Apps allow unprecedented customization of employee portals using the strength of SharePoint and Office365 as their backbone. Here are a few examples of useful SharePoint apps.

Sway. “I don’t need another presentation tool,” you’re saying. “PowerPoint is fine.” Maybe. But look at what Sway can do. This cloud-based app can deliver richer content in a more fluid fashion than PowerPoint. You can include images and videos– even gifs. You can also integrate interactive content. Wouldn’t it be a boon to stream those hashtagged twitter questions within the presentation itself? Here’s a list of the possible embeds.

Delve. This app allows you to see not just someone’s professional contact information, but how they fit into the larger system. You’ll be able to view the person in the context of their organizational structure, and see what public OneDrive documents they’ve worked on. You can view the employees grouped around them and what they’ve been working on, as well.

Groups. This is a simple communication tool that’s a great way to solve small or transitory problems on the fly, as opposed to longer-term undertakings for which you’d use a more robust SharePoint set up. Because there’s no need to fuss with administrators, it requires no IT involvement. It has all the functionality you’d expect: a library, a calendar and so on. You can create a group inbox, and subscribe if you want the messages to land in your email. Unsubscribing is so easy that you could do it at the end of a shift, to prevent a barrage of messages about issues someone else is already handling. Apps allow you to connect your group to connect to third-party solutions such as Salesforce.

Lens. This is a useful little phone app that integrates with OneNote. Lens takes a photograph of an image, then uses Optical Character Recognition (OCR) to render it searchable. Lens can do this with documents, whiteboards and business cards. It will even give you a .vcf, or contact card, for a business card you photograph.

MeetSweet! This third-party app can be used within Office 365, but can invite people from outside the system as well. Choose meeting times that would work for you, and survey invitees to settle on one. Use Bing to set locations. When everyone has weighed in, you can use the meeting confirmation feature to send out a confirmation with a calendar entry attachment.

DocuSign. Another third-party app, DocuSign is an electronic signature service that integrates handily with Office 365. DocuSign shows up as a tab in the ribbon bar, simplifying the process of sending out documents for a John Hancock. It’s easy for new users to understand, and a huge timesaver.

As you can see, there are a variety of apps out there designed to improve the functionality of your Office 365 and SharePoint Portal. And these are only the beginning. You can also get apps custom-made for your SharePoint Portal.

Ready to get a SharePoint employee portal for your company? Then sign up for our Simple SharePoint Set-Up (S3) Program! The S3 Program is a three phase process that takes you through the steps needed to create a customized portal.

And the best part is that the first phase, a 4-Hour SharePoint workshop, is completely free!