SharePoint Hub Sites: How and Why Businesses Should Use Them
Posted: Dec 14, 2018
Microsoft introduced Office 365 SharePoint hub sites as a way to enable companies to bring in structure, search across sites, gather news, and organize what would otherwise be merely a disjointed collection of collaboration sites. Moreover, there are a lot of different ways to use these hub sites. For example, comparatively smaller companies with, say under 500 employees, can make use of communications and hub sites as an intranet. However, that's not to say that an organization's size can limit the ways and how well it can use hub sites.
Hub sites are the regional hubs for companies that have various regional sites or locations. For them, hubs have the potential to offer a sense of local identity as well as focus attention on communication from within the said region. Another use case for hub sites is a PMO hub.?Most of the large organizations have a project management office (PMO) that manages an array of programs and projects. Therefore a PMO hub can offer direct access to all completed and active projects. It can also fulfill other everyday needs such as rolling-up announcements relevant to the project or status details. One more use cases for hub sites is a financial reporting hub. In an organization, the end of quarter and end of year financial reporting cycles often need much collaboration across departments that all culminate in finance. In this scenario, hubs can serve as the aggregate site for a certain reporting period and then have the relevant sections attach from various departments as they work on their reports and other materials.
Now, let’s look at some of their most compelling features that enable organizations to achieve better results.
- Streamline repository of team sites: Microsoft Office 365 SharePoint hub sites allow organizations to manage better the user experience they deliver across their collection of sites without needing to implement the organizational principles or hierarchy.
- Improved navigation experience: Hub sites can provide a three-level consistent navigation mechanism. It, in turn, allows companies to allow their end users to view priority sites or content and swiftly access it, no matter the site the might be on.
To properly leverage this potential, companies must carefully assess the content that must be accessible. They must also ensure the structure is intuitive. It is advisable that organizations engage an information architect, who can help audit the content.
3. Enhanced internal communication: Hub sites provide a novel method for news to be authored and flow from the individuals who are closest to work. It marks a significant shift for a majority of organizations that have their internal communications drafted by a dedicated team and then posted on their intranet along with other relevant channels.
Any company developing SharePoint apps will concede that Microsoft Office 365 SharePoint hub sites are indeed a welcome change for SharePoint administrators who, till now, had been struggling to keep up with the rapid growth of SharePoint team sites and figuring out how to manage the logical site structure and also link the websites together. Suffice it to say that hub sites offer an abundance of benefits that can help any organization achieve better business results.
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