SharePoint in Action

November 24, 2014 by Alex Collins, IT Services Consultant


Improving Customer Service and Fostering Collaboration

Enterprise-level communication capabilities are a fundamental requirement for organizations of any size. How can companies ensure all employees are on the same page, have access to the same information, and are providing customers with the same level of service? Online collaboration tools such as Microsoft's SharePoint are one solution.

SharePoint Creates Collaboration

Real Estate firm Avison Young faced a specific problem of communication when it rebranded all of its marketing materials. IT support and use of SharePoint let the firm share new templates, information, and forms seamlessly with representatives in every location. No team member was left out of updates, and no set of team members was behind on information. A representative of the firm compared information delivery via SharePoint with email delivery, stating that SharePoint benefits included the knowledge that everyone received the same information and the reduction of stress on email systems because large files were shared via the portal.

By ensuring that all employees have access to the same information from anywhere – and that teams can work on the same documents and projects in real time – SharePoint creates collaboration among employees, locations, and departments. When teams are cooperating in this manner, they are able to handle customer needs more accurately and efficiently.

Process Disparities are Reduced

Risk management in any company should look for areas where processes are performed incorrectly or differently among staff. A risk assessment might reveal that all customers are not being treated equally because employees in various areas are relying on outdated instructions or materials. For companies involved in a supply line, vendors or other down-line partners may be providing information from old product sheets. Instituting a SharePoint portal reduces disparities in processes and information, increasing the quality of customer support. Understanding the value of the portal in this regard, Avison Young runs contests to encourage portal use.

Data is Always Available to Employees

As a cloud solution, SharePoint makes data available to employees and other users 24 hours a day. IT security requirements are reduced in-house, and server backups are performed automatically on data stored via the portal. Because employees access forms and data through the reliable portal, stress on internal computer systems, and subsequent processing delays, are reduced. Team members dealing directly with customers are able to access documents and information immediately, reducing the time it takes to handle each customer issue.

For every organization, SharePoint use is likely to bring a different set of benefits. Any customer service organization will benefit from immediate access to real-time data and the collaborative environment of the portal. Learn more about SharePoint and ways it can benefit your business with our free SharePoint webinar Dec. 10.