Archives

Link Categories

5 Tips to Make Your SharePoint Intranet More User-Friendly - Evolvous

How to Make Your SharePoint Intranet More User-Friendly 

Globally, SharePoint is one of the most popular platforms for document management and collaboration. In fact, 80% of Fortune 500 companies use SharePoint for managing and collaborating on documents in real-time. However, businesses often face issues with adapting to their SharePoint intranet. One of the common reasons is that target users do not find the platform user-friendly enough. Well, you can customize your SharePoint intranet to make it more user-friendly. 

But how?  
In this article, let us explore some of the ways you can make your SharePoint intranet more user-friendly. 

Get Professional SharePoint Training to Ensure Effective Adoption 

Did you know that SharePoint Training can increase adoption by 64%? At Evolvous, we offer comprehensive SharePoint training programs, crafted by experts. Extensive training helps your team members gain the knowledge and confidence to use SharePoint more productively. Visit evolvous.com/change-management-consulting-services/ to know more. 

5 Tips to Make SharePoint Intranet More User Friendly 

So, let us get straight to the things that you can do to enhance the usability of your SharePoint intranet 

 1. Rework Your SharePoint Structure 

5 Tips to Make SharePoint Intranet More User Friendly - Evolvous

Let us start with the basics. One of the first things that you might need to do is to rework your SharePoint structure. There are many different site structures to choose from. 

  1. Classic SharePoint Structure: This follows a rigid structure, where you have a single home site at the top, branching into team sites for individual teams and then further dividing into subsites if required. 
  2. Modern SharePoint Structure: Ideal for organizations with diverse collaboration needs. The home site still connects to the individual teams but there might be several sites serving a single team, including communication sites, team sites and team sites along with Microsoft Teams. 

So, how can you improve your SharePoint intranet structure? You should start by asking the following questions: 

  • What are the primary goals of using the platform? 
  • Who are the target users? What are their roles? 
  • What are their current pain points? 
  • Does your content need to be organized in a better way? 
  • Will the system become more productive if you integrate with other applications, like Microsoft Teams and/or Outlook? 

Answers to these questions will give you a starting point on how to improve the basic structure and information architecture of your SharePoint platform. Work with a consultant to get more useful insights into improving your SharePoint structure.

 2. Improve SharePoint Search 

Example of how search works on SharePoint Online 

Many users find it challenging to find the right document on SharePoint, especially if there is a large volume of data stored on their Document Management System. To solve this usability issue, it is a smart idea to improve SharePoint search. 

SharePoint Search is a powerful tool that can easily be modified to suit your specific needs. Here are some of the things that you can do: 

Optimize Metadata and Content Types 

To make sure that the search queries return more accurate results, the first thing that you need to do is work on your metadata and content types. Make sure that you are using a consistent metadata scheme across your documents. You can also use managed metadata and custom properties. This will make it easier for the user to search and filter the specific content that they need. 

Configure Search Schema and Managed Properties 

Search schema in SharePoint is the framework that defines how content is indexed and searched within the environment. To improve search, you can adjust the search schema to include refiners and sorting orders according to the way your users usually search for content. 

You should also try to create managed properties and map them to crawled properties to make sure that important metadata fields can be searched. 

Please note that optimizing metadata or changing other search configurations requires a certain level of technical expertise. Any error can result in further usability issues.  

Click here to discover how Evolvous can help you configure your SharePoint environment without any challenges. 

 3. Enhance the Design of Your SharePoint Hub Site 

Enhance the Design of Your SharePoint Hub Site - Evolvous

An example of a SharePoint hub site (source: techcommunity.microsoft.com) 

In most cases, users will land on the hub site and then navigate to their respective destinations. As such, the hub site plays a crucial role in the user experience of your SharePoint environment.  

Here are some of the pointers to make your SharePoint hub site more user friendly. 

