Determining whether to use SharePoint Online instead of on-premises SharePoint can be complicated. Chris McNulty has put together a simple quiz - we are calling it the "Chris McNulty Challenge" - to help you determine if SharePoint Online or on-premises makes better sense for you. Share your answers and results with us (below in the comments or in a private email to email@example.com) and you will be entered to randomly win one of several $25 Amazon gift cards. **We prefer you make your answers public but appreciate your privacy!
Let's get started! For each question, give yourself points as noted in the box. At the end, total up the points and see how you match up below:
Are you already using custom-coded SharePoint solutions, such as third party tools or in-house Visual Web Parts?
Are you free from strict geographic control and accountability for your SharePoint content (e.g. not subject to HIPAA, SAS70, US FDA, Sarbanes Oxley or other regulations)?
Do you already have SharePoint engineers on staff?
Do you have a limited IT capital budget, but significant IT operating budgets?
Do you have a mature, on-premises installation of SharePoint 2010?
Do you have access to dedicated SharePoint developers
Do you have as many or more users outside your corporate network as you do inside the firewall?
Do you need to downsize or eliminate physical servers and data centers used with SharePoint?
DO you need to migrate off a legacy installation of SharePoint 2007 or Windows SharePoint Services 3.0?
Do you need to rapidly set up a pilot or proof of concept SharePoint site, independent of any current usage?
Do you project growth to a very large content pool over the next year, 500GB or more?
Do you use or need to use SharePoint-hoisted business intelligence solutions such as Performance Point?
Ok - now add up your scores - how do you match up?
· 32: You are probably already on SharePoint Online or Office 365. Enjoy the view from your cloud!
3 24-31: You are a strong candidate for SharePoint Online. Study carefully, and understand some of the functional tradeoffs of the platform. SharePoint Online doesn’t support:
o Deployment of custom solutions that require direct access to the server, such as visual web parts. It does support sandboxed solutions, however.
o SQL Server Reporting Service Integration
o Business Connectivity Services (originally this was a blanket restriction, but a slipstream release in 2011 added support for access to web services- based remote data in O365 BCS).
o FAST Search Server Integration
o Web Analytics
o Site collections greater than 100GB
· 10-23: You are somewhere in between. Understanding the platform advantages and tradeoffs is essential to figuring out your cloud strategy. Odds are good that you may use a hybrid approach in which parts of your SharePoint world remain on premises, with other aspects living on Office 365.
· 0-9: If SharePoint is already living in your data center, it’s probably in the right place.