In a SharePoint environment, on average, a quarter of the cost is associated with facilities, another 40% is allocated to labor, and the ROI is still questionable for many organizations. It should also be considered that experienced SharePoint resources are expensive and difficult to find, and existing “jack-of-all-trades” resources seldom understand the complexities and opportunities to realize the business value of the platform. Many organizations unfortunately don’t consider what it truly takes to run, manage and develop platforms like SharePoint and CRM. In fact some consider them no different than Exchange or Active Directory, however these are very different platforms indeed; especially if used to their full potential.
So why do so many organizations struggle to realize the full benefit of these platforms?
If you look at the governance and best practice guide for SharePoint (http://blogs.msdn.com/b/wael/archive/2010/12/16/sharepoint-governance-individual-roles-and-responsibilities.aspx) you will notice no less than 17 unique roles tied to SharePoint governance! Granted not every one of these equates to a full time employee; but each functional role is absolutely critical to ensure your solution doesn’t become another piece of irrelevant shelf-ware with your business users. The reality is very few of the largest organizations in Canada have the necessary in-house expertise to provide the necessary care and support for these solutions to achieve business results. For others, the cost is simply too much to bear and those organizations will settle for leveraging only a handful of the out-of-the-box capabilities. Others may perhaps look to hire contractors to perform sporadic tasks while outsourcing the hosting of infrastructure to another provider.
It would be disingenuous of me to claim that these approaches flat out don’t work, but I have no qualms about saying that there is a better way.
Consider the roles I have pointed to in the SharePoint governance guide, while your organization may not have them all, we at Navantis do. As one of the few partners in the country with a range of Microsoft competencies we have expertise across the Microsoft stack, a strong offshore delivery center, and have been able to put it all together with our Managed Service solution for SharePoint.
While every organization will need all these roles to play a part, you very likely need a small fraction of a full time employee across those disciplines. Here is how we help our clients realize the full potential of SharePoint and CRM:
- Our Consultants and Business Analysts can help you understand your business goals, define the problem and opportunity statements, create a vision and develop a strategic multi-year roadmap for the solution.
- Next, our Application and Infrastructure Architects can take that strategy and turn it into a solution that is scalable, aligned to best practices and will ultimately address your business goals.
- Our Deployment Specialists will then help implement, not only the platform but underlying infrastructure; on-premise, in Office 365, or in the cloud.
- Our Developers and Quality Assurance folks then step in and build business applications that actually solve your business problems and provide a real ROI.
- Finally, the solution is transitioned to our Managed Services Group that assumes the responsibility for the long term care and evolution of the overall solution across each of those disciplines.
During the sustainment phase we focus on maintenance, enhancement and evolution of the solution; from infrastructure through to the application layer. What that means is when we put it all together our Managed Services clients do not have to worry about designing, developing, deploying or operating their solution.
If something needs fixing, chances are our monitoring picked it up and we fixed it before you or your users ever knew about it. If you suddenly have a business unit with a new requirement let us know and we will let you know when your solution is ready and in UAT for testing. If you acquire a business and need your solution to scale, no problem, let us know and we will make sure it gets done.
Thanks to our competencies, history of software development, strong infrastructure team, our cloud and data center services and our global delivery center of excellence we have been able to put it all together in a comprehensive solution that costs a fraction of what it would to run it all in-house or through tactical short term engagements.
Best part yet, it’s a fixed and predictable annual cost.
If you struggle with seeing the value of these solutions I encourage you to talk to us or some of our existing clients who we’ve had had the pleasure of serving for a number of years.
To learn more about our Managed Services Offering, visit us on the web: http://www.navantis.com/Managed_Services.cshtml
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