How Does SharePoint Online Work?

SharePoint Online is Microsoft’s internet-based document, collaboration, intranet, and insights platform. Unlike previous versions of this software that would have to sit on a local server, Microsoft hosts SharePoint online as part of their Office 365 suite of tools. Licensed by the user, you can either get SharePoint alone, or you can get it as a bundle with all the other Office applications like Outlook, Word, and more.

If you’re considering SharePoint online, you might be wondering how building an intranet, file-sharing, collaboration portal on the web works. Here are three things you need to know to understand this platform better!

SharePoint Online Is Locked Down by Azure Active Directory

One of the common concerns that people have about SharePoint Online is security. That is, you’re potentially hosting and sharing very sensitive corporate documents. How can this online plan ensure they are as secure as an on-premise system?

Like all the other Office 365 applications, you’ll need to sign in with your AAD (Azure Active Directory) account under your organization. Microsoft encrypts your data on the servers, so nobody but those you authorize can see it.

Choosing this security method also makes file sharing and collaboration easier as you can share files, team sites, and more with people in your Active Directory. Plus, Windows has AAD support, so if users sign in with the proper credentials and choose the suitable options during setup, you can make it entirely seamless to the user. SharePoint behaves just as it would if it were on-prem!

Each SharePoint Online Plan Has Numerous Features

The plans that Microsoft offers are all packed with features, including:

  •  Ability to share files inside or outside your organization
  •  Collaborate in real-time in Microsoft Office apps
  • Create beautiful intranet team, company, and communication sites to let people
    know what’s happening in your organization
  • Manage documents in libraries complete with versioning and access control
  • Mobile support lets employees connect with your company, and with each other,
    on the road

More advanced plans include support for auditing and tracking documents for litigation purposes. These plans also permit placing virtual “holds” on content to avoid deletion or editing.

Since these plans start at $5 per user per month, it’s not hard to see how SharePoint represents an excellent value for almost any business, no matter how big or small it may be.

The Online Plan Makes Mobile Work and Collaboration Easier

By having everything online, your employees can access documents and data using their mobile devices. Once they authenticate with their Office 365 accounts, they’llaccess their company documents, intranet, and team sites.

Previous iterations of SharePoint were local. That would have required connecting to a VPN or being on-premise to use SharePoint’s features. But with everything online now, IT staff don’t need to worry about setting up complex ways to access internal data. That frees up IT resources for other more impactful projects!

It’s the Best Way To Have This Platform in Your Business

If SharePoint’s features sound appealing to you, the online plans are by far the best and easiest way to integrate things into your business. If you have Office 365, your plan might already include it as part of the available apps. You’ll need to check your plan details for more information.

At INVID Group, we have extensive SharePoint experience! We help companies of all sizes get started using SharePoint. We also develop custom apps and solutions to improve productivity and efficiency. If you’re interested in getting some of these benefits for your company, please contact us! We’d love to learn more about your business and see how we can help.

Download our e-Book and learn more about SharePoint Online.

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