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SharePoint Planning: A Labyrinth of Choices
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SharePoint Planning: A Labyrinth of Choices



This deck talks about the common pitfalls of SharePoint planning or the lack there of.

This deck talks about the common pitfalls of SharePoint planning or the lack there of.



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  • You probably remember me from movies such asHair Helmet SocietyThe Hitchhiking ProfessorSmooth Operator
  • Touch on Disney/Universal
  • This was created for the Best Practice Conference. The goal of the conference is not how to do something but why. Clarity, direction, confidence.ClarityThe reason why it’s the hardest is because there is so much, its so easy to agree but making it happen might make you feel filling the Grand Canyon with a table spoon would be easier.There are a lot of moving parts to SharePoint. Always have been. Each new version increases the complexity of this application… no this platformDirectionThere are a lot of common pitfalls that companies fall in that may cause their SharePoint environment to not live up to its potential or expectationsTo know the questions to ask puts you in a position to winConfidenceYou are not the only one traveling this road, others have made different choices and come to different points
  • You will see a lot of stuff this conference, don’t try to do it all at once. (Phases)Why I chose this style of delivery. A labyrinth is full of choices, but only one solution, not true with SharePoint.How I used to read my chose your own adventures… put fingers in just in case!
  • Understand your business problems you are facing as a whole.Know who you are, what you do and where you are goingSharePoint is versatile. A Swiss army knife of software that has its place.Its not going anywhere, its here to stay (Microsoft is betting the farm on this one… pun intended)A question to ask, within the question. SharePoint could do “x” but should it?
  • Problems solved vs. cool application vs. told to install itDon’t install it for the sake of installing SharePointSharePoint is an excellent application HOWEVER the cool factor is not a reason to install it in the first placeManagement or executive team tells you to.. Tread lightly, but get the reasons behind the decisionCommon mistakeCompared to other document management systems out there price is a steal (SharePoint Foundation = FREE!)Easy to install oh yes it is (not right, but it works!)Welcome to Generation X, Y and the Lost GenerationsIf you don’t have a why, your workforce will create one… or two… or twenty
  • An executive champion is not just your friend, but an essential part to having your project be a successHow can they be used?Use them as a voice on the executive boardUse them to convey and communicate to the end usersGenerate excitement, branding naming contests, telling them the expectations (file servers) etc.It is through them your SharePoint governance document will most likely gain the authority needed to be effective
  • How many times have I heard, oh that SharePoint server is under so and so’s deskSharePoint is not considered a Tier 1 application… until it breaksSharePoint has a lack of team, lack of funding… lack of interest?Those working with no the benefit of the product but falls on deaf ears because they are just they have no authority to speak to the executives
  • Here is where most companies go wrong…Choosing not to write a governance is a governance! (Welcome to the wild wild west)Create a governance committee. Its not an exclusive club for IT members onlyWhen first created you will probably have to meet more frequently until it is put together wellIf you drop your governance document on a table and the table goes thud, breaks, cries… its too bigDo not get into police mode when you created a governance, SharePoint is to enable and empower your users
  • Its scary without a governance document. Speak on this. Tell them of the early yearsNo taxonomy story (CO in RI)Fortune 100 company, no governance document, some structure, best practice install, but due to the size of the company people were out of control buying web parts, solutions, 3rd party solutions etc. Welcome to the pain baby! The environment was being brought to its knees
  • What's it going to be? There is a lot of talk about going ‘into the cloud’ will it be sufficient?Hosting in house if so more planning is going to have to happen
  • Measure out the pros and consSharePoint lends itself to virtual servers very wellSQL … lets call a spade a spade, I am going to have to side old school on this one
  • What are you installing? WSS/Foundation, Standard Enterprise?What is the scope? Stand alone for testing, small, medium, large farm, extranetBest Practice… full farm even if your running SQL server on same box as SharePoint
  • The stand alone install is very very limiting in many waysOnly one server farmInstall automaticallyLimited in database sizeCommonly used for beta environments (WARNING) more than 2 weeks, its most likely productionWorst practice
  • Don’t release everything at onceBest PracticeThe infamous black box that does everything (nobody uses it)
  • There is a shortage of good SharePoint talent out there..NET developers does NOT mean SharePoint developers necessarilyBig companies beware! A team of one person for your SharePoint environment for a company greater than 5000 people is outrageous! Especially if they are also the support team. They will not stay around if they are expected to keep the farm moving forward, maintain, update/upgrade, and be desktop support (AKA babysitter for 5000+ people)Good SharePoint resources that are unhappy will not stay rooted for long
  • Unfortunately due to the track record of SharePoint it already is installed in your environment (Sometimes more than one area)Where did they come from? Rogue environments… not us!SharePoint is not a tier 1 for DR… until it breaks!
