Today was the day I asked a question I had been wondering for a long time. Now, keep in mind that there are no stupid questions, at least, that’s what I had to tell myself before I asked this question. Another thing to keep in mind, is that my job entirely revolves around marketing, website design, and communication, so there may be some holes in my SharePoint education. Additionally, to erect another barrier I can hide behind, I did kind of know the answer before I asked it. Somewhat.
All in all, I’m a little insecure about the whole thing, so for my sake let’s just not talk about it.
So, on to the question itself. It’s simple enough, and not that difficult to pronounce, which is a big plus in my book. “What is SharePoint?” Now, I know what you’re thinking, (I don’t really, but humour me), “You work at a company where you are surrounded by SharePoint experts, why do you even have to ask that question?” Let me start by once again saying that there are no stupid questions, and also saying that I knew a broad answer to this question, (kind of), before asking. I know(ish) the technical definition of SharePoint, that being:
SharePoint is a browser-based collaboration and document management platform from Microsoft.
And that’s a fine definition, but I feel it doesn’t really encompass the full extent and importance of SharePoint. So I just wanted to know, from the professionals themselves, in the easiest terms possible, if I’m lucky in under one sentence, what is SharePoint?
And here are the answers I got:
How long have you been working here again? SharePoint is a one-stop-shop for team collaboration, where you and your coworkers have the tools to safely create, manage, and organize your important data, all in one place.”
Wikipedia probably has a really good answer you could use. SharePoint is an enterprise-level information portal that you can use to make websites, on either an on premise or cloud-based solution.”
Keeping in mind our “No stupid question” policy, I added a follow-up question of “What features does SharePoint have?” The answer I got was a little too in depth, so I may have paraphrased the following quote
a lot a little.
“SharePoint comes with a bunch of out-of-the-box features, like a document and content Management system, a centralized, password-protected space for secure sharing of files, and a lot more-” (Which I may or may not have forgotten to write down) “- but one thing to remember is that there isn’t a limited number of features. In addition to the out-of-the-box solutions, customized and tailor-made solutions can be made to fit your needs, which is a big part of what we do.”
“SharePoint really is about sharing. It can be made to run Intranet, Extranet, and Internet sites, all of which can be accessed through web-based browsers, from pretty much anywhere, on pretty much any device. I guess one of the biggest benefits would be that SharePoint really helps your organization’s effectiveness, and can amalgamate-” (what a fantastic word) “the process of sharing, managing, and accessing data.”
Professional #3 ½:
Using the term professional is a bit of a stretch, but seeing as I just talked to three professionals, I think I can count for half of one, just without any technical knowledge or credentials. So, without further ado, here’s my answer to the question: What is SharePoint?
“In my professional opinion, SharePoint is really cool. It’s all about sharing and amalgamating -what a fantastic word- information between people, in an easy-to-use and easy-to-access, secure, and collaborative solution. And, in my completely unbiased opinion, I really have to say that I think it’s more than worth it.”
I don’t know about you, but those words really touched the intranet of my heart. (Note: there isn’t actually an intranet in my heart. It’s more of an extranet with a strong firewall.)
If you want to learn more about SharePoint, I’m probably not the person to ask, but I do work with the people to ask, so be sure to contact us with any questions. Additionally, you can check out our SharePoint page to get a more in-depth description.