Benefits of Using SharePoint & Office 365

Benefits of Using SharePoint & Office 365

By Bryce Finnerty

With the seamless integration of Office 365 and SharePoint Online, Microsoft has breathed new life into SharePoint, one of the most used platforms for collaboration,… Read More


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Construction Project Management: Stop Using Spreadsheets

Having and maintaining accurate, up-to-date employee data is crucial in the construction business. If your business is rapidly growing (like so many other construction companies in the Dallas area where HingePoint is headquartered) and you’re onboarding employees, vendors, and contractors, accurate data on who your employees are and what they are working on is critical for success. Although it sounds like a simple task, project management for construction companies can be quite challenging and lead to more serious issues if not managed properly.

The Spreadsheet Problem

Many of our clients in the construction industry previously used Excel spreadsheets to manage their financial data, employee data, project status, and assets. Some were using old versions of SharePoint with unorganized data. When working with software and older systems, data about employees are prone to be full of errors (out-dated and inaccurate). The trick is to get up-to-date, accurate information out of your data management system instead of old, error-prone data. Spreadsheets are great tools for handling smaller and more manageable datasets. But what happens when you start hiring 10, 100, or even 500 employees at a time while managing employee data in a spreadsheet or in multiple, unstructured databases? It gets unmanageable - fast. As your construction business grows, more departments need human resource employee data because more information is attached to each employee. And soon, just having the right name, address, phone number, and social security number across the enterprise become more challenging if you don’t have the right controls and organization. If this data is in an actual spreadsheet, then anyone can enter and change data in that workbook. (See: Why spreadsheets don’t manage big data sets well)

The Situation

For example, a manager could get access to a Human Resource spreadsheet with employee names and other important information. Let’s say the manager has an employee named Suzanne, but she likes to be called Suzy. The manager changes the data because they can and there are no restrictions preventing it. But there is a big problem. Now the source data – the system of record – is not consistent/accurate. Suzanne will be called different names in different versions of spreadsheets. (Check out our FREE eBook on The Secret To Systems Integration: The System Of Record.) Throw time in there, too. Perhaps “Suzy” is a contractor who is keeping her time in a spreadsheet that gets sent to her manager. The manager sends Suzanne’s hours and all contractors to Human Resources so they can get paid. The manager’s project data is being merged with HR’s data. The problem is that we have two different names in the system. “Suzanne” and “Suzy”. No VLOOKUP formula or Pivot Table is going to solve this. It’s going to take someone to manually go in and fix the data. This might not seem like a big deal, but as the company grows, these smaller errors will multiply in other departments. Once this happens, the employee data cannot be trusted, and it will take a lot of manual work to fix the errors each pay period. The data problems can become so big that businesses end up just not trusting their data, causing a lot of rework, manual data entry, etc.

The Solution

A lot of construction companies we work with the hope that the software an IT company is going to install will solve the data problem. Unfortunately, this just adds another layer of complexity to the original problem. The problem that needs to be solved is how you're going to clean up your data, actually collecting it, and then showing it in a way that lets you see the data in a new light. Ideally, you want to make decisions with information that automatically reports to you. Seeing year-over-year and month-to-month views of data can quickly identify trends. With the right devices collecting the data and the right systems transposing it into information, humans can focus on making strategic decisions that will make their customers happy. That is how technology should work. And that what HingePoint can help you acheive! If you're looking to solve your company's HR and Project Management employee data problem, we'd love to hear what you're looking to accomplish! Feel free to start a live chat with our solution consultant on this page, email us, or call us at (214) 301-0000 to get started today. --

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [gravityform id="1" title="true" description="true"] [post_title] => Best Practices for Construction Companies to Control Employee Data [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => best-practices-for-construction-companies-to-control-employee-data [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-04-09 12:53:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-04-09 17:53:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=14266 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 14234 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2018-03-13 10:00:31 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-03-13 15:00:31 [post_content] =>

With the seamless integration of Office 365 and SharePoint Online, Microsoft has breathed new life into SharePoint, one of the most used platforms for collaboration, document management, team collaboration, IT support, web portals, project management, financial reporting, forms routing, and much more. The problem is very few companies take the time to maximize what Office 365 can do!

SharePoint Online improvements over the last year include upgrades that drastically impact users in terms of transporting cloud-based Office 365 capabilities onto the SharePoint platform. HingePoint identifies a few improvements we use to get the most out of Office 365 and SharePoint.

