Tag Archives: sharepoint custom solutions development

The Role of SharePoint in Your Business’s Digital Strategy

The digital marketing strategy of modern businesses focuses mainly on customer relationship management and customer engagement. Often businesses look for innovative customer relationship management (CRM) systems to enable their marketing, sales and customer service professionals to build long lasting customer relations. The right CRM solution can help your business in implementing a personalized customer engagement model to engage the customers and deliver higher customer satisfaction. Businesses across the world rely on SharePoint as a smart CRM platform to optimize its digital marketing strategy.

sharepoint application development

Why SharePoint can Optimize Your Business’s Digital Marketing Strategy?

Simple and Attractive Interface: SharePoint 2013 comes with an interface that is clean, simple and easy-to-use. While accessing the interface, users can avail the universal navigation feature of Office 365 navigation. As the interfaces supports touchscreens, it becomes easier for users to access it on their mobile devices. Also, they can use Office Web Apps to edit and drag-and-drop documents.

Mobile Experience: The latest version of SharePoint also renders site based on the user’s mobile device, and accommodate mobile web browsing. With more and more users accessing internet on their smartphones, tablets and phablets, the feature makes the interface effective in staying connected to their work on-the-go. At the same time, the user can view the interface in both landscape and portrait display modes, while accessing push notifications and location services.

Easy to Share Information and Ideas: SharePoint 2013 is also designed with a set of social network-like features. The authorized users can publish their Office documents to SharePoint, and share the files with others. The interface further allows them to post activity updates, share ideas, check what members of the team are working on, and get answers from their colleagues. Further, they can use their mobile devices to share their ideas and documents on the go.

Option to Organize Projects and Tasks: The professionals also use SharePoint as a CRM system to arrange their projects and tasks. Once they organize the tasks and projects, those will appear as upcoming deliverables across SharePoint, Outlook and MS Project. A business, at the same time, can set up a team site to gather the documents and emails of the teams in a centralized location. The documents can be further synchronized across the conventional and mobile devices through Microsoft SkyDrive.

Design and Publish Public-Facing Websites: An organization can create a public-facing website by availing the streamlined design features of SharePoint 2013. Microsoft has further updated SharePoint with an improved Content Management System (CMS) to make it easier for users to publish a variety of content. Thus, an organization can create community sites to enable its sales and marketing teams to share and collaborate with others.

Integrated Search: The latest version of allows businesses to effectuate document management and collaboration through a super fast search engine called FAST. As FAST is now embedded in SharePoint 2013, the users can avail the advantages of the super fast search engine without incurring any additional expenses. Also, FAST comes with a set of features that make the searching process more efficient and faster. For instance, the users can use the thumbnail preview option to browse through the documents without opening those up.

Enhanced Stability and Security: The updated version of SharePoint is compatible with several operating systems and mobile devices. So the users can access the web interface by using any of the major web browsers on Windows or Mac. It also comes with workflow advancements to eliminate the chances of system outage. The authentication enhancements further contribute towards optimizing both security and connectivity.

Most businesses, nowadays, deploy distributed teams to reduce project overheads. Microsoft has updated SharePoint 2013 with features to complement the needs of distributed teams, and help them in working together. Further, the users can start using SharePoint site without requiring any additional or specialized training.

You can hire developers from top custom sharepoint development companies in India who can help you build your projects within allocated budget and time schedules.

We provide sharepoint application development services. If you would like to know more about the experience of our sharepoint developers, please get in touch with Mindfire Solutions.

Best Practices for SharePoint security, privacy and compliance

Huge amount of content is being generated by organizations everyday and with cloud solutions, enterprise social collaboration as well as mobile access, new ways are being adopted by employees for information sharing. This is leading to continuous expansion of the ways of collaboration. Most organizations use Microsoft SharePoint as a corporate information hub with the content coming from external clients and partners as well as internal employees. This may result in risks entering the organization such as malware getting in to the enterprise, regulatory compliance issues cropping up as well as sensitive information getting exposed unintentionally. This makes it essential to secure the system properly so that you protect sensitive information from getting out. Here are some practices that help improve SharePoint security.

custom sharepoint developmentAssigning users to groups- This is a practice that should always be adopted. Through assignment to SharePoint groups, the capability of a particular user may be predicted without their security profile getting audited. While using Active Directory, hybrid should be used in conjunction and then SharePoint groups created. AD groups should then be assigned to the apt group.

