Document Management - The Modern SharePoint Document Library Experience

The Modern SharePoint Document Library Experience

Helping people share files and collaborate on content is paramount to any growing company. SharePoint’s modern document libraries offer a better experience for document management that’s faster, more intuitive and responsive. Here’s a look at what’s new:

The new, modern document library experience, showing two documents and a link pinned to the top.

User interface

Modern document libraries combine the power of SharePoint with the usability of OneDrive. These modern document libraries have an updated user interface that offers an experience similar to OneDrive, so it’s more intuitive to create a new folder and upload files in the browser. The ribbon has been replaced with a trim command bar, which provides intelligent commands relevant to the tasks at hand. If your organization has customized the ribbon with buttons that map to critical business functionality in your enterprise, those buttons will appear in the command bar as well. With this update, each new Office 365 group now gets a full modern document library, replacing the former “Files” page. Here are a few of the cool new features:

Important documents easily highlighted—Click Pin to top to add documents “above the fold” in any onscreen view.

Copy and move files from the command bar—Copying isn’t new, but the copy and move gestures are intelligent about displaying your information architecture and letting you create new folders on the fly.

Copy files from SharePoint command bar.

Import files from other libraries—You may not have to make as many copies any more. Document libraries are also intelligent about remembering other files you’ve been using in SharePoint. That’s why you can import other files from other libraries as links, without having to duplicate files between multiple sites. You still see thumbnails and metadata for native files. And SharePoint shows your list of most recent documents, so you don’t have to cut and paste a link.

Create a link in modern document libraries.

Personalization

Personalized views simplified—The new document libraries let you group files directly in the main page without clicking to a separate admin screen. You can also click and drag to change the size of your columns, as well as sort, filter and group from any column header. To make the view available to everybody else in the library, just click Save View.

Responsive and accessible design—Mobile browsers have the same features as the desktop, making SharePoint productive for every user—whether they interact via mouse, keyboard, touch or screen reader.

Metadata

Document metadata now available inline—You can now edit metadata directly from the main view in the information panel. No more clicking into multiple screens to apply an update! If you’re in a view that groups files by metadata, you can drag and drop files between groups to update the metadata. And if you miss something required, the document is no longer hidden behind enforced checkout—you just receive a reminder to enter the data when you can.

One-stop shopping for everything about your documents—Thanks to Office Online integration, you can navigate a complete document preview at the top of the information panel. The panel offers metadata, including the history of recent activity, updates to the file and who received a share to the file. You can also add more users or immediately stop all sharing. Finally, all other file properties are displayed, in case there’s anything else not already covered.

The document information panel.

Keeping it authentically SharePoint—While we enhanced the document libraries to make them as intuitive and productive as possible, we know that the power of SharePoint has always been in your ability to customize document libraries to work for your team. At the same time, there’s a rich tradition of using content types, check-in/check-out, versioning, records management and workflows in SharePoint. Modern document libraries inherit all of these.

Navigation

Modern libraries come to Office 365 Groups—To bring enhanced content management to group files, libraries belonging to an Office 365 group have a new header control at the top of the page. Unlike the old control, which included links to the group’s conversation, calendar and member management, the new control has a single link to the group’s conversation, from which users can navigate to calendar and member management.

Getting started with modern document libraries

As modern libraries rolls out Microsoft gives you full control of using classic or modern looks at the tenant, site collection and library level. Keepin’ it old school will run well into 2017 while your users adapt and adopt the new capabilities.


New FastTrack Offer for SharePoint 2013 Migrations

New FastTrack Offer for SharePoint 2013 Migrations

Are you looking to move your SharePoint 2013 on premises environment to SharePoint Online and reap the benefits of Microsoft’s cloud platform? If you answered yes, you might be aware of just how big of a task moving from SharePoint 2013 to SharePoint Online is. Dependent upon how much data you have, a move to the cloud can costs tens of thousands of dollars. Not only do you need to plan, onboard and drive adoption of the new platform – you need to ensure that data is not lost along the way.

Microsoft has announced a limited-time offer of migration services from on-premises SharePoint 2013 to Office 365—available at no additional cost to eligible Office 365 customers until March 31, 2017. This offer is available to customers with at least 150 licenses for an eligible service or plan for their Office 365 tenant. For customers who take advantage of this offer, the FastTrack team will assess your SharePoint 2013 environment, and help you build and execute a plan to migrate from your on-premises team sites and MySites to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business, respectively.

