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It Makes Sense for Enterprise Organizations Looking to Manage Support Costs for SharePoint to Train Site Owners for Self Maintenance

Rehmani Consulting, Inc. has recently introduced a help system for Microsoft® SharePoint® 2010, VisualSP. Our system delivers all sorts of training content — whether in video, document, slides, or even image format — directly within the SharePoint 2010 work space. We think this in-context access is very important. In fact, in-context access adds a stickiness to SharePoint, while removing any need for users to leave SharePoint to locate training information about policies and/or procedures. In our opinion, any content that can be used to successfully maintain user interest within a potentially unfamiliar — not to mention unwelcome –computing environment should contribute to hasten user adoption of the platform.

Looking further, our system offers enterprise organizations an opportunity to reconsider the level to which site owners and power users can be trusted to safely perform tasks like creating list, libraries, and, potentially, altering site branding. The rationale for reconsidering how these tasks are performed is what we have noted as a pervasive need on the part of enterprise organizations to lower the cost of supporting SharePoint users. Elsewhere in this blog we have presented information about these high costs; therefore, we do not intend to rehash these points in this post. Nevertheless, we do need to make mention of these costs as we have noted, in conversations with enterprise organizations, a substantial level of skepticism as to whether site owners and power users can be trusted to successfully, and safely deliver on these objectives.

We think that these users, once they are empowered with organization-specific training and industry best practices, can, in fact, be trusted to successfully deliver on these objectives. Further, we think that support cost represents a driver that is, increasingly, difficult for enterprise organizations to avoid. In fact, many of these organizations are considering migrating SharePoint over to a managed service via an option like Office 365, or its competitors, specifically to manage spiraling implementation and support costs. Surely, many of these organizations would rather maintain SharePoint, on premise. We think a help system like VisualSP can be used to train, empower, and manage site owners and power users to perform a higher level set of tasks than is often the case.

Supporting SharePoint users as they develop the ability to manage their own needs to successfully perform daily computing tasks, as well as to contribute to efforts to render SharePoint into an optimum work space, ought to be a pressing imperative for enterprise organizations. The cost benefits are too compelling to pass this opportunity by.

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