By Jeremy Thake
One of the biggest obstacles to achieving greater enterprise collaboration is the use of an employee’s personal drive. What good does it do to have your documents saved to your personal drive when no one else in your company can access them to work on?
This forces people to email back and forth, creating a versioning nightmare, when there is a solution that can eliminate the chaos and make collaboration simple – organizational adoption of SkyDrive Pro.
SkyDrive Pro is the ideal compromise between personal drives and enterprise collaboration. It’s a personal library for each employee to use to manage and store their own documents, content, links, and contacts, with the ability to share that content with other employees across the organization. It can also be used as a team site to set up and monitor the status of team projects.
Below, I’ve outlined some of the key benefits to enterprise-wide SkyDrive Pro adoption:
Goodbye Email, Hello SharePoint. No more email attachments! Telling your co-workers “I won’t respond to you unless you put it in SharePoint” will help to push this initiative along.
It is imperative to encourage people to put their files in their SkyDrive, and to then send a link to it over so you have the single source of truth. The best way to achieve this is to have a company-wide initiative of migrating personal drives directly in to SharePoint.
Leave Your Laptop at the Office. Having to work from home is bad enough - having to lug your work computer home is even worse. And what do you do if your work computer isn’t a laptop? Stay all night in the office?
If your files are in your SkyDrive instead of on your personal drive, you won’t have to worry about carrying your computer home or staying in the office after hours to finish up that big project. Your SkyDrive is accessible from anywhere, including the comfort of your couch.
Is this Final? Your SkyDrive can enable versioning, which can’t happen when your documents are saved on your own personal PC or personal drive. When you are saving things locally, you’re forced to email the file out for review, which can cause a versioning nightmare.
When it’s in your SkyDrive, any time the document is saved, it automatically becomes the most recent, updated version for all to see. You can also add metadata to help identify your files, or switch on approval workflow to route your document to a specific group of people for approval.
Your Central Command Center. Your SkyDrive isn’t just about your documents - this is your own personal team site. You can use it to create a personal task list, or to manage any projects that you have going on.
For example, I have a library where every month I drop expenses into a new folder, making it easier for me to track. For SharePoint 2013 users, there is also a nice feature called My Tasks, which is a task aggregator.
My Tasks will discover all of your tasks spread around SharePoint and aggregates them to your SkyDrive to provide a centralized view. No more overlooked tasks!
Make it Personal. Your SkyDrive can integrate with your personal profile, where you can put your About Me, and list particular skills that you have, which are searchable by everyone else in the organization.
This can give your co-workers a chance to learn a little bit more about you while collaborating with you on that important project.
Jeremy Thake joined AvePoint in 2011 as Enterprise Architect, and was later named Chief Architect in June of 2012. He was named a Microsoft SharePoint Most Valuable Professional (MVP) in 2009, and continues to work directly with enterprise customers and AvePoint’s research and development team to develop solutions that will set the standard for the next generation of collaboration platforms, including Microsoft SharePoint 2013.