“SharePoint? Not our cup of tea”, some companies are convinced that SharePoint isn’t the right tool for them. That’s a pity, especially for small businesses. They can really benefit from working with SharePoint. When your business is growing you face mature information management, here SharePoint is indispensable. As an SME you don’t want to waste hours on inefficient work. You should use limited resources as smart as possible. That’s why I want to debunk some persistent prejudices about SharePoint.
SharePoint is too big for small companies
OK, maybe this was true in the early days. First you had to set up new servers and purchase expensive licenses. Then you had to hire a consultant. Before you even got started, you already spent at least 20 thousand euros. For small companies this exceeded the available budget by far. Nowadays, SharePoint Online can serve you for a few euros per user per year. If you also buy standard Intranet or Document management solutions, you can make a major step forward with an investment of five to ten thousand Euros.
SharePoint is only suitable for document and content management
Sure, SharePoint offers a central place to store your files. You can also do the lay-out of pages similar to working in a CMS system and collaborate on documents. However, SharePoint has more to offer. Collaboration in teams becomes much easier with help of SharePoint lists. You can integrate tasks lists, issue lists, product lists and other things, that are currently stored in external systems. Get rid of complicated Excel sheets stored in different locations right away. SharePoint makes information easily available. Also, thanks to PowerApps you can easily use and manage this data on mobile devices.
SharePoint isn’t user-friendly
I have to admit that in recent years SharePoint was introduced in companies without the right support and user training. Compare it to an extensive toolkit you offer people without self-building experience. When you ask them, without any explanation, to use the kit, this may cause a lot of frustration. They criticize the tools, while the real problem is lack of support. A company, and particularly the management team, has to emphasize why and when SharePoint has to be used. To succeed with SharePoint, employees must feel involved and willing to learn.
PS: Changing the technique is easy, but changing people in their working habits requires more attention and energy. Developers and companies are more and more aware of this, but there is still a long way to go…