SharePoint, Teams or OneDrive: Which should I use?

by | May 20, 2022 | Blog

Should I save my document to SharePoint, Teams or OneDrive?  Which of these should I use to collaborate with an external partner?  Where is the best place to store my corporate policies?  These may seem like simple questions, but it is not always straightforward for many organisations and even worse for individual users. 

Often it is great to have choice, as we see in our day-to-day life.  There are different ways we can travel, places we can shop and services to stream content.  However, with choice sometimes comes the need to decide.  The same can be said about how we work electronically, including within Office 365.  

To help users there are some simple rules and guidelines that can be put in place regarding apps like SharePoint, Teams and OneDrive.  This education will help them understand the purpose of each app and where it is not appropriate to use them.  To support this, organisations can implement automation and reporting to identify non-compliance.

OneDrive

Let’s start with OneDrive, too often used as a cheap dumping ground for migrations to the Microsoft cloud.  It’s essentially the cloud version of the personal drives, or even my documents, that many users are used to.  Over recent years Microsoft has driven several technology improvements to OneDrive to ensure it now seamlessness synchronises on different operating systems and devices.

The problem with OneDrive, like all forms of personal drives, is that it is ungoverned and is reliant on individual filing preferences.  Use of OneDrive should be limited to content drafting, with the option for sharing during the process, and personal documents.  This may seem a stringent approach, but it will make sense as we consider SharePoint and Teams.

SharePoint

Moving onto SharePoint, which is often unfairly criticised and underpins many of the new experiences in Microsoft 365.  The strengths of SharePoint are content management, for example, intranets, and document management.  Documents stored in SharePoint can be stored for a long time or even forever.  Organisational classifications can be applied as well as labels to define sensitivity and retention.  SharePoint is therefore well suited to storing policies, marketing material, department documents, finance, and HR documents.

Microsoft Teams

Finally, Microsoft Teams, which so many of us have been using over the last two years.  Teams, even more so than OneDrive, has been misused for storing documents and other information.  Teams are well suited to content about a specific purpose, and which has a lifecycle.  A perfect example of this is a project, where a group of users can collaborate through chat, meetings, documents, and tasks.  These users can also be external parties, who are given access to a Team to avoid granting wider external access.  A project will have a start and end, at which point the content is typically archived.

Teams is not well suited to content that is retained for a long period of time, like department or corporate documents.  Teams does not have the navigation or search experience to deliver the best value from this form of content.  Also, these types of content typically have a longer retention period that is not so well suited to Teams.

Governance

SharePoint, Teams, and OneDrive all offer excellent capabilities for users to author, discover and collaborate on content.  However, they are not all well suited to all types of content.

To help drive good adoption, organisations need clear guidance and education.  This can be supported with governance solutions like ProvisionPoint 365.

Self-service provisioning allows users to easily create the right workload for its purpose.  Compliance and permissions reports allow organisations to identify where OneDrive, SharePoint and Teams are not being used for the correct purpose.  Reporting also helps identify any security risks, especially where external parties have access to confidential or personal data.

If you would like some help managing SharePoint, Teams and OneDrive, ProvisionPoint experts are ready to help. We can show you how ProvisionPoint 365 supports administrators and offer top tips to help improve the way you manage your information and projects. You can book a live demonstration here.

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