SharePoint is a web-based application used by organizations for several reasons. It has been in existence since 2001 and currently has seven versions. It is known for its collaboration and interoperability features, which contribute to its wide usage and acceptance. This article will look at some of the common SharePoint interview questions you should have at your fingertips to help ace your interview. Let’s get started!
1. Define SharePoint
SharePoint is a web-based collaborative platform by Microsoft which allows organizations to manage, organize and share data, documents, and different content thanks to its powerful tools. This collaborative platform is generally used by businesses to create intranets, manage workflow and build different web applications. It can improve an organization’s effectiveness thanks to features such as enterprise search, comprehensive content management, and information-sharing, among many others. SharePoint can also accelerate shared business processes, making it a powerful enterprise-level tool.
2. Can You Differentiate Between SharePoint Online And SharePoint Server
There are several notable differences between SharePoint Server and SharePoint online. They include:
- SharePoint server is a hosted solution, while SharePoint Online is a cloud-based solution hosted and managed by Microsoft.
- SharePoint servers must be installed and managed on an organization’s server, while Microsoft owns SharePoint online.
- SharePoint server offers users more control and flexibility as compared to SharePoint online.
- SharePoint server requires more hardware, maintenance, and IT expertise than SharePoint Online.
- SharePoint Online has fewer customization options
- SharePoint Online offers a convenient cloud-based option.
3. What Are The Benefits Of Using Microsoft SharePoint?
Some of the benefits of using Microsoft SharePoint include the following:
- Improved data management- SharePoint integrates with Microsoft Office, Excel, Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, Unified Communications, and Exchange Server, leading to unified and better data management.
- Simplified business functions- Microsoft Sharepoint has several workflows that automate routing documents or items for approval, collecting signatures, collecting feedback, tracking issues, projects, or tasks, and routing documents meant for publication.
- Better content management- Microsoft SharePoint offers optimized content management allowing users to create and submit content and get approval within minutes.
- Improved collaboration- Microsoft SharePoint offers unparalleled collaboration as it allows sharing files and updates in real-time and comes with version controls that track edits.
4. What Do You Understand By SharePoint Foundation?
Sharepoint foundation is used by organizations that require manageable and secure web-based platforms. It comes with all the basic collaboration features found in SharePoint. It is a free, downloadable, and easy-to-install web-based collaboration platform with features such as user and team site collaboration, security and administration, and applications such as lists and document libraries. Since the primary features of SharePoint Foundation revolve around collaboration and document management, you may need additional features to build standard communication and collaboration solutions.
5. Mention The Key Reasons For The Wide Adoption Of SharePoint Foundation
Businesses have widely adopted SharePoint Foundation over the years because of the following reasons:
- Document and Task Collaboration- SharePoint Foundation has team websites that allow centralized access to information.
- It allows embracing the web for collaboration, provided it is extended and customized.
- Data and information management and security- SharePoint foundation offers better control of an organization’s vital business data thanks to its data, information management, and security features.
- Windows Server customers can download SharePoint Foundation freely and save time and money implementing it.
6. Mention The Main Features Of The SharePoint Server
SharePoint server has several features, such as:
- Advanced Search- The advanced search feature offers more flexibility by allowing customized search results pages that can be configured with customized search web parts.
- Enterprise Services- Enterprise services allow users to build custom solutions using Office product family tools quickly.
- Records management- This feature allows content management throughout the content’s entire lifecycle.
- Social networking and computing- Social networking and computing unlock several solutions.
- Web content management- SharePoint server offers web content management revolving around creating and publishing web content.
- Business connectivity services- Popularly known as BCS, business connectivity services allow connection to external data sources and display of business data through user profiles, web parts, and SharePoint lists.
7. What Are The Main Uses Of SharePoint
SharePoint has two main uses, i.e., collaboration and interoperability. By collaboration, this platform brings different people together through capabilities such as web content management, enterprise content management, discovering people and their skills, and social computing. One of the most notable SharePoint versions, SharePoint 2023, allows apps to manage collaboration and developers to extend, build or customize their own applications or manage collaboration. Interoperability also brings people together. This platform achieves interoperability through office and web-based integrations, application deployment to the cloud, and integration with wider web technologies.
