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This article was first published in 2009. SharePoint has changed a lot since then. The latest edition of SharePoint has been added to the book.
A plan is essential for any project, and SharePoint doesn’t allow you to plan. This is the biggest flaw in this book. Microsoft SharePoint doesn’t connect with Microsoft Project. They might integrate with it.
There are two options when it comes to creating a SharePoint schedule: Copy all of your Microsoft Project (or any other tool) tasks into SharePoint and lose all dependency data; or store your Project plan in a SharePoint document library.
This is why SharePoint for Project Management is so restrictive to me. @meetdux Dux Raymond Sy writes well, the book has a clear layout, is easy to read, and is a great guide to SharePoint. There are lots of examples and screenshots. The case study walks you through the various features of the software, and includes ‘workshops’ that help you create lists and document libraries.
However, if you don’t know much about SharePoint, you won’t be able to learn much about how to apply it in a project management way.
I am not the target audience for this book. I am an experienced project manager and an experienced SharePoint user. Some of my French projects involved rolling out SharePoint sites to different groups.
I have used both excellent and poor SharePoint sites, some of which I created myself. Sy makes assumptions about who will be reading the book. It’s clear that Sy assumes new SharePoint users will read it. However, they must be new to SharePoint admins and site creation.
SharePoint for Project Management is limited because I am not familiar with a topic. Sy says:
To get the most out of this book, you must make a conscious decision to change how you manage project information, collaborate with your team, and facilitate project communication.
The book does not contain any of this information. There is no section on how to help others make that leap. It is important to realize that just thinking about how things could improve is not the same thing as actually being able to make those changes. People need to be encouraged but if they feel too difficult, they won’t make it through the whole process.
Once you have been convinced of the benefits, it would be great to have a chapter about how to encourage your team members to use SharePoint. All your hard work in following the chapters, creating a beautiful SharePoint site, and completing the checklists will be wasted.
It’s not a bad book. But it is a good book for SharePoint beginners. I hope I am not doing it a disservice by reading it with too much jaded eyes. It is highly probable that you will find something here, regardless of your SharePoint experience.
I strongly believe in encouraging people to use SharePoint. I will return to this topic in a future post. Have a story to share about how you engaged a team using a new tool. Let me know!
SharePoint for Project Management by Dux Raymond S is published by O’Reilly (2009, paperback, 233 pages).