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  • Image_The 3 Lessons Every IT Team Needs To Learn To Ensure A Successful SharePoint Adoption.png

  • image_The 5 Essential Components Your SharePoint Migration Plan Should Include.png

  • Last week I had the honor of being a judge at the Arctic SharePoint Challenge in Oslo, Norway. This is an annual challenge put on by a group of SharePoint-focused consulting companies in and around Oslo, though occasionally teams come from further afield.

  • First off, let me be very clear about a few things: I don't have any special knowledge here (probably, even though I'm a SharePoint MVP) and I'm probably making a few things up. But recently I've been thinking about where the future of SharePoint development lies, and I've connected some dots in my head.\

  • Last summer, I wrote an article discussing SharePoint in the cloud and what it actually means. The article was a response to the common question I hear all the time about what it means to put SharePoint in the cloud. The basic summary is that “cloud” comes in different flavors, and each one presents different pros and cons. If you’re still exploring the decision of going to the cloud, that article is a good starting point.... READ MORE
  • The Blind Upgrade

    Michael Pehel
    I have recently heard a lot of conversation in the community about upgrading from SharePoint 2007 to 2013. In fact, this seemed to be somewhat of a focal point last month at SPTechCon San Francisco, as many people asked my opinion on how to plan for the upgrade and what recommendations I had to get it completed as effectively as possible. The interesting thing about the questions is that they were focused on the business, relating to strategies, not technical issues related to how the upgrade itself should be tactically approached—which is great, because there is still direct Microsoft-defined migration from 2007 to 2013. READ MORE
  • Now that I’ve had some time to internalize the plethora of announcements from the Future of SharePoint event back on May 4, one thing really stands out for me: The SharePoint user interface (UI) is becoming a consumer UI. Let me explain what I mean.

  • After a collective sigh of relief, we must get back to work and find ways to customize in the post-“SharePoint on-premises is dead” days and look to our foreseeable future of hybrid. This past May at Ignite 2015 in Chicago, the SharePoint community was assured that SharePoint on-premises will continue as long as there is a demand. But the tables have turned for the better, and SharePoint will now be driven by the cloud (and on-prem will follow).

  • The future of SharePoint

    David Rubinstein

    Microsoft is on a mission to provide collaboration tools to the masses, renewing its investment in SharePoint and laying out plans for the software’s future.

  • SPTechCon Austin wrapped today, and attendees are leaving with the latest knowledge about SharePoint and Office 365, third-party offerings and the state of hybrid/cloud adoption.

  • After Microsoft's "Future of SharePoint? event in San Francisco on May 4, much of the excitement and conversation has been, of course, around new functionality and an improving user experience. As I catalogued in a personal blog post that morning, there is a lot to digest from the announcements and related blog posts from Microsoft's Jeff Teper, Bill Baer, Mark Kashman and others. And then there is the community excitement around SharePoint, in general. Our favorite enterprise platform is getting some much-deserved attention. 

  • The impact of community

    Christian Buckley

    1108.sp-community.png

    When I left Microsoft back in 2009 and joined a small SharePoint ISV in downtown Seattle, the SharePoint community was already a fast-growing, thriving phenomenon. One comment that I have heard again and again from people is that they've never seen anything like it.

  • For more than 12 years we’ve been thinking about SharePoint as both an application and a platform. We could use it as-is and get tremendous benefits from what it could do out of the box. However, many organizations decided they had to customize SharePoint extensively just to make it adequate. Sometimes these customizations were extremely valuable to their organizations and sometimes... well, not so much. As much as SharePoint could do, organizations thought of it as a website, to be bent to their will.

    We’re in a New Age of SharePoint now. While many people have predicted SharePoint’s imminent demise, that’s not what’s happening. At least not really. Instead, SharePoint is being assimilated—dare I say “Borg-ed?”—into the greater application that is Office 365.

  • With the recent explosion of mobile and smartphone devices (more than 7 billion worldwide at last count), how does your SharePoint user interface stack up? Are you meeting the needs of your user base? Are you creating a company portal, a project or team-management system? Or are you hosting your public-facing site on SharePoint?

