SharePoint in the Cloud? Clean it up!

Ok, so you have migrated your SharePoint to the cloud and users are asking, “How is this better, it looks almost the same?”  Organizations have a choice when moving SharePoint to the cloud, either do a “lift and shift,” which is to simply move SharePoint as it is to the cloud with the intent of cleaning it up later, or take the time to evaluate and clean up SharePoint before migrating to the cloud.  Either way, there is work to be done, but the benefits will be worth the effort.

Okay, so where do I start when it comes to SharePoint Clean-up?

I say, use the KonMari method!  Simplify and organize.  Marie Kondo, a popular organizing consultant who created the KonMari method, has some great strategies of cleaning out your “stuff” and I believe some can be applied to getting your organization’s SharePoint back in shape.  Let’s use a clothes closet as my comparison on using the KonMari method for SharePoint.

We’ve all seen, or have, a messy closet full of great, and not so great, clothes, shoes and junk, tossed everywhere.  SharePoint can get this way too, especially if governance is not well established and enforced.  The KonMari method has guidelines to follow, like SharePoint governance, and one of her first steps is to pull everything out into a pile.  Now you can see the shelves/rods/floor, so in comparison, the SharePoint architecture.  From here you can decide what needs to change in the architecture based on your governance plan, which should be solid, yet simple.  One of the pitfalls many organizations fell into with SharePoint was creating many layers of subsites, and then breaking permission inheritance, thus creating a “mess.”  With SharePoint Online’s new design, it is recommended to create a flat hierarchy, so reevaluating the architecture is key.

Do I have to go through all my SharePoint content?

We all know that SharePoint can end up having a lot of old, outdated content, and it isn’t necessarily fun to purge, but the results of purging does feel great and what is left is so much more useful.  Maire Kondo has you look at everything and answer the question, “Does it spark joy?”  For SharePoint, I would replace that question with “Does it add value?”  Keeping this in mind as you review your content will be critical.  The KonMari method also tells you to “Visualize the destination,” which is also very important when going through a project of improving your SharePoint.

Another step in the KonMari method is to “tidy by category, not location.”  Yes, most of us have clothes in more than one closet or dresser, and SharePoint is no different.  Look at where your SharePoint content is scattered and use this opportunity to reorganize it.

Once you have purged the old SharePoint content, you can then start using your new governance plan to build out your new SharePoint Online with the Modern Look and Feel that is intuitive for the end user, and “doesn’t look like SharePoint.”  SharePoint’s Communication and Team Sites offer a sleek look to the content that will benefit your organization.

Whether you have already migrated to SharePoint Online and need to reevaluate it, or have yet to migrate to SharePoint Online, there is effort involved in making this transition.  Most organizations are busy taking care of their daily job, so it is often put on the back burner.  It can be beneficial to turn to a consulting company, like eimagine, who has the expertise and experience with SharePoint migrations, re-architecting, and implementing the new Modern Look and Feel to help organizations get to the other side.

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