Questions on Syncing from Office 365 Cloud #SharePoint


Eleanor Vorys
 

Hi SIKM-ers!

 

While I am a first-time poster, I have really appreciated following the exchanges on this platform. I am hoping to tap into your expertise and get some advice on two challenges we are facing:

 

1.       We are a small consulting firm with a global presence, and over the past year we transitioned from a server based system to office 365 in the cloud to make access and collaboration easier for our staff around the world. Our team members are often working on tight deadlines and appreciate the co-collaboration features that allow them to work with others on the same document at once. Some people have discovered the “Sync” feature and want to use it to enable easy access and the ability to work offline, BUT we have found that this poses a challenge to co-collaboration. Those who use sync find that there are versioning issues, and occasionally colleagues have lost their work. Is this a common problem? So far we have asked people to stop using “Sync” and to only work from SharePoint. This is making people unhappy, so we wanted to see if any of you have found a solution for this issue.

 

2.       Along the same lines, our staff use programs like Adobe Creative Cloud (InDesign, Premier Pro, etc.) and Stata which must draw from local files and file locations to work properly. We find that these programs don’t work with SharePoint, and staff have to download large amounts of SharePoint files to make the programs work properly. This creates a lot of angst and inefficiencies and prompts requests for “syncing.” Has anyone found a work around for these kinds of issues? What do you suggest?

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank you,

Eleanor Vorys

 

 

Eleanor Vorys
Knowledge Management and Communications Coordinator

EnCompass LLC | Direct: +1 301-287-8765

Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn

 

 

 

 


Robert L. Bogue
 

Eleanor –

 

There shouldn’t be any version issues with syncing.  Can you elaborate on what you were seeing?

 

Without getting to technical, the OneDrive sync client and the Office applications communicate to coordinate the synchronization process.

 

I strongly recommend synchronization to all of my clients because it’s a much better user experience.

 

Rob

 

-------------------

Robert L. Bogue

O: (317) 844-5310  M: (317) 506-4977 Blog: http://www.thorprojects.com/blog

Are you burned out?  https://ExtinguishBurnout.com can help you get out of it.

 

From: SIKM@groups.io <SIKM@groups.io> On Behalf Of Eleanor Vorys via Groups.Io
Sent: Friday, December 13, 2019 9:41 AM
To: SIKM@groups.io
Subject: [SIKM] Questions on Syncing from Office 365 Cloud

 

Hi SIKM-ers!

 

While I am a first-time poster, I have really appreciated following the exchanges on this platform. I am hoping to tap into your expertise and get some advice on two challenges we are facing:

 

  1. We are a small consulting firm with a global presence, and over the past year we transitioned from a server based system to office 365 in the cloud to make access and collaboration easier for our staff around the world. Our team members are often working on tight deadlines and appreciate the co-collaboration features that allow them to work with others on the same document at once. Some people have discovered the “Sync” feature and want to use it to enable easy access and the ability to work offline, BUT we have found that this poses a challenge to co-collaboration. Those who use sync find that there are versioning issues, and occasionally colleagues have lost their work. Is this a common problem? So far we have asked people to stop using “Sync” and to only work from SharePoint. This is making people unhappy, so we wanted to see if any of you have found a solution for this issue.

 

  1. Along the same lines, our staff use programs like Adobe Creative Cloud (InDesign, Premier Pro, etc.) and Stata which must draw from local files and file locations to work properly. We find that these programs don’t work with SharePoint, and staff have to download large amounts of SharePoint files to make the programs work properly. This creates a lot of angst and inefficiencies and prompts requests for “syncing.” Has anyone found a work around for these kinds of issues? What do you suggest?