  1. The ability to leverage Office 365 Groups, which deliver a means of group communication, is a solid alternative to popular messaging applications, such as Slack. Using Groups gives your team the ability to view, edit, share all group files, view and schedule group meetings with ease allowing for better communications among team members. Read more about Microsoft Teams here.Microsoft, Microsoft Ignite, Microsoft Teams, Mixed-use Reality, Artificial Intelligence, HingePoint, SharePoint
  2. Using Microsoft Planner to your company’s teams or groups to create multiple task lists associated with different projects or daily to-dos. Microsoft Planner has many of the same filtering capabilities as SharePoint lists, so it is a niche replacement for tools that previously had to be built from scratch or customized from other list templates. Read more about Microsoft Planner here.
  3. The new workflow capabilities of Microsoft Flow feature code-free interaction with hundreds of third-party services such as Salesforce, Zendesk, Facebook, Twitter, OneDrive, SharePoint, Microsoft Dynamics, and more. Microsoft Flow puts real power in the hands of regular users by easily connecting and automating services vital to your business.
  4. SECURITY: Limit who, outside your organization, gets to see your content. Granting external access in SharePoint Online is a breeze and no longer a time-consuming inconvenience. Simply connect a Microsoft account to their company e-mail or create guest links to give users access to folders, individual files, and sites within your environment. Don't want anyone with a gmail account to have access, no problem! Share your content with a specific group of people in your organization by setting permissions through Active Directory Security Groups. Use policies that will allow or block certain user behavior (such as documents with credit card info or employee salaries). Create a policy that blocks people from sharing that kind of information between one another.
  5. A new layout that includes rich text, images, videos, news, highlighted content, customizable dashboard, and recent site activity allows for a more mobile-friendly content display. Mobile SharePoint access used to be a nightmare due to the lack of responsive You can now access SharePoint from anywhere and communicate with your team remotely to get more work done with ease.
  6. Embedding Power BI reports to a SharePoint page - display charts, dashboards, reports, KPIs, etc. on your SharePoint site to make the information readily available to users. Additionally, the analysis/metrics tools are now available within the program instead of having to import them; so significant time is saved on importing data from other sources.

We have guru developers and architects that have ALL the Microsoft certifications. Create your own Web Parts, .Net, Office365 APIs, SharePoint Online and Integration with Microsoft Exchange, Active Directory (AD), and SQL Server.

If you properly implement SharePoint, it will transform your company’s productivity. Employees will be more efficient, you’ll have better access to your company’s data, and you’ll be able to better report on key metrics. HingePoint’s custom SharePoint solutions have helped many companies struggling with unorganized data and manual, multi-step processes. Those same customers have transitioned into a more organized, productive organization through automated workflows and easy-to-search information.

  --

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [gravityform id="1" title="true" description="true"] [post_title] => Benefits of Using SharePoint & Office 365 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => benefits-using-sharepoint-office-365 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-03-23 21:15:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-03-24 02:15:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=14234 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 14204 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2018-03-06 09:57:22 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-03-06 15:57:22 [post_content] => Microsoft SharePoint is one of the best tools to manage company data. However, finding an expert SharePoint consultant can be a difficult and time-consuming task. Here are a few things to look for when searching for a qualified SharePoint consulting and development partner.

What to Look For in a SharePoint Consultant:

A good SharePoint Consulting Firm is a company that:
  • Has both consulting and development experience in your industry.
  • Can customize the out-of-the-box capabilities of SharePoint.
  • Understands how to organize data.
Let’s look at each of these in detail.

Experience in Consulting & Development in Your Industry

You don’t want a company with little experience in your industry. If the consultant cannot prove their track record of satisfied customers, then you might need to look elsewhere. Always ask, what brands the SharePoint Consultant has worked with. Depending on what kind of solution you want, you may want to find a SharePoint consultant that has worked with trusted brands. For example, HingePoint has worked with brands like Marriott, Verizon, Presidio, and IHG. Make sure that they have experience working in your industry (or a similar industry).

