SharePoint Fest – DC Wrap-up and Slides

SPFDC17PortalBadgev2I continue to feel honored that SharePoint Fest invites me to present at their conferences.  The most recent even was in DC a couple weeks ago.  The attendees were great and both of my talks were well received. As always I really enjoyed the conference and the discussions I had with attendees and the other presenters. This is one of the few times each year that I get to see a lot of my friends who live all over the world.  The next conference is in Denver in June.  I hope to see you there.

I had lots of attendees at both sessions who asked for the slides so I’ve uploaded them here.  They are also available on the SharePoint Fest DC site.  If you have any follow-up questions please email me at paul.stork@bluechip-llc.com.  You can download a copy of the slides from each talk using the links below:

BV 202 – SharePoint 2016: What’s New and Why should I Upgrade?

ECM 104 – Protecting your Content: Demystifying Data Loss Prevention (DLP) in SharePoint 2016

When Implementing SharePoint: Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail – Pt.2

plan-to-fail1Benjamin Franklin is reported to have said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”
I’ve seen this scenario – the failure to plan – play out at many companies, especially when implementing or upgrading SharePoint environments.
Implementing or upgrading a product like SharePoint, that is designed to empower information workers to do things for themselves, requires detailed planning.
Why?
Because empowerment​ does not come from a “one size fits all” product or solution.
SharePoint can be used to tailor a solution and deliver business value to an organizations’ technical environment. But that kind of tailoring requires careful planning. Otherwise, an organization will end up with a product that is implemented well, but does not fulfill the strategic goals they’ve set for the business.
In my first post of this series, we evaluated the reasons why organizations do not spend enough time planning before implementing SharePoint. (Read part 1)  In part two of this series, we’ll identify at some of the planning tasks that are overlooked when planning a new SharePoint implementation.

Governance

Governance helps you determine how SharePoint will be used to make your organization better. There must be a shared vision and the appropriate controls in place to make that happen.

Goals

  1. Develop a shared strategic vision ​
  2. ​​Reach a consensus on how SharePoint will be used

Key Questions

  • Is our corporate culture comfortable with a self-service model?
  • What will we control using Policies versus customization of SharePoint?
  • What business needs will SharePoint address?
  • How will policy decisions be communicated, updated, and enforced?

Security

How SharePoint security is implemented must be done in accordance with corporate culture. If not, content won’t be available to the people that need it or won’t it be secured.

Goal

  1. Decide whether or not security administration will be centralized or delegated

​​Key Questions

  • Do business users just manage the content or actually own the content they produce?
  • ​Which is more important: timely access to content or guaranteed security?
  • Will training be provided for users who need to manage their own content?

Taxonomy/Folksonomy

If information architecture isn’t planned, content will go in, but it won’t be efficiently used after it is first stored. A good organizational methodology is critical to your success.

Goal

  1. Plan how content will be organized in order to make it easy to find

Key Question​

  • How will we implement a structure for organizing content?
  • How can users surface content that is important to them?

Architecture

Upfront planning will result in a physical system that maximizes performance while minimizing costs. It must also be flexible and grow as usage increases.

Goal

  1. A​chieve a balance between cost and performance

Key Questions

  • What services will we use and where will they be located?
  • How important is search in our environment?

High Availability (“HA”)/Disaster Recovery (“DR”)

In most organizations, SharePoint becomes a mission critical application when it is implemented well. A service that can’t be depended upon can be worse than one that is poorly implemented.

Goal

  1. Build an environment that can be depended upon as a critical application.

Key Questions

  • How much downtime can we tolerate?
  • How much data can we afford to lose?
  • How much will HA and DR cost?

Staffing

SharePoint focuses on providing a self-service environment. But, having the right staff in place to maintain the system is still a critical factor to your success.

Goal

  1. Plan adequate staffing to support implementation of the other planning decisions.

Key Questions

  • Centralized security will require more staff for versus delegated security
  • How will our information architecture be maintained and enhanced over time?
  • What level of patches and fixes will be applied? All Cumulative Updates or just Service Packs?

Training/Communications

Even if you build the perfect system, people won’t be able to effectively use it without the appropriate training. You must develop a communications and training plan.

