We were hired by Alteryx, a fortune 500 Software Development company specializing in Business Intelligence (BI) software, to migrate their site from a Microsoft SharePoint platform onto an Open Source platform. They had an internal staff of Software Developers who were very skilled at writing BI software, but their attempts to create a corporate website using their internal development group was not successful.
CSS has implemented Microsoft SharePoint previously for the purposes of an Internal Corporate Intranet Site, but we do not recommend using SharePoint for external Corporate Websites. After meeting with the client and a review of their site and what the Marketing Department wanted to accomplish, we agreed to migrate the current site content to a new website based on the Drupal framework.
The client’s main frustration was the amount of time it took for updates and development cycles on the SharePoint site. Their Marketing Department was not able to run their promotions and campaigns and capture leads from the website into their Salesforce CRM in the manner that they needed to be successful.
One example of the long development cycles was their attempt to add a Tag Cloud to the SharePoint site. A Tag Cloud is a common addition to websites and indicates at a glance what keywords are most often used on a webpage giving the user a good indication of the topics covered on the page. The more often a keyword is used, the larger the font size for that particular word. This allows the user at a glance to see what topics are covered in the Tag Cloud.
The client’s attempt to create a Tag Cloud for their SharePoint site needed to be created from scratch as a custom development project since it is not included in the SharePoint Libraries and there is no open source community supporting free additional features and functionality.
The client’s Marketing Department complained that it took 800 hours for their internal development staff to build a Tag Cloud on the SharePoint site.
During the migration to Drupal, we installed a free Community Contribution Module for Drupal. It took us 4 hours to install, configure and deploy a Tag Cloud on the Drupal site compared to 800 hours for the previous SharePoint site.
We completed the migration from SharePoint to Drupal in 90 days, on schedule and within the original budget. The entire project to migrate from SharePoint to Drupal, create a new look and feel for the corporate site and add numerous additional features and functionality including the Tag Cloud feature in Drupal was completed in fewer hours than it took just to create the Tag Cloud feature in SharePoint. We were able to integrate the new Website with Salesforce, allowing the Marketing Department to capture and distribute website leads using Salesforce.
Another benefit of using the Drupal Framework for this project was the ability to easily create a new look and feel for the site. Since Drupal is an open source, community driven platform, one of the benefits is the ability to use over 30,000 free and low-cost contributed modules and choose from hundreds of pre-built, low cost themes. Since the Drupal Framework separates the data layer from the display layer, a theme can be applied to the site without affecting the data. The ability to purchase and install a pre-built theme lowers the cost of designing a new look and feel without having to design and build a custom theme.
The client’s ROI on this project was tremendous. They were able to recoup the money spent on the site migration in just a couple months due to the rapid ability to update and add features to the new Drupal site. After deploying the new Drupal site, the Marketing Department was able to manage content changes and edits to the site without impacting their internal Development staff who was able to focus on the company’s BI product development.
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