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank you,

Eleanor Vorys

 

 

Eleanor Vorys
Knowledge Management and Communications Coordinator

EnCompass LLC | Direct: +1 301-287-8765

Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn

 

 

 

 


Colin McIvor <colin.mcivor@...>
 

Hi Eleanor - as above not wanting to get too technical but there are a number of elements to 365 and really depends what you are referring to. There is onedrive which allows you to automatically save files to the microsoft cloud so it is just like working on your PC but they sync in the background and you can also elect to share files with other people. Then there is Onenote which you can work in either locally on your PC or you can "sync" it which means that it is saved to the microsoft cloud and you can share pages of the notebook with other people but also easily work offline etc. When you say that people have to download lots of sharepoint files I am assuming you mean files saved in sharepoint. If you are using onedrive and the files you are working on are saved to your local onedrive folder they will sync automatically in the background. Going back to a previous post the issue with 365 sharepoint etc is that it is easy to turn on but people miss out spending just a small amount of time initially on setting things up consistently and MAYBE having a couple of procedures in place for how files are shared consistently - this may be the issue


Susan Hanley
 

Hi Eleanor,

As others have said, in general, syncing in Office 365 is technically very reliable. However, it might seem that people are "losing" their work when one person works offline while others are actively working online. When the person who has been working offline re-connects, their offline work is going to become the latest version of the document and earlier edits - the ones made by others - will be deprecated to a prior version. Nothing is lost, but some of the edits may be over-written by the person who is syncing after working offline. This is why it is really imporant that teams who are actively co-authoring files establish a "collaboration contract" that defines how they are going to work together. Among other things, teams want to determine how to store and name files as well as establish practices when there is an active document that multiple people need to work on when not everyone can work online. It shouldn't generally matter whether someone is using the online or desktop version of the Office application but it does matter of not everyone is working in the cloud. If someone on the team needs to work offline - for example, while they are traveling - then the "contract" might say that that individual checks out the document for the time that they are working offline so that no one else can edit during that period and re-connects and syncs as soon as possilbe OR the agreement might be that they add a comment to the section of the document that they are working on and work on that section in a separate document and then manually merge in their work to the "master" copy of the document when they can re-connect.

In general, syncing the content that you are actively working on is a great idea - but online collaboratin works best when there is a shared understanding among team members.

With regard to your second question, I think that syncing the files locally should address these concerns, but I might suggest also posting your question in the Microsoft TechCommunity, where it will get broad visibility in a forum targeted specifically for SharePoint and Office 365 questions. Here is a link to the SharePoint Community.

Sue
 


Stephen Bounds
 

Agree with this. The only way you should be able to lose content is if libraries aren't configured to retain versions, so it might be worth checking that.

It is true that you'll need to learn how to merge versions if you aren't using a version of Office that supports co-authoring and/or you are frequently working offline though.

Cheers,
Stephen.

====================================
Stephen Bounds
Executive, Information Management
Cordelta
E: stephen.bounds@...
M: 0401 829 096
====================================
On 16/12/2019 9:57 am, Susan Hanley wrote:

Hi Eleanor,

As others have said, in general, syncing in Office 365 is technically very reliable. However, it might seem that people are "losing" their work when one person works offline while others are actively working online. When the person who has been working offline re-connects, their offline work is going to become the latest version of the document and earlier edits - the ones made by others - will be deprecated to a prior version. Nothing is lost, but some of the edits may be over-written by the person who is syncing after working offline. This is why it is really imporant that teams who are actively co-authoring files establish a "collaboration contract" that defines how they are going to work together. Among other things, teams want to determine how to store and name files as well as establish practices when there is an active document that multiple people need to work on when not everyone can work online. It shouldn't generally matter whether someone is using the online or desktop version of the Office application but it does matter of not everyone is working in the cloud. If someone on the team needs to work offline - for example, while they are traveling - then the "contract" might say that that individual checks out the document for the time that they are working offline so that no one else can edit during that period and re-connects and syncs as soon as possilbe OR the agreement might be that they add a comment to the section of the document that they are working on and work on that section in a separate document and then manually merge in their work to the "master" copy of the document when they can re-connect.

In general, syncing the content that you are actively working on is a great idea - but online collaboratin works best when there is a shared understanding among team members.

With regard to your second question, I think that syncing the files locally should address these concerns, but I might suggest also posting your question in the Microsoft TechCommunity, where it will get broad visibility in a forum targeted specifically for SharePoint and Office 365 questions. Here is a link to the SharePoint Community.

Sue