Please share with the community what you think needs improvement with Microsoft Office SharePoint Server.
What are its weaknesses? What would you like to see changed in a future version?
I would like to see more Agile techniques and seamless integration with other applications.
The product could be improved by accommodating different technologies, particularly integration. Hopefully, Microsoft won't change the product because they tend to do that. I'm not really sure about additional features but I think using SharePoint as an application server means it's competing with other similar products like Oracle Application Server, and they should aim for that level.
Stability and the reporting system need improvement. The interface is friendly but you have some limits and you have to use your imagination to make the graphs better. In the next release, I would like to see the possibility to integrate market information directly into the product. It will help us in saving time.
If you're a legacy, long-term user of SharePoint, there are challenges moving forward to the newer user experience that works with groups. It is a complex migration process and there's a lot of manual effort involved. If a file is moved or renamed then the links to it are broken. Ideally, a unique internal and persistent identifier should be used to access files to prevent this problem. When you start building a large repository of several hundred thousand or millions of documents that represent decades of history, you may want to enhance the name of something that was really poorly described in the past. However, if there's an external link to a website or an external link that you might've saved within your own office to access that content, it becomes annoying when you break things. It would be nice if they would abstract that so that it's an internal structure that uniquely identifies the document version, and that has absolutely nothing to do with the file name or its location within SharePoint. I know that there is some degree of workflow in SharePoint, but there isn't easy awareness of what that means and how to easily utilize it. I think there can be some enhancements done there to make it a lot easier for people to, for example, migrate a paper process to be a workflow for permissions or authorization, thereby leveraging the SharePoint platform. The ability to preview files in different formats should be expanded to include formats such as embedded postscript (EPS), AutoCAD, and Adobe Acrobat PDF. You can open them online, but that's an extra step and it would be nice to have a thumbnail to quickly review the content in that folder. That, to me, is a missing opportunity. These are known standards that file managers can work with.
The licensing needs to be improved, especially when there are a lot of users. It's okay if there are a handful of users, but when there are 20 or 30, paying monthly for all of these licenses is difficult. The solution needs to enable better sharing capabilities between users and external users. Several users also have problems with linking their emails to their Microsoft account.
One of the reasons why we don't recommend the cloud version of SharePoint is the cost. With the on-premise version, you pay for the license once. For the cloud version, there is a recurring fee. The truth is there are some places where SharePoint is pretty decent for the thing that it does. Microsoft has a very good product. It's difficult to find room for improvement because you can get add-ons that support it. With SharePoint, if you are not subscribed to the SharePoint environment libraries, you can probably get third party tools that you can add on to it. It's difficult to see other tools that allow people to collaborate on documents and data in these libraries. I think these tools do a pretty good job. There is only one area of improvement. Maybe Microsoft can invest a little bit more into the ease at which integration can be done with other third-party applications. I know that Microsoft released SharePoint 2016, but I don't know if there is SharePoint 2019. We have only worked with the higher version of SharePoint since 2013. I don't know how much they have done in the area of integration. I think integration is a very important area of focus for SharePoint because it's very easy for SharePoint to become the go-to area, where everybody in your organization can come. Your costs, documents, sites, lists, and data can all be in one place. I would like to see them make it easier for people who are not using Exchange to connect to different data sources. For example, a lot of people are using Google Apps. If I'm using Google Apps, there are plugins that we can just plug into SharePoint automatically to share documents and Google spreadsheets seamlessly. A Google spreadsheet can be imported into a SharePoint library. You can also point a SharePoint library to a Google spreadsheet, or the data source coming out of Google spreadsheet. Integration also should include tools like Tableau, Salesforce, and some of the top software out there. It's not good enough to have website integration. That's not enough. You want to make an integration where Microsoft can build a wizard and you can just click a few times to create the integration. Then, just enter your username and password and point to the URL. Those custom integrations are crucial, especially for smaller businesses. For large organizations that are deploying SharePoint in the enterprise, they already have an IT department, resources, and tons of administrators. They already have resources that can quickly build web services, called drivers or connectors. For small organizations, however, it would be good for Microsoft to invest in connectors. Microsoft can build and provide connectors for some of the more frequently used integrations, such as PayPal, Google Apps, Salesforce, SAP, etc. I think that would be great. There is another area that Microsoft can improve on. I don't know what they have done with InfoPath. I think that's still a mystery. There's still a very big opportunity for form development and apps development framework that you can use quickly. Otherwise, Microsoft is telling everybody to go and buy two licenses to do serious forms of development. I think that's going to be a problem. I know that they're trying to encourage their partners to build those tools. However, workflows and easier to use and more robust forms infrastructure on top of SharePoint would go a long way. It is very expensive. They expect everyone to pay $20 or $30 per user per month. Microsoft can definitely help if they can build some of those capabilities, especially for people that want to invest in SharePoint. You're not investing much in to get some of the functionalities out.
The permission management features need improvement. The search functionality on the on-premises version is not very good. We brought this up with technical support, but they said there wasn't anything they can do. This needs to be improved in a future release. The solution could use integrated bots or some form of AI. There needs to be the capacity to share links. They do it already on the cloud, but not on the on-premises version. It would be good to have to capacity to share a link to a dedicated person for a specific duration.
The search feature needs improvement. I can never find the information I need when I use it. They need a well-implemented Wiki engine. What they have now doesn't really comply to what I would expect from a Wiki platform.
I can't configure the current security I want. There are a lot of bots in it. Sharepoint doesn't integrate well with Oracle, and we use a lot of Oracle products at our company. Therefore, it makes more sense for us to go to Oracle instead of continuing to use Sharepoint.
The workflow is very rudimentary. We use the intensive workflows. However, these need to be improved. Microsoft may be coming up with a new flow currently, but I'm not sure. I'm hoping Microsoft will have all emphasis on WorkflowMax because the one we currently have is very rudimentary. The solution needs to be more collaborative. I believe they are just coming up with the themes for this right now.
It would be nice if you could use it out of the box or have something with more CRM-like functionality. If there could be some sort-of out of the box free option within SharePoint that would be nice. It's not easy to manage projects on it. They should work to simplify this. Sharepoint has a limitation for certain applications. There's a limit whereby you can only have an application that allows 5,000 items on a list. When you create a list that is bigger than this, SharePoint locks you from doing anything else. You can overcome this. The administrator can just increase the limit. Of course, this is not a good practice to have. If you want to try to understand how can you make the application that does not bypass this limit there is not a clear answer from Microsoft. This is the issue we are facing right now and we're trying to develop a solution or an algorithm that will work within the respected limits but it is not easy and Microsoft does not help. They don't have a clear explanation as to why this is, and they do not have a clear statement warning you about this. If they were just be transparent, we'd have our parameters defined and we'd be able to ensure applications adhered to them.
Many of our customers would like to see an OCR feature, so it would be very good to have this in a future release. For example, you have invoices that have been scanned and uploaded into the SharePoint document library. If you are attaching the metadata along with the particular document then it is fine because you can search it well. However, if it is a PDF from an invoice that you scanned, then you will not be able to search for the details. You will only be able to search for it by name. Many of my customers are requesting a feature like this and will go ahead with the product once it is there. Technical support for this solution can be improved. Migrating a site to SharePoint online is not recommended, but it should be made smoother because customers demand it. There should be a good solution for this. SharePoint would benefit from having more plugins available for it. Microsoft Forms should have more features. The basics are there, but we need to be able to connect directly to the database. Line-level entry should also be there.