SharePoint surge continues but strategies are lacking: AIIM

A recent survey by AIIM (Association for Information and Image Management) has found that less than 50% of SharePoint implementations were subject to a formal business case, and only half of those required a financial justification.

As a result, most did not have a management plan as to which of SharePoint’s many features were to be used, and where. Meanwhile, SharePoint deployment is proceeding rapidly, with 22% of respondents reporting it to be in use by 100% of office staff. This adoption rate is set to double by this time next year.

Half of the smaller businesses implementing SharePoint are addressing the issues of information management for the first time. Even a quarter of the largest organisations have no previous experience with Enterprise Content Management (ECM) or Document Management (DM) systems.

As a result, only 22% provide any guidance to staff on the use of content types and classification. In addition, just 15% have retention policies and legal discovery procedures - risking content chaos within SharePoint as well as outside of it, according to the AIIM report.

For organisations that do have existing ECM and DM systems, nearly a third have yet to define how SharePoint fits with these systems. The most popular option is to use SharePoint for collaboration and intranet publishing while relying on existing systems for document and records management. In many cases, SharePoint will be used as a portal or front-end to those existing systems.

Only 8% of survey respondents are planning to phase out their existing ECM suite in favour of SharePoint, while 7% plan to invest in a new ECM or records management suite to go with their SharePoint system.

According to Doug Miles, Director of Market Intelligence for AIIM, “We see that organisations are pushing forward with enterprise-wide rollouts of SharePoint for collaboration and intranet, and are using this universal access to provide single-sign on portals into existing document and records repositories, thereby opening them up for better knowledge sharing.”

The AIIM report also shows that among those who are using SharePoint for traditional ECM applications, there is strong growth in the use of add-on packages to strengthen and supplement standard functionality, particularly in BPM, security, records management, search, Enterprise 2.0 and archive.

Based on over 600 responses, the AIIM Industry Watch research report is entitled “SharePoint- strategies and experiences” and is free to download from the AIIM website. It is underwritten by Allyis, Autonomy, EMC, HP, IBM,Kofax, NewsGator and Open Text.

About the research
The survey was taken by 624 individual members of the AIIM community between May 6th and June 5th, 2010, using a Web-based tool. Invitations to take the survey were sent via e-mail to a selection of the AIIM worldwide community members.