Ability to Customize SharePoint's Built-In Capabilities

To meet your business' specific needs, SharePoint consultants sometimes only need to use the standard "out-of-the-box" (built-in) capabilities that come with SharePoint. But sometimes, they need to be able to customize SharePoint so it works the way you want. If you're looking for customization and the consultant can only perform basic configuration without any customization, you're going to be unsatisfied. The flip side is also true: if a SharePoint consultant only tries to push customization when you just need something basic, they aren't the right fit. Always ask, "Do you just configure out-of-the-box or do you customize SharePoint?"

Understands How to Organize Data

Let’s face it, if you're using SharePoint, you most likely want to manage all the information in your company. SharePoint is a great document management system. Without it, your documents are probably unorganized and difficult to find. If the SharePoint consultant does not know how to make a hierarchy of data, you might not have the right fit. Always ask,"Are you going to help me organize my data? Manage it on an ongoing basis?"

Conclusion

Hiring a SharePoint consulting firm can be an investment that provides a positive ROI almost immediately. If you're in the process of finding the right consultant, we'd love to hear what you're looking to accomplish! Feel free to start a live chat with our solution consultant on this page, email us, or call us at (214) 301-0000 to get started today.

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [gravityform id="1" title="true" description="true"] [post_title] => What Makes a Good SharePoint Consulting Firm? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => what-makes-good-sharepoint-consulting-firm [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-04-09 10:46:42 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-04-09 15:46:42 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=14204 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 14177 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2018-03-01 11:42:16 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-03-01 17:42:16 [post_content] =>

What is Microsoft Power BI?

Power BI is a suite of business analytics tools that deliver insights throughout your organization. In the past, you may have spent hours in Excel manually organizing data, creating pivot tables, charts, graphs, etc. in order to gain the insight needed to make critical business decisions. Power BI solves this headache by automatically connecting data from different sources into one central system — allowing you to organize data, build visually stunning reports, and personalized dashboards that help you find answers to your companies most important questions.

If you manage all your company data in Excel, you may also want to read:‍

The 3 Reasons You Should Quit Managing Data With Spreadsheets


Since Power BI runs in the cloud, users can access data, dashboards, and reports online and across mobile devices. Share, collaborate, and edit documents with other users in your organization in real time directly inside Power BI. You can also embed reports to your SharePoint Online site, giving employees visibility into the metrics that are most valuable to the success of your business. (We can also help you develop and integrate SharePoint with other business software that you run.)

Power BI brings all your data together – from all your data sources – so you can start analyzing and visualizing right away.

For example, you can pull in data from Excel spreadsheets, on-premise data sources, and SQL databases. You can also automatically grab data from your favorite cloud services like Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Google Analytics, Zendesk, Facebook, and more. Microsoft is continually rolling out direct integrations with other popular cloud services to make it even easier to get all your data straight into Power BI. Once you have the data you need, it should then provide you with the information required to make smarter and faster business decisions. That's where Power BI Q&A comes in. Simply type in a question about your data (as you would with Google) and it immediately serves up a response in the form of an interactive chart or graph For example, want to know this year's sales compared to last years sales by month? No problem! [caption id="attachment_14184" align="aligncenter" width="864"]Power BI Ask a Question Feature Power BI Visuals - Ask a Question About Your Data[/caption]

Power BI Tools Keep You Focused on The Important Metrics.

Gathering insights from your data is a breeze with Power BI’s simple drag-and-drop user experience. You can quickly find the insights you are looking for and visualize them in beautiful, interactive reports. Once you have a report, save it to your personal dashboard. Here, you can quickly see the charts and graphs with the data and metrics that are most important to you and your business. As we previously mentioned, you can also embed reports in SharePoint Online so that everyone (with access and the correct permissions) can view the report. [caption id="attachment_14185" align="aligncenter" width="962"]Power BI - Metrics Dashboard in SharePoint Power BI Visuals - Metrics Dashboard Example in SharePoint[/caption]

Power BI Gives You The Insight to Stay on Top of Opportunities and Risks.