  • Most companies have put SharePoint into their environments with no rules, no planning no … anything!The biggest statement out there is “We know it’s a mess, but we are used to it.”One question will answer if you continue or just try and survive as the blob continues to take over your companies existence.Are we willing to spend the time and resources to improve, fix, or rebuild this?
  • Snowbirds Picture book at picturebook.comFixing a static in use mess vs. building a new (hopefully a utopia) place for parts of the mess to migrate to
  • Welcome to the fight pit of the labyrinth.Folksonomy Definition:atype of classification system for online content, created by an individual user who tags information with freely chosen keywords; also, the cooperation of a group of people to create such a classification system Taxonomy = thescience ortechniqueofclassification.
  • With the continued expansion of SharePoint and what it can do. Just maintaining the metabase service application as well as keep on top of the search reports to ensure people are finding what they are searching for a librarian may become the next SharePoint team member.
  • Super Stock.comSecurity schema is it needed?Find a balance, wild west cant work, neither can an IT Death grip of doomMicrosoft’s Pyramid idea about security
  • Warning: Information Architecture is much more broad than SharePoint!Taxonomy… again?Find-abilityThe casual browserUsing alternate mapping vs. new web applications
  • Site pruningIt can be useful, but there needs to be a governance in place and must be communicated up frontNo ninja pruning allowed!QuotasVery important from DR standpointNeeded to keep your databases in checkNeeded to force end users to police what they put in SharePointCan be useful if your company wants to use a charge back model
  • My SitesA confusion of what they areEquated to FacebookLack of understanding as to what they really areA strong tool for getting tacit knowledge from employee’s
  • Communication does not need to be at the tail endIt is very important to set expectations, this will help curb disappointment as well as misuse
  • *self note*Learn from the questions

SharePoint Planning: A Labyrinth of Choices SharePoint Planning: A Labyrinth of Choices Presentation Transcript

  • SharePoint Planning:A Labyrinth of Choices V3
    Presented by: David J Pileggi Jr.
  • Introduction
  • The Real Introduction
    Computer Science degree from University of Central Florida
    Professionally working in the IT industry for 12 years
    Working specifically with SharePoint for last 7 years
    Taught several SharePoint 101 classes
    Designed SharePoint solutions more than 30 Companies Ranging from Regional to Global
    Member of New England SharePoint Users Group
    Avid Alpha/Beta tester SharePoint and otherwise
  • Setting Expectations
    Why vs. How
    Hardest Level 100 you will attend… EVER!
    Why your early choices can steer your outcome awry
    I hope to direct you safely away from common pitfalls
    Give an appreciation for the choices made to build your SharePoint environment and what they could define later on
    Stories to give confidence
    Understanding the decisions you make to be able to take you on the solution you have targeted
  • Foreword
    Welcome to the choose your own adventure, “The Case of the SharePoint Deployment.” This story is filled with interesting twists and turns. The greatest thing is you will be able have your own adventure. Don’t read the book like a typical book. At the base of each page you will have a choice to make. That choice will tell you which page to turn to continue your adventured. Have fun and remember there is no right or wrong way. Or is there?
    Goals of this Presentation
    • Try to walk through many of the main decisions a company may come across
    • Talk about as many good practices as possible
    • When we choose the wrong path, we will talk about why the choice led to that point
    • Make this both informative as well as enjoyable (Lets face it getting a lot of information without entertainment value can be trying)
  • Find the Why
    “Did you hear about that program called SharePoint?”“Stop smiling, the light shinning off your teeth is going to blind me. Yeah, it sounds cool.”“Maybe we should look at the business problems it could solve before we move forward with it?” you ask yourself out loud.Sarcastic Sally scoffs. “It’s a cool application, let’s just move forward. You are such a worry wart.”
    Go to page 21 if you agree with SallyGo to page 37 if you want to follow your own idea
    Your company hears about this SharePoint “Thing.” It sounds like a good idea. You and a bunch of co-workers are standing around the water cooler talking about it.“Hey Sarcastic Sally, how is the paper your working on.”“As good as an ulcer,” Sally retorted.
  • The Problems of No Why
    Your SharePoint environment is installed and takes a life of its own, causing chaos and mayhem everywhere in your company. You are blamed for the IT nightmare and sent to a small town in Idaho to flip burgers.
  • SharePoint Champion? Needed or Hot air?
