The latest AIIM Industry Watch report is out today, and it has some great insights into the love/hate relationship between SharePoint and its users. We asked implementers if they thought SharePoint was the right decision for their business when they originally went for it. It would be easy to focus on the 9% who feel it was a poor decision rather than the 55% who are positive about it – although half of those found it tougher going than they expected. More interesting, however, are the 22% who "had high ambitions, but have only achieved basic deployment".
So when we asked, “What are your three biggest on-going business issues with your SharePoint system,” #1, given by 46% or respondents, is the lack of expertise to maximize its usefulness, closely followed at #2 by the lack of strategic plans on what to use it for and what not to – hence the “unplanned and under-developed” title to this piece. Of course, you could take this as a plug for the excellent AIIM training courses in this area, and you would be right. There is also a very strong intent shown in the report (54% of respondents) to bring in 3rdparty expertise and products to help develop their SharePoint functionality.
But what of the “un-loved”? Well, #3 and #4 ongoing issues are resistance from users committing their documents to SharePoint, and resistance to joining and contributing to collaboration and social areas. Now, to be fair, both of these issues could probably be leveled at any ECM system, and any social collaboration site, but SharePoint was supposed to have much more user-appeal than traditional ECM systems.
Despite all of this, SharePoint continues to be popular, but not necessarily as the “ECM across the enterprise” we often visualize, nor as “ECM for smaller businesses” which was once the marketing concept. It’s best to measure adoption in a generic survey, rather than one that is dedicated to SharePoint, and we did this in the Process Revolution Industry Watch in February.
83% of the largest (5,000+) companies have SharePoint in use but only 45% of 10-500 employee organizations. Across the board, 70% of “users” are not using it as their primary ECM system, and only 8% say SharePoint is their first experience of ECM – 10% of the smallest and 5% of the largest. Similar numbers consider it to be their only ECM system, although a further 16% say it is their most widely used system. Either way, it’s certainly not wall-to-wall SharePoint for ECM in general. When you look more closely, most organizations have a confusing mix of traditional ECM, vanilla SharePoint, and SharePoint add-ons and integrations.
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