Capitalizing on opportunities and minimizing risks are important to sustain business growth (of course). Power BI offers predictive forecasting to help you visualize future business performance (such as potential and predicted sales and risks) while providing more efficient data-driven decision-making opportunities. [caption id="attachment_14130" align="aligncenter" width="843"]Power BI Visuals - Stay on Top of Opportunities and Risks Power BI Visuals - Dashboard Example[/caption]   With Power BI consulting and development services from HingePoint, you can take the blindfold off, and see your data organized visually on one screen (instead of scattered across spreadsheets, software, and organizations). Interested in seeing how Microsoft Power BI can help your business? We'd love to have a conversation about what you are working on. Start a chat with our Solutions Architect on this page, give us a call at (214) 301-0000, or contact us here. ---

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [post_title] => Microsoft Power BI Key Features and Benefits to Help Grow Your Business [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => microsoft-power-bi-top-features-benefits [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-05-28 06:50:54 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-05-28 11:50:54 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=14177 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 14106 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2018-02-22 03:05:11 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-02-22 09:05:11 [post_content] => SharePoint Project Management Solution for Commercial Real Estate With a few simple configurations, SharePoint can be the foundation for a flexible, user-friendly, and affordable Project Management Information System (PMIS). If you are not currently using Microsoft SharePoint and Office 365 to manage your commercial real estate projects… you should be! First, let’s clarify what Office 365 is. Some people think of Office 365 as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for document creation and Outlook for email. Most are unaware that those are only a tiny piece of everything Office 365 has to offer. We will discuss what these apps are and how to leverage them to their fullest capabilities at a later date (stay tuned to our blog). In the meantime, you can check out the Top 5 Integration Features of Office 365 and SharePoint Online. [caption id="attachment_14105" align="aligncenter" width="850"]Office 365 Apps Office 365 Apps[/caption]

Here are 8 reasons you should be using SharePoint to manage your commercial real estate projects:

1. Chances are you probably already have SharePoint

Microsoft states that they have over 250,000 organizations using SharePoint and that over 85% of Fortune 500 companies now have SharePoint Online. You are already saving money on licensing costs by owning the SharePoint application through your Office 365 licenses.

2. Security

Using groups to maintain a scalable security environment is typically your best option because permissions are applied to the group as a whole, not individual people. So, when adjusting permissions, only one change is needed to a group (as opposed to multiple changes for different individuals). You can define a security permission from a site collection, to a site, to the lowest component of a single item or document. It's very easy to assign these permissions directly to an individual user or a group of users.

3. Collaboration tools everyone will want to use

The ability to leverage Office 365 Groups, which deliver a means of group communication, is a solid alternative to Slack and other popular messaging applications. Using Groups gives your team the ability to view, edit, share all group files, view, and schedule group meetings with ease allowing for better communications among team members. Granting external access in SharePoint Online is a breeze and no longer a time-consuming inconvenience. Simply connect a Microsoft account to their company e-mail or create guest links to give users access to folders, individual files, and sites within your environment.

4. 3rd Party Services Integration

Microsoft Flow puts real power in the hands of regular users by easily connecting and automating services vital to your business. Microsoft Flow features code-free interaction with hundreds of third-party services such as Salesforce, Zendesk, Facebook, Twitter, OneDrive, Microsoft Dynamics, and more.

5. Ridiculously simple reporting tools

SharePoint features powerful reporting tools to quickly view and share data. You can build, configure, and update scorecards and dashboards.

Data visualization with Power BI:

Embedding Power BI reports to a SharePoint page (display charts, dashboards, reports, KPIs, etc.) on your SharePoint site makes the information readily available to users. Additionally, the analysis/metrics tools are now available within the program instead of having to import them; so, significant time is saved on importing data from other sources. You can also use Excel to build your reports and display them within SharePoint. [caption id="attachment_14067" align="aligncenter" width="800"]Example Microsoft BI Dashboard Reports Example Microsoft BI Dashboard Reports[/caption]

6. Mobile/Tablet Friendly

Access to everything, from anywhere, and on any device. This is HUGE for the real estate and construction industry! View and work on documents while on the job site or in the field. With SharePoint Online, you have all the information you need on every device so you can get more work done with ease.

7. Task Management

SharePoint allows you to manage a set of tasks that may belong to a project, a business initiative, or a department. Users can also create customized list views, combined with out-of-the-box workflows to manage personal tasks and assign tasks to their team members or anyone else in the company.

8. Flexibility to make it work how you want

SharePoint is designed to be configured however you want and to provide the most value when managing commercial real estate projects. It can be very intimidating to try and figure out where to start with SharePoint because (by default), SharePoint is installed as a blank site without any content. At HingePoint, we have guru developers and architects that have ALL the Microsoft certifications. We can help you create customized SharePoint Online, Web Parts, .Net, and Office 365 APIs that are integrated with Microsoft Exchange, Active Directory (AD), and SQL Servers.