Need-to-know assignments- People should only be assigned to sites where the access is mandatory. Only if somebody can demonstrate the need for accessing a site, then they must be assigned to a group which is associated with accessing the needed sites. In most scenarios, if the purpose behind a user’s presence in contributor groups cannot be justified, then they should not be allowed on the site in the first place.

Site inheritance should not be broken at object level- There can be a lot of frustration as well as confusion if permissions are broken at the object level. A user should be assigned to proper security group; then they must be left alone. If the list or library contains sensitive data then a child site must be created and accordingly group permissions assigned.

Refrain from assigning document level permissions as far as possible- Assignment of permissions at the very document level can turn out to be a maintenance nightmare. If the need arises, then additional sites or libraries must be created before breaking a list or library’s security. Permissions may be broken but it may turn out to be a fatal decision.

Monitoring content- You should monitor the content both on schedule as well as in real time by using automated processes that are rule-based, in a way that will provide protection to the information in a systematic way. The content must also be classified by the use of related metadata where metadata may be added by the authors but the controls of allowing user’s classification being overridden, is with the system.

Audits and scans- To check the level of compliance, ongoing audits must be performed as well as scheduled scans run regularly for SharePoint sites.

Risk evaluation- Risk must be evaluated according to the organization’s logic for providing multiple perspectives related to potential risk to data transport as well as delivery.

Measuring progress- Over time, progress must be measured so that priority is demonstrated, along with the triumphs of compliance initiatives; accordingly modifications should be made wherever necessary.

Prioritizing areas for improvement- Areas that need improvement must be prioritized and accordingly concerns as well as issues should be addressed. For that you should work in close association with content authors as well as stakeholders.

Linking compliance improvements- Compliance improvements must be linked to migration programs. For example, before migrating to SharePoint, scan data should be run on file shares. It should also be remembered that new initiatives need compliance.

Implementation of proper monitoring ensures that your information stays safe. However, the security problem is not simply a SharePoint-specific problem and may be said to be a universal problem for all content, no matter where it resides. But proper planning along with the correct technology may help you address this concern.

You can hire developers from top custom sharepoint development companies in India who can help you build your projects within allocated budget and time schedules.

We provide sharepoint application development services. If you would like to know more about the experience of our sharepoint 2010 development experts, please get in touch with Mindfire Solutions.

Business Value and SharePoint

Most organizations adopt new technology platforms only after evaluating their business value. Many reports have highlighted how an organization can avail several benefits by creating a well-designed intranet solution using SharePoint 2013. But the design and implementation of the intranet solution need to be customized according to the organization’s specific business needs and objectives. At the same time, the business as well as technology departments must understand the full capabilities of the web application development platform from Microsoft to get higher ROI by optimizing content and document management through a customized intranet solution.

Driving Business Value with SharePoint 2013

Create Intranets Accessible on Several Devices
sharepoint custom solutions developmentThe modern professionals use a variety of devices to access their corporate resources. In addition to desktops and laptops, users also access the document on smartphones and tablets. So the intranet must be scalable enough to allow employees to access documents on devices of their choice. SharePoint 2013 allows organizations to create customized and scalable intranets that allow their employees to access the information on any device. Further, the platform is compatible with major operating systems and web browsers.

Bring the Distributed Teams Together
Nowadays, most professional service organizations work with remote teams. An organization can easily curtail overheads by working with teams located in different regions. But it must facilitate quick and interrupted communication between the members of the in-house and distributed team to carry out the business process without any hassle. SharePoint is widely used by enterprises to create secure and effective intranet solutions that can be accessed simultaneously by multiple users. The intranet will further acts as a central location where employees can access the required documents and information anytime and anywhere.

