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Don’t	Make	Us	Think:
Getting	SharePoint	to	be	
Useful,	Usable,	and	Used
Kevin	Parker,	CIP
Sr.	Enterprise	Information	Archi...
@JKevinParker
Introduction
Don’t	Make	Us	Think:	
Getting	SharePoint	to	be	Useful,	Usable,	and	Used
@JKevinParker
In	this	session,	we’ll	explore	how	to:
• Plan	useful	site	types	that	meet	your	business	
needs
• Plan	usable...
@JKevinParker
User	Adoption	in	ContextStrategy
What	are	we	
trying	to	
accomplish?	
What	are	
the	Critical
Success	
Factor...
@JKevinParker
Success	=	Adoption
Make	it Useful
Meet	business	
needs	with	
good	
architecture
Make	it	Usable
Design	for	
u...
@JKevinParker
Make	it	Useful:
Plan	site	and	list	types	that	meet	
your	business	needs
Don’t	Make	Us	Think:	
Getting	ShareP...
@JKevinParker
What	Makes	a	Solution	Useful?
• Meets	real	business	needs
• Simplifies	work	processes
• Improves	efficiency
...
@JKevinParker
First	Things	First:	Name	It
• Don’t	call	it	“SharePoint”.	Come	up	with	a	non-
product-specific	name.
• Make	...
@JKevinParker
Identify	Business	Needs
Business	Need Description Scope
Intranet Communication and	knowledge	
management	for...
@JKevinParker
Plan	Site	Types	by	Business	Need
Business	Need Site	Types
Intranet Enterprise	wiki	(or	other	publishing	site...
@JKevinParker
When	You	Don’t	Plan:	Ad	Hoc	Sprawl
@JKevinParker
When	You	Don’t	Plan:	Ad	Hoc	Sprawl
@JKevinParker
Plan	Site	Collections
SharePoint
Farm
Main	Web	
App
Web	Application
Intranet
Site	Collection
Search	
Center
...
@JKevinParker
Some	Ways	to	Organize	Sites
• Organize	by	Unit:
– Site	Collection	for	each	department	or	division
– Subsites...
@JKevinParker
Use	a	Content	Type	Hub
• Centrally	manage	content	types	and	site	
columns.
• Centrally	manage	information	po...
@JKevinParker
Create	Reusable	List	Types
• Leverage	content	types	and	site	columns	in	
the	content	type	hub	to	create	reus...
@JKevinParker
Determine	What	Goes	Where
Information	for	
everyone
Goes	on	the	
intranet or	
unit-owned	
intranet	
subsite
...
@JKevinParker
Make	it	Usable:
Plan	usable	content,	navigation,	
and	search
Don’t	Make	Us	Think:	
Getting	SharePoint	to	be	...
@JKevinParker
Some	Basic	Rules	of	Usability
Krug’s	first	law	of	usability:
• “Don’t	make	me	think.”
More	principles:
• Mak...
@JKevinParker
Make	Usable	Content	and	Pages
• Use	clear	page	titles	and	headings	(h1,	h2,	h3).
• Omit	unnecessary words.
•...
@JKevinParker
Make	it	Clear	What	Goes	Where
Information	for	
everyone?
Put	it	on	the	
intranet or	
unit-owned	
intranet	
s...
@JKevinParker
Plan	Usable	Navigation
• Make	the	logo link	back	to	the	intranet	home	page	across	
all	site	types	and	site	c...
@JKevinParker
Improve	Search
• Use	search	analytics	to	determine	what	people	
are	searching	for	and	finding	(or	not).
• Le...
@JKevinParker
Get	it	Used:
Promote	adoption	by	supporting	
your	user	community
Don’t	Make	Us	Think:	
Getting	SharePoint	to...
@JKevinParker
Promote	User	Adoption
• Communication
• Learning	Resources
• Support
• Change	Management
@JKevinParker
Communicate
• Leverage	existing	corporate	communications	
channels	to	market	the	solution,	both	before	
and	...
@JKevinParker
Provide	Learning	Resources
• Create	simple	wiki	tutorial	pages	in	each	site	to	explain	
how	to	do	things	on	...
@JKevinParker
Provide	Support
• The	help	desk	must	be	capable	of	supporting	
the	solution	(or	routing	to	those	who	can).
•...
@JKevinParker
Manage	Change
• When	first	implementing,	plan	migration	for	
information,	processes,	AND	people.
• Monitor	a...
@JKevinParker
Leverage	a	Center	of	Excellence	Site
Connect	Central
Blog
§ News
§ Updates
§ Announcements
Wiki
§ How-to	gui...
@JKevinParker
Final	Thought:
“Build	it,	and	they	will	come?”	That	only	works	
in	movies.
Instead,	make	your	solution	the	“...
Kevin	Parker,	CIP
www.neostek.com
twitter.com/JKevinParker
www.linkedin.com/in/JKevinParker
www.JKevinParker.com
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Don't Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used

