Tuesday, February 5, 2013

SharePoint Collaboration, Visualized

I recently developed some custom web analytics reporting on top of SharePoint 2010 for a customer.  Among the data shown are number of page requests for each department, broken further into department.

It turns out as a metric, this isn’t necessarily the best.  For example, departments with sites that require lots of clicking have more ‘hits’ than departments with more efficient sites.  Still, it is _a_ metric. 


One interesting pattern I’ve seen repeatedly looks like the example above.  The sparkline shows number of requests per day.  For some departments, it routinely comes out looking like this.  Note one employee spiking one day, followed by another employee the next day, and another the next.   I could be over-analyzing, but I believe what this shows is that Employee1 does something, which Employee2 then sees and does something else with, that Employee 3 sees, and so on. 

In other words, by charting the page hits over time by employee, we’ve visualized collaboration within a department.  With a little more smarts, this could be turned into more valuable data- suggesting colleagues, or helping provide insight into business process improvement possibilities.

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