To date, Microsoft FastTrack has enabled more than 22,000 customers, migrated 2.45 PB of data and is currently taking on more than 4,000 new customers every month. Watch this video below to learn more about the value of FastTrack from customers who have experience it firsthand:

Working with a Microsoft Partner like 6th Street Consulting will not only aid in your FastTrack migration, but can provide valuable services during and after the execution. One of the keys to any successful migration, once an organization has deployed the new tools, is to make sure people are learning and using them. 6SC offers a comprehensive range of services to aid companies of all sizes in taking full advantage of Office 365 and SharePoint Online.

6th Street Consulting, the 2013 Global Microsoft Partner of the Year Winner for Collaboration & Content, is a strategy and technology consulting firm located in Redondo Beach, California. 6SC is a company built on user productivity and team collaboration. Allow us to implement our time-tested features with years of development and user testing behind them. Our SharePoint solutions help you to get more out of each and every work day. Integrated features across applications save time and allow you to focus on efforts that add value and profitability. Set yourself apart and grow your business by sharpening your competitive edge with 6SC.

 


Better Together: Contractor Collaboration via Office 365

Workforce on Demand

Having independent contractors at companies of all sizes is the new normal. Busy seasons demand extra bandwidth; full-time employees take temporary leave or unique/temporary roles need to be filled.

Whatever the reason, getting support from contractors can provide scale, flexibility and specialized skills to your team—which is why their popularity continues to grow. For example, 51 percent of companies say their need for contingent workers will continue to grow within the next three to five years. Alongside, the talent pool is changing to match this trend: By 2020, 43 percent of the U.S. workforce will be freelancers.

Finding the right contractor for the right job is only the first step. They’ll likely be working outside of your office, but will still need to rely on the resources your internal teams use daily. If you want to enable your contractors to do their best work, you need to ensure they have the right tools to collaborate with your internal teams. Office 365 and SharePoint Online offer a flexible way to give your contractors just that.

Here are the top four reasons why Office 365 and SharePoint Online are key to set your independent contractors up for success:

#1—Streamline Communication

Make it easy for your contractors to stay in touch. Set up technology that allows them to communicate with and get to know your internal teams. This can (and should) come in the form of many tools, but Office 365 offers a comprehensive all in one solution. Enable them to send instant messages to anyone in the company via Skype for Business. Also, promote the use of video conferencing and screen sharing for efficient collaboration. Not only will this increase productivity, but it will allow full-time employees and contractors to build more personal relationships with face-to-face communication.

#2—Share Files with Ease

Depending on when and where your contractors work, coordinating across time zones and locations may be a factor in their success. Avoid a situation where a contractor is stuck waiting for a team member to come online to gain access to files. Instead, opt for SharePoint Online a cloud-based file sharing and storing platform. That way, contractors can get the files and documents they need around the clock to get the job done. And with permission settings, you can restrict and permit access to the specific files an independent contractor needs, and revoke access when a contract ends.

#3—Stay on the Same Page

Enhance collaboration with the ability to co-author (edit and work) on the same online documents. It’ll prevent excessive back-and-forth on email between team members. Digital files automatically sync and update over the internet, so your team is always looking at the most up-to-date version. And since your files live in the cloud, you’ll always know who made the last edit and can review and revoke changes if you ever need to go back to an older version.   

#4—Secure Your Data

Security may not always be top of mind for your employees and contractors—but it is for you and your IT team. Strike a balance between giving your extended team what they need while retaining control over your company’s data. The file access you give to your freelancers doesn’t need to last forever. When their contract is over, simply revoke access remotely. Even if your independent contractor has used their own device to access your data, cloud-based tools can delete your company’s files from that device.

With the right technology and infrastructure, independent contractors can become an effective extension of your team. Forget disruptions, lost files or a lack of security. Office 365 and SharePoint Online provide the right tools to solve those problems and help your teams do their best work from anywhere in the world.


Microsoft Plans to Release Big Update in Spring 2017

PCWorld – Windows 10 update

Link to full article

6SC Teams Up with Microsoft and the Small Business Administration

6SC teams up with Microsoft and the Small Business Administration to explain how SharePoint can used for business process automation.

