SharePoint 2013: The Premier Content Management System

In a previous post I defined Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 as “The Collaboration Destination” business users access to interact with a “Single Version of the Truth.” This means that SharePoint Server 2013 provides a well-known location for end users to access and collaborate on final or released versions of enterprise documents.

In this post I would like to recast the character of SharePoint Server 2013 as an Enterprise Content Management System (ECM) and a Web Content Management System (WCM). These two generalized approaches to corporate resource management combine to provide a complete collaboration solution for the enterprise knowledge worker.

Enterprise Content Management (ECM)

Enterprise Content Management is the functional portion of SharePoint Server 2013 dedicated to the management and sharing of corporate documents. These may include Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint or third party content such as PDF documents. SharePoint 2013 stores documents in containers referred to as Libraries. These Libraries may contain thousands of documents of various types and structure and SharePoint Server 2013 provides the tools and techniques to optimize document sharing and collaboration.

  • Centrally located and managed enterprise content – Content is surfaced in a centralized repository that enables users to easily find, share, and use critical information.
  • Manage Metadata globally – The Managed Metadata Service allows for the creation and publication of term sets in term groups that make it easy to add Metadata to enterprise documents and enable both the organization of that data and enhanced search efforts.
  • Make Documents unique – Document IDs provide a unique identifier for assets in a large body of documents.
  • Object Oriented – SharePoint 2013 instantiable Content Type objects let you assign shared settings for specific types of content, such as a Purchase Order or a Contract Document.
  • Information Access Control – Out-of-the-Box and custom permissions provide tools that provide highly granular permissioning from the document up to the Site Collection level. The default inheritance of users and permissions in a Site Collection makes quick work of tedious security management operations.
  • Document Management with Workflows – Built-in document workflows let you start, track, and collaborate on document-oriented processes directly from Office desktop programs.
  • Document Versioning – Document Versions allows for implementation of Major and/or Major-Minor (draft versioning) to assist in multiple version document implementations.
  • Document Check In/Out – Document Check In/Out enables network locking behavior on SharePoint 2013 documents to insure consistency. Co-Author editing is a diametrically opposed process allowing multiple users to simultaneously edit a document in real time.
  • Discovery Center/Cases and E-Discovery – SharePoint 2013 can identify content stored in SharePoint, and associated Exchange Server and Lync Server documents that are relevant to each other in a Discovery Case. This allows for simplified Litigation Discovery and data isolation. Administrators manage discovery cases and holds from a single site.


SharePoint 2013 offers a variety of ECM Website Options Out-of-the-Box

Web Content Management (ECM)

Web Content Management is that portion of SharePoint Server 2013 that allows for the creation, publication and management of web page resources. Two types of web pages are supported: WIKI or unstructured pages and Web Part Pages with Layouts for a more structured approach.

  • Content Authoring – Content authors can copy content from Microsoft Word and paste it directly into a Rich Text Editor Web Part, a Content Editor Web Part or an HTML field control on a page, HTML markup displays the page in CSS styles defined by the site designer.
  • Image Renditions – Multiple pages now support different-sized versions of the same image file. Authors upload an image and adjust it to create the default image preview, then create different renditions that specify the width and height at which the image will display.
  • Effective Site Branding – Web designer “Wannabes” can quickly and easily develop Internet, Extranet and Intranet sites using the SharePoint 2013 Graphical Design Tools. Non-technical uses can develop engaging, content-rich pages, implement custom branding, optimize sites for mobile devices and much more.
  • SharePoint Designer 2013 – More advanced Web designers can employ sophisticated design options enabled by SharePoint Designer 2013 such as Master Pages, Layouts, CSS Styling and create business specific standards if required.
  • Improved Enterprise Level Search – With the integration into a single search engine of the FAST Search Server 2013 and SharePoint Server 2013 Enterprise Search, document searching has become a far more precise function. Web page content is crawled by the Search Component to enable full-text indexing on documents and web pages to greatly enhance search capabilities.

Directions-Training-SharePoint-2013-Blog-2The Publishing Portal Web Site option enables a secure Intranet presence.

In Summary

SharePoint 2013 Web Content Management and Enterprise Content Management functions work together to fulfill the promise of SharePoint 2013 as “The Collaboration Destination,” providing secure access and collaboration opportunities for all types of enterprise business content.

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