History & Challanges :
The L’Oreal group, founded in 1907 is world’s largest cosmetic and beauty company selling globally more than 500 brands. The company’s head quarter is in Paris, France and five R&D centers are spread worldwide. Two of its R&D centers are in France, One in US, One in Japan and one in China.
Its 150 subsidiaries, Head Quarter and R&Ds centre have to share information and collaborate to make a common strategy across the group. L’Oreal has operations in over 130 countries, employing more than 68,000 people in the year 2007. It operates 42 manufacturing plants throughout the world, which employ 14,000 people. To link everyone of them on the same platform of information is a difficult task.
The intranet for this division must support 3,000 researchers working in France, the United States, Japan and China. The intranet is required to host over 50 websites and support professional applications as well as databases on subjects including biology, patents, hair color and laboratory security.
In such a vast network its difficult for teams to communicate. Team members lose interest in commercial activity when they consume more energy in communication. To overcome these hurdles and to manage its Largest Internet Initiative L’Oréa choose SharePoint Portal Server.
Functionalities of M@sternet
Microsoft SharePoint products and technologies include browser based collaboration and a document management platform.
• These can be used to host web sites that access shared work spaces and documents, as well as specialized applications like wikis and blogs from a browser.
• Users are allowed to manipulate proprietary controls or pieces of content called web parts to creat or modify sites.
• The MS SharePoint is a premier collaboration server and a powerful platform that allows to work several persons on same set of documents together.
• It lets convert information from MS Office application quickly and efficiently.
• It is targeted as a colaberated work space and a tool for management and automation of business processes.In short this is a collabration of processes and people
L’Oreal moved with SharePoint Platform
ANS. L’Oreal sought on intranet solution to manage the numerous documents generated by the internet and e-business group and to enable its various world wide branches to easily communicate and collaborate in the development of 200 corporate and business web sites.
L’Oreal decided to use Microsoft share point server to create a global knowledge, collaboration and coordination of effort worldwide, enabling a single community ease of integration with desktop MS Office.
The implementation was easy out of box. The simplicity to adopt and integration with other MS office application were the reasons of choosing the SharePoint. Within one week L’Oreal was able to test on the internet.
Benefits of MS SharePoint to L’Oreal
In particular L’Oreal wished to achieve the following:
1. To have one global view of all the projects that were developing new products for launch.
2. To be able to form a view on prioritization and be able to make the right resource allocation decisions
3. To improve quality
4. To track engagements with commercial subsidiary companies
Keeping these objectives ultimate benefits of M@sternet for L’Oreal are as follows:
• Microsoft SharePoint products and technologies include browser based collaboration and a document management platform which are user friendly and easy to use.
• These can be used to host websites that access shared workspaces and document across all the offices of the group spread in three continents Europe, Asia and US, means no need to exchange multiple mails with attachments.
• Document library – a place to store relevant documents, files, pictures etc. The advantage is that every related group member can access the latest version of document efficiently.
• Team discussion board allows free discussion amongst the group members.
• Calendar helps everybody to know all scheduled meetings and appointments without losing the track.
• Announcements are available just a click away.
• SharePoint is not intended to replace a full file server. Instead it is targeted as a collaborative workspace and a platform for social networking.
Limitations of SharePoint :
SharePoint is often criticized for its lack of well integrated tools for developers and its complex customized software architecture that differs significantly from those of other ASP.NET-based web applications.
Microsoft has announced significantly better support in the upcoming version of Microsoft’s primary development environment Visual Studio to enhance the developer experience.
This has all the limitations what out of box – template solutions have. It is good for general program management, but may lack certain functionalities of specific needs of Project managers.
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