    “Well, we have all of these reports we are forced to do, but they are so time consuming, I don’t have time to do what I am supposed to do.” Jeff wrinkled his nose. “The enterprise version of SharePoint has Excel Services and BI capabilities,” I offered. “That could be another business problem we could solve initially.” “Do you have an executive sponsor?” Jeff wondered. “We are IT, why would we need that?” Sarcastic Sally snapped. “To get funding and support.” Jeff said defending himself.
    Go to Page 13 if you want to get an executive sponsor.Go to Page 25 if you agree with Sally
    You shoot back, “No, I think it will be a good idea to figure out the business problems we want to solve for the company.” “Like what?” asks Jeff from accounting. Sally and you watch him drain half the water cooler bottle of its contents into his water bottle. “Well, Sally already gave us one. She is having trouble collaborating with her team. The paper they are working on isn’t as easy as it should be. So collaboration is a big one I would think.” “Oh, sorry to hear that Sally, but we have our own problems,” Jeff informed us. “How so?” Sally inquired.
  • Oh no you didn’t!
    Oh no, SharePoint has been considered a rogue project. Lack of funding has landed us in trouble. We are forced to use an old Commodore 64 and two TRS 80’s to try and build the environment. The project and idea has died before it could even go forward. A walk to the water cooler for you and Sally is now known as the Walk of Shame.
  • Governance… Don’t leave home without it
    “I guess I have to agree with you Jeff, but where are we going to find an executive sponsor? That is going to take forever.” You wince at the thought of trying to approach the “High C’s.” “Jackie, my boss will probably jump at the chance. She is the CFO and knows how painful the reports are. Being in control of the money, I am sure she will find a way to fund the project as well. Especially if you throw in pretty charts and graphs.” Jeff laughed. Apparently he doesn’t understand body language, because both Sally and mine would have told him Jackie was right behind him. “I heard that!” she exclaimed. Jeff jumped almost spilling his water bottle. Fortunately Jackie was grinning. “He is right though, I live on
    charts and graphs. I will be happy to sponsor this project as long as our needs are on the top of the list. When can you get the application installed? The sooner or the better.” “Well, we should probably put together a governance document to keep this thing in control,” Sally suggested. “That is going to take a while isn’t it?” Jackie pouted a bit.
    Go to Page 27 if you decide to keep Jackie happy and install right away
    Go to Page 5 if you decide Sally is right
  • No Governance = No Good
    Your SharePoint environment is up and running for several months. Best Practices were not hit for the install, but trying to keep Jackie happy you pushed forward. Once released to the end users the application known as SharePoint became a scary beast of untold proportions that could not be controlled. Welcome to the IT nightmare.
  • Which way do I go? Which way do I go?
    A dream team is put together with Sally and yourself as a part. A month of careful planning and work on the governance document. You and Sally are commissioned with researching the install routine by creating a test environment.
    Sally is getting impatient and suggest to do the Stand Alone Install. There are two other potentials. What do you want to do?
    Go to page 17 for the Cloud
    Go to page 33 for Host in House
  • Virtual vs. Physical: News at 11
    You leave Sally to regain your senses. As you walk down the hall, you run into Eddie who was known as ‘Crazy’ Eddie from the infrastructure team. He greets you in as if he’s talking through his nasal passage.
    “Your going to build this SharePoint environment completely virtual right? Going virtual is the way to go. Woot!”
    To slowly back away and go physical Go to page 3
    To use a hybrid model go to page 23
    To go “totally’ virtual go to page 55
  • What Install Path to Choose
    A dream team is put together with Sally and yourself as a part. A month of careful planning and work on the governance document. You and Sally are commissioned with researching the install routine by creating a test environment.
    Sally is getting impatient and suggest to do the Stand Alone Install. There are two other potentials. What do you want to do?
    Go to page 17 for Stand Alone Install
    Go to page 33 for Full Install
  • Stand Alone… Really?
    You have chosen a very limited installation. You will only have 2GB of space to contend with in the environment, but you figure by the time the company needs to upgrade the environment to be able to expand on the space SharePoint’s value will be known.
    You have become a underground hero for the ability to flip the switch on a wizard. Giver yourself an atta-boy.
  • Bite Sizes is Good
    Sally walks in exasperated. “These people are going to drive me to go professional in lawn darts!”
    “What’s wrong?” you ask.
    “They want everything happen at the release. That’s a week away and they keep adding new functionality they find on the internet!”
    Go with the phased approach Go to page 29
    Do everything to make everyone happy page 37
  • The Next Level
    You have finished the first phase of your SharePoint deployment. End users are foaming at the mouth to get onto your farm and play. Solutions released are being celebrated and used. Rumors of your success has gone outside the walls of your corporation. You receive an email from Acme Anvils down town. They want you to work for them!
