We’ve Installed SharePoint – We Have a Successful Platform; right? Wrong.

This happens all the time.  If I had a penny for every time I heard that….

There are still plenty of misconceptions about SharePoint in the world.  The subject line of this blog is one of them.

Merely installing SharePoint does not make for a successful implementation.  How will you get users to use it? How will you manage it?

Issues of why you bought SharePoint in the first place, governance, liaison between IT and business, ownership, user adoption, change management, end user training, information architecture, understanding what works and what doesn’t, collaboration, process automation, social networking, content / document management, access control, managing and maintaining the infrastructure and planning for the next version are all things that need to be addressed successfully before you can consider your implementation successful.

They all form part of the user adoption / governance / change management / return on investment process which you won’t hear about in a sales pitch.

If you are failing at user adoption, it’s very likely being caused by factors like politics; and a lack of vision, ownership, communication, budget, dedicated staff and experience.

Don’t be fooled.  SharePoint is a brilliant product, but you need plenty more investment over and above what you spent on licensing and hardware to realise proper ROI.  And it can take a good couple of years if not longer depending on the size of the company.

To understand more on this, read  SharePoint is a Car. It is just as relevant today as it was then. The point being, this is a team sport and a long term project.  You can’t do it alone, nor on the cheap.

How do you want your “fleet” to look – like this?

Or like this?

Don’t under-estimate the time, money and staff it takes to successfully adopt SharePoint in large companies.  If you don’t address the issues raised above, you will just end up with a very expensive paperweight in your server room … (or under someone’s desk).

But do it right, and you can change the way you operate forever.

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