Notes From The Field: Beyond SharePoint Workflow

Beyond SharePoint Workflow

What Companies Look For As A Next Step In Their BPM Journey

As I continue to work with customers and prospects, I find some common ground in those looking to expand beyond SharePoint Workflow and Forms (And those products that rely on the underlying engine) .   There is definitely a BPM journey that organizations seem to take, regardless of whether they realize they have embarked.  This journey almost always leads to expanding beyond the confines of SharePoint, as well as a deepening need for more complex capabilities.    Here are some of the common trends I see in organizations looking to take their business process management to the next step:

  • The Requirement for Complex Workflow Patterns (With No Code) – simple serial workflows can only take you so far, and organizations quickly realize that rework steps, and moving to previous steps in any process is an absolute necessity in common business flow.  Having a BPM platform that integrates with SharePoint lists and libraries, and provides support for all types of workflow patterns can provide immense value, and eliminate the need for complex custom code and management of state.
Complex Workflow in SharePoint
Rework Should Not = Custom Code
  • Wanting Reusable, Shared Data Layer and Simple LOB Data Access – Accessing external data in SharePoint can be challenging, and I find many companies are looking to simplify the integration with external business systems.  The tiresome process of setting up Business Connectivity Services/External Lists in SharePoint, and maintaining them can be problematic.   A reusable model, as seen in K2’s smartobjects, can provide agility and reduce the overall time required to configure forms, workflow and reports.  The “create once” and reuse theme provides power and flexibility.
SharePoint External System Integration with Data
Simple, Visual Data Integration Tools
  • The Need to Surface Forms and Workflows Outside of SharePoint – SharePoint is a great tool, but should every form and workflow live  within its UI?  More and more, I am seeing organizations that want to have business apps (forms, workflow, data and reports) that live outside of SharePoint and can stand alone.  This is especially true when it comes to mobility, and the need to support various device types with web-based forms.
Supporting SharePoint access through mobile devices
Support for Mobile
  • The Need for A Broad Set of Design Tools – BPM in any organization is a broad undertaking, and usually involves a wide variety of individuals, with varying skill sets.  With Business Process Design, one size does not fit all, and organizations are looking to support power users, business analysts and developers.  See my post: BPA, BPM and Design.

So, in summary, if you are looking to step outside of the SharePoint workflow engine and its forms capabilities, take some time to evaluate your next step in the journey and focus on at least these 4 points.   For some additional considerations, see the below post:

10 Key Features In 3rd Party SharePoint Solutions

Comments?  Thoughts?

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What’s Missing From SharePoint? Infographic

Augmenting SharePoint Workflow and Forms

 

To see the full infographic, click on the image below:

SharePoint Workflow
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SharePoint Workflow and Forms: Limitations Got You Down?

SharePoint Workflow Limitations

SharePoint and Office 365 Workflow and Forms Limitations Webinar

UNLOCK THE POWER OF OFFICE 365 & SALESFORCE WITH BUSINESS APPS

Cloud Applications Event for Office 365 and Salesforce

IT Leadership Event at the Microsoft Technology Center in Irvine

Microsoft Office 365 has set a new bar for productivity platforms, and as a result, businesses far and wide are scrambling to leverage the power of its tools. If you have moved – or are moving – to Office 365, customizing your investment and integrating with your LOB apps and CRM solutions doesn’t have to be hard or time-consuming.

In this exclusive seminar, experts from K2 and Microsoft will cover solutions to help you create effective business apps fast. You’ll learn how to:

  • Improve productivity and business performance without a coding effort
  • Create rich forms and experiences that will actually get used
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There are only 30 slots available for this private event – please register now to reserve your spot.

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Irvine Event with Microsoft and K2: Unlock the Power of the Cloud

Cloud based apps in SharePoint and Office 365

Leverage Office 365 and Salesforce in Cloud Business Apps

More and more companies are moving to the cloud to save money and drive productivity.  But are you really getting all you can out of your cloud=based applications? Microsoft Office 365 has set a new bar for productivity platforms, and as a result, businesses far and wide are scrambling to leverage the power of its tools. If you have moved – or are moving – to Office 365, customizing your investment and integrating with your LOB apps and CRM solutions doesn’t have to be hard or time-consuming.

Join K2 and Microsoft at the Microsoft Technology Center in Irvine on May 21, 2015 to learn more and see the power of integrating cloud based-apps.

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