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SharePoint Search is Designed to Support Collaboration

SharePoint 2010 or 2013 search is designed to support collaboration. Personnel listings in Active Directory are matched up to documents and lists in search results. SharePoint users can quickly identify people from search results.

If collaboration is important for business users looking for an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system, they should consider SharePoint 2013. In a video entitled “Show Me How: The Elusive Chris Smith – Use SharePoint search to find the right people faster” Microsoft demonstrates in no more than a few moments how people can be quickly identified with SharePoint search. This video is included in the Show Me How set of video training content that is available at no charge from the SharePoint web site.

The search results displayed in this video are a combination of document retrieval and Active Directory lookup. The video presents two ways of searching for an individual: by the individual’s name, and then by searching for a project to which the individual contributed. In the context of submitting a query for the person based upon name, the video authors demonstrate the “phonetic search” capability of SharePoint. “Phonetic search” is built on fuzzy logic that permits users to misspell names, or even only partially complete them. Despite these user errors SharePoint search still retrieves the correct individual from Active Directory.

Once the individual is found through SharePoint search, Lync is used to quickly contact the individual and set up a time to chat. Crafting SharePoint search to support quick identification of personnel is a smart idea. Larger businesses with thousands of staff members can be difficult to work with when specific individuals have to be identified. This video makes a case for these larger businesses (as well as their counterparts in the public and not for profit sectors) that SharePoint is the perfect platform to support their need for not only an ECM, but also a virtual white pages for an entire organization.

Together with other collaboration services like NewsGator and Yammer, SharePoint Search can be used to dramatically improve the odds that projects within these organizations will succeed. Inviting someone otherwise unknown to a project team, to participate based upon his or her prior accomplishments in the same area makes sense. These tools make that invitation a lot simpler activity.

Ira Michael Blonder

© Rehmani Consulting, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2013 All Rights Reserved