There is so much you can do with SharePoint out of box. Here’s a list of tasks you could perform with some of the functionality. Combine these tasks with Alert Me’s,versioning, metadata and views, workflow, content approval, permissions management, RSS feeds or syncing to Outlook and you’ll have some quick wins that really make your admin day easier. This list is by no means complete, there are hundreds more uses. This is just to get you going and thinking about what you work with that you could possibly do on SharePoint more efficiently.
Announcements – messages from Executives, communication medium to your team, news of the week, reminders of reports due, sale specials, recent updates, birthday messages, events reminders.
Blank Pages – mini project dashboards using linked custom lists; organigrams, process flows, architecture models, topologies, career maps.
Blogs – actual blogs or FAQ, status reports replacement, messages from Executives, report back on events attended, feedback on sites, news articles.
Calendar – birthdays, leave for contractors, events planning, freeze periods for IT systems, regional and national government official scheduled visits, conference schedules, interview schedules, change control cycles, promotions, training schedules.
Content Editor Web Part – use Flash to create magazines and publish them using CEWP; standard navigation images you can re-use across all sites managed from a central location, all branding for team sites, instructions, launch buttons for surveys, inserting HTML code for the more IT savvy users, sets of links with cool icons for each (benefit here is you can open the links in a new window, which is not possible in the Links web part).
Content Types – standardize templates to be used for invoices, change requests, minutes, agendas, proposals, presentations, contracts, status reports, functional specifications, detail design documents, implementation plans, technical impact assessments, SDLC framework, work breakdown structure, concept document, budget, business case, CV’s, resumes, timesheets.
Custom Lists with Views (also using Site Columns, Lookups and Choice fields) – forms capability, client case tracking reports, contact lists, due diligence reviews, asset tracking, initiatives tracking, change management dashboard; master list of regions, project managers, analysts, admin staff, Board members, stores, branches, clients; automatic real-time reporting using totals and calculated fields, resource availability, timesheets, risk management, budgets (can do 7 nested formulas), issues and dependencies, portfolio management, group telephone / switchboard directory, talent management, costs and disbursements management, scope changes, online assessments, performance reports, lessons learned, checklists for project documentation, information risk assessments, personal development plan, deployment checklists, site creation checklists, request a site, request support, request custom development, registration forms, job openings and applications, data in some Access databases can be better leveraged using custom lists, license key tracking, price lists, merchandising information, track client information and interaction, authorizations of employment, out of cycle increases, for sale items, personal training program.
Discussion Forums – FAQ’s, Ask the Experts, build knowledge base around a topic, team review.
Document Libraries – (remember Shared Docs is a sample only, create your own) – contracts repository, business case repository, management report repository, template repository, knowledge base, newsletters, emails, strategy plans, government acts, status reports, minutes and agendas, research docs, board packs.
Issue Tracking (edit the default to suit your needs) – helpdesk ticket resolution, software projects issue logging.
Links – external, internal, research specific, quick links, launch pad to your “world”, also use Links if external RSS feeds are not allowed on your platform.
My Sites – staff profiles, skills identification; build team spirit by using it as an inhouse, secure Facebook app; junk mail portal, dating site 😉 (I’ve seen it done!); add your own lists of colleagues for sports teams, book clubs, hobbies, etc.
Picture Library – events, team members, (combine with This Week in Pictures web part on landing page), maps, new building progress, all images for your site design must be stored on the site, photo shoots, photographic competitions.
Project Tasks – no need for extra licenses, shared project plan tracking, milestones and deliverables. You could also use Tasks for this.
Sites – graduate program, change management, communities of practice, confidential (the Vault, Safety Deposit Box, Safe, Secure etc), telecommunications portal, publishing sites, team sites, business bulletin board.
Slide Library (Office 2007 users only) – create new slides from multiple presentations and apply new branding.
Tasks – assign tasks to team members, manage your to do list and sync to Outlook, track workflow from the site.
Themes – make each team site unique, see examples from Peter Allen.
Surveys – customer satisfaction, feedback on a document, health check, impact assessments on new legislative acts or internal policies, change management assessments, event planning.
Wikis – user manual, glossary of terms, bio’s, data dictionary, Exec bio’s, quick guides to X, tips and tricks, error repository, best practices, roles and responsibilities, governance plans, RAG definitions, escalation process, benefits realization map, training options, methodologies, monthly newsletters, planning techniques, stakeholder management, IT infrastructure environments, who are we, what do we do, how do you get hold of us, business services domain model, department positioning, knowledge cafés, frontend for multiple surveys and results, acceptable use policy, instructions on how the site is managed and compiled, resource allocation, agendas and minutes of meetings, engagement process, taxonomy basics, operations framework, course outlines, rules, standards, document brainstorming sessions. Policies and procedures – combination of wikis, lists and doc libraries with docs saved as PDF’s. But why not try converting all the docs to wikis instead, then you won’t have 20 versions of the truth floating around the company, use alert me’s to changes, still use workflow and metadata, has built in versioning. Then people have to hyperlink to the wiki and won’t be able to save documents. Create a custom list with a field for acceptance of this wiki tickbox and a hyperlink to it as proof of acknowledging the policy.
Workflow – stop signing things and passing them on. Approve minutes, proposals, reports, business plans, BRD’s, application forms, asset requests out of box.