Conclusion

If you properly implement SharePoint, it will transform your company’s productivity. Employees will be more efficient, you’ll have better access to your company’s data, and you’ll be able to better report on key metrics. HingePoint’s custom SharePoint solutions have helped many companies struggling with unorganized data and manual, multi-step processes. Those same customers have transitioned into a more organized, productive organization through automated workflows and easy-to-find information. Interested? We'd love to have a conversation about what you're working on. Start a chat with our Solutions Architect on this page, give us a call at (214) 301-0000, or contact us here. --

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [post_title] => 8 Reasons to Use SharePoint as a Project Management Solution for Commercial Real Estate [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => using-sharepoint-for-commercial-real-estate-project-management [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-04-24 02:46:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-04-24 07:46:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/blog/sharepoint/using-microsoft-sharepoint-as-a-project-management-solution-for-construction-industry-copy/ [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 13140 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2017-09-26 09:24:21 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-26 14:24:21 [post_content] =>

Business Intelligence in the age of artificial intelligence

Business intelligence -- which is the ability to make better decisions on real-time, visual data -- will be the reason for the next renaissance. The last renaissance was after the printing press revolutionized humanity by causing literacy to increase after its invention in the 1440s. But literacy didn't actually skyrocket until the Industrial Revolution made literacy economically valuable. Instruction manuals for machines became important to read during the Industrial Revolution. Books were cheaper and more subjects were available. Kamal Hathi, a general manager at Microsoft, said spreadsheets were the printing press of data literacy. But artificial intelligence will make data literacy skyrocket like the industrial revolution made literacy skyrocket. Artificial intelligence will remove the need to understand statistics and code because it will automatically find interesting trends and outliers for users. Business intelligence and artificial intelligence will democratize data so it will be available to everyone, not just data scientists.
Cool Stuff We Learned about Power BI at Microsoft Ignite Power BI now has the ability to turn on forecasting, see trends, and automatically see clusters with one click. Go to analysis tab and click add forecast and it automatically and immediately adds a forecast. No statistics or coding is required. Now Power BI has the ability to show drive times and demographic data by merging existing information with Geospatial data by Esri. Companies can also publish and share Power BI reports from local servers, instead of using it through the web. That’s good for organizations that don’t want or can’t put certain data in the cloud, but they can still get the Power BI functionality.

Quit the Spreadsheet

Use the tools large enterprises use, control your data with SharePoint

Managing Data with SharePoint Will Transform Your Business

Are you managing your entire company from a spreadsheet? How are you going to grow with those document management tools? Does your SharePoint work the way you want it to? If you properly implement SharePoint, it will transform your company's productivity. Employees will be more efficient, you'll have better access to your company's data, and you'll be able to better report on key metrics. HingePoint’s custom SharePoint solutions have helped many companies struggling with unorganized data and manual, multi-step processes. Those same customers have transitioned into a more organized, productive organization through automated workflows and easy-to-search information. HingePoint covers the AEC Industry and is the author of The AEC Industry 4.0 Report and the Autodesk Industry Report 2017. HingePoint helps construction and real estate development companies take control of their company’s information. We combine systems, software, and data so all company information can be seen and accessed from one screen, like a smartphone or computer. HingePoint provides Procore, SharePoint and Saleforce consulting for Commercial Real Estate and Construction companies. HingePoint also helps the AEC industry with development & integration of AutoDesk and Procore products with enterprise systems. We are a trusted partner with over 25 years experience of systems development and integration work in the AEC industry. Our clients range from top hotel brands and restaurant chains to AEC firms and real estate developers and Facilities Management. We provide BIM with ROI. Results Guaranteed…Literally Guaranteed. [post_title] => Why are Business Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence Important? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => why-is-business-intelligence-so-important [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-02-09 03:12:02 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-02-09 09:12:02 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=13140 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [6] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 13136 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2017-09-26 08:34:55 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-26 13:34:55 [post_content] => Microsoft is starting to break down the development wall between desktop and cloud services with Azure. Azure, Microsoft’s comprehensive set of cloud services for developers and IT professionals, will be able to work in the cloud or in a local server. During Microsoft’s technology keynote at Ignite, it was clear that Microsoft is breaking down the development workflows to be both desktop and cloud integrated with Azure. For example, Microsoft unveiled an integrated management portal that lets you see your whole infrastructure. It means you can see all the servers that are part of the data center, including the ones that are in the cloud and the ones on-premise on the same screen. Azure also lets you insert and create code snippets right into your app.  Simple right-click options will automatically insert the code into your app. If you need specific functionality you can just right click and get a block of code. Azure Functions is a great solution for processing data, integrating systems, working with the internet-of-things (IoT), and building simple APIs and microservices. Here are some examples of functions:
  • HTTPTrigger - Trigger the execution of your code by using an HTTP request. For an example, see Create your first function.
  • TimerTrigger - Execute cleanup or other batch tasks on a predefined schedule. For an example, see Create a function triggered by a timer.
  • GitHub webhook - Respond to events that occur in your GitHub repositories. For an example, see Create a function triggered by a GitHub webhook.
The robust Azure stack allows cloud functionality to work on your server that is not connected to the Internet. For example, a ship out at sea that does not have the Internet will still have the same functionality as if they are connected to the cloud. You can also develop mobile apps and immediately see the code you're working on. You can sync it with your mobile device and see it live so you can debug. Microsoft is releasing SQL Server 2017, which has standard performance gains and it runs on Windows Linux. It allows SQL to be used consistently across the cloud and in your personal server to create hybrid environments. Now developers can use R, Python, and Ruby directly in SQL servers, allowing a variety of languages to interact with the server.

