“We have been using SharePoint Server for a few years. We have analyzed the 2007 version yet in its Beta stage and have implemented it shortly after its premiere – due to a lot of new features such as in the field of process automation and permission management”- says Andrzej Biesiekirski, CEO of Fild.NET Sp. z o.o. “
One tool can have many faces, assisting the company in many different areas. When Fild.NET began its adventure with the Microsoft® Office SharePoint Server 2003 portal platform, the primary need was to find easily information in the rapidly growing set of documents: specifications, tenders, projects, documentation, etc. – “SharePoint has proved to be an elegant tool for organizing and arranging the collection and flow of information in the company. We got to know this tool very well and learned how to use it to solve many different problems, our own and customers”- says Andrzej Biesiekirski, CEO of Fild.NET Sp. z o.o. from Warsaw.
Fild.NET previously used SharePoint Server 2003. – “When Microsoft released the 2007 version, we got interested in its capabilities in a natural way – it was for us one of the main tools. There were so many features in a new version that the decision to upgrade was obvious “- says Tomasz Pelczarski, Enterprise Account Manager at Fild.NET.
As a result of the upgrade Fild.NET’s internal work environment has become even more convenient and efficient. – “We have managed to combine offers, sales and service in a coherent sequence of processes, because the portal is now a natural link for the CRM system, the project management system, and corporate knowledge bases. It is also a carrier for the system of document circulation”- explains Tomasz Pelczarski.
The upgrade also paid off as for most of the program functions there have been provided much more configuration options to better fit the portal environment to the profile of each business and to individual needs. – “More opportunities in the field of protection and control access to information, more wizards, more scenarios of how to use the application – this is exactly what we needed” – says Andrzej Biesiekirski.
Sector: Consulting and Implementation Services
Fild.NET is a fast growing company located in Warsaw, which specializes in solving business problems of large and medium-sized companies using Microsoft software.
Microsoft® Office SharePoint Server has been used by Fild.NET from version 2003. The solution has become the basis for group work of consultants and engineers and has been facilitating business cooperation with customers for several years.
With the advent of a new version of the platform – Microsoft® Office SharePoint Server 2007 – Fild.NET decided to upgrade. The company began an analysis of the functionality of the new version yet in the Beta phase of development and implemented it shortly after the official release.
- Ease of defining processes and connecting them with applications, including Microsoft® CRM, Microsoft® Outlook, Microsoft® Project Server
- Easier access to the company accumulated knowledge and experience
- Precise and automated management of access to information, allowing to share data securely with partners and customers
- Richer information management capabilities, including document libraries, improved sorting, better contextualization, greater scalability
The description of the solution:
Fild.NET Sp. z o.o. specializes in solving business problems using IT systems created for individual orders. The company helps customers in building solutions in the following areas:
- decision support
- advanced data analysis
- domain reporting
- consolidated reporting
- business process management
- cooperation with business partners
- work-flow management
- project management
- effective knowledge management
- customer relationship management
Fild.NET also often creates custom applications to reflect and improve unique business processes.
The pursuit of such activities requires considerable organizational effort, planning, and systematic approach to knowledge management, processes and projects. To support this activity, in which each project is unique, the company needed a tool that would allow to prevail over both service activities and the processes of designing solutions.
“Our needs were limited to the extension of the existing mechanisms of collaboration tools and features that would allow people to effectively work on different types of projects – from business consulting to managing versions of software” – says Andrzej Biesiekirski, CEO of Fild.NET.
Fild.NET has found such features in Microsoft® Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003. The portal very quickly has become an essential tool in the company, making it easier for employees to collect and search for information contained in the rapidly growing library of documents.
The corporate portal of Fild.NET contains thematic document libraries with full-text indexing and search features, domain knowledge database, and applications that automate internal processes.
Working with information on the go is an area where Fild.NET has already benefited after the implementation of version 2003. – “Before, you had to carry everything with yourself and eventually synchronize all your e-mails. With the portal we all know where are the latest versions of documents. It is enough to just click on a link and download the latest file. No need to call anyone and ask – it is a very measurable benefit, because it allows people to work more effectively”- says Tomasz Pelczarski.
In the meantime Fild.NET has also implemented other management support tools. One of the most important was the Microsoft® Project Server, through which the company has been coordinating projects. Another important new application was Microsoft® CRM 3.0 – a solution to help manage sales, service and marketing.
