What is SharePoint?
Microsoft SharePoint is a browser-based business collaboration and document management platform for the enterprise and the web from Microsoft.
But it is not that easy to explain what SharePoint is. SharePoint is not a single thing, it is a collection of many different technologies wrapped up in one name. Learning SharePoint is like learning Microsoft Office, once you know MS Word you will learn MS Excel and so on. So, SharePoint is a massive set of solution for the users.
SharePoint is a server product which you will not install in your desktop. SharePoint is installed on a separate server and shared across the network which can be accessed using the web browser.
Microsoft projects that SharePoint is having 6 different areas. They are Sites, Communities, Content, Search, Insights, and Composites. Let me explain them in my perspective.
SharePoint is a massive website engine which helps you create your own web site. It is not necessary for you to be a web designer, any SharePoint user can create their own site which can be a personal site or a website for their team or a website for their company or a website for the world to see.
Unlike most websites on the internet which allows you to read them, SharePoint allows you to be a contributor so that you can change and edit the site created anytime.
SharePoint helps you organize, Communicate and work with multiple people at the same time. Suppose if you and your team members want to work on the same word document at the same time SharePoint allows you to do that. SharePoint can give you shared Calendars, task lists, Document libraries, and discussion boards. All this content helps you to organize and manage your team effectively.
SharePoint can maintain an immense amount of data and lets you know whenever the content changes. The Idea of collaboration is built into SharePoint, all the contents that make up the organizations day to day activities like a word document, spreadsheets, images, Videos, audios, and even database files can be uploaded into the SharePoint. If you need to share file content to multiple people, you will be sharing the file in a network shared folder or you will be sending mail. Whereas SharePoint provides you space to save all your content in a single place and the data will be shared and accessible to other people. SharePoint also ensures that the sensitive contents will be shared only to the people to whom it can be shared. SharePoint also provides an option to maintain the versions of the document so that we can track the changes made to the document and we can revert back to any version of the document if necessary.
SharePoint contains a massive super smart search engine which lets you search all the data. This complex search engine not only allows you to search for your content but also the people more securely. So that no one gets access to the content they should not.
SharePoint helps you to bring all your information together. Not only bringing it together but brings in such a way that you understand better. SharePoint can analyze all your contents and present them as a report. SharePoint also provides options to build your own dashboards, scorecards and Visio diagrams which are automatically updated based on the real-time data available inside SharePoint. These insights will be really helpful in important decision making.
SharePoint helps you build on top of SharePoint itself. SharePoint has many capabilities to be extended, which are meant to be extended and customized. It is not necessary for you to be a programmer, with the help of the SharePoint designer and Visio you can build your custom workflows without any code.
Hope you understand the SharePoint basics and it’s importance As I said before SharePoint is not a program. It is not a solution to a problem, it is a platform that you will use to build a hundred solutions to a hundred problems. The need and use of SharePoint can differ from one individual to another, but SharePoint makes websites, it helps you work with other people, it gives you a place to place all your contents, it helps you to search all your contents and people, it helps you to bring it together and understand it better and it helps you to build it and extend it.