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SharePoint is infamous for being unuseful, unusable, and unused. But the fault is not in the technology—usually, it is a failure to adequately plan and execute practical business solutions that causes SharePoint projects to flounder. It's about user adoption: people need to do their jobs without having to think about how the tools work. In this session, we will explore how to make SharePoint useful, usable, and used through simple information architecture and governance. Presented by J. Kevin Parker from NEOSTEK.

Presented to the Baltimore SharePoint User's Group (BSPUG) in August 2016.

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Don't Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used

  1. 1. Don’t Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used Kevin Parker, CIP Sr. Enterprise Information Architect at NEOSTEK @JKevinParker
  2. 2. @JKevinParker Introduction Don’t Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used
  3. 3. @JKevinParker In this session, we’ll explore how to: • Plan useful site types that meet your business needs • Plan usable content, navigation, and search • Promote user adoption with communication, learning, and support
  4. 4. @JKevinParker User Adoption in ContextStrategy What are we trying to accomplish? What are the Critical Success Factors? Architecture How do we organize and structure things? Governance How do we get people to use it in the ways we intend? Implementation How do we build it out and get users started? Operation How do we support users and drive adoption? Security, Privacy, Management, Business Continuity, Retention, Compliance, Etc. User Adoption
  5. 5. @JKevinParker Success = Adoption Make it Useful Meet business needs with good architecture Make it Usable Design for usability and accessibility Get it Used Promote user adoption with communication, learning, and support
  6. 6. @JKevinParker Make it Useful: Plan site and list types that meet your business needs Don’t Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used
  7. 7. @JKevinParker What Makes a Solution Useful? • Meets real business needs • Simplifies work processes • Improves efficiency • Improves quality • Improves accountability • Lets staff and leadership do their jobs!
  8. 8. @JKevinParker First Things First: Name It • Don’t call it “SharePoint”. Come up with a non- product-specific name. • Make it simple and easy for people to remember. • Examples: – Inside Acme (inside.acme.tld) – Acme Connect (connect.acme.tld) – Acme Hub (hub.acme.tld) – Acme Central (central.acme.tld)
  9. 9. @JKevinParker Identify Business Needs Business Need Description Scope Intranet Communication and knowledge management for the organization Organization Collaboration Collaboration spaces for units and teams Units & Teams Content & Case Management Document and content management for specific business processes Business Process Records Management Records repository with appropriate controls and retention management Organization
  10. 10. @JKevinParker Plan Site Types by Business Need Business Need Site Types Intranet Enterprise wiki (or other publishing site type) Blog site Collaboration Team sites (preconfigured for your teams) Project sites (preconfigured for your projects) Content & Case Management Document center site collections Case sites (special preconfigured subsites) Records Management Records center site collections
  11. 11. @JKevinParker When You Don’t Plan: Ad Hoc Sprawl
  12. 12. @JKevinParker When You Don’t Plan: Ad Hoc Sprawl
  13. 13. @JKevinParker Plan Site Collections SharePoint Farm Main Web App Web Application Intranet Site Collection Search Center Site Collection /teams/ Managed Path Executive Office Site Collection Line of Business X Site Collection Line of Business Y Site Collection Accounting Site Collection Legal Site Collection Human Resources Site Collection IM & IT Site Collection Cross-Org Teams Site Collection /sites/ Managed Path Content Type Hub Site Collection Document Center X Site Collection Document Center Y Site Collection Records Center Web Application Records Center 1 Site Collection Records Center 2 Site Collection My Sites Web Application Collaboration: Each top-level organizational unit gets a team site collection with its own content database: • Ensure information isolation by group • Provide for growth and maintenance • Allow smaller teams to have subsites with unique permissions • Create subsites in a special site collection for cross-org teams
  14. 14. @JKevinParker Some Ways to Organize Sites • Organize by Unit: – Site Collection for each department or division – Subsites for teams and projects • Organize by Site Type: – Site Collections for specific site types – Subsites for specific instances of site types • Organize by Program: – Site Collection for each program – Subsites for teams and projects
  15. 15. @JKevinParker Use a Content Type Hub • Centrally manage content types and site columns. • Centrally manage information policies tied to content types. • Publish changes across all site collections that use these content types.
  16. 16. @JKevinParker Create Reusable List Types • Leverage content types and site columns in the content type hub to create reusable lists. • Keep metadata columns consistent across all sites. • Keep information management policies consistent.
