Check Out the Best Sessions From SharePoint NA 2018!

This year’s SharePoint NA conference offered attendees a veritable feast of information on the evolution of SharePoint, Office 365, OneDrive, and the organizations that employ them. Speakers from all corners of the SharePoint universe shared a diverse legion of insights, from an equally diverse legion of perspectives. Whatever your specific curiosity about SharePoint Online and Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure more broadly, SharePoint NA had something for you. Ranging from theoretical to practical, drawing on use case from dozens of different industries, these sessions and their speakers were armed and ready to provide attendees with a powerful SharePoint education, and an exciting and eye-opening tour of the cloud’s potential.

After attending, and getting to witness and participate in this cloud collaboration buffet, Cloud FastPath wanted to share with all of you some of the best that the conference had to offer. As such, we’ve compiled a list of our four favorite sessions from SharePoint NA 2018.

Let’s get to it!

Eric Eaton Shares the Caveman Approach to Migration

As the founder and CEO of Chops–a training and coaching firm specializing in SharePoint and Office 365 adoption–Eric Eaton knows a fair bit about the processes of migration and adoption. He also knows that, for all the benefits of adopting a platform such as SharePoint Online, the road to getting there can appear so arduous as to dissuade IT from even giving cloud migration a shot. In his talk, sponsored by Cloud FastPath, Eric provided audience members with a better, simpler approach to migration, once so agile and straightforward that even a caveman could accomplish it.

For Eric, simplicity is really the name of the game when it comes to migration success. A migration that is simple and streamlined, he explained, is less likely to become mired in mistakes or collapse upon itself. Citing four major principles–simple governance policies with a clear purpose, simple adoption metrics, simple solutions to real-life problems, and help that’s actually helpful–Eric argues that the best migrations are those that trim the fat from the process and ensure users and IT professionals alike have access to comprehensive support and clear-cut goals and practices for carrying out the migration. It’s all too easy for an organization to overcomplicate cloud migration, mistaking needless complexity for thoroughness. However, Eric argues, this mistake, more often than not, just leads to a total breakdown of the migration at hand. Migration is about perfecting the resources at your disposal and growing your toolkit. It doesn’t have to be about reinventing the wheel.

Matt Swann and Jeff McDowell Give You An Inside Look at How Microsoft is Defending the Cloud

As Engineering manager and Program manager at Microsoft respectively, Matt Swann and Jeff McDowell have incredible insight into the inner workings of OneDrive and SharePoint, and how those platforms work to serve the users who rely on them. Now that concerns about data security are constantly growing, Matt and Jeff decided to give conference attendees an inside look into how OneDrive and SharePoint Online work to defend user data, and why the security features deployed by both of these platforms are so highly regarded.

When it comes to security in OneDrive and SharePoint Online, Matt and Jeff offered the audience five key features of Microsoft’s approach to security to help them understand the exact process and organizational infrastructure that these cloud platforms are using to defend data: Secure baselines across the entire fleet of Microsoft cloud products; rich telemetry gathered via servers and Azure; extensive profiling of threats to aid in detection; comprehensive and scalable incident response; regular training via threat emulation provided by the Office 365 Red Team, who are trained to try to break OneDrive and SharePoint Online security so that those protocols can constantly evolve with the threats against which they defend users.

Anyone who looks through Jeff and Matt’s presentation can’t help but be wowed by how multi-faceted and no-nonsense the Office 365 approach to security is. For users who are curious how cloud security works, and why many argue that the cloud is the safest place for user data, this talk is a must!

Check Out the Ultimate SharePoint Online Deployment Guide and Experience These Upgrades Yourself!

John White Helps You Unlock SharePoint’s Reporting Secrets

John White is the CTO and co-founder of UnlimitedViz, and a Microsoft MVP in Office Servers and Services. At SharePoint NA, he put his extensive expertise to work, teaching attendees how to take advantage of SharePoint’s impressive reporting potential, including many features that users are often totally unaware of. That there are as many features as John is able to identify which users frequently don’t know to take advantage of speaks to the depth and breadth of SharePoint’s myriad capabilities, and the immense range of tasks that the cloud collaboration platform can accomplish when in well-informed hands.

The centerpiece of John’s talk revolved around the two-tiered reporting capabilities of SharePoint: as a data source easily interfaceable with other reporting tools; and as a reporting canvas in and of itself, that can integrate detailed user reporting into the structural fabric of how your enterprise’s SharePoint is organized. With these two options, organizations can take full advantage of SharePoint’s intuitive data management, getting a real-time and comprehensive understanding of what they’re storing, where it’s stored, how it’s being used, and what purpose it serves. With compliance issues at the front of many admins’ minds, these reporting capabilities can be essential to ensuring that your organization handles user data as it needs to in order to effectively secure that data and avoid hefty penalties for unwitting violations of compliance regulations. In SharePoint, John proves, you have nearly every feature you could want. You just need to know where to look.

Ben Truelove Teaches You How to Design An Accessible Intranet with SharePoint Online

For his presentation, Ben Truelove–a senior designer for the OneDrive and SharePoint design teams–helped attendees understand how to most effectively use SharePoint Online to design the ultimate intranet for their organization: accessible, flexible, and powerful. As Ben stated at the beginning of his presentation, accessibility is primarily about empowering every single member of an organization to achieve more, to do the very best work they can do. With SharePoint Online, this sort of achievement doesn’t need to just be a far off dream, he explained. In fact, it’s exactly what SharePoint is built to do.

With SharePoint Online, Ben explains, your organization can build an intranet that caters to all the unique needs of users and all the unique challenges they may face. Because it’s important for intranets to be accessible, welcoming, and empowering to users of all abilities and situations–be they physical or logistical–organizations need a tool that’s a diverse and multi-faceted as the intranet that organization has set out to build. A user who is vision-impaired needs different accessibility features than a user who is hearing-impaired. SharePoint Online allows organizations to build a foundation for the intranet that meets the needs of both those individuals and many many more.

The cloud is all about growth and empowerment, and accessibility and inclusivity of the features and tools available in the cloud must reflect that. SharePoint Online understands this, and the results for those who use it are more than enough proof that the cloud is for everyone.

SharePoint NA 2018 Demonstrated the Diversity, Flexibility, and Ever-Evolving Potential of SharePoint, OneDrive, and Office 365.

With its wide range of features and tools, the Office 365 cloud platform has always been about providing organizations with a range of functions that suit their unique needs and aspirations. The breadth of topics discussed at SharePoint NA only serves to underscore this, to demonstrate the reach of Office 365, and the myriad ways in which vastly different organizations and users are experiencing the same level of success and satisfaction as a result of its capabilities. Through these sessions, it’s impossible not to get excited about the unbridled potential of cloud collaboration as technology moves forward, driven by innovators like the folks at SharePoint, who understand that the opportunities for growth in the cloud are limitless.

SharePoint NA offered attendees a buffet of information, features, and news, but the most exciting reveal of all? There’s clearly so much more ahead!