Meet Ron Fetters.
He failed his admin interview and didn't rock on his developer interview, but He's our recent rock star on the SharePoint team. Why??? Well it starts with his experience. He was a notes consultant taking business requirements and building business solutions. For the last 7 years he's taken on huge clients and spend hours, weeks, months and years taking requirements and building SharePoint apps for clients. These apps he's been creating are the composite apps. They often start with forms, and processes that lead to content management systems, records repositories, document management systems, and more. He's a wiz at Infopath, Access Services, Excel Services, building Workflows, and can build reports in SSRS like nobody's business.
We essentially now have a business consultant on our technical team. Ron is our business solutions consultant. He spends his time across the business units with our users. Help desk has changed from telling users that they can't help them with their form or workflow, to telling them about the new SharePoint Labs, a program that Ron and Adam have put together to support our customers that are looking for help on building out their sites, and applications. This program is essentially an hour that's set aside on a set interval where Ron and Adam are available for Q&A on a weekly basis. The nature of the meeting can be training, workshop style or open roundtable style question and answer. The first meeting was a hit. We had a handful of people in a conference room and everyone walked away with answers to their problems and at least one of them walked away with a follow up appointment where Ron will sit with them to help them with their app. In the short few months he's been working with us our client satisfaction has gone from people feeling like they would have to struggle and get their own training, and walk away frustrated as they would see their needs as support needs, while help desk and even the ops team comes up clueless when it comes to figuring out their business logic needs for building their workflows. Support unfortunately can't scale to meet these needs, but Ron's role as business solutions architect is meeting this need and more. Now I need more.
What do you call this role? Should this role be in the business? Most definitely! We should build up these people in the business units and across our community. It's still fascinating to me what's just happened over the past few months where the business is really starting to feel the power of SharePoint and how it can impact the business in a big way to streamline processes and get rid of forms and a ton more.
It's great to have Ron on the team. Even if it took a few weeks to figure out where he sat and what hats he should wear. Still amazes me how diverse the SharePoint roles are in a business, and yet how impactful they can be.