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Meeting the Challenge of SharePoint Customization

January 29, 2015

SharePoint customization has been a rollercoaster of ups and downs. To customize or not to customize, that is the question. With its initial rise, customization was key, but in recent years, experts and Microsoft itself have shunned the practice. CMS Wire covers the issue in their recent article, “Don’t Be Afraid of SharePoint Customization.”

The article highlights the transition from the customization craze to the recommendation to cease customization:

“With the release of SharePoint 2013, we suddenly had Redmond telling everyone to stop customizing SharePoint. A lot of companies are now embarrassed and ashamed to admit that they have customized their SharePoint sites. In less than three years it went from de rigeur to risky and questionable . . . Then SharePoint 2013 came out. And Microsoft made the following statement in its blog post about the launch: ‘Use SharePoint as an out-of-box application whenever possible.’’

And through the ups and downs, it still comes down to doing what is best for you individual organization. Although Office 365 has taken the most ardent stand on not customizing, CMS Wire says not to be afraid of tweaking areas that need to be tweaked. Stephen E. Arnold follows similar news on his Web service, His career is devoted to search and his SharePoint feed highlights the latest tips, tricks, and news when it comes to the volatility of the platform.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 29, 2015

Tips for Improved SharePoint Experience

January 27, 2015

It is about time for those New Year’s resolutions to be wearing off. There’s likely a little more dust on the treadmill come mid-January. Yet, it is never too late to commit to a few resolutions for your organization’s SharePoint installation. Read some handy and attainable tips in the Network World article, “5 New Year’s Resolutions (Tips) for SharePoint Power Users.”

The article begins:

“For my first blog post of 2015, I’ve compiled a list of New Year’s resolutions for SharePoint Power Users. These are my favorite tips and best practices to improve user experiences for SharePoint sites. They are in no particular order but they are all designed to improve the user experience for power user designers and/or end users of SharePoint sites.”

Tips go on to include things like organizing content, making meaningful links, and embedding PowerPoint pages via hyperlink. These are not life-changing tips, but they are helpful, and research has found that these small changes make a big impact on overall user experience. Stephen E. Arnold has a vested interest in these tips and tricks when it comes to SharePoint. He has made a career out of all things search and he reports his findings on his Web site, His SharePoint feed is a treasure trove for those who are interested in these practical suggestions for improved usability.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 27, 2015

Looking Beyond SharePoint

January 22, 2015

SharePoint owns a lion’s share of the enterprise market. While it is largely undisputed, there are products out there that seek to make a name within the marketplace. M-Files is an option that has made a few headlines. Read more about the product from one proponent in the ZDNet article, “M-Files: A better SharePoint than SharePoint.”

The article begins:

“Although Microsoft’s SharePoint has been around for 14 years, it isn’t the best CMS product on the market. As a SharePoint Administrator myself, I can tell you firsthand that there has to be something better. My interview with M-Files convinced me that there indeed is something better. While this post isn’t a review, I do want to point out M-Files’ compelling features to you as I saw them during the presentation. Often we use products because they are the ‘accepted standards’ and we explore no further.”

Stephen E. Arnold is a longtime leader in enterprise and often covers SharePoint on his Web service, He even has a dedicated SharePoint feed to cover the ups and downs of the service. And while SharePoint does have many strong points and is the largest contender in the market, many of its idiosyncrasies are the reason why some customers are looking elsewhere.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 22, 2015

SharePoint Hopes It Becomes Irresistible

January 20, 2015

SharePoint is hoping to make itself irresistible and irreplaceable with its latest announcement of providing a digital window to make the platform feel more personal. Get all the details in the CMS Wire article, “Office 365 & Sharepoint Online Just Became Irresistible.”

The article begins by explaining the strategy:

“Forget Google Docs, Box and any productivity tool that anyone else has to offer. Microsoft is committing its brains and its brawn to one thing —being your ‘go to’ for your digital life, at work and at home. It plans to do this by providing a window to the digital world that feels ‘more personal and natural,’ to use CEO Satya Nadella’s words, via innovations in touch, speech, vision, inking and much more. They will all come together with intelligent agent (can you say machine learning, analytics, PowerBI, Office Graph) and shell technologies.”

As part of the new strategy, Delve incorporates a new feature called Boards, helping to organize content and keep it on the surface. Other more tangible features are likely to be rolled out in coming weeks. To stay on top of them stay tuned to, particularly the SharePoint feed. Stephen E. Arnold is a longtime leader in search and keeps his eyes peeled for the most important tips, news, and tricks for users and managers alike.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 20, 2015

SharePoint Year in Review

January 15, 2015

In another week everyone will be tired of the “year in review” articles. However, for now, there is still useful information to be gleaned. Check out the latest installment in the CMS Wire article, “CMSWire’s Top 20 Hits of 2014: SharePoint.”

The article begins:

“You’ve all heard of Ground Hog Day, right? Well, how about Ground Hog Year? Looking back at the SharePoint landscape over the past 12 months, that’s certainly what it looks like. In 2013, the conversation was dominated by 1) SharePoint Online 2) SharePoint and Yammer and 3) SharePoint in Office 365. In 2014, the conversation was dominated by … well, you guessed it: 1) SharePoint Online 2) SharePoint and Yammer and 3) SharePoint in Office 365.”