Share Internal Documents Securely with Various Stakeholders
Each enterprise also has to share internal documents with various stakeholders to facilitate the decision making process. Each stakeholder in a project must access the internal document immediately to facilitate key activities like project planning, resource sharing, documentation, collaboration and approvals sign off. The custom SharePoint solution provides a secure environment to modern businesses to share a variety of content with various stakeholders. In addition to members of a remote team, the solution can also be used by partners or clients to access the required information. The solution further help users in avoiding the complexity associated with document sharing.

Easy to Find the Required Information
Along with being secure, the SharePoint solution further makes it easier for the stakeholders to find the required information immediately. Microsoft has updated the web application development framework with both Bing and fast capabilities. These features enable end users to quickly find a specific document, along with reviewing the search results while initiating or after the search.

Realign Business Processes
The complex projects often require organizations to restructure and realign their business process. While realigning business processes, the strategy must be communicated to different departments in a detailed and unambiguous way. For instance, the details of a sales deal must be clearly conveyed to the sales, finance and project management departments. The native SharePoint applications make it easier for enterprises to realign key business processes. Each time a department initiates in change, it can submit the information into the system on a daily basis. The solution will further inform other stakeholders about the updates and changes by sending notifications. Thus, business process realignment can be done smoothly without affecting the core activities of an organization.

Microsoft has further released SharePoint 2013 with a set of new features to deliver enhanced business value. The business and technology departments of an organization must avail these capabilities to create customized and scalable technology solution that complements their needs and objectives.

You can hire developers from India’s top companies in sharepoint who can help you build your projects within allocated budget and time schedules.

We provide sharepoint custom solutions development services. If you would like to know more about the experience of our sharepoint site branding experts, please get in touch with Mindfire Solutions.

The Importance of SharePoint Software Development in the Marketing Technology Today

Microsoft launched SharePoint in 2001 as a rapid web application development platform. But within a decade, it is being used by enterprises for various purposes. Many companies even use SharePoint to manage their content, documents and records. A number of survey results have further highlighted that the platform is being used widely by companies across the world to build intranet. The innovative features offered by SharePoint 2013 also make it easier for businesses to constantly collaborate and communicate with both external parties and internal departments.

Custom SharePoint developmentThe quick and hassle-free sharing of documents, images and content further helps the marketing teams in boosting sales, and beating competition. At the same time, an enterprise also has option to build a customized SharePoint intranet site to enable members of its sales teams to access the latest information, images and videos on the go. If you are yet to migrate to SharePoint 2013, it is time to understand the significance of the platform in latest marketing technologies.

Why Invest in SharePoint Intranet Solution for Your Marketing Team?

Hassle-Free Communication and Collaboration
The SharePoint intranet will allow you business to store marketing brochures and similar collateral in a PDF or Microsoft Word format. The data can further be tagged and classified according to your marketing strategy. So the members of your marketing team can access the most updated and relevant data without putting any extra time and effort. You can further use the versioning feature for documents to ensure that your employees are accessing the most updated version of marketing collaboration. The quick and hassle-free collaboration will contribute towards optimizing the performance of your sales team.

Better Control over Marketing Images
Most marketing campaigns, nowadays, use images to attract and engage the prospects. But each member of the sales team must know the approved marketing images. As SharePoint allows you to store the images at a centralized location, the library can be accessed by each employee, along with acting as an archive for old marketing images. The accessibility with further help you marketing department to exercise a greater control over the images that will be used as part of the ongoing marketing campaign.

Easy to Share New Marketing Videos
Similar to images, videos are also an integral part of marketing campaigns. Some of the video clips can be used to promote products or services offered by the company, whereas others will convey important information to the employees. SharePoint allows you to add new marketing videos by using the Media Web Part feature. You can simply post the latest video on the home page of the intranet, and the video clip will be accessible to all employees in an instant. The feature can also be used to display both audio and video clips on the various pages of the site.

