Businesses run on data, and the secret of success in an ever-growing competitive world is how well you manage your data. Today, most of the data generated by businesses are stored in a digital format, on a cloud storage platform. With the advent of Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, and the likes, storing data on the cloud has become more accessible to businesses of all sizes. These platforms often come with a ‘Enterprise’ or ‘Business’ plan that allows you to store a significant volume of data and gives easy access to the data to the members of your team. But is that enough for your business? Is accessibility the only aspect of data management that you should be focusing on. Well, if you want to make your business process more efficient, then you should be getting more than just ‘accessibility.’
In data management, the aim is not just to make the data accessible but to use that data to be more productive. This is where cloud data storage platforms fall short. You can only upload and share the document with individual members of your team. This is good when you are working with low volumes of data.
But most businesses do not. They generate a ton of data every day, in the form of customer data, invoices, purchase orders, and whatnot. Searching for a specific piece of information from such discrete sets is a tedious task, and your employees would have to spend a lot of workhours searching for the data. This drags down the productivity levels.
So, you need a system that comes with an advanced search engine that allows you to find the data not just by file name or keywords, but also by other attributes like date, metadata, source etc. You do not need to go through every individual folder and search for it.
What is the extent of collaboration between teams on most cloud storage platforms? Well, anyone from the team can view and edit documents simultaneously. But ask yourself, does it really build a productive collaborative environment?
An ideal collaborative environment is the one that allows for free information exchange between your teams. For example, your marketing team might need access to sales reports from time to time. In most cases, you would need to send an email to the marketing team with the link. This creates a lot of communication gap between teams, especially in different departments.
An effective solution would be to have a system of intranets among different department. Each team will have its own intranet, within which they can communicate and exchange information freely. The intranets of different departments can also connect with each other having a specified degree of interaction. You can have a ‘hub site’ or ‘mother site’ where all the important that is relevant to all the departments are uploaded so that anyone can access it whenever they feel the need. This is beyond what your ‘standard’ cloud storage platform is simply incapable of doing.
Working on the documents on a cloud storage platform does involve a lot of steps. For example, if you are working on Dropbox, you will have to download the document first, then edit the document and then reupload it for everyone to see your changes. Things are simpler with Google Drive. You can simply edit the document in Google Docs or Google Sheets and the changes can be seen by others in real time. But what if you are making changes to a graphic? Then you must follow the same process as in case of working in Dropbox.
The time taken to follow such processes looks to be minuscule. However, when you consider the fact that you make edits multiple times a day, it adds up to a significant amount of time. Those precious workhours might have been spent better on more productive work. So, you need to have a system that makes it easy to edit and retrieve documents.
If you want to solve all these critical productivity issues and get more from your document management system, then you need to move beyond your normal cloud storage platforms like Drive or Dropbox. Microsoft SharePoint is an ideal option, as it is proven to deliver exceptional performance for both small and large organizations.
SharePoint is a cloud-based service that helps your business to share and manage data. It also comes with native applications that help to:
Here are some of the advantages of using SharePoint for your business:
One of the biggest advantages of SharePoint is that it is incredibly simple to install, implement and operate. There are two different ‘versions’ of SharePoint – SharePoint online and SharePoint on-premises. SharePoint online comes with your Microsoft 365 business subscription, and you do not need to invest in any additional infrastructure since it is entirely cloud-based.
SharePoint on-premises is an application that needs to be installed on your on-site servers. You can also get a ‘hybrid’ solution which combines the best of both worlds.
It is also quite easy to edit and retrieve documents. If your computer has OneDrive, then you can make changes to the document on Word, Excel and other such applications on your own system and it gets updated in real time on SharePoint. This is also applicable to graphics or any other type of content.
SharePoint allows you to create intranets, called ‘SharePoint Sites’ in a fast and effortless way. You can create a SharePoint hub site and link all the other intranets to it. This enhances collaboration and boosts productivity.
With SharePoint workflows, you can automate some critical yet repetitive tasks. For example, every time a specific data field is changed or updated in a spreadsheet, the manager will get an email notification. There are plenty of other use cases where SharePoint workflow can be used so that you can focus on more productive tasks.
SharePoint also integrates seamlessly with Microsoft OneDrive, Microsoft Teams, Power Platform etc. This way you can share links to SharePoint documents on Teams, access SharePoint documents through OneDrive or use the data to run applications like Power BI, Power Apps, and the like.
Data Security is of prime importance in today’s world of constant cyber security threats. SharePoint is known for robust security features. It is administered using a PowerShell console that requires two-factor authentication. No third parties, not even Microsoft engineers, have standing access to the service. If the engineers need access, then they need to raise a request first. Then their eligibility is checked, and if approved, they only get access for a limited time.
You can add an extra layer of security to your documents by getting Azure Information Protection (available together with SharePoint under Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan).
If you are looking to get more from your cloud storage, then it is time to migrate to SharePoint. Migrating from other cloud platforms to SharePoint is easy. However, if you are migrating large volumes of data and you are worried about retaining the data structure and organization as well as security, then it is better to get the services of a SharePoint consultant.
Evolvous is one of the most experienced SharePoint consultants in Calgary, Alberta offering services to diverse range of industries in Canada, the US, Europe, Australia, and other markets across the world.
To know about our SharePoint migration and upgradation support, click here.
Visit our website today to discover more about our SharePoint consultancy services and discover how we help you get more from your data.