  17. 17. @JKevinParker Determine What Goes Where Information for everyone Goes on the intranet or unit-owned intranet subsite Information just for our team Goes in the team’s site collection or subsite Information related to a process Goes in the case or document management site Information to be kept as records Goes in the appropriate records center
  18. 18. @JKevinParker Make it Usable: Plan usable content, navigation, and search Don’t Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used
  19. 19. @JKevinParker Some Basic Rules of Usability Krug’s first law of usability: • “Don’t make me think.” More principles: • Make and keep only the information you need, and eliminate ROT (Redundant, Obsolete, Trivial). • Make it easy to put information in the right SPOT (Single Point Of Truth). • Make information findable. • Make it all accessible. Check out Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug
  20. 20. @JKevinParker Make Usable Content and Pages • Use clear page titles and headings (h1, h2, h3). • Omit unnecessary words. • Use clear links and labels (including navigation). • Make text readable (high contrast, not too small, columns not too wide). • Learn to love white space (you don’t pay by the pixel).
  21. 21. @JKevinParker Make it Clear What Goes Where Information for everyone? Put it on the intranet or unit-owned intranet subsite Information just for our team? Put it in the team’s site collection or subsite Information related to a process? Put it in the case or document management site Information to be kept as records? Put it in the appropriate records center (Better yet, automate this!)
  22. 22. @JKevinParker Plan Usable Navigation • Make the logo link back to the intranet home page across all site types and site collections (in the master page). • Make top-level (global) navigation consistent across intranet pages and subsites. • Context (quick launch) navigation can vary based on location. • Make it easy to get from a team’s collaboration site to their intranet site. • Create a clear site map and/or index for site collections and subsites.
  23. 23. @JKevinParker Improve Search • Use search analytics to determine what people are searching for and finding (or not). • Leverage SharePoint search features: – Results Types – Display Templates – Results Refiners – Query Suggestions • Plan on continuous improvement for search.
  24. 24. @JKevinParker Get it Used: Promote adoption by supporting your user community Don’t Make Us Think: Getting SharePoint to be Useful, Usable, and Used
  25. 25. @JKevinParker Promote User Adoption • Communication • Learning Resources • Support • Change Management
  26. 26. @JKevinParker Communicate • Leverage existing corporate communications channels to market the solution, both before and after implementation. • Use the intranet to communicate to users about how to use the solution, where things go, how to get help, etc.
  27. 27. @JKevinParker Provide Learning Resources • Create simple wiki tutorial pages in each site to explain how to do things on that site—and keep these current. • Provide live and/or video tutorials specific to how to do things on your sites. • Host user group meetings. • Create a “center of excellence” site for knowledge management. • DO NOT provide generic SharePoint training to users.
  28. 28. @JKevinParker Provide Support • The help desk must be capable of supporting the solution (or routing to those who can). • Provide types of support: – Site planning and setup (initial and improvements) – Records and information management guidance – Access and permission levels (on/off boarding) – Incident response
  29. 29. @JKevinParker Manage Change • When first implementing, plan migration for information, processes, AND people. • Monitor analytics and reports to improve capacity, performance, service applications, search, navigation, etc. • Communicate and coordinate maintenance windows and any service changes.
  30. 30. @JKevinParker Leverage a Center of Excellence Site Connect Central Blog § News § Updates § Announcements Wiki § How-to guides § Learning resources § Standards § Policies Forum § Support § Ask the experts
  31. 31. @JKevinParker Final Thought: “Build it, and they will come?” That only works in movies. Instead, make your solution the “path of least resistance.” Make it so simple that they don’t have to think about how things work. They just work. Make it useful, usable, and used.
  32. 32. Kevin Parker, CIP www.neostek.com twitter.com/JKevinParker www.linkedin.com/in/JKevinParker www.JKevinParker.com
  • juliasheehy

    Jul. 13, 2018
  • hjjoachim

    Oct. 15, 2016
  • JanineWeightman

    Sep. 23, 2016

SharePoint is infamous for being unuseful, unusable, and unused. But the fault is not in the technology—usually, it is a failure to adequately plan and execute practical business solutions that causes SharePoint projects to flounder. It's about user adoption: people need to do their jobs without having to think about how the tools work. In this session, we will explore how to make SharePoint useful, usable, and used through simple information architecture and governance. Presented by J. Kevin Parker from NEOSTEK. Presented to the Baltimore SharePoint User's Group (BSPUG) in August 2016.

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