Top 20 Ways to Use Sharepoint in Your Business

By: Andrea Kalli

We're listing some common business needs that can be solved by using a SharePoint Services 3.0 site. Maybe you'll find a few things here that you've been trying to find a solution for within your own organization.

I'd like to share with you the top 20 ways that SharePoint can solve your common business needs. And I want to emphasize that these 20 are only a few of the many ways to utilize the SharePoint Services. Once you start using it, you will begin to realize the many other valuable benefits that can easily be accomplished by the everyday user.

Shall we get started? Within this simple list you might find a solution to something you've been looking high and low for.

With SharePoint you can:

1. Store all your emails on a secure and centralized Website for easy archive.

2. Have a centralized location for tasks and assign tasks to team members. These tasks will automatically show up in yor team's Outlook 2007 To-Do List. Those tasks will also link to your projects so you can easily find out what tasks are still open for each project.

3. Organize large events and store the related documents, assigned tasks, and generally post anything and everything related to the events. It will also integrate with Outlook for added efficiency.

4. Collaborate with team members on all documents and stay on top of who did what. Earlier versions can easily be restored in case someone has made too many mistakes. Projects can also be linked to related documents.

5. When tasks are assigned to team members they'll automatically be notified that they've just been assigned a new task. Each time a task has been updated alerts are sent.

6. Quickly manage all projects for your team or organization so there's no need to explore buying an expensive project management solution.

7. Use the efficient check-in / check-out management feature to sort your documents.

8. Implement a help ticket resolution for your organization or team without breaking the bank.

9. Start a private company blog to communicate and share ideas with your team that's viewable only by those you give access to.

10. Gain more control over your company's documents with the content approval function.

11. Offer training materials to your teams, clients, and/or partners in a password-protected Website that can be accessed anywhere in the world.

12. Offer a secure and private place to share documents and other information with clients and/or partners.

13. Access and work with your data using your Internet-enabled mobile phone for added convenience while traveling or out of the office at client meetings.

14. Create better team communication and brainstorming sessions where everyone can participate when their schedules permit.

15. Keep project announcements for your company and team in a central location. Everyone will receive a notification via email or mobile phone automatically, anywhere in the world.

16. Take the project tasks, team discussions, company contacts, centralized calendars, team blogs, and files offline. and then sync the updated information later on.

17. Create "central" documents (and syncronize), so all team members, clients, and/or partners are able to work on the same document and make changes. Updates are accessible with a click of a button. Everyone can then sync back to the "central" document and have all edits merged into that single document.

18. Easily add custom fields to any area and capture the information that's most important to your company, all without the help of a web designer or IT person.

19. Pull up and update Microsoft Access 2007 database from a local desktop and sync information to a central location that can be accessed from any where at any time.

20. Create a project dashboard where on one page you can view and filter on common project elements, such as: project details, project documents, project tasks, project issues, project calendar, project milestones, project lessons learned, project risks, project change orders, and more.

On top of it all, you won't spend a fortune to meet these communication, collaboration, and organizational needs.

Don't even get me started about the integration features between SharePoint Services 3.0 and the Microsoft Office 2007 products, especially Outlook 2007 - It's fantasic! For some of the ideas listed, you'll need to have Office 2007.

Keep in mind that a little training goes a long way in increasing productivity in the products you use in your business. I highly recommend taking the time to learn this efficient and effective tool and watch your productivity, along with your profits, soar!

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