SharePoint is a software that is used by many businesses that are looking for a web-based collaborative platform. It launched in 2001 and has been around for an outstanding 18 years. In those 18 years it has gained many supporters while at the same time gaining many people who were left dissatisfied. Today we’re going to be looking into SharePoint’s pros and cons and seeing if it is actually worth the price, and who is right -the detractors or the supporters.
SharePoint has seen success largely because of their ability to cater to many clients needs and desires due to a wide array of services. Below are some of the features that make it one of the best web-based collaborative platforms in the business.
The Wide Variety of Features
One of the most interesting features of SharePoint is one that is relatively new. The Modern version of SharePoint includes an AI that helps create personalized experiences. These personalized experiences are things such: as search suggestions, targeted search results, pulling up recent documents, sites, and even the news. On top of this exciting new AI feature it also offers: workflow management, a place for your team to share and work on documents collaboratively, a way to schedule, and an opportunity to create your own intranet. However, SharePoint’s benefits do not stop at just these features
Works Seamlessly with Office365
SharePoint being included into Office365 gives it an advantage over its competitors. Other companies may have to advertise to get their software noticed, SharePoint’s advantage is that it is already in software most companies are using. With SharePoint being a part of Office365 you also have the ability to directly edit documents from the 365 menu. With it being included into Office 365 you can easily upload any document that you were recently working on in any of the 365 programs to SharePoint. Overall it being included in Office365 allows for simplified information exchange, better productivity, and a lower price.
Most cloud-based storage systems have security issues. One example of this is Apple’s cloud system which was breached and resulted in the leaking and stealing of personal photos and information. This hasn’t happened to SharePoint because SharePoint is associated with Microsoft. Being a part of Microsoft means that SharePoint has a multi-layer security system, online data encryption, multi-factor authentication, and different levels of permissions. Security is vitally important for personal/business documents that potentially have confidential information on them and SharePoint’s ties to Microsoft give it some of the best security in the business.
SharePoint may have the largest market share, but does that necessarily make it the best? As with everything in life, nothing is perfect -not even SharePoint. Here we will explore some of its disadvantages.
Can Be Confusing
Depending on the needs of the business, the amount of features SharePoint has can be simply overwhelming. A small business may only need document management and real-time collaboration, but SharePoint offers so much more than that. Being that it can be confusing a smaller company may opt for a stand-alone service that manages documents and allows for real-time collaboration only. SharePoint may be so difficult for some to understand that there are even online training courses offered by Stay Green Academy. It can take months for developers to learn how to use the program and 1-2 weeks for everyday users. This is a long learning curve that can potentially slow down the productivity of the company and or project(s).
Lengthy Design Time and Costs.
One of the best features of SharePoint is that it allows for intranet customization, conversely there is a notable con associated with this -Time. The average amount of time it took to create a customized intranet was 1.2 years in 2018 according to the Nielsen Norman Group. This along with the cost of SharePoint is a lot of time and money to invest and may be unobtainable for smaller businesses.
The main choice for whether or not one should use SharePoint comes down to what you need. If there is a similar service being offered for less price then you might choose that over SharePoint. The reason why SharePoint has a price some people don’t agree with is SharePoint has many features and you pay for all of them. There are services out there that do a handful of features for a fraction of the cost. A small business who needs all or most of SharePoint’s features but doesn’t want to pay SharePoint’s price can look towards HyperOffice. HyperOffice is a program that rivals SharePoint in terms of functionality and at a cheaper price for the user. SharePoint is deep and complicated, small businesses are probably better offer using alternatives such as HyperOffice.