8. Why Is SharePoint Normally Considered A Platform?
SharePoint is generally considered a platform because of its interoperability, collaboration, and extensibility. It also has a rich object model, a growing developer community, and an excellent set of developer tools. Lastly, it supports the cloud, a feature that introduced several new app models, such as new forms of OAuth authentication, new ways of using REST services and OData to achieve interoperability, and new ways of deploying, developing, and hosting SharePoint applications.
9. What Were Some Of The Best Features Introduced By SharePoint 2016?
SharePoint 2016 introduced several useful features such as:
- It allowed organizations to store their data both on the cloud and premises, solving the security concern that existed before, and forcing some organizations to store data both on-premises and on-cloud.
- It allowed the upload of more than 2047MB files into the SharePoint library, raising the cap to 10GB.
- It allowed previewing of video and images while hovering over them, saving users from having to clock on the content.
- It lowered the site creation duration from 40 seconds to just a few seconds.
10. What Development Changes And Features Did SharePoint 2013 Bring About?
SharePoint 2013 brought about several development changes and features, such as:
- Introducing a new cloud app model for designing SharePoint applications, making such apps self-contained.
- The introduction of new tools for app development, such as Visual Studio 2012, allowed people to develop both SharePoint and MS Office applications. It also introduced Napa Tool and Office 365 Development Tools for app development.
- It eradicated Sandbox solutions, leaving behind a new app model and the old SharePoint Farms solution.
11. Differentiate A SharePoint Site From A SharePoint List
A SharePoint site is a web-based platform that manages and shares information within a given organization. It has a centralized location that stores and manages documents, information, and lists. The sites can always be customized to meet different organizational needs, including adding custom forms. On the other hand, a SharePoint list collects data to be shared by other users in an organization. It may have contacts, events, or tasks to track data, such as inventory. It’s possible to customize such lists using views, columns, and workflows for business process automation.
12. What’s The Difference Between A SharePoint Page And Library?
SharePoint pages are customizable web pages that display announcements, events, and news. They normally have web parts, including text boxes, lists, and images strategically arranged to meet organizational needs. On the other hand, a SharePoint library contains documents such as Excel, PowerPoint, Word, or PDF files. It allows users to organize, store and share documents with other organizational members. To customize SharePoint libraries, one should use versioning, metadata, and workflows, which can also automate document management tasks.
13. How Would You Define SharePoint To A Person Without Any Technical Know-How?
I would define SharePoint as a web-based collaborative platform that organizations use for content management, document management, business intelligence, team collaboration, and enterprise search. I would also add that it is a Microsoft application that allows users to create and manage different mediums for sharing information and collaborating on projects such as intranets. Lastly, I would tell them that SharePoint generally makes business processes smooth.
14. Differentiate A SharePoint Farm From Its Feature
A SharePoint farm refers to a group of servers working in unison to allow organization members to access SharePoint services. A SharePoint farm consists of several web servers, application servers, and database servers that can be easily up or down-scaled depending on the needs of an organization. They can also ensure the availability of data and services through configuration. On the other hand, a SharePoint feature can be activated or deactivated within a SharePoint site, given that it’s a modular unit. SharePoint features can easily add or remove functionalities such as workflows, custom site columns, or web parts. They can also be customized to meet an organization’s needs or deployed using Visual Studio and PowerShell.
15. Tell Us The Difference Between The SharePoint App Model And Framework
16. Does SharePoint Have A Search Service?
Yes. SharePoint has a search service that allows users to look up content across external content sources and SharePoint sites. It is generally used to locate list items, documents, people, and SharePoint content. It can also be customized with several settings, such as managed properties, search scopes, and query rules.
17. Differentiate SharePoint Permissions Management From Authentication
SharePoint has a permissions management feature, which lets organizations control who can access the content and functionalities within SharePoint sites. This feature is normally used to assign roles and permissions such as contribute, read-only or full control to different groups and users. It can also be customized with permission levels and inheritance settings and used in content navigation and search queries. On the other hand, SharePoint authentication refers to the user identity verification process. Some authentication methods supported by SharePoint include forms-based, Windows, and SAML-based. All the authentication methods can be configured to integrate with providers such as Azure Active Directory, offering a Sign-On (SSO) functionality.