And while SharePoint was pretty unoriginal in 2014, there are rumors of things brewing in 2015. Stay tuned to Stephen E. Arnold at His Web service is devoted to all things search, including enterprise. His SharePoint feed is a great way to filter out the noise and hone in on all things relevant to SharePoint users and managers.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 15, 2015

The Continuing Evolution of SharePoint

January 13, 2015

It is the time of year when everyone is reflecting upon the year in review and much attention is given to goals, plans, and speculations for the future. Reviewing Microsoft SharePoint is no different. CMS Wire covers the latest speculations and year-end critics in their article, “A Look Back: The Continuing Evolution of SharePoint.”

The article begins:

“If we could really say what the future holds for SharePoint, we could probably sell the information back to Microsoft. All the signs point to major changes — but they also point to the fact that Microsoft is still dithering. While the company has committed to another on-premises version, after that all bets are off.”

Microsoft has always been largely secretive about SharePoint changes and updates. It is no surprise that no one knows for sure what to expect in 2015. We can, however, say that Stephen E. Arnold will continue to manage all the latest tips, tricks, and news related to SharePoint on his Web service, His SharePoint feed provides precise and up to date information for users and managers alike. Stay tuned.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 13, 2015

SharePoint Online and Apps Working Together

January 8, 2015

Microsoft is planning deeper integration between SharePoint Online and other Office 365 apps. Users can expect to see some changes in the coming year, and Search Content Management covers the story in their recent article, “SharePoint Online, Other Office 365 Apps Work Together.”

The article begins:

“Microsoft has long adhered to a ‘better together’ strategy that suggests its operating systems and applications can achieve greater capabilities if used in conjunction with other Microsoft products. Although it’s easy to dismiss the ‘better together’ philosophy as being nothing more than a strategy to sell products, this argument begins to break down when you consider Office 365.”

Stephen E. Arnold is another resource to consult for SharePoint and Office 365 needs. His Web service,, contains a separate SharePoint feed full of the latest tips, tricks and news for users and managers alike. Heading in to the new year, it would be worthwhile to spend some time considering how to streamline and improve your organization’s infrastructure.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 08, 2015

SharePoint Power User Cheat Sheet

January 6, 2015

been improved and future plans for better efficiency. Regarding SharePoint, this reflection can be especially helpful with the complicated platform. You can start the process with a well-written article like CMS Wire’s most recent, “The Power User Cheat Sheet to SharePoint 2013 Search.”

The article begins:

“If you’ve spent any time researching SharePoint 2013 you already know that one of the most exciting components was Microsoft’s integration of FAST Search features into the product . . . As a Power User of SharePoint what do you need to know to make the absolute most out of these features? There is a lot to learn, but in working with SharePoint 2013 over the past two years I have identified three areas that are a great place to begin your search journey.”

Stephen E. Arnold offers lots of resources for reflection and improvement on his Web service, His SharePoint feed is full of useful information that end users and managers alike can benefit from. Staying on top of the latest tips, tricks, and news can make a big difference in SharePoint use and satisfaction.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 06, 2015

SalesForce Connects SharePoint Files to the Cloud

January 1, 2015

Research has showed that most employees have to access data files from at least four different locations during the course of a workday. So SalesForce has completed work on a solution to connect all SharePoint files to their Cloud. This adds to the existing function of SalesForce Files, which allows users to index files. Read the full details in the Computer World article, “Salesforce Connects SharePoint Files to its Cloud with New Tool.”

The article begins:

Salesforce, the not-so-little cloud CRM company that could, is furthering its play to bring everybody everywhere into the fold with the launch of Salesforce Files Connect, a new tool that brings files from on-premises Microsoft SharePoint into a company’s cloud workflow.”

Stephen E. Arnold of has made a career out of following and reporting on all things search. His interest in SharePoint is longstanding, and he has devoted a separate SharePoint feed to the topic. Keep an eye on Arnold’s work to find more helpful third party solutions as well as helpful tips and tricks for navigating the SharePoint environment.

Emily Rae Aldridge, January 01, 2015

Microsoft Confirms Drop of Public Website SharePoint Feature

December 30, 2014

Microsoft has confirmed the rumors that everyone has feared – the Public Website feature of SharePoint is being discontinued. Customers are being encouraged to move to third party options that integrate with SharePoint. ZDNet breaks the news and covers the details in their article, “Microsoft Confirms it is Dropping Public Website Feature from SharePoint Online.”

The article discusses how the transition will occur:

“New customers signing up for Office 365 as of January next year won’t have access to Public Websites in SharePoint Online, Microsoft officials acknowledged in a new Knowledge Base support article published on December 19. Existing customers using SharePoint Online Public Website will continue to have access to this feature for a minimum of two years following the changeover date, Microsoft execs said.”

Interested parties will not be surprised by the news, as rumors have swirled for some time. However, it is a difficult transition for those who relied on the feature. It seems that SharePoint went through a season of trying to be all things to all people, but that did not seem to pan out the way they anticipated, and now they are scaling back. Stephen E. Arnold keeps a close eye on SharePoint on his Web service, Keep an eye on his SharePoint feed to see what feature may be next on the Microsoft chopping block.

Emily Rae Aldridge, December 30, 2014

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