Microsoft made many revelations at this year’s SharePoint Conference in Vegas. We’ve mentioned the major updates regarding the use of AI in SharePointWhat was also talked about was SharePoint Server 2019, the highly-anticipated upgrade to the SharePoint platform.

A redesigned platform clearly aimed towards a more flexibly working audience, SharePoint 2019 looks to be focused on facilitating a demand for instant access regardless of device type.

Microsoft have wanted to keep this latest version familiar to existing users, whilst being intuitive enough to entice a new user base. SharePoint Online, a solely Cloud-based version of the SharePoint platform, has provided the inspiration behind the improved user experience of SharePoint 2019. Improvements to document libraries and navigation shows fluidity with existing Office 365 systems.

As usual, SharePoint has collaboration at the forefront of everything it does, and the 2019 version is no exception – if anything it accelerates this foundation. The introduction of innovative tools such as Communications Sites, Team News and Lists and Libraries being included in modernised Team Sites enhances the customer experience no matter where the customers are located.

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However, SharePoint 2019 isn’t going to be forcing Cloud-only work environments. many organisations have a hybrid environment, with aspects on-premises and in the Cloud. Similar to SharePoint 2016SharePoint 2019 will continue to derive the on-premises server from  platform investments in SharePoint Online with new native support for hybrid scenarios that can be configured during your deployment.

Dave Nixon, a Microsoft Practice Manager at Business Agility, said: “It just goes to show how the shift in demand has moved to more Cloud-based systems. SharePoint 2019 is showing definite signs of adhering to a flexible workforce, however on-premises continues to be operated by many organisations.”

Ultimately, SharePoint 2019 looks to improve critical business processes. Business process automation is a key component for SharePoint, and the 2019 version continues to support this as well as collaboration and search within businesses. It’s not always easy or simple to move your business, your workloads, to the Cloud. Process automation and forms technology will be accelerated in SharePoint 2019 – tools such as Mirosoft PowerApps and Flow will be utilised to connect with your on-premises data.

John Votaw, a Principal Consultant at Business Agility, said:  “The most important take away from Microsoft’s recent SharePoint 2019 announcement is that Microsoft continues to be committed to on-premises versions of SharePoint.  If you still have a need to keep your SharePoint environment on your own servers, Microsoft will continue to invest with you.”

Microsoft seem to be demonstrating the use of customer feedback in their SharePoint upgrade. They plan to have a preview release of the platform this Summer – so watch this space!

If you’d like any further advice on managing SharePoint  on-premises, in the Cloud, or both – get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.