    Continue to work here Go to page 57
    Work for Acme Anvils Go to 73
  • Welcome to the Pain
    You are greeted at the door on you first day working at Acme Anvil by the CIO. You find it a little odd until he starts speaking. “We are happy you joined our team! Our SharePoint person left 2 weeks ago and SharePoint has been down for the last business week!”
    You suddenly get that nasty bile feeling in the back of your throat.
    Battle stations! Go to page 81
    Run to Canada… go to page 43
  • After the Fact
    You weigh your options. You can try to just keep the environment up and running, keep it from crashing, and sustain the status quo or take the initiative to fix the problems. This bull is a lot bigger than the company you dealt with. Where do you even begin?
    Try to just keep your head above water Go to page 51
    Take the bull by the horns Go to page 57
    You realize you have just stepped into a huge mess. You just came to at your desk. Apparently you fainted just walking in the front door. Apparently this happened a lot to the previous SharePoint admin because the security guard at the front desk carried smelling salts on him at all times. Never a good sign.
  • To be a Champion
    The task is absolutely daunting. How do you go about fixing this? You think back to the success’ you had at your previous employment. A champion. This will be the shortest offensive of all times if you don’t have an Executive Champion. If there is no authority backing this up, you will have no way to deal with the push back you know you are going to get.
    Seek out an Executive Champion Go to page 67
    You’re the SharePoint admin. Make the changes anyway Go to page 81
  • Migration is Good
    You are approached by multiple people in the cafeteria. Despite the fact the SharePoint environment had been down, they are all clamoring they want to upgrade to SharePoint 2010. The same people that were complaining from the time you walked in the door until you brought SharePoint back on-line.
    Approach the governance board about a upgrade/migration Go to page 33
    Continue to try and work with the current version Go to page 67
  • Folksonomy vs. Taxonomy
    You didn’t realize the level of tempers that would be raised during the meeting you were holding to try and gather facts for the SharePoint environment. Folksonomy! Taxonomy! Tastes Great! Less Filling! Really people? This could get ugly.
    Go with Taxonomy Go to page 91
    Choose Folksonomy go to page 55
    Be a Rainmaker by going Hybrid Go to page 107
  • Is there a Librarian in the house?
    Ok, the battle of Folksonomy and taxonomy has finished, but now there is a void with the solution your company has chosen to work with. A gate keeper who understands words and grouping of those words. Not to mention Search needs a watcher too. Both could fall in the same job, but a librarian? How do you move forward?
    Request for a resource requisition Go to page 95
    Try to take it on yourself to maintain Go to page 31
  • Security! Walk this stuff out, please!
    Things are coming together nicely, but one thing you need to do is try and stop the wild west mentality of the company. The security is looser than a hippy convention in the middle of an unused pasture. Everyone has admin rights to everything. Oh yeah, that has got to go, but to what level? Back to the governance committee.
    Wild West Rules! Go to page 75
    Introduce the Sheriff Go to page 81
  • Information Architecture? Taxonomy?
    Finding things in the current environment… yeah right! When you first came to this company, you casually browsed SharePoint, or at least tried. There was no direction, no rhyme or reason for links, navigation or sites. What a disaster. Your eye is still twitching. The governance committee is going to breathe a sigh of relief when this is all done.
    Bring a solution to the governance committee Go to page 71
    Leave the mess alone Go to page 93
  • Space! The Final Frontier… It’s Cheap?
    The databases you inherited are behemoth! No quota’s in the wild west does not work. When you ask some of the infrastructure team if they were concerned, their answer was, “No! Space is cheap now!” Not a great answer to be sure, not to mention a DR nightmare if as you recall when walking into a downed environment.
    Enforce quotas on the new farm Go to page 19
    Try to use Site Pruning Go to page 23
  • Not in my house!
    You have begun an exciting journey, the governance document you helped put together has given you direction. You have begun to put together a solid farm. There is a lot more ahead of you, yet your confidence is steadfast. Time to turn to configurations.
    To use all the out of box configurations Go to page 19
    To customize your configurations go to page 23
  • Calling all cars!
    Things have been going very well, now is the time to release the new and improved SharePoint environment to the company. One thing is needed though. Communication! Time to call on your champion and corporate communications tag team. You sit back and breathe a sigh of relief. Its been a long road, but you survived!
    The End
  • Q&A
  • Contact Information
    David J Pileggi Jr.
    Consultant at Insight
    Email: dpileggi@insight.com
    Blog: http://sharepoint.mindsharpblogs.com/davep
    Thank You!
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