Have You Thought About What to Look for In a SharePoint Consultant?
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Have You Thought About What to Look for In a SharePoint Consultant?

Editor’s note: Starting today, and for each foreseeable Thursday, we will be posting articles relevant to Microsoft products. The next several weeks will be devoted to the Sharepoint application.

We do have to make it known we are a Registered Partner with Microsoft but we are not promoting our services as a result of these articles — unless you want to publish an article about the uses of Microsoft products as a guest blogger or regular contributor. Think of it as free advertisement for your skills!

As they are published, the articles will be interconnected through the Posts in This Series section that is found below all posts. You will want to keep an eye on our YouTube Channel as well — for this Series, we have added 40+ videos to our SharePoint 2013 playlist! All the Microsoft Office playlists will be getting a boost in the coming days as well.

You will always be able to find these articles by using our search page at http://j.mp/thwsearch, and then enter ‘Microsoft [Product Name]‘ into the Custom Search box found at the bottom of the page. Why the bottom of our page? We provide some tips as how to hone and focus your searches on Google — seems only 25% of the people that use Google are using it correctly. To get you started off correctly, we have even provided a coupon for a free Google search. :-)


As organizations have increasingly conducted business online, the need for effective data management has grown and evolved.

Part of that evolution has demanded that content management platforms be developed with greater infrastructure and a more advanced ability to be integrated with other applications and digital tools.

Microsoft SharePoint has been one of the leading web application platforms to help businesses realize those goals.

While it’s an easy application that can be taken out of the box and set up by any small business operating with limited tech knowledge and even more limited resources, it can also be implemented by large-scale organizations.

A number of Fortune 500 companies have used or currently use SharePoint in their content management efforts.

But this increased scale is considerably more complex than implementing SharePoint at the small business level.

You’ll have to do a lot of extra work to equip SharePoint for the demands of a mid-to-large organization.

Using external hosting (like Rackspace) will make using SharePoint easier in the long run, but a consultant is great to have on hand to guide the transition.

If you’re in the market for such a consultant, make sure you know what you’re looking for.

Here are some guidelines…


Seeking out experience

Don’t entrust your business’s virtual content management to someone who hasn’t been in these shoes before.

If you’re a smaller or mid-sized organization, you might be able to get away with a consultant who only brings a few years of experience to the table.

But if you represent a larger organization whose SharePoint utilization figures to be on a massive scale, don’t entrust your system to anything less than the best.

Shoot for at least 5 years of experience, if not more.

But keep in mind that since it’s a relatively young field, you won’t find many experts whose hands-on experience surpasses 5 or 7 years.

Make sure there’s a plan

Don’t let any consultant touch your systems without first laying out an executable plan.

If you have an IT department in-house, you’ll want them to review the plan to make sure they’re on board and understand its objective.

Your IT team might be able to point out potential snags in the plan and troubleshoot to find alternative methods of implementing SharePoint without complications.


Continued Support

One of the dangers of implementing new software and technology is that the system breaks down when you try to put it to use.

It’s important that your consultant commit to being available to you for the next several weeks, just in case you arrive at any hangups.

This can stem from a variety of potential bugs or stumbling blocks, particularly if it relates to an integrative problem with internal or external applications.

The more your consultant will be available after the initial setup, the less reason you’ll have to worry.

Conclusion

By enlisting the services of the right SharePoint consultant, you’ll give your organization the best chance at a smooth transition to the new management system.

Not only can a consultant make sure the basic needs are covered, but they can also steer you toward better practices for utilizing the features and applications SharePoint has to offer.

That means more efficient workplace operations and a promising future in the cloud.


What Are Your Thoughts??

  As this is only one is a series of articles on SharePoint that Jennifer Marsh has provided, what questions do you have about SharePoint?

Perhaps you have something that needs to be resolved?

Or perhaps you have something that has been a thought for a while but haven’t gotten around to asking (until now)?

Let us help you, how can we help?

Leave your question in the comments below, or use the email and/or social media links in Jennifer’s profile to reach her through Rackspace.

  If you have used a consultant to implement your Sharepoint system, what can you add ot Jennifer’s points here?

  What one point is a convincer for you that someone would make a great consultant for your implementation?

  What concerns do you have about implementing your Sharepoint system?

Please share your thoughts with our audience in the comments section below!

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Jennifer was brought to our attention by Beth Corneglio of Rackspace Hosting and by clicking here you can reach Beth by email.


Jennifer Marsh is a software developer, programmer, technology writer, and blogger.

You can reach Jennifer by contacting Beth via email or by leaving a comment below…

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Jennifer was brought to our attention by Beth Corneglio of Rackspace Hosting and by clicking here you can reach Beth by email.
Jennifer Marsh is a software developer, programmer, technology writer, and blogger. You can reach Jennifer by contacting Beth via email or by leaving a comment below...

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