Goal

  1. Increase user adoption and satisfaction

Key Questions

  • Develop and leverage local champions to increase knowledge and acceptance.
  • What is the right level of training and communications for your organization?

Spending some time planning will lead to a successful implementation that can transform the way your company collaborates and shares information. And that’s what you started your project for in the first place, right?

SharePoint Fest – Chicago Wrap-up and Slides

SharePointFestChicago2016I really enjoyed my time at SharePoint Fest in Chicago last week. Due to some personal commitments I had to cut things short and was only able to make one day of the conference.  But I still had a wonderful time.  The attendees were great and both of my talks were well received. I want to express my thanks to the conference organizers and the attendees for the wonderful conference. I really enjoyed myself and I’m already looking forward to doing it again in DC next spring.

I had lots of attendees at both sessions who asked for the slides so I’ve uploaded them here.  They are also available on the SharePoint Fest Chicago site.  If you have any follow-up questions please email me at paul.stork@bluechip-llc.com.  You can download a copy of the slides from each talk using the links below:

BV 103 – SharePoint 2016: What’s New and Why should I Upgrade?

SIA 106 – Implementing SharePoint: Failure to Plan is Planning to Fail

Dogfood Conference 2016 Wrap-up and Slides

Dogfood2015

I really enjoyed my time at the Dogfood Conference in Columbus yesterday. The attendees were great and both of my talks were well received. I want to express my thanks to the conference organizers and the attendees for the wonderful conference. I really enjoyed myself this year and I hope to be invited back to speak again next year.

I had lots of attendees at both sessions who asked for the slides so I’ve uploaded them here.  I’ve also sent them to the conference organizers.  If you have any follow-up questions please email me at paul.stork@bluechip-llc.com.  You can download a PDF of the slides from each talk using the links below:

Building a Hybrid SharePoint Environment

SharePoint 2016: What’s New and Why should I Upgrade?

SharePoint MVP for the 9th Year

Most people look forward to July 1st because it means the July 4th holiday weekend is close.  For me as an MVP it has an entirely different excitement. No matter how many times I’ve been awarded as an MVP I’m always nervous when my anniversary comes around and its time to be evaluated for a re-award. But I’m happy to say that I received an email Friday morning saying that I’ve been awarded an MVP award again this year.  The categories have changed over the last year, so instead of an award for SharePoint server my new category is called “Office Servers and Services”. This of course includes SharePoint and Office 365 which are my focuses. No matter how the program changes I continue to be more excited every year.  This is my ninth year and I hope to continued my contributions for years to come. SharePoint and Office 365 continue to be exciting products to work on and there is always a lot more to learn.  This year in particular I will be focusing more on how hybrid environments that include SharePoint online, Azure, and SharePoint on-premises function.   

I continue to start each day by answering a few questions on the MSDN and TechNet Forums.  But am also hoping to expand my presence on the public Yammer forums. I really enjoy being able to help people find answers and frequently find interesting questions that I’ve never thought about that lead me to discover new and different things about SharePoint.  I often wonder how I learned as much as I did before I gained access to the resources and contacts available to me as an MVP.  I’m also looking forward to continuing to share what I know at several conferences this year.  I’m always looking for new topics that people would like to hear about.  If you have a question or a topic then drop me a line and my next talk may be on that topic.

This year I’m particularly excited that one of my colleagues at work was just awarded his first MVP award. Gareth Gudger works on Exchange and Office 365 and has a well read BLOG at https://supertekboy.com/. Gareth and I haven’t worked a project together yet since he is based in Cincinnati and I am based in Cleveland. But I hope to find more time to connect with him on Office 365 this year as he begins his MVP journey.

But the bottom line is still that I wouldn’t be an MVP if it weren’t for all of you out there in the SharePoint community. Recently I’ve been running into a number of people who have heard me speak at conferences or have seen me answering questions on the Forums.  Its been great to meet all of you in person and thanks for all the questions that you’ve asked. As long as you keep asking questions and listening to me at conferences I’ll keep trying to learn more and share what I’ve learned with all of you.  Without you I wouldn’t be receiving this award. I hope to continue to live up to the honor and hope that I never get complacent about what its really about: Helping to support the SharePoint community.