About the Client
The client provides software consulting services to develop, implement and support a suite of business software solutions for the energy industry including oil & gas, renewable energy, and natural resources. Their software solutions manage operational, administrative, financial and transactional business processes tailor-made for energy and resources operations.
The client is an established mid-size software vendor in the US Energy sector. With over 350 staff operating out of three locations in the US, the client needed a complete corporate intranet capable of supporting employees working remotely from locations in the United States and Canada.
A secure and scalable system for document management and collaboration was a key requirement to improve operational efficiency. There was a critical need for an intranet portal to store, share and distribute knowledge resources and to manage their expanding libraries of documents related to employees, projects, training and administration. The organization was seeking a technology solution to support the requirements of its internal business units including strong document management capabilities and provide a platform for business support departments such as HR, training and IT.
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Phase One of the project involved completion of the corporate intranet site and its sub-pages. A detailed project scope with a wireframe to show the interface and different components of the intranet was created by the client. Using this wireframe as a starting point, Silicus built mockups on a test SharePoint environment to demonstrate the final look and feel of the desired solution to the client. The following high level tasks were completed by Silicus in this implementation:
Document Libraries: Define folder structures, columns layouts and taxonomies
Home Page Design: Columns to display "tips 'n tricks," company birthdays, image carousel, and popular links; content is automatically populated with the help of custom JQuery code and REST APIs
Search Capabilities: Resizable boxes, intranet wide search, employee list search
Sitemap & Content Migration: Needed to upload existing resources to libraries
Training Module: Training Calendar and scheduling tool for employee training registration with automatic reminders sent to employee calendars; training library for online training videos
Within the current IT environment, SharePoint had limited access to their Active Directory. Silicus created a custom utility using SharePoint APIs and PowerShell scripts to solve this problem. The utility reads and pushes data from the Active Directory to SharePoint and automatically updates by running a daily synchronization process. Technical features of the project were as follows:
Confidentiality and security: A secure network, remote login and authentication processes, and defined access groups were implemented using Office 365 sign on capabilities
Support for mobile devices: iPad, Surface, Android & Apple phones
Support for the web browsers: Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Firefox
During user interface design, regular feedback was taken from the client team and Silicus ensured the final design met client specifications.
Navigation: Top navigation with dropdowns; breadcrumbs to indicate location
Frequently Viewed: Popular links dynamically updated based on site usage
Simple, uncluttered design to be re‐used by sub sites and Individual sites
Limited custom elements, optimized pages for standard resolutions, and a print friendly style sheet
Microsoft .NET 3.5/4.0
Office 365, SharePoint 2013 Online
REST APIs, SharePoint JQuery Services, PowerShell, Client Object Model
Improved Employee Satisfaction and Productivity
The new corporate intranet delivers business services through an efficient, cost effective platform. Employee career development can be managed and tracked through the online training calendar and scheduling tool. News, HR services and knowledge resources are delivered via a single online platform resulting in huge improvements in employee productivity levels.
High Quality and Proficient Delivery of SharePoint Intranet Solution
The Silicus team utilized their proven delivery practices and project methodologies to deliver a customized SharePoint intranet. With regular feedback received from the client, several unplanned features were understood and executed in multiple iterations.