[SharePoint Conference 2011]

New this year at the SharePoint Conference was a track for business, which was nice to see. Some ten years after the inception of SharePoint the community has started to more fully embrace the importance of concepts like user adoption, governance, user interface design, change management, and the cultural shifts that are required to help users understand and maximize the benefit of the platform.

Historically SharePoint has been driven by IT, and while this is changing, we still don't see the broad skill-sets that can effectively guide these shifts on SharePoint projects. Resourcing still remains a primary obstacle.

Recently at the Calgary SharePoint User Group I facilitated after a great session by Chris Harper on information hygiene and the psychology behind the change required within organizations to facilitate this change, one of the attendees spoke up and remarked that it didn't bode well for all the IT folk in the room that they were now required to be psychologists — as well as all the other hats they wear on a day to day basis.

It was funny, but it struck a chord with me.

This isn't just a technology that IT implements. It's a platform that dramatically alters the way people work. It requires commitment on the part of organizations, partners, and implementers to ensure that SharePoint implementations have the right skills and people on their teams including business analysts, change management experts, and user interface designers, in addition to the great work and skills our IT teams bring to the table.

It's a good start to see that awareness of these needs is growing.