Articles and White Papers

Articles By Date (Newest on Top)

Articles hosted on this website can be downloaded using the links provided below the description. Articles hosted elsewhere are available by clicking the title of the article.
SharePoint and Microsoft 365 Governance Policies and Guidelines Questions
One key to successful plans for Microsoft 365 governance is to have the right conversations with the right individuals at the right time. If you start with the right questions, you can build your governance plan from the answers. I've spent a lot of time asking governance questions in my work with clients. This document provides a list of the conversations as well as the questions that I typically ask for SharePoint and Microsoft 365 (including Microsoft Teams and Yammer), though many of the questions apply to earlier versions as well. For the questions about the user profile attributes, I've also included the typical guidance (i.e. "governance") that we include in the governance information for users when they set up their profiles. The document is updated frequently (see home page of the site for the latest update date).

SharePoint and Microsoft 365 Governance Policies and Guidelines Questions
Communication Site Planning Guide
Tips, best practices, and a design planning template for creating modern communication sites.

Communication Site Planning Guide
Microsoft 365 KM Metrics (.pptx)
List of suggested system metrics to evaluate the success of knowledge management initiatives with how you can get these metrics from Microsoft 365 directly or with the help of third-party tools.
Modern vs. Classic SharePoint Document Library Feature Comparison (.pdf)
List of commonly used document library features and where to find them in Classic and Modern SharePoint document libraries. Dude, where are my doc lib actions?
Sharing Nicely in the Cloud: Understanding External Sharing with SharePoint 2013
Article on CMS Wire (August 8, 2013) covering considerations and recommendations for SharePoint 2013 Online/Office 365 users who choose to enable the "external sharing" features of SharePoint 2013.
Practice Safe Search: 10 Essential SharePoint 2013 Search Hints
This short document is an updated version of the SharePoint 2010 search hints I published in July 2012. It is published in Word format so that you can adapt it for use in your own organization.
SharePoint 2010 vs. SharePoint 2013 Feature Comparison for Business Users
This document presents a comparison of selected features that are particularly relevant for business users and provides examples and screen shots of how these capabilities are addressed in SharePoint 2010 vs. SharePoint 2013. The document will be helpful for explaining SharePoint 2013 as well as making the business case for an upgrade.
Conversation Options in SharePoint 2013
This one-page table summarizes the different ways to have a "conversation" in SharePoint 2013 and describes the scenarios for which each approach is "best" and compares each approach along multiple dimensions.
Essential SharePoint Search Hints for SharePoint 2010 and Beyond
This document provides a list of ten search tips - 3 for content publishers and 7 for content "finders" that will help you get better search results. The content "finder" tips provide 7 easy to use query hints that work both in SharePoint and in internet search engines. The paper expands upon a July 2012 blog post and includes screen shots of search results from SharePoint Foundation, SharePoint Enterprise, and SharePoint 2013 Preview.
July 2012
SharePoint Content Authoring Quick Guide
This brief guide provides a model for a short guidance document to help make it easier for users to "consume" and comply with SharePoint governance plans. It provides simple tips for writing great content for SharePoint sites.
April 2012
Article in SearchContentManagement: Q&A: SharePoint governance guru Susan Hanley talks deployment plans
Interview focuses on what's most important for creating effective governance plans and getting user adoption.
A Practical Framework for SharePoint Metrics
Presents a practical approach for measuring the value of the solutions we build with SharePoint. The paper is primarily intended for a business audience, which could include the business owner of an entire SharePoint deployment or the business owner of a single site or solution.
October 2011
Choice versus Lookup: Which type of Site Column is best?
Summary of trade-offs to consider when deciding between Choice and Lookup columns in your metadata architecture.
CMS Wisdom Report: Volume 1 (ISITE Design)
Collection of "54 inspired tales of web content management trials, tribulations and tips
from the men and women who lived to tell their stories." My contribution is on page 7.
SharePoint Server 2010 Usage Best Practices White Paper
White paper written with Scott Jamison for Microsoft on how to manage content effectively, how to choose the best option for displaying content, and the most effective way to find your content later.
October 2010
SharePoint Server 2010 Adoption Best Practices White Paper
White paper written with Scott Jamison for Microsoft on best practices for SharePoint 2010 User Adoption.
October 2010
Tips for Leveraging the Social Computing Features of SharePoint 2010
Article for InformIT describing six key tips that should be incorporated into your social computing strategy for SharePoint 2010.
October 2010
Top 10 Considerations for SharePoint 2010 Governance Planning
Article for InformIT outlining 10 steps to consider when preparing your SharePoint 2010 Governance Plan.
October 2010
SharePoint 2010 Governance Planning
White paper written with Scott Jamison for Microsoft based on the Governance chapter from Essential SharePoint 2010: Overview, Governance, and Planning. Includes several examples that didn't make it in to the book.
July 2010
10 My Site Best Practices
This document includes 10 best practices for getting the most value from SharePoint My Sites.
February 2009
Sample Stakeholder Interview Guide
This is a short, 2-page Word document that I use to frame initial conversations with key stakeholders for portal and collaboration solutions. I always tell people that they are not expected to write down the answers to the questions - just to use this guide to prepare for a stakeholder interview.
December 2008
Sample SharePoint Style Guide
This is a short, 2-page Word document for "end user publishers" (content contributors) on SharePoint sites.
December 2008
Breaking the Folder Paradigm - how to get more value from your SharePoint document libraries
Presentation that demonstrates how metadata can be used to replace folders as an organizing principle in SharePoint document libraries. This document needs some updating for SharePoint 2010. For example, SharePoint 2010 Document Set is a great way to "collect" documents that belong in a set (see page 4). Also, folders can now hold metadata that can be inherited into documents, which means you may not always have to choose between folders or metadata - you can have both. Even in SharePoint 2010, you still want document metadata as your primary strategy for "findability," but witht he Content Organizer and folder metadata, folders have a valid and meaningful place in your information architecture.
July 2008
Using MOSS 2007 Meeting Workspaces
Document describing an approach for using SharePoint Meeting Workspaces.
March 2008
Everything End Users Always Wanted to Know but Didn't Even Know They Should Ask about Property Searches in MOSS 2007
Syntax conventions and search best practices for SharePoint 2007 search.
June 2007
Organizational and Cultural Issues to Consider When Deploying Your New Windows SharePoint Services Solution
White paper written for Microsoft in 2005. Though this applied at the time to WSS "2003," most of the recommendations still apply.
October 2005
Everything you ever wanted to know about Taxonomies ... but were afraid to ask
What is a taxonomy and how do I get started building one?
April 2005
Department of the Navy Metrics Guide for Knowledge Management Initiatives
This document has formed the foundation of KM metrics initiatives for the U.S. Navy, many Federal agencies, and private sector companies all over the world. The approaches and suggestions are still relevant almost 10 years after the document was first written.
August 2001
"If You Build an Enterprise Portal, Will Users Come?" Lessons from Dell
Cutter Consortium, Business Intelligence Advisory Service Executive Update, Vol. 3, No. 11
August 2003
Don't Build Your e-Business Without KM
Article in Knowledge Management Magazine
March 2001

Articles and White Papers (by Title)

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