Play video (Channel 9 MSDN)


Microsoft 2016 Ignite - Incredible Changes Coming Your Way

Microsoft’s largest conference for customers and technology providers has just concluded at the end of September 2016. Microsoft is continuing to make large innovative strides across multiple fronts. Cloud computing, security and personal productivity were key focus areas this year. See below for Microosft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, message about innovation.

 

 


Increase SharePoint User Adoption

Getting onboard

 
My professional experience with SharePoint has been somewhat brief, but working for one of the top SharePoint firms in the nation has required me to get up to speed fairly quickly. For most of you reading this, chances are you’re already a SharePoint advocate. The features integrated throughout SharePoint are great. From document libraries, wikis, versioning, alerts, team sites, search, and the million other things SharePoint can do it’s easy for myself to see the benefits. Unfortunately, not everyone thinks like myself and sees SharePoint as an additional IT initiative that will only make their work day harder.

I’ve found that explaining the value of SharePoint to clients can feel a little like speaking a foreign language. The more I talk, the less they understand, and the less they understand, the more likely they are to reject it. All is not lost though, actually quite the contrary. For those that are onboard with implementing SharePoint and even those that are still skeptical, below is a few simple steps that can have a real impact on seeing the benefits of SharePoint and gaining user adoption.

Make it cool to use SharePoint
I know it sounds cliché, but I often hear about companies that are bewildered by their low SharePoint user adoption numbers. They set up their environment and had everyone come to some training sessions, but no one seems to be using it. The biggest problem here? SharePoint isn’t Facebook. It’s a great tool for managing and organizing company files, but people aren’t going to leap at the opportunity to use it. It’s not “cool.” In order to get people onboard you’ll need a well-structured plan to target the great social aspects of SharePoint and how it will make their day to day tasks that much simpler and enjoyable. You know your company and you know how your colleagues work. Get creative and build a plan that will inspire them to adopt.

Put yourself in the users shoes
I know SharePoint is awesome, but how bout your end users? Your colleagues are just trying to get their day to day job done, answer emails, find relevant information and avoid boring meetings. Put yourself in your users shoes and determine how they will interact with the site. What does Scott in Marketing need that SharePoint can provide? What are his pain points? People just want things to happen easily and if they can see how SharePoint will help them do that, they will jump at the chance to adopt it.

Starts from the top
If you want success with your SharePoint adoption, you need strong leadership. If your CEO and senior management doesn’t use it then why are the rest of your users going to? The leaders of your company need to be seen to be onboard with SharePoint and utilizing the same benefits that it’s adding to the rest of the company. If they are correctly using it and reaping the benefits then you can darn well expect the rest of the company to follow suit.

User focused training
We’ve all been a part of a company training session and upon leaving it said “well that’s two hours of my life that I’ll never get back”. Don’t get me wrong, SharePoint training sessions can be extremely valuable to your users. However, these sessions need to be targeted towards specific departments. In order for these training sessions to be effective and above all, useful, you need to show your users how the platform can be used in their day to day work. Give them specific examples so they can see just how beneficial utilizing SharePoint is to making their job easier.

In-house marketing
Getting marketing onboard with your SharePoint implementation can go a long way in upping your numbers. Get people in the company excited about SharePoint. Put up a few posters around the office, send out emails with daily tips and cool features, and hold Q&A sessions. Build some excitement around SharePoint and convey the message that SharePoint will make things easier, faster and better in their day to day work life.

Measure engagement
SharePoint offers a range of tools for measuring how engaged your users are. Keep an eye on these figures and work out where there are problems. Target departments with low engagement and listen to colleagues and implement a plan to encourage adoption.


Take the Work Out of Working Together

The all new Office 

Microsoft Office 365 can help you achieve real gains in innovation by strengthening the connections that your employees have with one another, with partners, and with your customers. Employees can seamlessly connect to information and move between all types of communications, from virtually anywhere, on all your favorite devices. This flexibility is absolutely critical to enable collaboration in context as your employees work together to achieve more.

40% or more of the U.S. workforce is expected to be made up of contingent or independent workers by 2020.

With the recent release of Office 2016, there are a host of great new features that allows you to produce professional documents fast with intelligent suggestions, information, and insights at just the right time. Office 2016 is truly built for teamwork and reduces the friction in co-creation, making it easier to share documents, work together, and use coauthoring, IM, voice and video to get things done. Below I will touch on some of the improvements of Office 2016.