Find Required Information Quickly
Microsoft has further designed the latest version of SharePoint with an advanced search center. The feature enables users to find the most relevant information on a topic in a simpler and faster way. The search results will be displayed according to the relevance of words in the search term entered by the user. Further, the search center is designed with a refinement pant that allows users to restrict the search results by choosing from the links appearing in the panel. At the same time, SharePoint further enables enterprises to promote the expected results through features like Keywords and Best Bets. These features will help you in allowing sales team members to access the most relevant information according to their individual contribution and expertise.

SharePoint 2013 also comes with a set of innovative features that enable the members of a distributed sales team to stay connected with each other. The members of your marketing team can use the instant messaging and online chat option to find the members of their group who are currently online. So they can discuss various aspects of a sales deal in an instant.

Custom SharePoint development teams can help you build projects within allocated budgets and time schedules.

We provide SharePoint bespoke development services. If you would like to know more about the expertise of our SharePoint developers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

Gartner Calls Sharepoint an “Evolutionary Dead End” that “No One Likes Using”

As per the views of Jeffrey Mann, a Gartner analyst, Microsoft should soon do away with SharePoint and companies that are largely dependent on the platform should actually consider a more cloud-based future. The Gartner analyst also said that though a majority of the companies make use of SharePoint, they do not quite like it. SP is also less functional and less useful in many respects. Moreover, it does not facilitate smooth content migration and requires greater amount of online management.

SharePoint migration servicesWith SharePoint being customized in most organizations, it also appears to be excessively big and complex. Certain businesses are also making use of older versions of this web application development platform. With regards to the question of whether to move to cloud or move out of it, Mann says that Microsoft should essentially move SP to the cloud by means of killing its current form.

The enterprise social networking platform, on the other hand, comes up as a hope for Microsoft, as both of these compliment each other in multiple ways. SP, on becoming more cloud- based, will have a strong influence by Yammer.

However, the problems regarding the on-premise deployment of SP, slower arrival of upgrades, lower functionality will remain the same. Hence, a cloud- based solution is considered more beneficial for the large-sized organizations. In fact, Mann advises the technologists to start developing plans for post- SharePoint scenario.

Reasons behind People Disliking SharePoint

While Gartner declares SharePoint to be an evolutionary dead end, there are quite a few reasons behind people hating SP. Surveys conducted at different points of time also point out to negative sentiments. Here is an overview of some of the causes behind this dislike:

It Takes Too Long a Time to be Deployed

One major problem with SP is that the deployment process is quite elaborate and time- consuming. Presence of technical difficulties often make it rather impossible to get done with the deployment process within the allotted time. An unnecessary delay is certainly undesirable because it compels organizations to lose valuable time and resources.

SP Requires Assistance of Third-Party Tools

Enterprises realize that SharePoint cannot be used “out-of-the-box”. Augmentation of the platform for the purpose of fulfilling the specific business requirements is nearly impossible without the use of the third-party tools. Governance is perhaps the biggest technical issue when it comes to the implementation of the development platform. Managing the metadata and taxonomies is equally difficult. It is for these reasons that 50% of organizations are planning heavily on having the third-party add-on products.

SharePoint Promises to Handle Too Many Tasks

SP has always been promoted and marketed as a solution to several problems and issues. Now, whether it is document management, corporate intranet, project management, wiki or blog, SharePoint promises to handle it all. Consequently, the end result is often far from being satisfactory.

User Experience is Nothing Satisfactory

It has been revealed by certain surveys that users are not really happy using SharePoint. Individuals who find it difficult to handle this particular platform prefer going back to the original business process for smooth operations and better accomplishment of projects.

Lesser Mobile Device Access to SharePoint

SharePoint’s mobile device access is slow and ineffective. The dissatisfaction about the matter has been expressed by many users. The issue automatically prevents the users from staying updated and productive, no matter where they are.

How to Lead to Successful SP Implementation and User Experience?

In spite of the many difficulties associated with SharePoint, the platform is actually of several benefits. Here is a list of tips and strategies, following which SP can be made more acceptable.

