Bytes Blog: Unlocking the benefits of your data for the digital workplace

Tuesday 31st January 2023

Writer: Simon Dobbs, Editor: Kathryn Piper


The future is cloud

Despite its popularity and widespread use, here at Bytes we are working with many organisations who are only just starting to adopt SharePoint Online and the cloud more generally. The shift to cloud-based solutions, as well as the increasing need for collaboration and information sharing for hybrid workers, has driven many organisations to explore the benefits of SharePoint. However, despite the use-cases being understood; it is not necessarily simple to achieve and there are many moving parts to consider when planning your migration.  

Today I'm going to discuss the many benefits of SharePoint online, and the things you need to consider when starting your journey to the cloud.

What makes SharePoint so powerful for businesses like yours? 

First things first, let us remind ourselves of exactly why SharePoint Online is so powerful and why SharePoint is a gateway to doing more with your data and becoming more productive. 

With its rich set of features, scalability, and integration with other Microsoft 365 (M365) tools, SharePoint Online has become the de facto solution for organisations looking to increase collaboration, streamline processes, and enhance productivity. As Microsoft develop and add more features into M365, having your data in the ecosystem means it will become ever more powerful and actionable over time.  

Let's have a look at some of the main benefits of SharePoint Online:

Time saved

One of the fundamental benefits of SharePoint Online is the ability to free up valuable time for employees by automating routine tasks and streamlining workflows. With SharePoint, businesses can easily manage, organise and share information. Therefore reducing the amount of time spent searching for and working with data. This can help to increase productivity and improve the overall efficiency of an organisation. 

Accessing & sharing information

SharePoint Online provides a centralised platform for storing, organising and sharing information. This helps to improve collaboration and communication within an organisation by enabling employees to access and share information more easily. The platform also supports the use of metadata and tagging, which makes it easier to find and organise information and to keep track of important data. 

Integration with PowerApps

Something that we are really excited about at Bytes is the integration of PowerApps and SharePoint Online. With PowerApps and SharePoint, businesses can create custom solutions that automate routine tasks and streamline workflows, further increasing productivity and efficiency. 

Recap... what are PowerApps? 

Microsoft PowerApps is a low-code platform that builds custom business applications without the need for extensive programming knowledge. 

You can use PowerApps to:
  • Create custom forms - Capture information from employees, customers or other stakeholders
  • Automate workflows - Automate routine tasks and streamline workflows
  • Integrate data - Integrate with a variety of data sources including SharePoint, Excel, SQL Server and more
  • Develop custom mobile apps - For iOS, Android, and Windows Devices 
  • Create custom forms for customer feedback - Better understand your customers 
  • Track assets - Build custom applications for tracking assets, managing inventory and monitoring maintenance schedules
Integration with other M365 tools

Another key benefit of using PowerApps with SharePoint Online is the ability to integrate with other Microsoft 365 tools and services. This allows businesses to easily connect their SharePoint data with other applications, such as Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, and Outlook.

As you can tell, there are a tonne of benefits to using SharePoint Online, especially alongside PowerApps. But, what are the potential challenges?

Migrating to SharePoint - Things you need to consider:

  1. Complexity - SharePoint Online is a complex platform with many features and capabilities, migration can require a significant amount of planning and coordination
  2. Data compatibility - Migrating data from on-prem SharePoint or other systems can be challenging 
  3. Customisation - It may be difficult to migrate heavily customised on-prem SharePoint environments to SharePoint Online
  4. Integration - Integrating SharePoint Online with other systems and applications can be complex, especially if you have a complex IT landscape
  5. User Adoption - Getting users to adopt SharePoint Online can be challenging. Tip: Providing training and support can help to overcome this
  6. Security & Compliance - Ensuring security and compliance of data is difficult, especially for organisations with strict regulatory requirements

Why should your business consider SharePoint Online?

In conclusion, enterprise adoption of SharePoint Online offers many benefits to businesses of all sizes. With its robust features and functionality, businesses can easily manage, organise and share information, freeing up valuable time for employees to focus on more strategic initiatives. Additionally, the integration with PowerApps provides businesses with a powerful platform for building custom solutions that automate routine tasks and streamline workflows.  

As we enter a time in which almost every organisation is being tasked to do more with less, utilising tools to drive efficiency, automate workflows and tasks is great opportunity to realise meaningful productivity and efficiency gains.  

Bur first things first it is important to cleanse and understand your data, exploit it and then finally automate where you can in order to streamline the creation and management of it. And then there is the visualisation and interpretation of your data, but that’s a whole other blog!  

Next steps...

Here at Bytes we are helping organisations to every day to plan, migrate and adopt M365. To find out more about what you can do with M365, visit our Smarter with 365 Hub.

Have a question? Get in touch with our expert team via [email protected] if you would like to discuss how and where we can help accelerate your adoption.

Thanks for reading! 

The Bytes Team,

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