Efficiently running a business involves keeping track of many different details, documents, and data points.
The ability to automate, increase efficiency, and have all business data and information in one centralised location can reduce human error and can also increase the productivity and success of your business.
SharePoint is an innovative collaboration platform that can allow your business to increase efficiency and productivity. This is your complete guide to how SharePoint works and what it can do for your organisation.
What is SharePoint and how does it benefit businesses?
SharePoint, developed by Microsoft is a web-based collaboration platform that integrates nicely with Office 365 and other applications and databases. SharePoint is useful for the management of information, intranet portals, and collaboration within internal networks.
It was first released in 2001 and today has an estimated 190 million users. SharePoint allows for increased productivity in small to medium-sized businesses and enterprises. The platform allows for workflow collaboration, secure sharing, and access to information all in one place.
What can businesses achieve with SharePoint?
SharePoint provides seamless integration of commonly used desktop applications, email, and web browsers. This means users can comfortably use the same programs they are used to while taking advantage of the features of SharePoint at the same time.
Increase Workflow Efficiency
With the use of SharePoint, employees are able to initiate and track common processes. For example, automating purchase request workflow across an entire organisation. SharePoint allows you to track a process, manage the steps required, and see where each item is up to. Collecting required signatures is a breeze. Recipients can seamlessly sign off on the document through SharePoint and send it back.
Manage Business Records
Keeping accurate records and following federal, state, and local regulations is important for every business. SharePoint allows businesses to easily organise business information and adhere to record-keeping and privacy regulations, amongst others.
Make Business Data Easily Accessible
With the use of SharePoint, employees can more easily access the data they need to carry out their roles and projects. Employees can even customise their SharePoint experience to an extent to personalise it to their needs.
Gather Important Client and Customer Information
SharePoint enables efficient information collection from clients and customers. Its powerful collection capabilities help ensure the information is accurate and reduces the risk of inaccurate and incomplete information.
Access to Real-Time Information
Employees are able to make better decisions when they have the whole picture, live, as it happens. With SharePoint, employees can see pertinent information in real-time which allows for more informed and timely decisions.
Collaborate on Team Projects
Working on team projects can come with challenges. SharePoint stores all files and information in one location, so that team members can access everything they need when they need it. This increases productivity and eliminates the duplication of effort and manual information-sourcing that can slow down teams and projects.
Every employee can be kept up to speed on upcoming events and deadlines with the integration of company calendars with SharePoint. Calendars can be centralised so employees, teams and departments have visibility of upcoming events, milestones and deadlines. Employees can also set alerts and reminders to either be alerted of business activity or to avoid missing deadlines.
Manual repetitive tasks are an opportunity for time and cost savings. SharePoint allows you to automate these tasks, improving workflow processes and driving efficiencies. We regularly see dramatic changes in workplace productivity through automation and productivity improvements made possible by SharePoint.
Real-world SharePoint case studies
HIC has provided industrial solutions to mining, agriculture, construction and power generation industries since 1978. HIC provides a range of industrial products and services including asset management, engineering and mechanical services, process equipment and wear prevention. HIC has trusted Forsythes Technology for over 7 years to provide IT solutions that fit their organisation. Recently Forsythes Technology implemented a hybrid cloud Office 365 and on-premise IT solution.
Outcomes for HIC: The implementation of SharePoint Online resulted in digitised manual processes, lower capital cost, faster access to documents and information, and a decrease in replicated data between offices.
Marks & Spencer
Global retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) boasts a tradition of personal customer service that dates back to the 1880s when it catered to customers in towns across the UK. Today, M&S operates on a global scale in an evolving, competitive retail market. M&S employees use Office 365 and SharePoint Online to connect in real-time with colleagues across the world, enabling the historical responsive and personalised service the company is built on.
Outcomes for M&S: A mobile-first intranet built on SharePoint Online connects over 80,000 global employees, from offices to stores. The implementation of SharePoint Online resulted in distributed teams and departments collaborating on long-term projects more effectively. Having all documents and digital resources centralised and organised saves time. For the business, this means faster collaborative decision-making.
American auto racing company NASCAR faces enormous logistical challenges every year. With 38 events held annually across the USA, NASCAR is constantly on the move. The company previously relied on standalone files and email to coordinate the many aspects of events and travel.
Outcomes for NASCAR: The implementation of SharePoint Online has resulted in employees collaborating simultaneously on documents and securely accessing the information they need on the road or from the track. Productivity is stated as being at a “peak level” company-wide and races are being set up and operated with maximum efficiency.
Optimise your business workflows and processes
Forsythes Technology is a Microsoft Gold Partner with a team of highly-skilled SharePoint technicians. Firstly, we get to know your business’s goals and needs and then devise a plan to help you reach them. Every aspect is handled by our highly experienced team, from strategy and custom development to deployment and training. We also provide ongoing SharePoint managed services beyond implementation when required.
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