“When three large information management environment have begun to operate side by side in our company, it became obvious that they must somehow get connected. Ultimately, each of them served to support the same customers, although at different stages of cooperation and in different areas. We wanted to integrate the systems through the SharePoint platform, but in that time we knew that soon there would be available the next beta version of the system, which is today’s SharePoint Server 2007 “- says Andrzej Biesiekirski.
Fild.NET decided to wait with the integration until getting acquainted with the capabilities of the new version of SharePoint, which was expected to offer significantly extended functionality. – “Once we had the opportunity to look at the 2007 version, it became clear that investing in the development of the current version did not make sense. Many of the needs that arose after the analysis of our previous work with the older version of SharePoint, the 2007 version offered almost out of the box”- adds Andrzej Biesiekirski.
Migrating from version 2003 to 2007 took place in early 2007 and lasted about 2 months. So much time was needed to transfer data, configure the new version in accordance with the wishes of users and determine which of the new features should be implemented and to what extent.
“The wealth of functionality of SharePoint Server 2007 may overwhelm at first glance, but yet there is no obligation to implement all functions. You can choose what your company really needs and what is likely to translate into greater efficiencies”- reports Thomas Pelczarski.
One of the novelties, which in the eyes of Fild.NET deserved the immediate use, was a strong portal integration with the environment of Active Directory. – “In the 2003 version, it was necessary to create mechanisms to ensure synchronization of database users and their privileges. In the 2007 version all happens automatically and permissions can be defined very precisely, what was not possible in the 2003 version. For example, permissions can be granted to individual documents, as opposed to individual libraries. It is more natural because users with different privileges use the same domain or project libraries. There is no need to create multiple libraries with different levels of rights” – explains Tomasz Pelczarski.
Effective integration of SharePoint and Active Directory was important from the standpoint of the company internal systems integration. SharePoint was supposed to become a seamless environment for managing customer support at all stages of cooperation by integrating Microsoft CRM 3.0, Microsoft Project Server 2003 and a number of applications running in the SharePoint portal.
“Currently, a user logged into one system will automatically be transferred to other systems by clicking on a link with his contacts, correspondence history or current status of work on a project. From the user point of view all the information is in the portal, but in fact he gets it from several different applications. Also thanks to this integration data entered in one environment end up in all the databases”- says Andrzej Biesiekirski.
The application integration has enabled the integration of internal business processes. For example, an order confirmed in the CRM system of Fild.NET is transformed into a project for which – based on the content of the agreement – there is being created a project schedule on a server. In the context of a new project designers and programmers can reach the database of knowledge to look for possible problems and solutions. In turn, salesmen and account managers have constant access to information about the progress of work.
“In the SharePoint 2007 version there are Web Parts ready components available in the portal, which automatically communicate with external applications and display information or links to resources in the appropriate context. The number and mode of action of these components shows that Microsoft has predicted a number of SharePoint usage scenarios. It really corresponds to our requirements as we are aware that there are ready-made solutions for the problems that we may have in the future”- adds Andrzej Biesiekirski.
SharePoint Server 2007 has brought many innovations in the field of information management. It is possible to specify a list of rules, especially for filtering and sorting information. In fact, you can customize every aspect of the portal. Each user can customize standard configuration to his needs or preferences – of course within the framework given to the role and associated privileges. Personalization is possible in such areas as the navigation or how to handle key functions in search results, as well as colors and patterns views.
Benefits of implementation
SharePoint Server 2007 has allowed Fild.NET to refresh its looking at own processes and in the same time has made it easy to improve them. – „A universal tool for managing the collection and sharing of information” – it is the definition of SharePoint Portal that Fild.NET’s staff will be happy to sign.
Among the obvious benefits of migration from SharePoint Portal 2003 to SharePoint Server 2007 Fild.NET can talk about:
- Ease of defining processes and easily connect them with other applications, including Microsoft® CRM, Microsoft® Outlook, Microsoft® Project Server
- Simpler and more intuitive than ever access to the company accumulated knowledge and experience
- Larger information management capabilities, including document libraries, better contextualization, improved sorting, greater scalability.
- Much more powerful customization environment to different processes and different user needs
Software and services
- Microsoft® Office System 2007
- Microsoft® Windows Server 2003
- Microsoft® Office SharePoint Server 2007
- Microsoft® Project Server 2007
Fild.NET’s own implementation
More information about SharePoint Server 2007 and Fild.NET is available at www.microsoft.pl.