared folder system.

Security is a deceptively simple function of products such as SharePoint, one can select a file or folder and simply share it with a user that they wish to provide access to. While this works in theory, the mess it creates is incredible and results in a totally unmanageable and unknowable system.

Forsythes Technology enacted a plan with assistance from PerformHR to restructure the permission matrix and protocols for applying permissions across SharePoint, creating a system that was both easy to use, easy to administer and most importantly resulted in a highly secure system.

Get in touch!

If you are having any difficulties with your current document management process, whether it be shared drives, Dropbox or SharePoint get in contact with one of our staff for a free consultation.

1300 766 661