When it comes to storing data, business solutions have made little progression in the last 20 years. This is surprising, given how fast technology moves. With flexible working and mobility now at the forefront, there are some serious limitations with the traditional approach. Your staff want access to their data from anywhere and, in most cases, on any device. They want to access the same data, at the same time, without duplication or access queues. And when they share it, they want to share the original, rather than a copy stored on their desktop. They can do all this, with SharePoint and OneDrive.
What is SharePoint Online?
Microsoft, describe SharePoint Online as a cloud-based service, that helps organisations share and manage content, knowledge, and applications. This means that the shared files and folders, previously stored on a file server, can now be placed on SharePoint. Whilst it can be easy to just move all files and folders, it presents a good opportunity to consider folder structure, permissions and whether you can even archive some data. You can then create a simple, organised and up-to-date file structure online.
By moving to SharePoint Online, you can keep that same top-level departmental structure, with dedicated sites. SharePoint is so much more than just a web page, you can create always on, access anywhere, fully searchable document libraries. For instance, a site for your marketing team gives them a shared mailbox, a document library, a team web site and a dedicated Microsoft teams space for chat and meetings. They can continue accessing their data through a familiar folder view or embrace Microsoft Teams as their new hub for collaboration. Most importantly, they can now access their data anywhere, on any device, at any time.
How does it work?
The first step is to create a SharePoint site. This can be for any purpose including, departmental collaboration, projects involving multiple departments and even for company-wide communication.
When a Teams site is created, the following process begins. Firstly, a new Office 365 security group is created. This group comes with its own mailbox and calendar, a shared OneNote and team planner. The security group is also the way to manage access to the contents of the SharePoint site. All members of this group will get access to all of the above, creating a single collaboration space for the team.
During site creation, you can specify group owners and group members. Owners will have full control over all data in the site and members will have modify access only. Group owners also become moderators, which means that you can let your department heads take responsibility for who has access to their data.
With the site created and a group populated with department members, you have a modern destination to store your data. The data to be moved can now be assessed and migrated. As mentioned previously, you can move everything to SharePoint immediately or you can consider a structure redesign, archiving data where necessary. It’s important to assess the data to ensure it’s migration ready.
You can then give users access to this new location, so they can continue working with their data. This can be completed through Microsoft Teams, browsing the URL or mapping a drive directly to the data. With no need for re-education, mapping a drive is often the most popular option. It presents a familiar folder structure, inside Windows Explorer and allows for a gradual transition to Microsoft Teams.
Why do I need it?
SharePoint Online is more than just a modern document library but, even if we just compare that capability with your current solution, there are many key reasons to transition. These are primarily security, accessibility and cost.
When we place data in SharePoint, you get access to all the security controls available in Microsoft 365 including, information protection, data loss prevention (DLP) and conditional access. You can start classifying your data, protecting it with DLP and making intelligent decisions on where, when and how to allow access. You can find more information on this in our identity and information protection blogs.
Another significant benefit of moving data to SharePoint is that it becomes accessible anywhere, anytime and on any device. You no longer need insecure VPN solutions, to keep people working remotely. You can also utilise Office Online. This means all your documents are available from a feature rich, web-based version of Microsoft Office, without having to install on every device.
In terms of cost, an on-premise file server or network attached storage means you’re paying for the hardware, Windows licenses, support costs, data disks and backups. With SharePoint and OneDrive, you’ll have a minimum of 1TB of SharePoint space with your 365 licenses, as well as 1TB of personal OneDrive storage, all included in the price.
How do I get it?
SharePoint and OneDrive are included in almost all 365 plans. Although Microsoft 365 Apps and Microsoft 365 F1 don’t include these services, if you have any other Microsoft 365 or Office 365 package, either Business or Enterprise, you’ll have access to both features.
They are also available in two standalone plans, should you want cloud storage without access to the other 365 features, such as email and productivity apps.
If you would like clarification on your plan and the features available to you, as well as how best to implement them, then reach out to one of our team, who will be happy to discuss the options.
How can LIMA help?
Moving your data takes a lot of planning. You’ll need a clear understanding of the options available, as well as the limitations. You also need to consider how best to present access to the data, once it is moved and how to keep it secure.
That’s why we’ve created LIMA’s collaboration assessment and migration services. Through these processes, we can help you classify your data and assess its suitability for SharePoint and OneDrive. We can also advise on the remediation actions necessary, to prepare for the data move. We’ll show you the different methods available for accessing the data and recommend the most appropriate, for your needs.
When you’re ready to move, we’ll handle the site creations, security group mapping and migration of all required data. We can also provide user awareness training and step-by-step guides, to ensure a smooth transition.
Speak to your account manager or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about how LIMA can help mobilise your workforce with our Microsoft 365 Assessment Services.Contact us Back to News & Events
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