  • I have recently been working with a client who has a specific problem; they implemented a brilliant SharePoint intranet for themselves, but ignored governance completely.  What they now realize, having been live for just over a year with the product, is the level of internal confusion that has now grown into a huge negative force. As it was described to me, everything was running smoothly until someone had a question or issue, with no place to turn and no solution that encouraged them to continue working as usual. Users were unable to request or create a new site, create and tag content appropriately, search for information or more generally, use the tool to improve their job performance.

  • A new Office 365 add-in wants to provide SharePoint Online and Office 365 app users a single point of entry to manage their business needs and solutions. The Quad Solution Center from H3 Solutions provides an end-to-end request and delivery solution center for the business.

  • It takes all kinds of skills to successfully design, develop, and launch a SharePoint solution: sponsors, project Managers, Web designers, developers, information architects, change agents and subject matter experts, just to name a few. But what if I told you that to truly get sustainable adoption of that SharePoint solution, there is really only one skill that all of these roles must put at the top of their list—a skill that is the secret sauce to change a site from good to great. What’s more, this one skill will make developers, architects and designers not only meet requirements, but also delight their sponsors, leaders and clients each and every time.

  • Back in the early days of mass SharePoint adoption (circa 2008), the most popular request from customers was to make their shiny new intranet “not look like SharePoint.” It was a reasonable request; after all, the product was created to simplify online collaboration and document management, not to be an internal marketing platform, so the user interface naturally reflected a utilitarian design aesthetic that many found less than appealing. Of course, that didn’t stop customers from taking the platform in all sorts of directions it was never meant to go, the result of which was a proliferation of highly-customized implementations that required a great deal of time, money and custom code to deliver.


  • Whether you're from a small, mid-size, or large organization Robert Bogue explains in this keynote how to take the SharePoint sketch Microsoft has laid out for users and turn it into a blueprint for your organization's success.

  • The world’s most interesting SharePoint influencers: When they create SharePoint functionality, jQuery queries THEM. InfoPath asks THEM for directions. THEY put the Power in PowerShell....READ MORE
  • Each year I sit down to write my year-in-review piece, and I’m consistently amazed by the changes that take place both from a technological and community perspective in 365 days. To me, one of the idiosyncrasies of the SharePoint world is that, for a platform that takes an incredibly long time to strategically plan, implement and support, the eco-system is always changing, scrambling to push the limits.

    To me, one of the most exciting parts of SharePoint is the community. I think most would struggle to name another technology that can support the events pushed out by the SharePoint community. From conferences to webinars, articles to tweets, the SharePoint world is thriving with more and more content being produced and consumed each year. Furthermore, Microsoft has pushed out more tools, features and products that have continued to impress, such as Office for iPad, Office 365 Video and Sway. Here were some of the highlights in 2014, and a few hints at what’s to come in 2015 and beyond.

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    SharePoint expert Benjamin Niaulin sat down at SPTechCon with conference chairman David Rubinstein to discuss search Web parts, why he does what he does, and how he got where he is without knowing how to code!

  • Over the past couple months, I have been thinking a lot about adoption metrics around SharePoint and Office 365, and wanted to share some thoughts about the Office 365 Adoption Content Pack for PowerBI that was announced at Microsoft Ignite 2016 in Atlanta. Specifically, what it delivers and what it still lacks, and why every enterprise should be thinking about adoption and engagement metrics, in general.

  • Timlin Enterprises presented a “Stump The Experts” panel at SPTechCon Boston, awarding an XBox to Patrick Doran of North Carolina for his query that both entertained and stopped the experts.

    Ryan Thomas, Timlin Enterprises president, hosted the standing-room-only event which saw SharePoint developers and users pose questions and problems in hopes of walking away with an XBox.

  • Continuing on the theme of SharePoint being a mere tool to solve business problems, not some magic software that will do that voodoo on its own: Matt Wade at icansharepoint weighs in with the thought that it’s a lack of knowledge of what SharePoint can and can’t do that stymies users.

  • Lots of third-party tools were on display at Microsoft’s Ignite conference held in Chicago last week, and while we turned the spotlight on a number of them in last week’s newsletter, today we’ll offer up our thoughts on a few more.

  • Responsive Web Design techniques, strategies and tools continue to expand in the general Web design world. If you do a search for “Responsive Design,” the ever popular “Top X Tools for...” pops up in the search results, and one of my more recent favorites is “12 Essential Responsive Design Tools” by Richa Jain. I am often asked what tools I consider essential when I implement a responsive site in SharePoint, so I compiled a list of my go-to tools for every project I work on.

