One of the many items on my list of To Do’s has been to develop a strategy for a new employee portal. It’s been a low priority, and so when I was approached with the suggestion to roll out SharePoint (since we had already paid for it), I agreed to put it in place.
Straight out of the box its a little rough around the edges, but it performs all of the basic functions for our Intranet needs, and has become a useful team tool. We’re slowly making modifications, and have even started exploring the world of customized web parts.
For example, a friend at Microsoft pointed me pointed me toward an RSS/ATOM reader yesterday. I’m having my Networking Ops team look into the web.config changes necessary to get through our firewall, and hopefully we’ll have this feature up and working shortly.
My primary complaint about SharePoint is duplicate document versions. I’d like access controls to go down to the document level, but more importantly – when I upload a document, I should also be able to search on documents within SharePoint itself, and upload a "link" to an existing doc. This would allow me to control one master document, sharing it within several different spaces. And when I make modifications to the master, it is instantly reflected across all children docs. In a previous life as a Product Manager, I helped develop this exact capability in a tool called Collaboration Manager. The functionality was invaluable.
I’m slowly exploring SharePoint sites and picking up on as many best practices as i can find. If anyone has developed unique value using SharePoint, please share.