SharePoint State of the Union, Part 3: Staying the course
By Eric Riz
October 23, 2012 —
(Page 2 of 3)
The core business tasks at hand remain, so look to make enhancements to your SharePoint environment that will build satisfaction with the product. As you discuss changes, remember that business processes adapt to changing business conditions, so you should make any changes you want to SharePoint knowing that you will again modify things. Do not feel that you have to hold back on your plans for internal growth.
One of my primary concerns (and main reasons for starting this series) is that businesses stop developing on their current SharePoint environment until they have upgraded to a newer version. This is a poor decision to make. I have seen this happen before, and it results in the proverbial wheels coming off the business. People will resort to their “old ways” and create information silos, which will be harmful to the process and to the evolution of your SharePoint implementation. Companies cannot stop the development life cycle and risk negatively affecting their overall deployment if they do. This is particularly so in the case of staff buy-in, where stopping future development can alienate staff who are dependent on the pending changes.
For example, let’s say your team has been working on some changes to the portal, presumably as enhancements to make everyday life easier. How will users interpret the cancellation of these changes? Negatively, I’m sure, which will result in adoption and governance issues as they become turned off from SharePoint. The compounded risk occurs if and when you upgrade, as your expectations will be that users will suddenly embrace the new version, and it won’t happen.
Regardless of your final decision, remember to document and archive the process as you go through the State of the Union exercise. Be sure that any documentation on the evaluation of your current state, and potential future state, are archived well. Easily locating these lessons learned and documents will allow you to continue the conversation, instead of starting a new one when the time comes. I recommend creating a team site for the entire State of the Union exercise, with the appropriate documents online and available to current and future team members.
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