SOURCE: Axceler


January 30, 2013 09:00 ET

Survey: Collaboration Tools Disconnected From Business Goals

"SharePoint Governance Maturity Benchmark" Survey From Axceler Finds Organizations Embracing Collaboration, but Deploying With Minimal Governance

WOBURN, MA--(Marketwire - Jan 30, 2013) - Axceler®, a leader in enterprise collaboration governance, administration and migration solutions, today announced the results from its "SharePoint Governance Maturity Benchmark" survey, which finds that while businesses understand the value of SharePoint, a lack of governance is resulting in poor alignment with business goals, low user adoption and ultimately, reduced return on SharePoint investments.

Of the 1,000 SharePoint administrators and business professionals surveyed over the past year, although 67.2 percent said SharePoint governance is extremely or very important to their business, only 26 percent admitted to having a very well-defined governance strategy, with 51 percent admitting their business has not implemented any form of governance strategy. These results show a significant disconnect -- while businesses are embracing collaboration suites such as SharePoint within their organizations, there is confusion over who owns the management, compliance and end user success of these platforms.

Find out more in this infographic: Collaboration Tools Disconnected from Business Goals

When respondents were asked about the top challenges around managing SharePoint within their organization, managing security and permissions was named the number one challenge (60.8 percent), followed by managing content and information storage (51.3 percent) and not having enough time to manage the application (43.8 percent). Additionally, nearly half of the respondents (46.8 percent) said governance is not very or not at all defined within their organization and of those with a governance plan in place, only a third (33.5 percent) said there is a general awareness of the governance plan and ongoing strategy of how it will be managed.

The survey results also emphasized a widespread failure to align enterprise collaboration efforts with business objectives. Of the respondents, only 33.8 percent said their SharePoint plans directly connect with their business goals, with 60.5 percent stating their plans ranged from being neutral to not at all link to business objectives. Responses also showed organizations lost the opportunity to involve and engage end users in the governance process, with only 30 percent of companies connecting their governance plans with an end user adoption strategy well or extremely well.

"Enterprise collaboration suites like SharePoint are supposed to be enabling technologies," said Michael Alden, CEO and President of Axceler. "The goal of every SharePoint, Yammer or any other enterprise collaboration initiative is not to let the platform go stale, but to enable your organization to conduct more business, make quicker decisions and to do more with less resources. A governance strategy that automatically secures business data, meets all compliance standards and is directly connected to business goals will result in a higher return on investment and a more efficient workforce."

Any SharePoint or enterprise collaboration governance strategy should empower, not prohibit, employees to leverage the platform to their advantage by tapping into the organization's collective intelligence and be more efficient. Based on these results, below are the following governance recommendations for businesses that have deployed or are thinking about implementing SharePoint or another collaboration tool within their organization:

  • Identify clear roles and accountability - Of those surveyed, 55 percent claimed they had primary governance accountability. As SharePoint and other collaboration suites are introduced to the organization, it is important to specifically clarify these roles to ensure clear ownership and responsibility.
  • Develop a shared definition of governance - With 37.7 respondents stating governance is not very defined within their organization, it's critical to not ignore project management principals and involve core users in a process they understand to eliminate any confusion over the governance strategy.
  • Align collaboration governance with business objectives - 42.7 percent said their governance plan lacks how their governance plan will deliver value for the organization, demonstrating a lost opportunity to identify specific business goals and underline the value collaboration can provide a business.
  • Empower end-users - Enterprise collaboration suites are enabling technologies and with only 30 percent of all companies aligning their governance plans with end user adoption, businesses are lowering the value of the collaboration technology, reducing their potential bottom line returns and limiting employee efficiency.
  • Protect business assets - Only 36 percent stated their governance plans are extremely or very focused on retention and compliance requirements and another 43.6 percent claimed they do not regularly run audits on usage, security, content or permissions. In addition to meeting compliance requirements, regularly running audits may provide businesses with valuable insight around usage of the platform, allowing the business to better prioritize future initiatives.

For more information on the survey, please see the full results or visit:

About Axceler
Axceler is an expert in governance for collaboration in the social enterprise. ControlPoint, Axceler's award-winning SharePoint governance tool, won the Best of Connections Award, the Gold Editors' Best Award and the Bronze Community Choice Award in the SharePoint category from the readers and editors of Windows IT Pro. More than 2,700 organizations worldwide are using Axceler solutions to govern their SharePoint environments. Axceler is headquartered in Woburn, MA, USA, with offices in Redmond, Los Angeles, London and Sydney.

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