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The SharePoint Adoption Checklist: Unlock User Adoption & Engagement Success

A SharePoint adoption and intranet implementation is no easy undertaking. Follow our checklist for a seamless adoption journey and learn why you need a Microsoft Partner for the best user experience.

The SharePoint Adoption Checklist: Unlock User Adoption & Engagement Success

SharePoint is one of the most widely used collaboration tools by organizations around the world. With its robust features allowing organizations to effectively store, manage, and share content internally or externally, it is no surprise that many businesses choose SharePoint as their main collaboration tool. While SharePoint is a great choice for many organizations to build sites, hubs, or portals, adopting a new platform always comes with its challenges, which is why following a SharePoint adoption checklist is essential.

SharePoint Pre-Deployment Checklist

Prior to deploying your SharePoint environment, there are a few things you should do to increase the likelihood of a successful adoption, which include:

  • Get Leadership Buy-In

    You need to have a team of champions that push for a SharePoint adoption. Take the time to communicate the purpose of this project and involve key team members to lead the plan.

  • Assess Your Digital Workplace

    Assess your existing workplace, making note of how you collaborate and communicate, identifying its limitations, and determining the processes that will potentially be replaced with your SharePoint intranet.

  • Identify Goals and Objectives

    Gather the needs of your organization from department heads and the identified champions of the SharePoint adoption plan to finalize the objectives of your business and what you look to achieve in the future – better search, improved employee engagement, version controlling, and efficient collaboration, or all of these.

  • Develop Deployment Plan and Timeline

    Create a plan and timeline for deployment. Be realistic about moving over to a new platform and keep in mind the need for customizations, configurations, content migration, and the overall architecture and site build. Make sure your timeline spans from kick-off and design all the way to training and ongoing management.

  • Create Backup and Disaster Recovery Plans

    Plan for any hurdles that may arise, as even if you’re fully prepared and have the knowledge necessary to deploy your environment, sometimes things can go wrong, which is why it is essential to create backups of sensitive data.

SharePoint Implementation Checklist

Once you have completed the pre-adoption checklist, you are ready to begin your deployment. To ensure your SharePoint environment is successfully deployed, you should:

  • Verify Pre-Deployment Checklist Items

    Go through the pre-deployment checklist and ensure that you have considered all the factors, including an assessment of the existing environment, a timeline, and a backup/recovery plan.

  • Creation of a SharePoint Information Architecture & Content Design

    The most crucial and time-consuming step of all. Make sure to draft an information architecture to ensure users’ intranet search is effective and your sites are more intuitive.

  • Implement Your Visual Design

    This is where you either follow the pre-built layout provided by SharePoint or dive deep into matching your hub sites with your corporate brand for consistency and ease of use. Without an experienced facilitator, this can be a taxing undertaking.

  • Implement Security and Governance Policies

    Most important of all, and the key to a sustainable SharePoint adoption is the security configurations. Set up security and permissions to control your SharePoint environment. Configuring sensitivity labels, setting up metadata, adding classification labels, and managing user access ensures that business users have access to sensitive information directly relevant to them. This is another challenging hurdle for businesses unless you have experienced SharePoint service experts providing the guardrails for effective security.

  • Train Stakeholders

    Curate training resources that help your stakeholders adopt the new environment with ease. Make sure the materials are accessible and address common end-user pain points and FAQs. Build a plan to educate users on the search functionality that helps guide users to easily find files and documents.

  • Migrate Site Content

    Begin migrating the documents and content that you would like to see as part of your new SharePoint collaboration space once your environment is set up and ready. Migrate smaller portions at a time so you can address any hurdles that arise.

  • Test and Validate Migrated Content

    Validate the content migrated to your new SharePoint environment to ensure everything has moved over correctly, and test customizations and functionality to see if they work as intended.

  • Deploy Customizations and Third-Party Solutions

    Deploy existing or new customizations and third-party solutions that best fit your organization after you have migrated your data, documents, and files to your new SharePoint environment.

SharePoint Adoption Post-Deployment Checklist

Finally, once you have successfully deployed your new SharePoint environment, you should consider the following:

  • Verify Adoption Checklist Items

    Verify that all data, customizations, third-party tools, security and permissions, configurations, and site structure have been applied correctly in your SharePoint environment.

  • Make Training Accessible

    Even though you have invested in training your users during the deployment, make sure that your training program and all associated resources are easily accessible. The knowledge base should be available as and when needed for old and new end users to boost engagement and widespread SharePoint adoption.

  • Monitor SharePoint Environment

    Monitor your SharePoint environment to see if any issues arise that were not visible during the testing phase. Sometimes, issues become more apparent after wide-scale adoption.

  • Develop a Maintenance and Support Plan

    Update and constantly monitor your SharePoint intranet after deployment. The process is not complete simply because you deployed your new SharePoint environment, you must continue to keep an eye on it and ensure it is equipped to successfully scale with your business.

  • Strategize Continuous Improvement Plan

    Gather feedback from end-users on the features or customizations they find most beneficial, and where they think improvements could be made, to come up with a detailed improvement plan.

Why Carry Out a SharePoint Adoption Project with Big Cloud Consultants

Deploying a new SharePoint environment requires a lot of planning, which is why it is essential to follow a thorough SharePoint adoption checklist to ensure a seamless transition. Although SharePoint has an admin-friendly interface, it is a complex program that needs an experienced hand to launch successfully.

By working with Big Cloud Consultants to modernize your workplace, you can optimize SharePoint to fulfill your communication, collaboration, and process automation needs to improve employee experience and engagement. Our team of SharePoint intranet experts will help you with:

Site Architecture

We will develop a clear site architecture prior to deployment to ensure the proposed SharePoint intranet addresses the requirements of your key stakeholders, is well-organized, and is easily accessible to your users.

Build

We will build out your SharePoint intranet based on your existing environment’s user base, content, configurations, and customizations, and provide continuous support pre-deployment and post-deployment to ensure you are making the most of your investment.

Customization

We will evaluate custom workflows and features in your existing digital workplace environment and carry over the features to make the transition as seamless as possible, as well as help you implement new features based on stakeholder and end-user feedback.

Governance

We will carry out an analysis of your current technology platform and applications to ensure you have proper controls and compliance configurations in place, and we will implement these in your new SharePoint intranet to protect your sensitive data.

Training

We will provide you with curated training resources, support, and knowledge bases for all stakeholders and end-users across your organization to ensure the successful adoption of your new SharePoint environment.

Maintenance

We will be available for support from the beginning of the SharePoint deployment process to the end and beyond, with constant monitoring of your SharePoint intranet to ensure it remains updated and continues to meet the needs of your organization.

Work with Big Cloud Consultants

Our SharePoint adoption experts will work with your key stakeholders to determine the requirements for a successful SharePoint implementation and make your business processes more efficient.

Get in touch with our industry experts today to work smarter, reduce redundancies, and increase ROI with your SharePoint environment.

Picture of Craig Zimmerman - Chief Operating Officer

Craig Zimmerman - Chief Operating Officer

Craig Zimmerman is deeply versed in navigating the IT, software, and broadcast industries. As COO, Zimmerman's role sits at the intersection of strategy, operations, and growth, propelling organizations to new heights through cutting-edge cloud solutions and expertly delivered services. By leveraging his entrepreneurial skills and broad industry knowledge, Zimmerman effectively drives digital transformations and optimizes cloud usage for businesses.

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