  • A well-defined deployment process should be planned beforehand. This plan should also consider the needs of the business users apart from that of the tech savvy ones.
  • The project must focus on business solutions. For instance, it should take into account the ease with which SP can be accessed from anywhere.
  • Integrating SP into the everyday work flow of a business user is also essential.

Apart from the above-mentioned strategies, one can also go by Jeffrey Mann’s advice, that is to use the third party tools to cover up for the deficiencies of SharePoint.

We provide SharePoint migration services. If you would like to know more about the expertise of our SharePoint developers India, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.

Setting up a social strategy for SharePoint? Here are tips to get started

With the launch of SharePoint 2013 by Microsoft, social business became the talk of the day, with SP gradually moving towards becoming a company’s social hub. Last year, Microsoft acquired Yammer, and is planning to tie up the same with SharePoint as well as other wares of Microsoft ranging from Dynamics to SkyDrive. My Sites along with Community sites have been introduced by SharePoint 2013, and these aid in internal business collaboration by providing a social interface. These are also designed to make use of the security as well as other enterprise or business management features that SharePoint has. This implies a genuine extension of collaboration among partners and work-groups.

SharePoint site migrationAccording to R.Wang, leading social business analyst, going social might close the gap between execution and strategy, measurement and execution, as well as strategy and measurement. Organizations understand that SP might be a platform for integration of these technologies thereby bringing in innovation, provided there is a proper plan and strategy for social business.

Let us discuss briefly about three of the major social aspects of SharePoint 2013, namely My Sites, Community Sites as well as the new Newsfeed. All of these distinguish SP from its predecessors and make upgradation a forward-thinking smart decision.

Community Sites
Creating a new Community Site has become very convenient. You simply need to select Community Site from the list within SharePoint available for Collaboration site templates. As per the community’s business role, site owners can go for selection of four permission levels:

  • Private: Selected members can view or go for interaction with the community.
  • Closed: Content can be read by end users but only those members receiving approved requests would be able to contribute content.
  • Open with explicit membership: Content can be read by end users, who would also be able to automatically join the community for contributing content.
  • Open: Content can be contributed by anybody.

Like other SharePoint subsites, the Community Site template would be able to disinherit or inherit permissions from its parent site. The fundamental permissions as well as security constructs remain similar. Community Sites just build on this construct utilizing the permission levels. In spite of the presence of this architecture, it is always considered a better practice to make use of unique permissions for management of community membership. It is essential for organizations making use of communities at the site level to become well-versed with this setup. Moreover, community moderators can gain access to features such as offensive content reporting or alerts which enable them to follow discussions more effectively.

My Sites
My Sites is capable of giving users exactly what their requirement is- rapid access to their things. Presently a user is able to follow people, documents or sites. This ‘follow’ mechanism helps in the automatic creation of lists which are rendered in the user’s My Site, both on the Newsfeed page and also on the My Sites homepage.

Moreover, with the help of My Sites, a user is capable of having one click access to the sites he or she follows. It also recommends other sites the user might find interesting or useful, based on a number of criteria.

Newsfeed
Newsfeeds refer to content that is dynamically updated and generated through the activities indulged in by fellow users. These incorporate the currently omnipresent hashtags as well as ‘@ mentions’, and resemble Facebook or Twitter feeds closely. Unlike the case of external social networks, organizations are able to exercise some amount of control over the activities that would be appearing across the Newsfeed from the User Profile Service Application. On the Newsfeed Settings screen, there are provisions for a user to have considerable control over e-mail notifications, hash-tags, and so on.

It is true that in order to make use of these tools, the enterprise architecture does incur some cost such as licensing costs, software and hardware considerations, along with architecture to render support to redundancy as well as performance. But the benefits are indeed far-fetched. Leveraging the social features present in SharePoint development platform with the proper strategy can help organizations effectively manage their social business interaction while at the same time safeguarding intellectual property and content.

We provide SharePoint site migration services. If you would like to know more about the expertise of our SharePoint programmers, please get in touch with us at Mindfire Solutions.