When working with prospective clients, I always hear the same things:
- “I was working on this Excel sheet, and saved it to the server. Someone opened it and deleted everything I did, so now I can’t get that back.”
- “Searching for a file takes forever, especially if I don’t know what folder it’s in.”
- “I was working on this one file on the server, and then couldn’t find it to make changes.”
- “Trying to access the server from home is a pain; I always have to restart my computer to get my VPN working.”
These issues can be solved with SharePoint Online, which is a cloud based service that helps organizations share and collaborate with colleagues, partners, and customers. You can access internal sites, documents, and other information from anywhere – at the office, at home, or from a mobile device.
One of my favorite features on SharePoint, version control, allows you to make changes to a file and save those changes as a separate ‘instance’, all within one file. Doing so allows you to view all the versions, as well as restore an older version and designate it as the most current one. That fear of having your Excel sheet overwritten – or worse, deleted – is not be something to worry about as long as Versioning is enabled!
One of the great advantages of SharePoint over file shares is its ability to search and find the content you are looking for. There are different methods of searching through SharePoint. For instance, you can search the entire site, or a specific library/folder, then filter your results.
Instead of manually deleting outdated files, users can set retention policies to retain content so that it can’t be permanently deleted until the end of retention period.
What else does a retention policy let you do?
- Retain content, delete content, or both (that is, retain and then delete the content).
- Apply a single policy to the entire organization or just a specific location or group of users.
- Apply a single policy to all content or only to content meeting certain conditions, such as content containing specific keywords or specific types of sensitive information.
CHECK IN/CHECK OUT FILES
If you’re working on a file that shouldn’t be edited by anyone else while you are working on it, you can check that file out. Others would only be able to view the file in read-only mode, meaning that they would be unable to make any changes to it or delete it.
Once you’re finished, you can check the file back in, creating a new version (if versioning is enabled) in the process.
SYNCHRONIZATION TO COMPUTER FOR OFFLINE USE
What if you wanted to work on a file, but had no internet connection? That’s not a problem with SharePoint Online because, as long as that file has been synchronized to your device beforehand, you can always save your changes to a file and those changes will automatically sync when you have internet access using OneDrive for Business.
At IntegraOne, we can solve all these issues and more! Check back here for more useful information, on SharePoint as well as our other solutions and services!