TMCnet Feature
January 20, 2022

Reporting and dashboards in SharePoint and Teams

As a multifunctional communication platform, Microsoft (News - Alert) Teams quickly became one of the biggest breakthroughs in the current world of remote work. However, it is also relatively easy to not receive the full potential of Teams features, for a number of reasons. One of the biggest reasons for the inevitable missed potential of Teams is rather obvious – lack of knowledge about the software in question.

This single problem cascades into a lot of different, more specific problems – such as inactive Teams groups, for example. It may not seem like a big issue from the start, but it’s rather easy for inactive Teams groups to become a massive problem if you’re working in a rather large environment, with many different Teams that you have to manage from the get-go.

Since we’re already on the topic of inactive Teams groups – it’s only fair to continue on with this and show the easiest way to manage these groups. Microsoft Teams reporting as a feature is extremely useful and serves many different purposes. One of these purposes is to monitor the activity for each of your Teams groups, to make locating inactive ones as simple as possible.

Of course, generating a Teams’ user activity report requires a specific role in the hierarchy – such as global admin, reports reader, product-specific admin, and so on. But the effectiveness of this method is also rather impressive, with the ability to find inactive groups in a relatively short time span.

The entire report is also shown to you as a dashboard of sorts, with the ability to filter out specific parameters from your report in a simple manner. However, it does have its own limits, as well. For example, the maximum time span of such a report is 90 days, so any Teams group that has been inactive for more than this specific period would not be located or reported about whatsoever. 

It would be fair to say that there are also other ways of generating reports for Microsoft Teams groups, and you can find more on the topic here -

Speaking of reporting, it is a really useful feature on its own, and more than just Teams can take advantage of it for their own goals. Another example of a platform that requires reporting as a feature in some way is SharePoint – a web-based collaborative platform that is still one of the bigger players on the market of multifunctional management solutions for enterprises and other businesses.

Business intelligence is extremely important for pretty much any company out there, and it’s one of the bigger reasons why the market of third-party SharePoint reporting solutions has grown so much in the last few years. As with any rapidly growing field, SharePoint reporting is a very competitive market, with each solution competing with others for the attention of a user with unique features and benefits. 

However, another reason why this field is as competitive as it is now is that there’s no undisputed leader so far, no solution that takes up a massive part of the market and overshadows the competition. One of the bigger reasons for that lies in all of the unique features that various SharePoint reporting solutions provide. This makes every solution more suitable for some specific use case.

Another important matter that needs to be discussed here is the compatibility with two different SharePoint versions – online and on-premise. 

While SharePoint reporting as a feature holds a lot of importance for many different types of specialists, presenting this kind of statistical information in a simple and easy-to-understand way is kind of a challenge on its own. This is where SharePoint dashboards come in.

Strictly speaking, the biggest purpose of most SharePoint dashboards is to present some sort of Key Performance Indicator (KPI) in a form that is easy to understand. Showing any kind of KPI also usually requires some sort of data aggregation, often from multiple sources.

This is where we can see a big difference between two distinct types of SharePoint as a platform – since SharePoint Online can easily collect and calculate data using its own servers, while SharePoint On-Premise would have to rely on the company’s own servers to do both, which often leads to bigger waiting times and overall performance issues throughout the company.

Of course, there are several ways of creating dashboards for SharePoint, too. This includes both built-in features (like Excel), as well as several third-party tools. 

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