Like many IT projects, SharePoint projects experience significant failure rates or do not achieve their desired objectives. One of the key reasons for challenges with rollout is the failure to establish a formal governance program for SharePoint. This may lead to the following issues:
- Proliferation of content, sites and applications to the point where they cannot be effectively managed
- Organizational conflict due to lack of roles and responsibilities definition
- Poor adoption and resistance to change from the organization due to lack of training, poor operational support and lack of process for involving business stakeholders in the change management process
- The perception from stakeholders that the solution is controlled by Information Technology and does not meet their business requirements
- Operational inefficiency due to lack of management processes, escalation paths and poorly designed infrastructure
- Exposure to significant risk of downtime due to poor or undefined backup/restore procedures, disaster recovery plans and operational management processes
- Many organizations start SharePoint projects within their IT departments. IT departments may not be empowered or able to adequately engage the rest of the organization to ensure they are involved in “owning” their new information management platform.
The establishment of governance at the beginning of a large enterprise technology roll-out significantly increases the chances of success for both the initial implementation and subsequent phases. A governance program sets expectations with the organization on what the solution will provide and establishes a process that achieves buy-in from the organization and ensures that the solution continues to evolve to meet business needs. Governance provides the operational models for ensuring that the business is an active participant in the process and that they are provided with on-going operational support for the SharePoint adoption.