I had the opportunity to make my way out to sunny San Diego, Calif. for Gartner Portals, Content, and Collaboration Summit which took place April 29-May 1.
The focus of the event was helping organizations embrace a mobile, social, and context-driven world. Topics included:
· Seamlessly integrating across mobile platforms
· Harnessing social to drive innovation
· Demonstrating the business value
· Adding increasing amounts of context to the influx of data already existing in organizations’ data repositories today
· Empowering mobile workforces securely
In my three days of speaking with Gartner analysts and attending sessions on enterprise content management, portal strategies, and a panel on SharePoint 2013, I left with two main takeaways:
1. Interoperability is key in today’s multichannel landscape. We’re in a world that enables us to consume, digest, and produce information across various devices and form factors. You could be very well reading this blog post on your PC, phone, or tablet. Maybe you’re reading this on your Microsoft Surface while you respond to emails on your iPhone. Being able to connect enterprise technology investments and ensure a consistent user experience across all platforms is key to success. How well Microsoft SharePoint can integrate with CRM, ERP, and other line-of-business (LOB) systems – whether they are all part of the Microsoft technology stack or not – is going to dictate the future success of the platform. It seems Microsoft recognizes this with its Business-Critical SharePoint Program – of which AvePoint is a proud partner – that focuses on utilizing SharePoint’s ability to connect to LOB systems for access to transactional data, including SAP, Oracle, JD Edwards, Salesforce.com, and Microsoft Dynamics. To learn more about AvePoint Solutions for Microsoft Dynamics CRM, please visit our website.
2. Storing large files is still up for debate in SharePoint. Honestly, this one surprised me. At the very end of the panel discussion on SharePoint 2013, in which Gartner analysts Mark Gilbert, Jim Murphy, and Karen Shegda took questions from a crowd exceeding 100 people, one man raised his hand and complained that while we had gone over social, cloud, mobile, business intelligence, and search – storing large files was still a major concern. For those utilizing SharePoint today, the way that the platform natively stores data and content is in Microsoft SQL Server content databases. These databases are built to handle structured data – think Excel sheets – very well, but not so much when it comes to unstructured data like Word documents, PDFs, pictures, video files, CAD files … which quite often make up the vast majority of content stored. SQL is the engine that makes SharePoint run well – and the key to optimizing SharePoint performance is through efficient SQL storage management. This tells me AvePoint’s storage management tools are still well positioned to help organizations take full advantage of SharePoint for all its content – large files or otherwise – without having to worry about clogging SQL and damaging SharePoint performance.
Gartner PCC was a good show to help affirm our continued vision for the technology market – enabling collaboration with confidence by addressing four key pillars: infrastructure management, governance, compliance, and productivity. To learn more about AvePoint’s vision, please visit our microsite.