SharePoint Roles and Responsibilities

Please read my article  SharePoint Development Methodology

Typically in a SharePoint project the the main roles are:

  • SharePoint Administrator
  • SharePoint Developer
  • SharePoint Designer
  • SharePoint Architect

SharePoint Administrator

The role of SharePoint administrator includes setting up the SharePoint infrastructure with servers and services; SharePoint 2007/2010, Exchange Server, Active Directory, Windows 2003 and 2008 Servers, SQL Server 2005/2008, IIS 6.0 and 7.0, network infrastructure, ISA server, etc. He is responsible for maintaining and optimizing the SharePoint farm.

A SharePoint administrator requires knowledge of both SQL Server and Windows Server. Since SharePoint stores all of its data in SQL Server databases, DBA knowledge is critical. However, the Windows Server knowledge required to build and maintain a SharePoint farm is considerable. The administrator role is often split between two people who work closely together: a Windows Server administrator and a SQL Server DBA.The DBA skills required are the standard set required for any SQL Server but the features of Windows Server that a SharePoint Administrator needs to have some knowledge of include:

  • Good knowledge in IIS and the architecture of it
  • Windows Server Manager
  • Active Directory (LDAP,ADLDS,ADAM etc)
  • DNS and SMTP
  • Network Load Balancing (NLB)
  • Firewall (Hardware and software NLB)
  • Event Viewer and Performance Monitor
  • PowerShell scripting will be added advantage if looking in SharePoint 2010

But I suggest some knowledge of SharePoint development experience will add extra benefits to this role.

SharePoint Developer

The main role of a developer is developing custom web parts and component for SharePoint. They should have experience in,, web parts, master pages, Ajax developer, detailed knowledge of the SharePoint 2007 object model / 2010 client object model, JavaScript experience etc. A SharePoint developer should be well versed on .NET frame work and windows workflow foundations (WFF). The Developer should have a solid understanding of C# and or and a solid understanding of the SharePoint API as a whole. Building workflows from a completely custom Visual studio direction as well as custom coding SQL and SQL server manipulation and maintenance also required so some knowledge in DB side also needed.  XML/XSLT knowledge will also provide some extra value in development. Since most things in SharePoint are xml based or can be converted and fed as xml/xsl, these are just another set of skills are another way that the developer can increase their value. A solid understanding of IIS and editing web config files are needed for a developer.

However, the main thing is to understand the out-of-the-box functionality and SharePoint web services well enough so that you don't program something SharePoint has Out of the box. SharePoint development involves tuning functionality that SharePoint has out of the box. So we should explain how to achieve project requirements with the least amount of programming.

SharePoint Designer

There are some wiles that a SharePoint Designer is really needed for the SharePoint project. But as per my experience it is good to have a Designer in your team so the developers can focus on programming no need to waste their time on customization. Designers are responsible for all the "non-programming" customization of the SharePoint solution. Good understanding of SharePoint and the different out of the box web parts and their functionality are needed for this role. Experience with html, style sheet, caml, xml, xslt, java script, SharePoint Designer 2007/2010 and InfoPath 2007/2010 are the main areas they have to focus.

SharePoint Architect

A SharePoint Architect needs to have a thorough understanding of SharePoint (admin, developing, functions) including when and how new components/web parts should be developed. Also Microsoft Technologies in general, especially .NET 3.5, C#, Exchange, Active Directory, Office 2007/2010, IIS and infrastructure in general. Pivotal specialized role is of SharePoint architect. This is the person who can:

1.       Collect, transform, validate and map functional and non-functional requirements

2.       Plan and architect infrastructure integration

3.       Define solution

4.       Map MOST of solution requirements to existing configurable features of SharePoint

5.       Architect and POC custom code as needed.

The Architect also needs to set up the projects environments. In some cases this can be a full blown Development, Staging and Production environment. If that is the case it's very important to have all the environments match as close as possible if not be exact. The Architect also needs to understand fail over's, clustering and load balancing, for large farms. A SharePoint Architect also needs a solid understanding of alternate access mapping in MOSS, host headers, DNS entries, Kerberos configuration and multiple forms of authentication (forms auth, ntml etc).