What is a SharePoint Administrator?

When organizations want to implement and manage SharePoint, Microsoft’s web-based platform that integrates Microsoft Office in order to help colleagues collaborate, share documents and store files, they employ SharePoint Administrators. These employees are tasked with maintaining the platform to ensure relevant updates are implemented, address employees’ concerns and fix server issues. They can work in a team, where each person oversees a certain area, or work individually to maintain SharePoint for the entire company.

Although SharePoint Administrators can be employed by many different sectors that need the SharePoint platform to allow their staff members to collaborate online, these professionals should have a background in technology and operating knowledge of Microsoft Office. Those considering entering this industry should know that the demand for Network and Computer Systems Administrators, a category that includes SharePoint Administrators, is expected to rise by 8 percent through 2024, with a total of 7,940 jobs becoming available annually through 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics.

 

SharePoint Administrator Duties and Responsibilities

Although the SharePoint Administrator’s main responsibility is to implement and maintain Microsoft’s platform, depending on the industry and the individual firm in which they are employed, their responsibilities may differ. However, we have narrowed down the most common duties based on a review of SharePoint Administrator job postings.

Implement Security

All organizations want to protect their data, whether it’s sensitive Human Resources files or company information that should be kept private from competitors. Additionally, each company has a hierarchy of personnel, with top executives having more access to company files than those at the bottom of the chain. SharePoint Administrators are responsible for securing company files by creating security groups, allowing access to specific employees or departments, as well as setting permissions for editing abilities.

Ensure Maintenance

A SharePoint Administrator must ensure the proper maintenance of the SharePoint platform, servers and intranet to make sure they are functioning properly. This involves keeping a regular schedule to verify that all the required patches and updates are installed, and the platform is up-to-date on all security checks. These professionals often serve as members of the help desk, stepping in to troubleshoot and fix any SharePoint issues or malfunctions. They are also responsible for maintaining system backups so that no information is lost in a system crash.

Monitor System Usage

To ensure that ample disk space is available to all employees, SharePoint Administrators monitor system usage by evaluating built-in SharePoint reports and reviewing the files and websites that are no longer used and can be deleted or archived to free up space.

Train Employees

When implementing new SharePoint features or training new employees, SharePoint Administrators are in charge of educating them in how to use this platform. This includes creating manuals and designing in person trainings and being available for questions.

Propose Changes

While reviewing usage and activity reports, SharePoint Administrators may choose to reconfigure, redesign or move certain databases, folders or sites for better layout or usability functions. As well, they may rearrange sets of files to promote organization, and propose changes to make the platform more effective.

 

SharePoint Administrator Skills

To succeed in this role, a SharePoint Administrator must have advanced technological skills, and be invested in continuously learning about Microsoft’s offerings to keep the platform up to date and functioning at optimal level. They must work well alone, or as part of a team, and have a helpful attitude when it comes to training and aiding employees in the use of SharePoint.

Core skills: Employers sought the following basic skills when posting SharePoint Administrator jobs:

  • Computer science knowledge
  • Windows operating system and hardware knowledge
  • Knowledge of networking, including creating firewalls, security zones and encryption
  • Experience with Internet Information Server (IIS)
  • Experience with a Microsoft SQL Server

Advanced skills: Adding these advanced skills to your toolkit may be advantageous in negotiating a better employee package:

  • Experience with Windows PowerShell
  • Experience with Windows Server 2008
  • PowerShell administration modules knowledge

Tools of the Trade: These tools are commonly used by SharePoint Administrators, and should be listed on your resume:

  • Microsoft Office applications, such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel
  • HTML
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Windows PowerShell
  • JavaScript

 

SharePoint Administrator Salary

The median salary for Network and Computer Systems Administrators, including SharePoint Administrators, is $77,800, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The 90th percentile of these professionals earns $124,000, while the 10th percentile earn $47,500. Maryland, the District of Columbia and Virginia are states that SharePoint Administrators will typically be offered the highest salaries – $95,400, $90,900 and $90,000, respectively.

 

SharePoint Administrator Q & A

Stephanie Potash, a SharePoint Administrator at Rebuild Group, shared her insights about the job with us. Here’s what she had to say.

What are some of the core duties performed by a SharePoint Administrator?

A SharePoint Administrator manages the more complex and difficult projects, while overseeing/managing the Junior Account Managers workload. Some other duties are assigning tasks to the internal team, communicating a timeline with the client and setting expectations for deliverables. Maintaining a great relationship with all of the clients is the most crucial part of the job

What challenges does this position face?

The main challenge this position faces is ensuring that the client’s expectations are met, the timeline is met, and the client received the best product. Everything the SharePoint Administrator does is for the client. The Account Manager is the voice of the client, internally. It’s important to make sure the communication to the team is extremely clear so they know the exact task at hand. Understanding and knowing what the team has on their plates is a challenge; however, it allows this position to give realistic timelines to the client so deadlines can be met.

What skills does this position use most?

Communication is key as a SharePoint Administrator as you are the main point of contact for the client. You must communicate clearly, be knowledgeable and be available. Clients will range from all industries and all around the world. It’s important to make yourself available, outside of office hours, for your clients.

What should someone consider before becoming a SharePoint Administrator?

There are times you’re going to have to be tough. You have to manage the work your team is doing and if they aren’t giving the client the best product, you’re going to have to make sure they work hard to ensure it gets done right. Also, being an Account Manager involves a lot of time. Clients want answers at all times, not just from 9-5; if you’re available when they need you it will make you a better Account Manager.

What type of person is successful in this job?

Someone who can communicate extremely well with all types of people. You will encounter clients who know nothing, and clients who know a lot. Make sure you know what you’re managing to the best of your ability. If you don’t know something, let the client know you will get back to them and find the answer. The truth is always the best.

What do you find to be the most rewarding about this position?

Providing results for the clients. When I am able to deliver a product, or results, that beats the clients expectations it is very rewarding.

 

SharePoint Administrator Resources

If you think you have what it takes to become a SharePoint Administrator, utilize these websites, associations and influencers to learn more about the position.

On the Web

Microsoft: SharePoint  – Microsoft’s product page, which has the latest news for SharePoint users.

Microsoft Virtual Academy – Online SharePoint training courses by experts in the field.

Office Blogs: SharePoint – Helpful articles on working with SharePoint, as well as troubleshooting and management solutions.

Books

Microsoft SharePoint 2013 Step by Step by  Olga M. Londer and Penelope Coventry – Step-by-step building and practicing tips in using SharePoint 2013.

Microsoft SharePoint 2013 Inside Out by Darvish Shadravan, Penelope Coventry, Thomas Resing and Christina Wheeler – A reference pack with various timesaving solutions, troubleshooting tips and workarounds.

SharePoint 2013 Branding and User Interface Design by Randy Drisgill, John Ross and Paul Stubbs – This visual book offers instructions in a simple format, focusing on various tasks of branding and design of SharePoint 2013.

On LinkedIn

SharePoint Community Group – A group with over 74,000 members, from novice to expert, that offers networking with industry leaders.

SharePoint Experts – A networking group for SharePoint experts with over 32,000 members.

SharePoint 2013 – A group to discuss the newest version of SharePoint.

 

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