Cloud-based SharePoint Knowledge Management
- Custom workflow enabling users to create new accounts and process payments faster
- Access to a knowledge management portal with collaboration capabilities
- User-friendly app ensuring knowledge sharing and learning management on mobile devices
Iflexion delivered a SharePoint-based knowledge management solution enriched with collaboration features and custom workflows for automated data and payment processing.
Our Customer, AlignPM, Inc. is a knowledge and process management consulting agency. The Customer came up with an idea of launching an innovative personal knowledge management solution—my-Know—that would allow users to organize, store and manage their personal information safely and easily, as well as to become members of an educational community and extend their knowledge.
The new product is a cloud solution built on Microsoft Office 365. The solution is based on a custom SharePoint Online template that was set up and modified by our Customer. However, in order to make their solution successful on the market and let different companies use SharePoint as a knowledge management system, the Customer needed to enhance the application considerably. The planned enhancements included an automated payment process and a custom workflow that allows creating new user accounts and filling in user data automatically. This would help the Customer to make the solution easier to use and maintain, as well as more attractive for new active users.
The Customer entrusted the project to Iflexion’s consultants owing to their competencies in SharePoint knowledge management, their rich portfolio of SharePoint and Office 365 solutions and wide experience in designing enterprise portals.
The Customer offers their clients a SharePoint knowledge management solution as part of the Office 365 subscription. By adopting the solution, end users can store personal data, join an education community to learn and share personal knowledge, as well as use business services, such as Outlook, Skype for Business, Microsoft Office Online, etc. The solution supports two user roles:
- End users store their personal data, add and edit content on their accounts and on SharePoint sites.
- Administrators manage end users’ data.
Iflexion enriched SharePoint knowledge management with a new payment form to facilitate the payment process. The form is integrated into the Customer’s website for users to subscribe to a monthly or a yearly plan and choose the license type:
- E1 plan to access my-Know in Office 365 and all available collaboration tools.
- E3 plan to use my-Know as a cloud-based Office 365 and a desktop application.
Once end users pay for their subscription, the Customer provides them with the functionality according to the chosen license type.
Apart from that, Iflexion’s SharePoint developers built a custom workflow that enables companies using SharePoint for knowledge management to:
- Accept automated regular subscription payments and one-time fee through integration with Authorize.Net payment processing platform.
- Create new user accounts in the Customer’s tenant and populate user data from a user registration form.
- Verify new usernames and email addresses.
- Create SharePoint site collections using the my-Know SharePoint template.
- Assign new users to the created site collections.
- Send automated welcome emails to new users.
This way, the solution can automatically create new user accounts and new sites for them to store their personal data (notes, ideas, photos, documents, etc.) with 5 GB of data per user. The solution also has a mobile version, so subscribers can use SharePoint knowledge management on the go. Iflexion’s team modified the standard SharePoint look and feel and delivered custom design in order to ensure a better user experience within the solution.
Iflexion’s SharePoint consultants used Office 365 Graph API to add new users to the Customer’s tenant. The developed workflow and payment forms are hosted in Microsoft Azure. Microsoft Azure accesses the Authorize.Net platform for payments, and then uses Office 365 via Graph API to create new sites. Initially, the Customer planned to perform a simple integration with Authorize.Net and implement a recurring manual billing supported with an Authorize.Net-hosted payment form. However, it would force subscribers to use the payment form on the Customer’s website every time they have to pay the fee according to their subscription plan. To facilitate this process for end users, Iflexion offered the Customer to automate recurring billing transactions by creating Microsoft Azure-hosted payment forms and using Authorize.Net ARB API. This way, payments are automatically transferred from the user’s bank account to the Customer’s one on a monthly or yearly basis.
To ensure the solution’s proper performance, Iflexion allocated 2 Quality Assurance engineers to work on the project. They performed functional testing of the workflow, as well as cross-browser and cross-device testing. As a result, they identified several functional defects, which our SharePoint developers fixed.
Iflexion’s SharePoint team helped the Customer to improve the existing solution significantly by facilitating registration and payment processes and tuning the application’s look and feel. The Customer continues to collaborate with Iflexion on a regular basis. The team keeps delivering new features and assists the Customer in enhancing the performance, design, and security of the SharePoint knowledge management solution.
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