The Inside Scoop on Selecting and Deploying Business Process Automation in SharePoint and Office 365
The sphere of Microsoft-based Business Process Automation continues to evolve. Microsoft recently updated their guidance around Infopath and FoSL as part of their Evolution Of SharePoint blog, announcing Infopath Forms Services support will continue in the upcoming release of SharePoint 2016. Some good analysis here of exactly what that means for those wanting to better understand the implications on the future of InfoPath.
For IT Decision-makers looking to add new Business Process Automation capabilities on top of their existing SharePoint deployments, and empower non-technical users to create new business-driven forms and workflows, we continue to recommend Nintex. Nintex is the simplest, easiest solution in the marketplace to automate many of the person-to-person processes we see at our customers today. Not only that, but we also see Nintex growing its leadership position in the market by rapidly pursuing support for Microsoft Office 365.
Nintex has been an early leader in bringing their tools to the Office 365 platform. They are making deployment of forms and workflow solutions even easier and simpler than in the past, while also leveraging the rapid pace of innovation that is occurring in Office 365. From our 7 years of hands-on implementation experience automating line-of-business process automation, we have learned a lot about what it takes to be successful from the user and the IT perspective. Here are some of the keys to our success and that of our clients:
- Cloud & On-Premises – The same and yet different products: the first thing to be aware of is that both the on- and the cloud version of Nintex are remarkably similar. The screens and GUI tools you’re used to in the on-premises version have been translated over with high-fidelity. This is great news for people who invested in learning and using the on-premises version and are looking to move to the cloud. However, as always, the devil-is-in-the-details. Given that the underlying versions of SharePoint (on-premises vs. cloud) are vastly different in their mechanics, will differ in the two Nintex products.
- Rapid Innovation: The Nintex development teams are doing a great job of adding new functionality on a regular basis to the cloud version. But do not assume they are identical. Some practical tips below on how to address this.
From an IT-Decision-Maker perspective, what does this mean?
- Take advantage of the free trial: Nintex makes it easy for you to get your feet wet with a 30-day trial. Definitely take advantage of this, and make sure that you trial with the version you are planning to deploy. You can access a trial copy here .
- Make the most of your trial period – before you initiate your trial period, know which processes are your priorities for any initial release or pilot phase. Have a plan that includes having those key processes mapped out in detail, what success criteria looks like and how you’re going to approach building your business case.
- Prototyping – during your trial, prototype those processes to quickly develop a comfort with the product and its capabilities. The Nintex tools lend themselves very well to prototyping, and you can also leverage an experienced Nintex partner to help accelerate this prototyping process.
When we combine the simplicity of Nintex’s solution to business process automation, with the enterprise scale, security and cost-effectiveness of Office 365, we see a powerful combination. There is enormous value for any forward-looking business looking to modernize their business processes, reduce environmental impact with less paper and reduce inefficiencies through automation.
Check out our webinar on mobile forms and workflow with Nintex for SharePoint and Office 365 below: