Web Marketing Manager at www.venuebirmingham.com
22 May 2007 10:02am
Hi all; I have just started a new position and it is looking like a fait accompli that we are going to use MS SharePoint as a CMS.... - so I just wanted to ask if anyone had ever used it before, and if so what they though of it?
We are a University, and so we will require:
We are a wall-to-wall MS environment with a lot of MS server, networking and support skills.
Business Development Manager at Auros
23 May 2007 10:20am
As a company, we implement CMS solutions for a living. We assessed > 20 enterprise products prior to partnering with a leading UK vendor. I won't mention them here, as it would probably constitute spam!
Our take on Sharepoint is as follows (subjective):
It is, however, strong on the following areas (again subjective!):
If you would like to chat through any of the above in more detail, feel free to drop me a line at
Auros Business Development Manager
On 10:02:56 22 May 2007 JamesRobertson wrote:
Hi all; I have just started a new position and it is looking like a fait accompli that we are going to use MS SharePoint as a CMS.... - so I just wanted to ask if anyone had ever used it before, and if so what they though of it?We are a University, and so we will require:
decent workflow management,
multiple authoring roles and editor roles
multiple look and feels
single log-on across multiple sites and intranet sites.
Let me know any horror stories; what is it like to train people up as content contributors? - how hard is it to import new look and feel templates? - is it capable of writing good CSS and accessible code?We are a wall-to-wall MS environment with a lot of MS server, networking and support skills.
Head of Communications at Finance Wales
09 July 2007 11:43am
Hi James, I'm curious to know how your CMS implementation is going? I'm in exactly the same position as you were a few weeks ago: our business was looking for a new CMS. SharePoint has been sold to the IT manager and now I have to work out whether it will support our marketing needs! Back to front I know!
Lead Technical Consultant at cScape
10 July 2007 10:08am
Coming into this thread a bit late... but hope I can be of help.
To lay my hand on the table first - I'm a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for SharePoint, so I guess I'm a little biased. That said, I've worked in a UK based consultancy specialising in web content management for nearly 10 years, so I am very aware of the capabilities of other WCM products out there.
Don't get me wrong - SharePoint is by no means a perfect product, and if you are just using it for a simple brochureware site, I would say that it is far too big and complex to use. The two best things about the product are:
1) You can pretty much make it do anything2) The management interfaces are all customer focused and easy to use
The two worst things are:
1) Its complexity to initially set up if you are unfamiliar with the product (but its a lot better than earlier versions of the product)2) It is difficult to make the management interfaces accessible (though we are involved in a Microsoft open source initiative to improve this).
For more details, read on:
Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) 2007 combines (and enhances) the good quality web content management capabilities of Microsoft CMS 2002, but adds the collaboration, document management and search capabilities of the core SharePoint products to the mix too. That means you get blogs and wikis, RSS feeds, workflow, versioning, security etc.
Most importantly, contributing content to the site and managing the servers is done in a consistent way whether you are using it for an intranet, a public website, an extranet, a file store or whatever. This should cut down on IT training both for your network admins and your content authors.
In terms of code quality, MOSS is built onto ASP.NET 2.0 using standard web controls and master pages for templating the content. For public facing sites, there shouldn't be any issues with fine-grained control over the (X)HTML / CSS which is used. See, for example, a site I built earlier this year which should show the level of customisation which is possible: http://www.hedkandi.com.
One final thing to say is that there are many other public sites which are already using MOSS, and there is a community which the product team estimate at 750,000 who are actively developing in SharePoint technologies, so there is a lot of help out there on the community.
Hope this helps,
Ben RobbMVP, Microsoft Office SharePoint ServerLead Technical Consultant, cScape
[P.S. Check out the eConsultancy CMS Best Practice Guide
Freelance Web Consultant at architxt.net
10 July 2007 11:15am
"In comparison to other products, poor content contributor interface (not true WYSIWYG) "
True WYSIWYG is not necessarily the best interface. If you're using templates where information is laid out in specific areas and you don't want people to go crazy with text formatting then a form based interface where each content element has its own field is probably better (eg. updating your forum profile).
Head of Partnership Sales at Squiz
15 July 2008 11:01am
Hi James - I am also coming to this late, so I guess you have had a little while with Sharepoint by now if that's the way you have gone. If not, you might also consider looking around at the some of the opensource products on the market which are - on the whole extremely advanced now. I work in this sector and we have come across many of the licensed systems which all have their pros and cons (our view: sharepoint is good for docs not so good as a CMS) and were very much the only solution for an enterprise scale project, but there are now many additional products out there that won't require the spend on license fees, simply for the privilege of using the system. These are more than capable of handling projects that need multiple features and guaranteed uptime. I won't push our particular system here as it may be considered spam but my contact details are on my profile and it might be worth looking at this University site that we have built recently: http://www.oxford-union.org/
Kenton WardHead Of Partnerships - Squiz
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