The use of tools is one of the things that sets humans apart from other animals. Sure, there are other animals that use tools to achieve a task, but only humans have developed a complex set of tools AND the necessary safety precautions to insure we can use them over and over again.
Take the typical woodworking shop as an example. There are band saws, table saws, sanding stations, electric drills and hammers. Each of these serves a specific function and has specific safety elements designed into them.
A similar set of circumstances for tools and safety apply to other shops and working environments too. Each has a specific purpose and a factor of safety built into them.
SharePoint is a Tool
SharePoint has a similar set of tools --- with each requiring some education before use. Sure, most people have the base level capabilities to operate a computer, a browser and a mouse. But these are skills much like an opposable thumb as they are just capabilities required to start the learning process.
In a SharePoint environment users will encounter web parts, tables and views (Oh My!) and they will need a little instruction on how to use each to insure their tasks can be completed and that they contribute to the overall growth of the tribe (aka business).
The key points to consider are:
- Teach them well
- Encourage Use
- Build in Factors of Safety
The end result will be a well used system that is safe and secure. An added benefit is that there will also be advocates and trainers of new users built into the process.
Think about it. When you learned a new tool did you only read the manual or did you ask someone who already knew how to use the tool?
A well organized set of tools can save everyone a lot of time and headaches. And potentially can avoid a safety hazard. In the workshop it could be a life threatening injury. In a SharePoint environment it could be the accidental disclosure of information … which could threaten the business.
Note: This article focused on the use of the tools … not the mis-use of tools which leads to another kind of tool humans have developed. That tool is called a lawyer. We’ll leave the legal aspects of Tool Safety and SharePoint for another time.
About The Author:
I have spent the last 20 years working in various aspects of the ECM industry. I am currently with Kodak as a Director of Business Development. In my past I have spent time at Kofax, Microsoft, FileNet, K2, and at Captaris (which was acquired by Open Text). Prior to that I was a Unix VAR running my own company. Follow me on Twitter, check my blog, send email or find me on Facebook or LinkedIn.