SharePoint 2010 was announced in the fall of 2009. But it wasn't until this year that it officially arrived on our doorstep. Love it or hate, you can't ignore it. Here are some of CMSWire's highlights from the year.

What is this SharePoint Anyway?

We used to think of SharePoint as primarily document collaboration (some thought glorified file share too, but let's move on). SharePoint 2010 came with many improvements in the areas of document management and records management, but it also came with some much needed social computing capabilities.

Now the question has become, what exactly can SharePoint do, and what can it do well? If you look at SharePoint based on its core pillars -- Collaboration, Portal, Search, Content management, Business forms, Business intelligence -- you start to see the possibilities and where the real work will be.

Improving Document and Records Management

Let's talk enterprise content management capabilities for a minute. SharePoint continues to make all the analyst lists for Enterprise CMS, but in pretty much all cases, is considered a departmental solution. That being said, there have been a number of improvements in this area, including a new metadata structure and term store, the idea of document sets (a way to organize and manage a related set of documents) and in place records management.

There is still much that can be improved, and there are a number of Enterprise Content Management vendors ready and willing to provide that additional functionality:

SharePoint Enters the Enterprise 2.0 Arena Officially

SharePoint is not exactly social software. But SharePoint 2010 comes with a number of improvements and new features in the area of Enterprise 2.0 capabilities, including user profiles, MySite, activity streams and microblogging.

And, most of the top social software solutions provide varying levels of integration that do take SharePoint 2010 to the next level:

SharePoint and Web Content Management

SharePoint does offer web content management capabilities, but they have never really been on par with most of the Web CMS products on the market. Still, if you've made the investment in SharePoint and are looking for a single platform to manage everything, it is possible. Whether or not it's going to provide you with the full list of functionality you need is another question.

For those of you who think SharePoint isn't your WCM solution, but still want whatever you implement to work with SharePoint nicely, there are solutions available for you. Any CMS vendor (or social software vendor for that matter), that doesn't provide some level of integration with SharePoint, needs to reconsider their position.

Christmas Bonus

Have you examined all the possibilities and still aren't sold on SharePoint for your organization? There are alternatives. We gave you a number of them, but if you read the comments, you'll see there are many, many more.