Engage
Access your documents and work whenever and wherever with full fidelity viewing and editing from your PC or Mac to your Windows, Apple, and Android phones and tablets. Engage with your colleagues in all facets of the business, including trusted partners, in a highly collaborative open-discussion forum to identify new ideas.

Deploy 
Work in collaborative workspaces with virtual teams and research partners to reduce ramp-up costa, co-create proposals, and fast-track innovation, while protecting company IP. Collaborate like never before in Word, PowerPoint, and OneNote. Real-time typing in Word lets you see others’ edits as they happen.

Conduct 
Work like you’re all in one room, even when you’re not. Use Skype for Business for HD video conferencing, coauthoring, desktop sharing, presentations, and IM to run your meetings from anywhere. Make your virtual meetings effective, while reducing travel costs.

Enable   
Share business insights to improve decision-making and produce better products and services. Enable seamless project collaboration to optimize project portfolios and manage costs against the budget.

Office 365 is the best-in-class solution delivered to you on a single cloud-based platform. It enables you to accelerate new capabilities to users, while reducing time spent on admin and upgrades. Giving you consistent, familiar, and intuitive tools to reduce training costs and minimize disruption.  This helps you keep your data and devices safe with enterprise-grade security and IT controls. Widen your ideation pipeline and accelerate time to market by delivering higher quality products and new customer experiences with Office 365.


Helping Project Teams Work Efficiently

It is critical for project teams to have a professional solution in order to work efficiently. Companies are continuously changing their work process policies, in turn adopting more team-oriented approaches. Below we will discuss the extensive amount of collaborative tools that SharePoint has to offer.

Information

  • Announcements – The Team Site comes with a built-in Announcements list, designed as a tool for keeping the entire team informed about the latest project status or changes.
  • Document Libraries – These are collections of files that team members share in order to ensure comprehensive information about a project’s objectives and activities. Usually, document libraries contain procedures, manuals or instructions.

Project management

  • Tasks – This is a feature dedicated to team managers that enables them to allocate tasks and track activity status. For each task, managers can assign it to one or more team members, select its priority, and enter the percentage of the task completed.
  • Project Tasks – A project task is a simple project management feature that uses a timeline and Gantt bars to represent the tasks in a project.

Time management

  • Calendars – A SharePoint calendar allows teams to share information about dates, events and schedules. Also, it offers users the possibility to create and integrate Meeting Workspace sites that contain tools for managing objectives, meeting agendas, guest lists, and meeting documents.

Knowledge sharing

  • Discussion boards – With this feature, team members can share information and centralize feedback about specific processes or activities.
  • Slide libraries – They help team members to share, store, and manage Microsoft Office PowerPoint slides.
  • Wiki page libraries – These libraries are designed for employees to capture and share ideas by creating simple pages and linking them together. A wiki page is useful for gathering and sharing ideas quickly.

Issues Management

  • The Issue tracking feature enables team members to track issues with a project or item. SharePoint will also send notification to users according to each issue priority.

Team feedback

  • Surveys – This SharePoint feature allows managers to ask and gather feedback from team members about issues, processes and many other topics. Users can collect the results by using several different types of questions, such as multiple choice, fill-in fields, ratings and even anonymous responses.

Your Intranet in Your Pocket

Untether with the SharePoint Mobile App

It’s time to untether with the SharePoint mobile app, which enables you to stay connected to important content, sites, portals and people from your intranet while you’re on the go.

Get the full power of SharePoint on your phone. This new app, too, is infused with intelligence from the Office Graph to help you navigate more quickly to content and people that matter to you the most.

The Sites tab takes you to your Sites, Recent sites and Followed sites, where you can keep up with site activity, navigate using quick launch or see recent files.
The Links tab takes you to sites and portals programmed for everyone in the company.
The People tab gives you access to the people you work with and visibility into what they are working on.
Search is available throughout with clean results filtered by sites, files and people.

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The SharePoint mobile app is available on Windows, iOS and Android.

Users can also have multiple accounts online and on-premises, and can easily switch between them. The SharePoint mobile app for iOS is now available, followed by versions for Windows and Android in the second half of 2016. And a planned, future update to the app will bring company news and announcements to your device.