  1. Streamline the navigation: Make sure you have a consistent menu structure that makes it easy for the user to find their team sites and commonly used resources. 
  2. Use a visual hierarchy: You need to utilize headings, sections, and different font sizes to create a visual hierarchy that naturally guides users through the content. 
  3. Placement of search box: Place the search box prominently on the hub site, preferably near the top. You should also try to optimize managed properties and search settings to ensure relevant and accurate search results.  
  4. Use breadcrumbs: Enable breadcrumbs to help users to keep track of their location within the hub site and easily navigate back to the previous pages, when needed. 
  5. Categorization: Categorize and tag content effectively to make it easier for the users to find what they need. Use metadata and filters smartly to enhance search and overall navigation. 

Did You Know? 

You can use custom SharePoint Framework (SPFx) to create custom webparts that aggregate important news on the hub site or include any other features that you might want. Contact us to find out how we can help. 

 4. Use Smarter Workflow Automation 

Use Smarter Workflow Automation - Evolvous

Example of a document approval workflow that can be automated in SharePoint (source: support.microsoft.com) 

64% of the workday of an average employee is spent on repetitive tasks. This not only hampers productivity but also reduces the adoption rate on SharePoint. Now, you can automate most of such repetitive tasks on SharePoint, allowing users to complete work faster and be more productive. 

Automating workflows is easy in SharePoint. SharePoint has Triggers and Actions which can be used to automate simple actions. You can also integrate SharePoint with Microsoft Power Automate to automate the complicated actions. 

What is Microsoft Power Automate? 

Microsoft Power platform Power Automate is a low-code process automation tool, that allows you to automate crucial tasks without any extensive coding requirements. Power Automate can not only help you automate SharePoint workflows, but other critical business processes as well. 

To know how Evolvous helps you with custom automation with Power Automate, click here. 

 5. Integrate AI Copilot with SharePoint 

Lastly, how about getting a personal assistant who does most of the heavy lifting for you?  

With Microsoft’s Copilot, you have exactly that – an AI-powered assistant which can help you and your users to manage and execute tasks on SharePoint with greater ease.

Integrate AI Copilot with SharePoint - Evolvous

An example of Copilot at work in SharePoint Online (source: techcommunity.microsoft.com) 

As of 2024, AI Copilot comes as standard on SharePoint Online. Copilot in SharePoint can turn your words into powerful tools for creating and editing SharePoint sites and pages. Just tell Copilot what you need, as you would to your colleagues, and it will get it done. 

With simple textual commands, you can create or edit SharePoint sites, get metadata suggestions, retrieve documents, check document versions, and do a whole lot more.  

Explore More Possibilities with Microsoft Copilot Studio

With Microsoft Copilot Studio, you can create a ‘personalized’ version of the Copilot AI assistant. Click here to find out how Evolvous can help you create a personal Copilot that is more accurately tailored to your needs. 

How Does Evolvous Help You to Make SharePoint More User-Friendly? 

Evolvous is a certified Microsoft Gold consultant in Canada, having experience in helping businesses like Unilever, Patek Phillipe and many others, to get a better performance from their SharePoint environment.
Here are some of the ways in which we help you make SharePoint more user-friendly 

  • Customizing the Design and UI/UX of SharePoint 

We can help you design a custom, intuitive user interface that aligns with your branding and the needs of your user. We will work to improve navigation and ensure consistency across the SharePoint environment. 

  • Implement Improved Information Architecture 

As an experienced consultant, we can help you structure and organize the content effectively, including setting up hierarchies, custom metadata, and optimizing search. We also help you develop content taxonomy to further reduce document retrieval times. 

  • Extensive SharePoint Training 

Our team of experts will also provide extensive SharePoint training, helping your team members with diverse roles, technical expertise and aptitude, to use SharePoint and its various features more confidently, ensuring better adoption. 

Make SharePoint Intranet More User Friendly, with Help from Experts 

 Contact to Unlock Potential 

======

Plus read

A Guide to Excel and SharePoint Integration

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *