SharePoint - Why you should be using it!

Need help with collaboration and the organization of your RFP responses, proposals, Scopes of Work and other sales documents?  While SharePoint may not be your first choice to manage your documents and files, it should be.  Stop relying on different software tools like Word, Excel and email to share and manage content, knowledge, and responses to get the job done. Empower teamwork, quickly find information, and seamlessly collaborate across your organization with SharePoint.

Sales isn’t done in a silo.  Everyone needs to be able to contribute to information, pricing and proposal content to get proposals out the door quickly.  According to SalesForce’s State of Sales Report, which surveyed over 3,100 global sales professionals, 73% felt that collaborating across departments is absolutely critical or very important to their overall sales process.

What is SharePoint?

SharePoint is a collaboration and document management platform that users access via a web browser. It can be installed on an internal company server (the so-called “on premise” version), but the most feature-rich, modern, collaborative, integrated and cost-effective version is hosted by Microsoft as a component within its Office 365 subscription plans. SharePoint is not only a platform for document management, but it also provides collaboration features such as (intranet) websites, wikis, shared calendars, shared lists (including task lists) and discussion boards.

Benefits of SharePoint

  • Increased productivity and visibility to information
  • Access files from any device using a web browser
  • Features centered around intranet-based collaboration
  • Secure sharing
  • Content Management
  • Workflow and Collaboration features
  • Easy to learn and understand
  • Customizable and deeply scalable
  • Co-Authoring (more than one person can be in the same file at the same time)
  • Versioning
  • Can require approvals before files are visible
  • Files can be “Checked-Out”, preventing others from editing
  • Notifications when documents are uploaded or updated

Advanced File Management

Advanced File Management
There are a multitude of reasons to use SharePoint; let’s start with the most obvious, File Management.  You’re probably underestimating this already.  What if you could keep your organization’s files in a smart, centralized location?  Oh yeah – and more than one person can be working on a file at the same time.  Talk about collaboration!

File search, filtering and saved views are just the beginning of the file management advantages that SharePoint provides over a traditional folder-based approach. SharePoint automatically retains multiple versions of each file so that you can always pull up a previous version of a file and keep track of the changes made.

SharePoint’s two-level Recycle Bin – where deleted files can be restored by a user via their personal Recycle Bin, or by an admin via the “Site Collection” Recycle Bin – protects companies from accidental or malicious file deletions. Moreover, SharePoint’s menu-driven approach to copying and moving files makes it much less likely that a user will accidentally delete or move a file.

For SharePoint Online, files are stored in the cloud … meaning that users don’t have to be logged into their corporate network to access them. You can open and edit files on mobile devices via Microsoft’s SharePoint/OneDrive apps, and even sync SharePoint folders for offline access.

More Than Just Document Management

As mentioned above, SharePoint also provides collaboration features such as websites, wikis and discussion boards. Its deep feature set also provides useful features like workflow automation and alerts (that alert users when certain conditions are met, such as modifications to documents), and you can gain valuable business intelligence by adding reports, scorecards and dashboards.

Microsoft has developed a deep, feature-rich application programming interface (API) that allows third parties to create applications that integrate with SharePoint.  Industry-leading companies like DocuSign and Adobe Sign have developed e-signature services that integrate with SharePoint, making it easy for customers to buy products and services simply by e-signing proposals and work authorizations.

Check it out!

With so many features and functions, SharePoint can be a critical component of your long-term document management strategy.   If you have Office 365, you probably have SharePoint bundled with your Office version.  SharePoint can also be purchased as a standalone version.  Check your Microsoft account or this site for more information.

Next Level File Management …

Take things to the next level by using RFP Response Builder and SharePoint together.  It’s auto-naming and auto-saving features plus dynamic Dashboard keeps you from misplacing files.  Tightly integrated with Microsoft SharePoint and Office tools, RFP Response Builder.  generates proposals and Scopes of Work saved to SharePoint and associated to your opportunity or project.   Better organization and cleaner file management sets you up for success. See RFP Response Builder in action.

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