Recently, we’ve delved into some of the common obstacles to effective Enterprise Collaboration. This has surfaced a number of general obstacles that must be navigated. Given that SharePoint is a popular enabler of enterprise collaboration, we thought it would be worthwhile to elaborate more specifically on the common SharePoint pain points we see across our clients.
We see the 5 roadblocks below as the most common.
If your site is difficult to use, it will quickly be abandoned. Inconsistent user interfaces, unintuitive navigation, and confusing site configurations minimize the productivity gains that come with enterprise collaboration. If your users are asking, “How does this help me better do my job?” you may have hit this common stumbling block.
SharePoint is powerful, but it is often deployed with only basic functionality (like simple team sites) and treated as a glorified file sharing system. Consequently, users may attempt to use SharePoint for purposes better handled with another tool, or acquire unnecessary applications to perform functions that SharePoint is well-suited for. Be sure to take an enterprise perspective.
Security and Access
Sensitive content is often exposed to unintended audiences due to poor design and implementation, raising issues of confidentiality and compliance. This risk is even greater when a SharePoint rollout includes a powerful search engine such as Microsoft’s FAST. Search should be speedy and efficient, but if anyone can find anything, it’s time to take a look at your governance plan.
Don’t let SharePoint exist in a vacuum. When collaboration tools are focused exclusively on departmental needs, your users miss out on enterprise-wide benefits. If your Sales team loves SharePoint and the rest of your organization barely signs in, they might be working in a departmental silo.
Lack of governance can lead to SharePoint ghost towns abandoned by users, or total sprawl and unmanaged growth. Without oversight, you run the risk of losing content, functionality, and development in the wilds of an unregulated SharePoint environment. Control and consistency are key.
If one or more of these pain points sounds familiar, you should consider an Enterprise Collaboration Roadmap. These obstacles can be overcome with the right planning and design.