18. Explain What SharePoint Analytics And Governance Are
SharePoint’s analytics feature offers insights into content usage and user activity within SharePoint sites. It is generally used to track and analyze user behaviour, such as document views, site visits, and search queries. It can be customized and integrated with external analytics tools, including power BI. Customization is normally done with settings such as reporting and usage data retention. On the other hand, SharePoint governance defines policies, controls, and procedures for managing SharePoint functionality, content, and sites. It generally ensures administrative regulations and standards compliance and the efficient usage of SharePoint resources. Settings used to customize SharePoint governance include policies, committees, and enforcement mechanisms. Integrations include COBIT and ITIL.
19. Define The SharePoint User Profile Service
The SharePoint User Profile Service is one of the many components in SharePoint. It offers SharePoint users their profile information and social features and generally synchronizes their profile data with external systems such as Exchange and Active Directory. The user profile service can be customized with several settings, including audiences, social features, and profile properties. Some supported social features that enhance SharePoint communication and collaboration include Newsfeeds and My Sites.
20. How Would You Backup And Restore Data In SharePoint
SharePoint has a backup and restores feature that allows users or administrators to create and maintain a copy of all SharePoint configuration data and content, which can be restored later in case of data loss disasters. I would also use the several backup and data options provided by SharePoint, such as differential, full, and incremental backups that can further be customized with retention policies and backup schedules. Lastly, I would use supported backup and restore operations tools such as Central Administration and PowerShell.
21. Define The Following: SharePoint Content Type And Managed Metadata
The managed metadata is an important SharePoint feature that lets organizations determine how to classify their content. They get to define a classification system or standardized taxonomy. It is generally used to create a hierarchy of terms: products, projects, or departments. The hierarchies tag and organize SharePoint content. Other uses of managed metadata include content navigation, search queries, and custom applications.
On the other hand, the content type refers to a reusable schema that defines a document’s metadata and behaviour in a SharePoint library or list. It is generally used to ensure that a given content structure is consistent. Customization settings include workflows, document templates, and custom columns. Other applications of content types include content navigation, custom applications, and search queries.
22. Define A SharePoint Site Column
SharePoint has site columns which are reusable columns created and used across several SharePoint libraries and lists. They ensure metadata consistency and are open to customization, provided there are default values, data type, and validation settings. Site columns can also be used in managed metadata navigation and search queries.
23. Can You Differentiate A SharePoint Designer From A SharePoint Solution?
A SharePoint Designer is a free tool from Microsoft used to design and customize sites and workflows. In-depth uses include creating custom master pages, CSS files, and page layouts required to make SharePoint sites look unique. Additional uses include automating business processes and creating and customizing workflows. On the other hand, a SharePoint Solution is a packaged functionality unit with one or multiple web parts, workflows, or features often deployed to SharePoint Farms using Visual Studio or PowerShell. It can also be upgraded, installed, and uninstalled to manage SharePoint’s custom functionality.
24. Define A SharePoint Web Part And Workflow
Sharepoint workflows are automated actions that streamline business processes. They often automate tasks, including document routing, notifications, and approvals. They can be created using a custom code or through out-of-the-box templates and customized depending on an organization’s needs. On the other hand, a web part refers to a custom-made or pre-built component added to SharePoint pages to offer functionality or provide information. Some of the display options of web parts include web content, lists, and charts. Like SharePoint workflows, web parts can be customized depending on an organization’s needs.
25. What Are Some Of The Disadvantages Of SharePoint That You May Have Encountered?
Even though SharePoint is an excellent platform, it also has several shortcomings, which regular users definitely know. They include:
- Upgrade Costs- Although SharePoint is generally marketed as a free platform, you must factor in the upgrade costs. For example, you need SharePoint consultants to help you tailor the new version to your environment and factor in the implemented resources cost. Also, remember that it will require ongoing maintenance, which requires money.
- User training- Most organizations have to plan for comprehensive end-user training in their budgets, which isn’t cheap.
- Other disadvantages include security and non-compliance risks and its complicated nature, given that it wasn’t necessarily built for end users.
This section marks the end of our article. We hope we have had a ‘fruitful’ discussion to help you ace your upcoming interview. Ensure you take as much time as possible to prepare for your interview. We wish you all the best.