By Cathy Dew
Enterprise SharePoint consulting is a high level of SharePoint consulting. It involves engaging with experts in the setup, configuration, and features of the Microsoft SharePoint suite, as well as the large companies seeking to implement and use such solutions. In the simplest of terms, enterprise SharePoint consulting is umbrella consulting on all things SharePoint with the goal of helping a major company get to the next level.
Site Architecture and Branding
If your company desires to hire a SharePoint enterprise consultant, there could be a variety of different reasons behind the decision. In most cases, though, enterprises start out with SharePoint with the goal of using it to help organize their information. As such, one of the most important responsibilities for enterprise SharePoint consultants is setting up intranets for their client companies.
The enterprise SharePoint consultant's job is twofold. First, the consultant needs to understand how your enterprise organizes its information (or wants to organize its information in future). Secondly, the consultant must use this knowledge to create a SharePoint site that matches up with your enterprise's desired information architecture.
At 2Plus2, we offer enterprise SharePoint consulting services to companies just like yours. If you decide to collaborate with us for this type of service, we will usually divide your information into two main categories (public or "global" information and team sites) and several sub-categories. Below, we have outlined the basics of how we tend to do site architecture for enterprise clients.
Public or "Global" Information
The first thing a SharePoint enterprise consultant should determine in regards to your company's information architecture is what information is public or "global" to the company? Which information needs to be readily available for everyone in the company, regardless of department, team, or rank? Here are a few information types that might fit into this category:
- Policies and procedures: Company policies or human resources procedures are necessary for everyone to have access to at all times. Making sure that these documents are globally accessible on your company's intranet is a vital step.
- Corporate communication: This category could include any company-wide news or announcements. From dates of key meeting and sales conferences to details about out-of-office events, hosting these communications in a universally accessible place on your intranet increases the likelihood that everyone will see them and remember the key information.
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Most information within a company—especially a large enterprise—tends to be distributed on a need-to-know basis. For instance, memos that only concern one department don't need to be made available globally. In fact, using "public" or "global" placements for these more niche-focused documents would be inefficient and would make it harder to underline the universal importance of company-wide announcements or policies.
To organize these more granular announcements or bits of information, your SharePoint enterprise consultant will create smaller team sites within your intranet. As with public sites, these group sites can be used to store, organize, and share a few specific types of information:
- Departmental documents: Any department announcements, communications, projects, or resources can and should be used in team sites. With this kind of organization, different departments can access the information that is relevant to them. Other teams who do not have reason to access that information wouldn't have to see it or wade through it while trying to find documents that are relevant to them.
- Projects/Initiatives that cross boundaries: Setting up team sites for different departments does the trick for organizing most of the information that your enterprise's individual teams will need on a daily basis. However, sometimes teams from different departments collaborate on the same project. Your company SharePoint consultant will be able to set up subsites where these cross-departmental projects and initiatives are possible.
Documentation and Training
After setting up your SharePoint sites in accordance with your preferred information architecture, your enterprise SharePoint consultant has one more responsibility to perform: training. Specifically, your consultant needs to teach you how to manage your SharePoint sites, create new sites, grant permissions, take permissions away, and more. For instance, it is in this training stage where your consulting team will teach you how to create subsites where teams from different departments can collaborate on the same projects.
Your consultant should also create documentation and other resources to help you with the management of your SharePoint intranet. While the internet is filled with resources on how to perform all manner of SharePoint tasks and processes, having detailed documentation on the subject will ease the transition into having a self-managed SharePoint intranet.
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Contact Us Today
If you are in the market for a SharePoint enterprise consultant, look no further than 2Plus2 Partners. We will help you through all the steps listed above and more. We want to help you get the most out of your SharePoint sites, which means that we will do everything we can to tailor your intranet to your preferences. Call us at 510 652-7700 or schedule a free consultation.