On POINT with SharePoint 2010

Onyeka Nchege, VP and CIO, Interstate Batteries and Sydney Allen, Sr. Manager-eBusiness, Interstate Batteries
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Now in their 3rd iteration with SharePoint (v3, v7, v10 and soon v13), it’s safe to say that for their intranet/extranet, Microsoft SharePoint is the enterprise “platform of choice.” The primary reason? Simply put, for Interstate Batteries, SharePoint’s greatest offering is what it does best promoting and streamlining collaboration. For Interstate, it comes down to more than 2,000 individuals (Distributors, Franchisees, Team Members, Vendor Partners) located all across the U.S., Canada and Internationally all will able to see and access consistent company data and messaging in one spot.

Here are a few ways SharePoint has proven beneficial for Interstate Batteries beyond the normal program features:

Being the Brand-They were rebranding you know, updating language of their Purpose & Values, Mission, and Vision statements? SharePoint provided a way to reveal, share and connect those closest to the corporate office with those in the furthest parts of the field. Adoption and employee engagement were key; hence, the most popular item during the rollout? A monthly photo & video contest where team members could upload their submissions showing how they were living out company values.

The Beginning of an IT & Marketing ‘Love Fest’-“This latest migration to 2010 for Interstate Batteries marked a significant change in the relationship between IT (backend support) and Marketing (front end design/content development), said eBusiness Sr. Manager Sydney Allen.” Working shoulder-to-shoulder for three months to break-up the 161 GB, SINGLE (yes, that’s right) SharePoint 2007 database and upgrade to SP2010 proved to solidify a key departmental partnership that is critical to any business’ success. The result? A mutual respect and admiration for each team’s unique skill set and contribution.

Access, Access, Access-it’s all about Access! Sydney Allen, Sr. Manager-eBusiness, Interstate Batteries

Here’s how Interstate utilizes Active Directory (AD) in conjunction with SharePoint Groups: 
• Access to SharePoint sites is controlled by security groups (Active Directory groups) to avoid assigning (or mis-assigning) direct permissions to individual users. 
• Access to sites follow the permissions inheritance defined in parent sites and breaks this rule only for situations where inherited permissions do not adequately protect SharePoint artifacts. 
• Users can only request access through an internal self-service tool, rather than making direct requests from the SharePoint site.

Utilizing this methodology for permissions consistently across their SharePoint environment, Interstate has put the ownership of the permissions to content in the hands of the site owner vs. IT Support. Governance allows the SharePoint Admin to remove individual, one-off additions to enforce the use of adding AD accounts into SharePoint Groups.

Doing more with less, removing manual processes-This latest migration to 2010 for Interstate Batteries marked a significant change in the company’s thinking. Now, more than ever, we’re being asked to deliver more, in less time, with less money and fewer people,” says Director of eBusiness Al Hurlebaus. Interstate has seen SharePoint to be a valuable resource for automating formerly manual processes and freeing up people to focus on more strategic tasks. To realize our vision of ‘First Choice in batteries’ our 62-yr-old company must innovate using technology. SharePoint has helped us do that.

So, what’s next? SharePoint 2013 coming in calendar 2016 (likely a combination of on-prem and in the cloud) and then SharePoint 2016 fully in the cloud (sometime after that)!

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