SharePoint can be the better solution. Most businesses store their documents on file shares, shared hard drives, that everyone can access. This, on the surface can seem to be a logical, efficient use of storage. Storing documents in a common area is a great way to share documents. But, most businesses have very messy, poorly maintained shared drives. Most would admit that their files shares are loaded with outdated, misfiled documents. Granted, in the midst of this document chaos there can be order and relevant documents. Version control, archival, and updates are needed, but not maintained properly.
To make matters worse, many people will use what I call “mood-based” naming conventions, which make it very difficult to locate a document, even by the person who created it!
Not only are we having to manage all these documents, I find that many of the employees I speak to tell me they are using personal storage devices for work such as USB sticks. Almost half of them store work documents on personal cloud services. If you are like me, you can easily feel overwhelmed by all the information we must deal with and store every day.
It is increasingly difficult to mange the storage and security of our business documents. There are so many input and output options, it’s no wonder we have documents everywhere.
SharePoint gives us these advantages over shared drives:
- Web-based document access
- Version control
- Approval processes
- Workflows to automate business processes