If you are using SharePoint the way it was intended, you most likely have all your data presented from the platform in some way or another in the form of dashboards, lists, libraries, calendars and web parts. If you don’t quite have that experience yet, you most likely have some data in SharePoint and the rest of your data in many other systems, with a future roadmap to eventually consolidate everything into one beautiful dashboard. And it’s simple enough once you get SharePoint talking to the other systems, and I’m sure you know there is a way and have a plan and working towards that.
So what is wrong with this scenario, well in an ever more mobile environment we often find that SharePoint is either locked down or its difficult to navigate to that business critical when you are not in the office.
Unless like us at GT you prioritise dashboards in a responsive environment to work on all devices, and then it is accessible via mobile and from anywhere, anytime, or if you are taking full advantage of the SharePoint app to access the platform.
For me the issue is I often need to be pushed the data, I might forget to check the data (even if Cortana tell me to check it) and by the time I need it, the moment has passed and it’s too late. For example, I will walk into Craig’s office and notice he is not in and then check the calendar and see he is in Cape Town that week or I would have greeted Annie in the kitchen in the morning and only later found out it was her birthday.
So the big WHAT IF! What if the data could be pushed to me via email? What if it was set out in a fabulous design using my branding? What if the content was tailored to my role and location? In that scenario, I would not have forgotten to wish Annie happy birthday and I would have planned to sabotage Craig’s office with plastic wrap while he was out.
Well WHAT IF is now a reality – Introducing Info Mailers, leveraging your existing SharePoint datastore to send you (and your business) daily information right to your mailbox to be accessed via PC, mobile, tablet and phablet. The info can contain several items that are important for day to day office communications whether business critical or social. We have seen it used for:
- Social data like – Leave notifications, Out of the office, Birthdays, News, Weather
- Business critical data like – Exchange rates, Sales figures, Targets, Cashflow and more.
- Interactive data – Links to surveys, feedback and communication processes
Whether your information is on SharePoint, Exchange, Office 365 or any Line of Business system with a relevant API the Info Mailer will package it and send it to you.
At GT we have Info Mailers hard at work in the Morning Report which is sent daily at 8AM to the entire company. Take a look at what we believe is important for everyone to see on a daily basis.
|Data||Source of data|
|On Leave||SharePoint Calendar|
|Out of the Office||SharePoint Calendar linked to LOB via workflow|
|Congratulations||Exchange Office 365|
SharePoint Calendar linked to LOB via workflow
|One Time Pins||Azure SQK Query|
|Vitals Users||Azure SQL Query|
|Umlindi Servers||Umlindi API|
Web service Query
With the GT Morning Report everyone in the company regardless of location knows all the important info before they start their day. The Support staff can react to open calls, The Project managers can resource plan in case of ill staff, finance can choose when to make international payments based on the exchange rate, Arno can prepare for a sleepless night on call and Craig can remember to wear his rain coat in Cape Town. This mailer helps make the staff more proactive, more educated and more informed with data to assist them navigate their day.