    1. Twitter Bootstrap
    You will always want to start each project with the right foundation, and with a responsive site, that starts with your grid. Although there are too many responsive grids to actually count, I would say a few of the most popular are Zurb Foundation, Skeleton, Less, and most importantly in my eyes, Twitter Bootstrap (also commonly referred to as simply Bootstrap).

  • Are you attending SPTechCon Boston? Or are you thinking about attending? Well, we have 5 reasons why you should stop by the Exhibit Hall!

  • Ever wonder if, and how, consulting companies use their own products, methodologies and services? When working with other software companies, we often see that even though they work with a product, sometimes they don't use it within their own company.

  • Many years ago, I came to the conclusion that thoroughly training end users on SharePoint is a waste of time for employees and trainers. I don't mean to say that SharePoint trainers are bad people or that all training programs are useless. It's just that comprehensive SharePoint training, crammed into a 1/2 day or five days is by and large wasteful. This might sound controversial, but this is the conclusion I have come to after many years of unsuccessful attempts by myself and other Microsoft MVP trainers like me.

  • Germany-based Rencore this week announced SPTransformator, a tool for cloud migration of customizations such as sandbox and forms solutions, at SPTechCon San Francisco.

  • George Bernard Shaw wrote, “Progress is impossible without change.” If you know Microsoft and heard the messages from the recent Ignite conference, you know this is Microsoft’s mantra (sometimes to our discontent).

  • Change is the only constant. You must embrace change if you want to stay sane in the SharePoint space. Since Web design strategies continue to evolve with the latest devices, design trends and UI concepts, so too must the underlying frameworks we use day in, day out.

  • In speaking with SharePoint users, content management remains at or near the top of the reasons they use the software. Recently, two content-management solution providers—Harvest Technology Group and EZONES—popped up on my radar, and depending upon how you define content management, each comes at it from a different direction.

  • If there's one thing all SharePointers have to keep in mind, it's the limits of the tool you're using.

  • UnlimitedViz, makers of the tyGraph business analytics software, showed off its tyGraph for Groups solution at SPTechCon this week.

  • In a just-posted blog, Microsoft’s CMO Chris Capossela clarified what will happen with the Ignite conference: It’s not being killed, only moved out of Chicago to a time later in the year.

  • A while ago I wrote two articles about how you can automate the publishing process of your SharePoint Framework scripts and solution package via custom gulp tasks.

  • Okay, maybe that title is a bit of a stretch, but I wanted to make sure I got your attention. So many people skip over how important PowerShell is to their success, and I didn't want that to be you. Keep reading, and I will give you some concrete examples of how you can benefit from PowerShell and all of the resources you need to learn more.

  • This applies to SharePoint or actually more than SharePoint where perhaps you are building a big site with Angular, where multiple teams are dropping functionality are URLs, except, they don't know WHAT URL ahead of time

  • Varonis Systems, Inc., the leading provider of software solutions for unstructured, human-generated enterprise data, today announced the release of several updates to the Varonis Metadata Framework - its core platform for delivering innovation through a wide range of products. Important enhancements have been made to Varonis DatAdvantage, Varonis DataPrivilege and the company's core "commit engine."

    The release of version 6.1.30 of the industry-leading Varonis Metadata Framework platform continues to raise the bar in enabling organizations of all sizes to analyze, protect, manage and share their rapidly growing volumes of unstructured data. On the heels of the May 20, 2015, announcement of beta availability of new cloud compatibility with Microsoft Office 365, Varonis solutions bring organizations peace of mind on their most valuable and sensitive data, wherever they chose to store it: on premise, in the cloud, or in a hybrid environment.

    The new features are as follows:
    —DataPrivilege for SharePoint: Users will now be able to manage their SharePoint data alongside their file share data without IT's involvement, putting identity management in the hands of data owners and their business unit leaders.
    — DatAdvantage for Directory Services: With improved detection capabilities, users will be able to not only detect group policy changes in Active Directory, but also show IT staff exactly which policy settings were changed. More log-on information will be captured and analyzed to help security better spot possible intrusions and misuse, along with real time alerts when critical settings are modified. These enhancements will help IT better control the security and stability of a critical infrastructure component.
    — Commit Management Platform: Advanced logic and functionality have been added to Varonis' commit engine, the underlying mechanism that allows the software to affect customers' environments through changing access control lists, folder structures, and group memberships. The new logic will  make sure that all changes will satisfy logical dependencies; new functionality will help administrators easily program changes in bulk, add more flexibility to schedule and monitor their execution, and add flexibility to more easily roll back changes later. With these enhancements, users will be able to get their environments under control more quickly than ever before.

