SharePoint 2010 pilot project at Bankstown City Council January 9, 2013

Last month, Kate Cumming and I met with Melissa Ratkun, Claude Wetsteyn and Anita Franjieh from Bankstown City Council to talk about Council’s SharePoint pilot project and see a demo of some of the functionality implemented.

In 2012, Council ran a pilot project to test whether SharePoint 2010 could meet Council’s document and records management needs and introduce improvements to Council’s information management practices.

The project team took a process-based approach:

  • The team identified a range of business processes, such as tendering, event planning and managing personnel.
  • The team worked with relevant business units to extensively map these processes, including identifying the types of records that need to be created as part of each process, how and when they should be captured, how long they need to be kept, which employees within the organisation should have access to them, what metadata do they need to ensure they remain understandable and useful over time, how might this metadata be generated, opportunities for workflow etc.
  • The team then worked with a SharePoint developer to set up and configure a series of sites for the piloted processes.
  • The developer and the team also tested integration between SharePoint and critical business systems.
  • The team provided some basic training to pilot participants so that they could go ahead and test the SharePoint implementation.
  • The team then surveyed the participants about their experiences with using SharePoint.

The project demonstrated that SharePoint could meet Council’s document and records management needs and introduce improvements to Council’s information management practices. Council’s Executive has given in principle approval for a wider rollout.

As well as achieving a range of outcomes, such as the ability for users to capture emails via ‘drag and drop’ functionality and the ability to sentence records on creation, the pilot project achieved some ‘big picture’ benefits:

  • much greater visibility and accessibility of corporate information
  • reduction in duplication of information and double handling
  • more flexible security/access settings
  • streamlined work processes
  • improved efficiencies.

This project demonstrated how important initial planning is to the success of an implementation. The hard work of the team in so thoroughly mapping the business processes was essential to the project’s success because the vendors could see clearly what functionality was required.

The full case study of this project is available as part of State Records’ guidance on the recordkeeping capabilities of SharePoint 2010.

Thanks to Melissa, Claude and Anita for so generously sharing their experiences with us. If your organisation has implemented SharePoint and is interested in providing a case study of its experiences, please contact us.


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