Away we go!
Wrapping up week 1 of self-imposed 8-week SharePoint boot camp.
Grasshopper has much to learn. Our sys admin/developer who set up our SharePoint environment is gone to a new job (although we are still in touch – thanks, Eric). We have a new sys admin, but he is newer to SharePoint than I am.
The system has been on autopilot for awhile with only an occasional burp to clear the cache or stop and restart the timer service, but as I told the boss, it’s really not a matter of IF something’s going to go wrong but WHEN. Right now, I’m kinda the expert on staff. Truly scary, considering what I know wouldn’t level up to the first line on a measuring cup of SP Knowledge.
So, I’m taking 8 weeks off from grad school to delve into all things SharePoint. I need the extra time because SharePoint is only 30% of my job, so there’s not much time to study at work. I’ve been doing SP end user training for over a year, and know my way around some aspects of administration, but as to governance and development – all new. We haven’t even done an out of the box workflow except in a test environment: Eek!
My office is the central administrative agency for 27 district offices spread over 77 counties. We handle most of the personnel, training, and grants administration while the district offices handle the day-to-day business.
This means a huge amount of paper coming and going. It is not unusual for the central office to receive a two-foot stack of mail on a given day. Additionally, there are folks in each of the district offices doing essentially the same job with little or no contact with one another.
I know — get a face mask. Sounds like a SharePoint pandemic just waiting to happen.
First two projects on the list:
Automate the paper process to request personnel changes (lots of fun security factors there!) and make a form with logic validation for Travel Claims (a MAJOR business rules nightmare).
Awesome resource for the SharePoint newbie:
Twitter – a fantastic community of people who responded to an unknown asking for help using the #SharePoint keyword. If you just look for people talking SharePoint ideas, problems, and workaround using Twitter search, you’ll soon be in the thick of it. @JoyKnows (that’s me!) sends out thanks again to @mrackley @ToddKlindt @grayguitar @richfinn @tsongvilay1 @wonderlaura @lorigowin and @gannotti (along with some others I know I’ll remember later) for responding personally or giving me – and this is a biggie – referrals to the references the Pros use.
Do a Google search for your problem. Which of the 700 results are written by idiots? Which are so biased they won’t tell you the downside of an approach? Heck, I don’t know! But they do. They’ll tell you: this is the one I use in real world SharePoint.
And that rocks!