A variety of IT vendors debuted add-on solutions that bring functionality including mobile, cloud and collaboration features to SharePoint at last week’s SharePoint Conference held in Las Vegas, NV. Solution providers making noteworthy announcements included Workshare, Colligo, Nintex and Axceler.

Workshare Solutions Improve SharePoint Protection, Comparison, Collaboration

During the SharePoint 2012 Conference, secure document collaboration software provider Workshare demoed four solutions designed to ease the secure sharing and tracking of SharePoint documents outside an organization’s firewall. The four solutions are:

  • Workshare Point – This solution allows direct exchange of documents between Microsoft Office and SharePoint, allowing users to perform both Office and SharePoint document tasks with a single platform.
  • Workshare Professional 7 – Direct integration of Office document sharing and review capabilities including comparisons, version controls and metadata management with SharePoint enhances their effectiveness.
  • Workshare Protect 7 – This solution integrates SharePoint with Microsoft Outlook to automate real-time removal of, or warning about, email attachments of SharePoint documents that include sensitive or unnecessary data such as tracked changes, speaker notes, author names and last time of editing.
  • Workshare Compare 7 – This comparison tool is designed to streamline the review of SharePoint documents and PDFs and ease the identification of changes.

Colligo Enables Mobile SharePoint Content Management

SharePoint app provider Colligo introduced Colligo Briefcase, a mobile app for secure SharePoint content management that runs on the Android, Mac OS X and Apple iOS platforms.  Targeting organizations with BYOD policies, Colligo Briefcase enables secure access to SharePoint on Apple iOS, Mac OS X, and Android, including full offline access to all features.

Thumbnail image for colligo-portal.JPG

In addition, the app offers centrally-configured and managed SharePoint access across user devices and integrates email and metadata management across devices.


Nintex Provides Mobile, Social, Cloud Capabilities

SharePoint workflow solutions provider Nintex is offering mobile, social media and cloud computing capabilities via its new Nintex Workflow 2013 and Nintex Forms 2013 modules which are aligned with the release of SharePoint 2013. Following are brief overviews of how the new applications will deliver functionality in each of these three areas.

  • Mobility – Nintex already supports basic mobile usage of SharePoint for Windows 8 and iOS users. New mobile features will allow users to create and respond to HR items and also support touch input, location data, camera photos and digital audio/video.
  • Social – The Nintex SharePoint workflow platform already supports major social media networks such as Yammer, Twitter and Facebook. Nintex says it is continuing to add social connectivity and provisioning to provide users with direct access to social media platforms and SharePoint social feeds from one dashboard.  
  • Cloud – Nintex has been offering cloud-based SharePoint services for two years, but is now allowing users to directly run SharePoint workflows in the cloud and use combined online/onsite workflows.


Axceler Enables SharePoint Change Management

Enterprise collaboration technology specialist Axceler released ControlPoint Change Manager, a solution designed to aid change management across SharePoint 2010 environments. ControlPoint ChangeManager allows SharePoint administrators to copy and restructure SharePoint sites and content, deploy and manage SharePoint workflows, and analyze SharePoint content type and web part usage.

An intuitive user interface allows management and restructuring of SharePoint content from any location, while granular control enables filtering, configuring and refining of content sets. In addition, content can be copied from one source to multiple destinations and users can employ Excel spreadsheets for online and offline editing and data transformation.

ControlPoint Change Manager will be generally available in early Q1 2013.  The introductory price will be US$ 5,100 which includes maintenance, with a pre-order promotion price of US$ 2,975 in effect now through December 15th, 2012. 

New SharePoint Development Model Raises Hopes, Questions

According to IDG News Service, the new SharePoint development model has “piqued the interest of ISVs and enterprise developers who create applications for Microsoft's enterprise collaboration server.” While the new standards-compliant model is designed to simplify the development and release of applications for the on-premise and cloud versions of SharePoint 2013, it is still not clear exactly what types of functionality Microsoft will support, or what types and price points of SharePoint apps will best fit within the promised SharePoint app store.

SharePoint 2013, Heavyweight Contender

As CMSWire reported in July, the upcoming release of SharePoint 2013 marks the entrance of the platform as a “heavyweight contender” in the WCM space. New WCM features for SharePoint include SEO tools, URL control, improved on page content management and content aggregation, enhanced mobility and multi-channel management, flexible meta-data driven Information Architecture (IA), search based user experiences (using FAST technology that is now fully integrated, catalog management and integrations with Independent Solution Vendors (ISVs).

But it SharePoint role in enterprise content management space where you see most third-party providers, like those above, offering enhanced capabilities. Governance and compliance are key areas of concern for many. And now even more organizations are looking for third party solutions that make working with SharePoint in cloud environments easier. 

The four new third-party SharePoint solutions highlighted in this article are just a small representation of all the new applications showcased at last week’s conference. Expanded internal functionality and external partnerships give SharePoint the potential to rearrange the content management marketplace in the coming months.