Quit the Spreadsheet

Use the tools large enterprises use, control your data with SharePoint

Managing Data with SharePoint Will Transform Your Business

Are you managing your entire company from a spreadsheet? How are you going to grow with those document management tools? Does your SharePoint work the way you want it to? If you properly implement SharePoint, it will transform your company's productivity. Employees will be more efficient, you'll have better access to your company's data, and you'll be able to better report on key metrics. HingePoint’s custom SharePoint solutions have helped many companies struggling with unorganized data and manual, multi-step processes. Those same customers have transitioned into a more organized, productive organization through automated workflows and easy-to-search information. HingePoint covers the AEC Industry and is the author of The AEC Industry 4.0 Report and the Autodesk Industry Report 2017. HingePoint helps construction and real estate development companies take control of their company’s information. We combine systems, software, and data so all company information can be seen and accessed from one screen, like a smartphone or computer. HingePoint provides Procore, SharePoint and Saleforce consulting for Commercial Real Estate and Construction companies. HingePoint also helps the AEC industry with development & integration of AutoDesk and Procore products with enterprise systems. We are a trusted partner with over 25 years experience of systems development and integration work in the AEC industry. Our clients range from top hotel brands and restaurant chains to AEC firms and real estate developers and Facilities Management. We provide BIM with ROI. Results Guaranteed…Literally Guaranteed. [post_title] => Microsoft Azure Goes Hybrid with Development, Cloud Services [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => microsoft-azure-goes-hybrid-development-cloud-services [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-02-21 00:01:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-02-21 06:01:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=13136 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [7] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 13120 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2017-09-25 05:13:31 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-25 10:13:31 [post_content] =>

SharePoint Two-Way API Integration Brings Microsoft’s Enterprise-Grade Document Libraries Right into Procore

Procore customers can now automatically update SharePoint and Procore libraries simultaneously with a new SharePoint Two-Way Sync integration and connector, built on Procore Construction OS and is available in the App Marketplace. SharePoint Two-Way Sync shares and mirrors files and documents in both SharePoint and Procore libraries through a new connector created by HingePoint, a Dallas-based company that integrates and architects SharePoint for better data management. The SharePoint Two-Way Sync brings Microsoft’s enterprise-grade document libraries right into Procore, with two-way, real-time sync of folders and documents. When a folder is updated in SharePoint, it updates in Procore. If a file is deleted in Procore, it is deleted in SharePoint. “This is not an embedded form that anyone can access, it's an actual API integration that lets SharePoint and Procore libraries mirror one another while having the security of both systems," HingePoint CEO and Founder Bryce Finnerty said. “If you are a user with rights to a Procore project and you’re a SharePoint user with rights to a document library, you can access the synced files." A growing number of construction companies use SharePoint as their system of record to store important data about employees, contracts and project status. This connector eliminates multiple repositories of documents in both Procore and SharePoint and connects the construction unit to the rest of the company. The new integration HingePoint provides for Procore reflects each organization’s commitment to openness and building out the construction technology ecosystem. With the new connector, companies can automatically and securely sync files between Procore and SharePoint or Office 365, which will save time and confusion when managing project documents. It also creates better collaboration with the teams that are not in the construction space. Leveraging SharePoint’s API with Procore’s open system, this integration automates document sync, saving time and effort of updating two systems that tracks and reports documents. This integration allows everyone – from the owner to the general contractor – to have access to relevant documents needed to finish a project. “We’re excited for the SharePoint connector from HingePoint to launch on the App Marketplace as it will have an immediate impact for our users who will be able to take advantage of it,” said Laura Paciano, Senior Manager, Partner Programs, at Procore. “We first began talking with HingePoint about an integration at Groundbreak, which was just over five months ago, so for the connector to now be ready is a testament to their commitment to the construction industry and value of the App Marketplace.” HingePoint integrates software so data can move from one system to another. They specialize in building custom tools that detect and collect data, so a business can project trends about their business. For more information, contact our Solutions Consultant, Dylan Seelie today! 214-301-0000

