Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Introducing SharePoint

When we talk about SharePoint, even to people who are in the IT field, the first thing that comes to their minds is collaboration. That’s true. SharePoint offers many tools that make things easier for a team to collaborate and share information. But, SharePoint is not only collaboration. In this post, I will try to highlight in brief some of other features where SharePoint also excels:

Business intelligence:

For BI, SharePoint offers easy and smart ways to bring, consolidate and display key management indicators for decision-makers. For this, SharePoint uses:
- Excel Services to access and share Excel spreadsheets via a web browser.
- Dashboard and reports, a combined power, to create and display vital business information in a built-in interface made of Web Parts such as KPI (Key Performance Indicators), Excel spreadsheets and Microsoft SQL reporting services reports.
- Business Date Catalog (BDC) to access external line-of-business applications data such as Oracle, IBM DB2 and SAP.
For more: http://www.microsoft.com/sharepoint/capabilities/bi/features.mspx

Enterprise content management (ECM):

The SharePoint ECM capabilities allow enterprises to manage their content by offering them integrated solutions that come out-of –the-box such as:
- Documents management: SharePoint provides many features to publish documents to a specific space to be shared and where users can collaborate. SharePoint also offers out-of-the-box workflows to facilitate the approval/review processes of documents.
- Records management: To be in compliance with the law, enterprises need to implement procedures and plans to keep track of information (documents, pictures, media files, etc.) as records that we can refer to when needed for audit or legal requests for example. SharePoint records management capabilities allow records managers to specify metadata, workflows and policies necessary for a good records management.
- Web content management (WCM): Many organisations are now moving from MCMS
2002 to Sharepoint WCM for a better way to author and publish web content.
- Forms management : With Microsoft Office InfoPath 2007, organisations are able now automate business process and gather vital information using electronic forms. SharePoint make this even practical by deploying these forms to the web via web sites thanks to its forms services.
For more : http://www.microsoft.com/sharepoint/capabilities/ecm/features.mspx

Enterprise search:
Enterprise search is may be the greatest functionality in SharePoint. This strong feature is aimed to facilitate the way people look for relevant information and improve the way the results are presented.
For more : http://www.microsoft.com/sharepoint/capabilities/es/features.mspx

This post is just a summing up introduction to SharePoint for people who want to know what this product is for.

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