There has been a lot of hand-wringing and teeth-gnashing about the future of SharePoint in the community and the media recently. Microsoft helped fuel that concern by not using the term outside of its own conference. Three years ago at TechEd, SharePoint was a big part of the Microsoft pavilion. Two years ago, there was a SharePoint sign in the Office 365 area. Last year, the word “SharePoint” appeared nowhere on the exhibit hall floor.
Well, at least one organization is betting on a rosy future for SharePoint, or whatever it ultimately will be called.
That organization is Metalogix, which last week announced the purchase of SharePoint assets from Axceler to create a very large company focused on SharePoint. Well, not SharePoint, but collaboration and knowledge sharing.
“We’ve been involved with Microsoft since 2001, doing MCMS migrations to the first release before it was even called SharePoint,” said Steven Murphy, CEO of Metalogix. “We’ve been betting on Office for 10 years. We just got used to calling it MOSS, so we’re not worried about what they’re calling things.”
Murphy said there are 130 million users of Office, Exchange and SharePoint, so Metalogix has been evolving its message around content management, collaboration and the sharing of knowledge. “Because of this growth, you’re seeing the evolution of governance and permission management on steroids,” Murphy said.
The growth of SharePoint users also means the maturity of SharePoint implementations beyond document sharing. “We were talking about sites three years ago,” Murphy said. “Now, it’s petabytes and farms. Farm synchronization and replication are huge, and externalizing BLOBs, index backup.
“There’s a whole chain of custody of content, including SharePoint, e-mail attachments, PowerPoint. We’re seeing a tighter integration of e-discovery and archiving that support legal issues around SharePoint. Those are the kinds of things we’re looking at.”
So call it what you want, but how Microsoft envisions offices working—collaboration, knowledge sharing, internal and external news feeds, the ability to find experts to solve problems—is clear. Whether it’s SharePoint, or Yammer, or simply Office, the capabilities (and the problems that go along with them) will remain.