Benefits of SharePoint

SharePoint Process Digitization Pros and Cons: Make an Informed Decision

Discover all the relevant SharePoint process digitization pros and cons to be able to make an informed decision for the transformation of your workflows.

Sebastian Schneider

Sebastian Schneider

Digitizing your business processes can be a headache. Standard software is too generic and pricey. Custom development? Slow and costly, leaving you at the mercy of developers. You need a quick, cost-effective, and simple solution to modernize your business processes. The road there seems fraught with compromise.

That's where SharePoint steps in. It's your perfect middle ground. We're diving deep into the pros and cons of process digitization with SharePoint. This blog post will empower you to make an informed decision for your digital transformation. Get ready to find out how SharePoint might be the tool you've been searching for.

The pros of process digitization with SharePoint

Usability often plays a major role. SharePoint fits in perfectly with the rest of the Microsoft world. Users are already familiar with the interface, can login easily with Single Sign On (SSO) and find their way around the solutions very quickly, even without or very little onboarding. But, SharePoint is often only used as a document repository. SharePoint can do much more when it comes to process digitization.

Let's dive into the pros and cons of using SharePoint, if you would like more detailed information on SharePoint's process digitization capabilities, read on here.

Enhance collaboration in your team

Imagine a workspace where everyone connects seamlessly. SharePoint offers that collaborative environment. Everyone in the team has access to exactly the resources they need for their work. The data is always up to date as it's updated in real time. Users can even work on the same documents at the same time. In addition, documents can be found very quickly thanks to the efficient search function, which is already integrated in SharePoint.

If you map individual processes in SharePoint, all workflows are available in one place. You can create a great Single Source of Truth. With SharePoint workflows all team members always know where the process currently stands and are up to date. The days of having to spend ages searching for the right data, documents, or workflows, where everyone has different levels of information and collaboration is extremely difficult for remote or field teams, are finally over.

Streamline your business processes

SharePoint simplifies your business workflows. You're constantly looking for ways to make processes more efficient. SharePoint steps in as a central hub for storing documents, collaboration, and information exchange. It's a one-stop-shop for streamlining your workflows.

Not only can workflows be mapped digitally, but manual steps can even be completely automated. This also works with an unlimited sequence of work steps. This relieves your team of a lot of manual work. SharePoint workflows make business processes significantly more efficient, faster and less error-prone.

For the automation of individual tasks, it can be extremely helpful to integrate other Microsoft products. This is very easy to do in SharePoint. For example, you can send team messages, e-mails or create tasks in Microsoft Planner.

What's more, you don't have to worry that the solution will no longer fit the company at some point. SharePoint and all solutions based on it grow with the company. The platform is therefore perfectly scalable and suitable for companies of any size. You also have the possibility to start your digital journey with small processes and digitize all your other workflows step by step.

Don't worry about security

A solution that is used for central business processes should of course also guarantee a high level of security. Here you can rely on the security features already included in SharePoint. The platform offers strong security features to protect sensitive data and comply with regulations.

In addition, SharePoint offers version control for documents. That ensures that the most recent updates are always available and reduces duplication of work. You can see what has been changed in the individual versions and which user has executed them. Furthermore, no important data can be lost, as you can jump back to old versions.

The cons of process digitization with SharePoint

In summary, the pros of process digitization with SharePoint offer a broad basis of numerous functions that significantly simplify the modernization of workflows. However, SharePoint also has a few cons that you should also weigh up before deciding on SharePoint as a platform for your process digitization.

Building in SharePoint can be complex

With the help of SharePoint, you can build entire solutions that map workflows and automate tasks. If you want to do this solely with features that SharePoint offers out-of-the-box, it can become very complex. You will need the help of a SharePoint developer for this. Or you first must have your team trained to do this. This requires a considerable amount of time and money. It also pushes the modernization of processes back again. This is because your team first has to learn the necessary skills before starting the implementation.

But, there are low-code tools that can help you with this. These include the Solution Studio from skybow, for example. With the help of this platform, even citizen developers can very easily and quickly build complete solutions, including workflows and automation. No programming knowledge is required. The platform also offers numerous other features and functions that are not available out-of-the-box. These make it possible to build even more individual and powerful solutions.

SharePoint customization has limits

In the introduction above, we claimed that SharePoint is ideally suited to digitizing individual business processes. Of course, this is mainly because SharePoint solutions can be customized to meet individual requirements. This means you don't have to adapt to the specifications of a standard software solution. So why is this point listed among the cons of process digitization with SharePoint.

Quite simply, customization in SharePoint has its limits. This is because the solution is built in SharePoint and is therefore not completely customizable. However, many individual requirements can still be implemented, like custom layout or individual automation actions. This requires the use of custom code within SharePoint. This brings us back to the first point: you need specialists who are familiar with this.

SharePoint solutions are also limited when it comes to layout. Here you have to stick to the SharePoint layout - even if customizations are of course possible.

Low-code platforms such as the skybow Solution Studio can also help here. On the one hand, customizations can be created using drag&drop editors and don't have to be solved with coding. On the other hand, the skybow Solution Studio offers significantly more customization options for your SharePoint solutions and workflows than SharePoint out-of-the-box. This not only makes it easier to develop the SharePoint solution you need, but also to use it. The solutions are easier to use, offer users more functions and transparency in the workflows.

The combination of SharePoint and skybow Solution Studio creates a powerful synergy. Together it's a perfect tool for process digitization for every company, every industry, and every department. When you think about SharePoint you only see that old-fashioned layout and cannot imagine how a whole business solution could look like? I got you! Here you can see how a Recruiting Management System with connection to the Meta API built with skybow in SharePoint for a Recruiting Agency looks like:

Recruiting Management System with connection to the Meta API built with skybow in SharePoint.

Now that I have listed the major pros and cons of process digitization with SharePoint, I will come to a short conclusion:

SharePoint already provides an excellent basis for the digitization, modernization, and automation of business processes out-of-the-box with numerous features and functions. This makes it a very good middle ground between standard software, which does not fit 100 % with your own processes, and customized software, which is extremely costly and time intensive.

Nevertheless, it should be noted that SharePoint also has some limitations. Although many of these can be circumvented, an experienced SharePoint developer is required. If such a person isn't currently on the team, training the existing team or recruiting them can again cause considerable time and costs.

This is where low-code platforms such as skybow Solution Studio are the perfect complement to SharePoint. They make it possible to build individual, reliable, and stable solutions within a very short time. No programming knowledge is required. In this way, the various cons of process digitization with SharePoint can be perfectly balanced. This also turns them into opportunities.

If you are now convinced of the pros of process digitization with SharePoint and want to start directly, but don't yet know which workflow is best to start with, then we have five typical use cases for SharePoint process digitization for you. In this blog post you can get some inspiration on process digitization with SharePoint. For even more inspiration, we recommend our case studies. There we present exciting projects from our customers. Take a look and start your digital revolution with skybow and SharePoint now.

Sebastian Schneider
CEO, skybow

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