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SharePoint, Lync and Yammer offer powerful integration

3rd December 2013

In an article for TechTarget, Jim Romeo this week weighed up the impact that Microsoft Lync might have on the marketplace. Citing its varied and enterprise-level feature-set of instant messaging, audio, video, and conferencing and telephony as well as it’s seamless integration with other Microsoft products, Romeo was bullish on Lync’s potential:

“The landscape for unified communications is fertile as more businesses and individuals rely on applications, technology and devices to enable communication. On this premise, Microsoft Lync, with its corporate horsepower behind it, can emerge as one of the big dogs.”

Romeo also provided a quote from Martin Barron, a Senior Consultant at Microsoft, that perhaps  tilts at just how strong Lync can become in the marketplace. Barron said:  “Most other competitors remain heavily focused on VoIP and hardware sales while adding new functionality, either through acquisitions or integration with third-party vendors, whereas Microsoft offers a complete solution in a single software package.”

Meanwhile, Microsoft has announced that another of its collaboration products, Yammer Enterprise, is to be included in all Office 365 Enterprise plans. The move follows a reported a 55% increase in registered users (up to about 8 million) and 200% increases in paid-for networks and user activity in the first 12 months since Microsoft purchased Yammer in June 2012.

Given the murmerings of approval surrounding Lync and the continued rise of Yammer, Microsoft’s collaboration offering as a whole appears to be getting stronger and stronger. Both Lync and Yammer can be used as stand-alone products, but they can also be integrated into  SharePoint. For SharePoint users, the integration of Lync and Yammer together provides two big benefits:

  • Contact sharing – Users and contacts can be shared between SharePoint, Lync and Yammer making switching between the tools seamless and finding the right contact in the place simple. For its telephony offering, Lync can pull contact details from your central contact list and will pull in Skype contacts too.
  • Document sharing – Documents stored in SharePoint can be easily linked to in Yammer with discussions around the document easily created and tracked. In Lync, the same document can be presented on-screen during video conferencing so that all users can see exactly what is being discussed.

Lync and Yammer are excellent stand-alone products, but when integrated with SharePoint can provide a hugely powerful offering. By drawing on the data that each holds for your organisation, they create a communications and collaboration platform that will, in short, be unrivalled by anyy other offering.

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