Upgrade SharePoint with a solid business case

A system/software upgrade can be on the cards for many different reasons. Commonly, the need to move to a newer version of an application includes the below. You’ll soon be able to upgrade SharePoint with a solid business case.

  • Making your life/job easier!
  • Cost saving (e.g. moving to the Cloud)
  • Improving security and governance
  • Increasing user adoption
  • The old system may no longer be supported
  • Reducing reliance on legacy systems
  • Introducing more efficiency and automation
  • Ensuring your system is mobile-friendly
  • Adopting a system that better fosters collaboration, workflow and more robust processes

Since it was first introduced in 2001, SharePoint is a platform which has continually evolved – both by the user community (which drives true innovation), by Microsoft Partners (developing, configuring and building on it) and by Microsoft itself (forging the roadmap and releases of SharePoint)

Did you know?
If you have an ‘Out of the box’ implementation (i.e. no customisation) then to upgrade you must be on the previous version to be able to upgrade to the new one. i.e. you can upgrade from SP2013 to 2016, but you cannot upgrade directly from 2010 to 2016. (However, if you’re going to use SharePoint Online, then it doesn’t matter which version you’re on).

Some organisations may have adopted SharePoint right at the beginning and gone through several versions since – however, commonly we see companies using SharePoint 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016 as the foundations for various business processes.

You may want to upgrade to a newer version of SharePoint; for example, 2010 to 2013. (You can’t upgrade from 2010 to 2016). Alternatively, if you’re not keen on having an on-premises system and you want all your data to reside in the Cloud, then SharePoint Online may be the option for you. (It doesn’t matter which version of SharePoint you currently have if you’re looking to upgrade to SharePoint Online).

Want to upgrade SharePoint from 2013 to 2016? It’s simpler than you think!

Upgrading to SharePoint 2016 from 2013 is a very simple process. You’ll have access to lots of new functionality without having to do a huge amount of work. All you need to do is create your new SharePoint 2016 farm, copy the databases from your old system to the new farm, apply all of the necessary upgrades required and that’s pretty much it.

Did you know?
Business Agility has been delivering Business Process Automation solutions on SharePoint since its first iteration in 2001…in fact, even before when it was formerly called ‘Tahoe’!

The practical steps and business case for actual migration

Employee onboarding, offboarding and training

A migration tool will keep all your existing metadata intact – and when your metadata works well, then your SharePoint capability multiplies! There are roughly five various ways to upgrade to Office 365 or SharePoint Online:

  • Microsoft FastTrack
  • Using the Office 365 Migration API
  • Using third party tools
  • Manually copying files
  • Go Hybrid

It’s worth noting that if you rush your migration or don’t pay sufficient attention to detail, then it could completely skew the process and the product you end up migrating your information to. So, it’s worth taking the time to make sure you have everything in place and the capability to migrate before you go ahead. Here are a few tips:

Be mindful of security

When there’s a lot of data to be moved, security can inadvertently take a back step, especially if you find yourself in a rush to get it done. Don’t fall into the trap of becoming slack with your security. Even if it’s old data, make sure it’s destroyed properly if it’s not getting migrated. That includes making sure it’s not residing anywhere else.

Review your content

There’s no point migrating across old content – it’s either dated or irrelevant (usually both). So take it out of the equation completely. The less you migrate, the easier the process will be.

Pick your migration strategy

As mentioned above, you have several options – you can go down the manual route (laborious but customised to your needs as you go), or automate the process. Alternatively, you can do a bit of both, for various pieces of information.

Check out our guide here for great advice on creating a business case for your SharePoint upgrade!