Since the launch of Microsoft SharePoint 2010 last May, many companies have released complementary products that extend it or make it easier to use. This week, document collaboration software vendor Workshare (news, site) released Point, which enables users find and file SharePoint 2010 content from inside Microsoft Office applications.

By integrating with SharePoint, Workshare Point lets users manage their SharePoint documents from familiar environments such as Office or Outlook. In doing so, this simplifies the document management capabilities of SharePoint even for inexperienced users. More specifically, what Point is doing is turning SharePoint 2010 into an easy-to-use document management system by offering a document-centric front with Office and Outlook integration.

Document Tracking

In addition to reduced training times and associated costs, this also means users can track their documents in SharePoint using one interface, which lets them store and file documents with repository access.

Moreover, Workshare Point’s interface is customizable so it can be adapted for industry- or department-specific tasks.

Several other new features are intended to make SharePoint document management easier for the novice user.

These include:

  • Content filing and management into SharePoint from Outlook
  • Drag-and-drop functionality applied to attachments so they can be placed and located more easily
  • Efficient inbox management using suggestive filing of inbound emails
  • Access to files from Microsoft Office
  • Standard file functionality using, save, check in/check out through Microsoft Office
  • FAST search functionality in Microsoft Outlook and the Workshare Point user interface

WorksharePoint and Outlook

Because Workshare Point integrates Microsoft SharePoint and Outlook, users have access to SharePoint document libraries from the Outlook Navigation pane.

A Reading Pane view in Outlook lets you perform tasks on documents within SharePoint. You can also drag-and-drop files from SharePoint into Outlook email, either as links or attachments.

Workshare's World

Workshare’s services mainly involve providing collaborative software that enables professionals to create and share documents with colleagues, with a focus on functions such as document comparison, metadata management, PDF security and mobile data management.

In 2010, Workshare has gained 2,000 enterprise customers, with about a third signing up in the past three months. While the majority of Workshare’s business interests come from the U.S. and U.K., the company is looking at expansion opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region.