SharePoint social business partner NewsGator, updated its Social Sites platform to include compatibility with the soon to be released SharePoint 2013.

Bridging the Workplace Divide

One of the biggest IT roadblocks to adopting SharePoint, and indeed any large implementation, is worker recalcitrance. Whether intentional or not, getting people to change work habits is never easy. That's one reason why so many companies turn to the NewsGators of the world to help fully integrate their SharePoint base.

Social Sites has been updated to ease the transition for businesses contemplating the move to SharePoint 2013, offering full integration for SharePoint 2007, 2010 and 2013 users. Those who live inside their inbox are equally accommodated in this release, and activity streams can be viewed inside a Web page or SharePoint page.

At an administrative level, groups of employees can be mandated to have certain parts of their view customized across their roles. That way, they can still have features laid out how they want while still being included in important communications.

Lookout, Outlook

Microsoft Outlook devotees have the option of plugging Social Sites features into their email, or adopting the Lookout social media dashboard. NewsGator calls it a combination of TweeDeck-like columns with the feel of the Windows 8 UI. The Lookout toolbar can be personalized and can monitor notifications and allow people to ask questions, among other things, right from a Web page or SharePoint page.


Filter content in the activity stream so only the important items, people and content flow through.

Learning Opportunities

For new users, Lookout helps create profiles, includes drag and drop tiles for personalization, and offers a tour feature for learning about the features at any time. Lookout is available on mobile devices via mobile Web client.

NewsGator released the Social Sites Windows 8 app last October, and the latest upgrade should help keep hardcore Microsoft users totally up to date on all the newest Microsoft platforms. In fact, this is exactly why Social Sites is so popular, J.B. Holston, NewsGator's former CEO told CMSWire last summer.

Newsgator works closely with Microsoft, Holston said, and it moves quickly to adapt to the moves Microsoft makes, no matter how painful. That's dedication to an ecosystem and a smart move for NewsGator given how incredibly large the SharePoint user base is. We look forward to seeing the SharePoint 2013 implementation when if finally rolls out.