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [gravityform id="1" title="true" description="true"] [post_title] => HingePoint Develops SharePoint Connector for Procore for Automatic Document Sync [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => hingepoint-develops-sharepoint-connector-procore-automatic-document-sync [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-03-28 10:18:02 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-03-28 15:18:02 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=13120 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [8] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 12772 [post_author] => 3 [post_date] => 2017-05-10 06:46:11 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-05-10 11:46:11 [post_content] => Argus Conference, Arizona, April 26 – 28, 2017 The leading provider of software solutions for the commercial real estate industry, ARGUS held their annual education conference to provide insights on global market trends, strategies to managing data and performance, and the latest developments in CRE technology and innovation. HingePoint attended to get certified on the new ARGUS Enterprise platform, which is the industry standard for many of our clients in real estate. And in construction and development, those projects are part of the bigger real estate pro forma and plan created by ARGUS. Critical to any real estate or construction business is maximizing the data and analytics from ARGUS and the suite of ARGUS and Altus Analytics products. If you missed the conference, here are the highlights and best elements this year. 1. CEO Bob Courteau – This was not your standard keynote by the CEO. Courteau laid out the plan of how ARGUS suite of tools will provide the data and analytics to help real estate business compete now and into the future. Staying on top of all the technology trends sweeping the business world, Courteau is no “old school” developer. Argus will keep you on top of the best tools to grow and run a profitable real estate business intelligently with data. 2. Peter Hinssen –As a keynote, Hinssen makes a compelling argument that you must not focus on today, or tomorrow, but the day after tomorrow, to know what technology trends will rock the real estate industry in the near future. Will drones, autonomous vehicles, mobile, analytics, robotics, data, and smart buildings affect the way you do business or the types of facilities the world needs in the future? He speaks of many technologies from our AEC 4.0 Industry Report. I’m going to read his book , which will be published June 22, 2017. 3. Sean Gourly –As a keynote, Gourly proposed that humans plus computers are better. Computers are better than humans at some things, but humans are better at others; better than a computer by itself or a human by itself is a team of computers plus humans. For example, weather prediction accuracy over time shows people plus computers are 16% more accurate than just computers, at every level of computing power. Gourly’s book recommendations on data analysis: Nate Silver – The Signal and the Noise; Pedro Domingos – The Master Algorithm, Leonard Mlodinow – The Drunkard’s Walk. 4. Waypoint – Waypoint had the best new product at Argus Connect. Waypoint offers a breakthrough collaborative tool that enables asset and property managers to more easily identify opportunities for NOI improvement. Designed exclusively for the Commercial Real Estate industry – the unique Waypoint application drives operating expense reductions that improve building performance, increase property values, and enhance investor returns. So many people guess at the industry averages for their pro forma planning. But with WayPoint, you get real data! For more details, watch this video: Waypoint Overview. 5. NOI Strategies, Tama Huang – Huang had some amazing comments on the panel discussion. What ever they are teaching is right! Tune in to NOI Strategies. NOI Strategies is a global consulting firm that is committed to helping real estate organizations achieve operational excellence. 6. ARGUS Enterprise Certification – while most software training is like pulling teeth, this training was incredible. The best training our team has been through. Amazing instructors, great training materials, hands-on computer based exercises and case studies. First class! Can’t want to have our team certified on 11.6. Next year is back to Florida, so stay tuned! On the beach, you can’t beat the atmosphere and location of this conference. You could consider attending just for the location alone.