    Yaki Faitelson, Varonis Co-Founder and CEO, said, "We are witnessing a growing demand for organizations and by organizations to secure, manage and take advantage of the massive volumes of emails, word documents, spreadsheets, presentations, images, audio, and video files that are created and shared by their employees every day. We call this human-generated data. Rarely does a week pass without news of a data breach impacting hundreds or thousands of consumers, and a huge percentage of these breaches seem to stem from poorly managed file environments. This is why we continue to work hard to refine and expand our software solutions to help our customers take every proactive step necessary to feel confident in the security of their data files, whether they live on premise, in the cloud, or in a hybrid environment. We look forward to helping more companies prevent serious damage from future data breaches, and feel confident in the security of their data."

    For more information on Varonis' solution portfolio, please visit www.varonis.com and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

  • You knew it had to happen. With Satya Nadella pushing Microsoft technologies onto more platforms, it was only a matter of time before Office 365 would become available on a smartwatch.

  • Boole Server, leading company in the protection of digital data and data-centric IT security, will be part of the SPTechCon: The SharePoint Technology Conference, the largest independent SharePoint training conference in the world, to be held in Boston (MA) from the 16th to the 19th September.

  • Unily, an out-of-the-box intranet solution that sits atop Office 365 for collaboration as well as engaging, organizing and structuring content, was launched last week by BrightStarr, a provider of SharePoint solutions.

  • Build a Form, win a prize

    David Rubinstein

    The fine folks at Kintivo have launched their “Build a Form” contest to encourage SharePoint users to create a fully functioning form its business can actually benefit from.

  • If you work in technology long enough, you begin to see it has trends just like any industry. Suddenly, no conversation can be had without certain buzzwords coming up. Old problems are said to disappear without any clear explanation of how they were dealt with. Enthusiastic people assure us that everything will be OK if we just follow the trend.

  • Microsoft’s Build conference kicks off today. Developers will hear about Windows 10, HoloLens, Azure enhancements, Cortana, Windows Phone 8.1, Docker containers... oh, and new tools for creating Office 365 applications. In his keynote, CEO Satya Nadella spoke of Office as a complete platform, more than simply a collection of applications and APIs. Integrations with DocuSign, LinkedIn and Salesforce were demonstrated. Imagine, Microsoft partnering with Salesforce! Also, an Uber add-in for Outlook will allow users to get reminders about rides based on events in their calendars.

  • BZ Media, the parent company of SPTechReport, produces SPTechCon, the long-running conference for SharePoint and Office 365 users. Now in its eighth year, SPTechCon will next be presented June 27-30 in Boston, and we’d love to see all of you there. You can see for yourselves the great program we’ve put together. Registration for this event is still open, and discounts are still available if you sign up before the end of the week.

  • Calling all developers

    David Rubinstein

    For those of you struggling with making your documents and data in Office 365 available to external users, SharePoint MVP Mark Rackley has written an excellent guide to creating managed extranets in Office 365. This step-by-step instruction set covers inviting users and controlling access, as well as recommending separate Site Collections for external users only and building sub sites off the root site. It’s an excellent resource!

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  • Intlock, developer of CardioLog Analytics, recently announced their seamless integration with Microsoft’s Power BI. The integration allows for the visualization of CardioLog Analytics through new live and interactive dashboards, to enhance SharePoint as well as overall business performance and monitoring.

SPTechCon will be held at the Sheraton Boston Hotel

There are special discounted room rates for SPTechCon attendees and sponsors - $189 per night plus taxes.

The number of rooms in the discounted block is LIMITED and historically rooms sell out well before the deadline. Don't wait until the last minute to reserve your hotel room!

More information coming soon!

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Take advantage of special discounted room rates at the Sheraton Boston Hotel - only $189 per night!  

Sheraton Boston Hotel