When OneDrive document versioning and synchronisation breaks down, the consequences range from frustrating to nightmarish.

Have you ever begun a boardroom presentation only to realise that you’re missing an essential slide, several slides or, even worse… your entire PowerPoint deck hasn’t synced properly, so you’re left with an old and incomplete version?

Synchronisation issues can create these ‘nightmare’ scenarios that keep us up at night. Unfortunately, it happens all too often – OneDrive document versioning and synchronisation have a history of letting people down when it matters most.

It’s all well and good investing in popular enterprise productivity suites, such as Office 365 – with hopes of boosting collaboration and enabling flexible working. But when an individual cog in the system fails, like OneDrive, it can put a real dampener on your dreams of digital workplace nirvana.

In this post, we will:

  • Outline the ways that business users can lose control of their data due to OneDrive synchronisation and document versioning issues
  • Offer another solution: Easier365

 

 

What can go wrong with OneDrive document versioning and synchronisation?

OneDrive is infamous for its document versioning and synchronisation issues. Largescale problems can surface, but more often it’s the small and frequent ‘everyday’ disruptions that deal the greatest blow to workplace collaboration and productivity. Let’s look at the most common ways that OneDrive slips up:

  • Document conflicts – When different people collaborate on the same piece of work it can create conflicting versions of the same document. When multiple conflicting documents are created, how do you know which is the “latest” version? How do you make sure the final document has all the changes from the respective contributors?
  • Metadata malfunction – When working offline, OneDrive metadata doesn’t sync reliably – now, you can’t find the document you need. You know that you need John’s version, which includes the quarterly sales figures. But when you search for documents written by John, nothing shows as the metadata has not synced.
  • Lost documents – OneDrive doesn’t have its own user interface, which can make it difficult to find files, increasing the time it takes to get basic tasks done.
  • Different versions of OneDrive – Microsoft have released multiple versions of OneDrive, which you can read more about here. Many users are completely unaware of the version they’re using. As each comes with its own problems, this only adds to the misery when synchronisation fails.
  • On-premises? No chance – OneDrive for Business synchronisation doesn’t work for on-premises users of SharePoint.

What does this mean for your business?

Synchronisation is when your computer keeps your data on your computer in step with your data in the cloud, right? Unfortunately, not. Synchronisation is when you are in sync. When you know that the data you have with you is in step with your data in the cloud. When you, absolutely, positively know, that you have the correct and latest data to hand; when you know the date and by whom it was last updated; when you know that your version is the latest version—the one that you need.

Digital transformation is supposed to be about making our working lives easier. But, as we have seen from the problems above, this doesn’t seem to be the case when it comes to OneDrive document versioning and synchronisation.

Instead users are left with the following problems:

  • Confusion – which is the latest document? Are these figures correct? Who made these recent changes and why?
  • Productivity delays – people must stop and start again when they realise they are working on the wrong version of a document; work takes longer, and meetings are delayed while colleagues debate which version is “the” version you must be using.
  • Time wasted – everything takes that little bit longer when there is uncertainty about document versioning. 
  • Inflexible working – If you have gone out of the office for a meeting, you need to feel confident that you have the latest version of the document with you. Otherwise you are stuck out on a limb when, really, you need to be at your best.
  • Loss of customers and clients – if these issues crop up in a sales pitch or at a client meeting, it can cost your business and the bottom line.
  • Loss of confidence – you want to be able to rely on your technology to do what it’s supposed to do. When this isn’t the case, you find yourself seeking out alternatives, e.g. bringing a hard copy of a document to hand out at meetings.

So, two questions arise:

  • Can you rely on OneDrive for Business?
  • Do you feel in control?

 

Easier365 by Digilink can help you take control of your data, so that you are prepared for all eventualities. By providing you with dedicated software and a dedicated user interface for all your document versioning and file synchronisation needs, you can enable collaborative and mobile working at your organisation. To find out more about Easier365 and leave OneDrive document versioning and synchronisation in the past, click here.