Need assistance using Argus or any other integrated solutions? We can help.

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Construction Project Management: Stop Using Spreadsheets

Having and maintaining accurate, up-to-date employee data is crucial in the construction business. If your business is rapidly growing (like so many other construction companies in the Dallas area where HingePoint is headquartered) and you’re onboarding employees, vendors, and contractors, accurate data on who your employees are and what they are working on is critical for success. Although it sounds like a simple task, project management for construction companies can be quite challenging and lead to more serious issues if not managed properly.

The Spreadsheet Problem

Many of our clients in the construction industry previously used Excel spreadsheets to manage their financial data, employee data, project status, and assets. Some were using old versions of SharePoint with unorganized data. When working with software and older systems, data about employees are prone to be full of errors (out-dated and inaccurate). The trick is to get up-to-date, accurate information out of your data management system instead of old, error-prone data. Spreadsheets are great tools for handling smaller and more manageable datasets. But what happens when you start hiring 10, 100, or even 500 employees at a time while managing employee data in a spreadsheet or in multiple, unstructured databases? It gets unmanageable - fast. As your construction business grows, more departments need human resource employee data because more information is attached to each employee. And soon, just having the right name, address, phone number, and social security number across the enterprise become more challenging if you don’t have the right controls and organization. If this data is in an actual spreadsheet, then anyone can enter and change data in that workbook. (See: Why spreadsheets don’t manage big data sets well)

The Situation

For example, a manager could get access to a Human Resource spreadsheet with employee names and other important information. Let’s say the manager has an employee named Suzanne, but she likes to be called Suzy. The manager changes the data because they can and there are no restrictions preventing it. But there is a big problem. Now the source data – the system of record – is not consistent/accurate. Suzanne will be called different names in different versions of spreadsheets. (Check out our FREE eBook on The Secret To Systems Integration: The System Of Record.) Throw time in there, too. Perhaps “Suzy” is a contractor who is keeping her time in a spreadsheet that gets sent to her manager. The manager sends Suzanne’s hours and all contractors to Human Resources so they can get paid. The manager’s project data is being merged with HR’s data. The problem is that we have two different names in the system. “Suzanne” and “Suzy”. No VLOOKUP formula or Pivot Table is going to solve this. It’s going to take someone to manually go in and fix the data. This might not seem like a big deal, but as the company grows, these smaller errors will multiply in other departments. Once this happens, the employee data cannot be trusted, and it will take a lot of manual work to fix the errors each pay period. The data problems can become so big that businesses end up just not trusting their data, causing a lot of rework, manual data entry, etc.

The Solution

A lot of construction companies we work with the hope that the software an IT company is going to install will solve the data problem. Unfortunately, this just adds another layer of complexity to the original problem. The problem that needs to be solved is how you're going to clean up your data, actually collecting it, and then showing it in a way that lets you see the data in a new light. Ideally, you want to make decisions with information that automatically reports to you. Seeing year-over-year and month-to-month views of data can quickly identify trends. With the right devices collecting the data and the right systems transposing it into information, humans can focus on making strategic decisions that will make their customers happy. That is how technology should work. And that what HingePoint can help you acheive! If you're looking to solve your company's HR and Project Management employee data problem, we'd love to hear what you're looking to accomplish! Feel free to start a live chat with our solution consultant on this page, email us, or call us at (214) 301-0000 to get started today. --

About HingePoint

HingePoint offers cloud and mobile applications for construction and real estate that are easy to adopt and employees love. Specializing in the systems that run the construction and real estate business including SharePointSalesforceProcoreMS Dynamics, and Autodesk. Scale and grow profitably with Financial and Project Management Dashboards, document management, and workflow automation for field to office collaboration. HingePoint 8105 Rasor Blvd. Suite 241 Plano, TX 75024 (214) 301-0000 www.hingepoint.com [gravityform id="1" title="true" description="true"] [post_title] => Best Practices for Construction Companies to Control Employee Data [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => best-practices-for-construction-companies-to-control-employee-data [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-04-09 12:53:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-04-09 17:53:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.hingepoint.com/?p=14266 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 24 [max_num_pages] => 3 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => 1 [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => 1 [is_tag] => [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => 2b67667dd25c1bbbbea27353e5bbb9a9 [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )