Just a couple of quick observations from last weekend’s SharePoint Saturday in DC:
- Interest in SharePoint as an enterprise ECM/RM solution is exploding. Big drivers behind this include ease of use, user acceptability, overall cost of deployment versus the other, more traditional vendors, a growing developer and system administrator base and, of course, high expectations for SharePoint 2010.
- The number of qualified SharePoint developers and system administrators is increasing rapidly, but failing to keep with demand. If you were an experienced SharePoint developer at last weekend’s show, you could have dropped your resume off at almost any booth and would have gotten a job offer. Probably on the spot.
- There was a notable lack of interest in managing SharePoint in the ‘cloud’. (This seemed to be true regardless of how you defined that term.) Part of this may be due to the fact that a large portion of the attendees were employed by or working for Federal agencies and Federal agencies still haven’t embraced the notion of managing their data in the cloud due to perceived risks around content ownership and security. This may change as the agencies begin to recognize the inherent benefits of cloud-based architecture and become more comfortable with allowing their records to be stored outside their agencies firewalls. Or it may not. Jury’s still out there.
- Possibly the hottest single topic was solution migration and upgrades. It seemed as though everyone wanted to know what was required to move from their current legacy ECM solution to SharePoint 2010 or from MOSS 07 to SharePoint 2010 or from a homegrown ad-hoc system of file shares into SharePoint 2010. Companies providing these types of services will do very well over the next couple of years.
- There was a great deal of conversation specifically focused around SharePoint as an enterprise records management solution. The topic came up frequently in Q&A sessions and there was a great deal of excitement around the new records management features in SharePoint 2010. Buzz seemed to focus on managed metadata, records in-place, multiple Records Center deployment, Document ID’s and other new features that provide value to records management (as well as general content management) across the enterprise.
- John Holliday’s terrific session on the new records management features in SharePoint 2010 was one of the most well-attended presentations of the day, despite being the last session on the schedule. John’s audience was fully engaged and asked the kinds of informed questions that made it clear they were serious about learning what it takes to implement a SharePoint records management solution.
Did you attend SharePoint Saturday in DC or any of the other SharePoint Saturdays around the country? Did I miss anything? Please add your observations in the comments below.