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Since last year’s ranking of SharePoint influencers was announced, Microsoft has actively been promoting Office 365, while still supporting its enormous on-premise SharePoint installations.  This has been no easy task, since SharePoint, as Microsoft’s collaboration platform, is deployed in 80% of Fortune 500 companies, with over 135 million users.  Furthermore, the acquisition and subsequent integration of Yammer into the SharePoint ecosystem has impacted the way companies collaborate in profound ways.  And of course, it is not only about product.  Overall, the evolution of Microsoft into the cloud, mobile and social world, has impacted the community of professionals who influence Microsoft products, services, and company direction, as well.

Because of the nature of the cloud, community influencers now represent a global force, changing how products and services are consumed at businesses around the globe. Now more than ever, community members learn from each other as much as from Microsoft.  Specifically, Microsoft’s SharePoint community is helping to shape the company’s future, so it is important to identify those individuals who are most influential in driving discussions and opinions.

As a service to the business community, has commissioned the third annual ranking of the “Top 25 SharePoint Influencers.”  Prominent industry analyst Dana Gartner and Scratch Marketing + Media were tapped to identify those leaders who are helping others navigate the SharePoint/Yammer platform. Based on a finalist list of top 100 SharePoint professionals, a weighted formula was used to identify the top 25 U.S. SharePoint influencers. Selection was based on: each professional’s SharePoint knowledge and business impact; digital and social presence and influence; blog reach and frequency; depth of SharePoint topic coverage; citations by other influential bloggers; and more than 3,000 qualified community votes.

According to Gardner: “Microsoft must leverage the voice of the community around products, services, and company direction to chart their next moves. Creating influencer lists creates an opportunity for those who follow SharePoint to make sure no one they might be interested in slips their radar. On a deeper level, identifying influencers solidifies the connection between the people on influencer lists and their collective voices, ultimately creating a powerful synergy that powers innovation and productivity. This synergy is only possible when influencers from different niche SharePoint communities are aware of the greater SharePoint world.”

Significantly, this year there was a 400 percent increase in women taking leadership roles - with four spots, or 16 percent of the list being female; in comparison to the single female influencer who made it onto the list last year. Almost half of the winners are SharePoint specialists/ consultants; and over 80 percent of influencers are United States or Canada residents. 

Without further ado, the top 10 influencers are:

  1. Andrew Connell, Co-Founder, Co-Host, Microsoft Cloud Show (@andrewconnell).
  2. Joel Oleson, Global Collaboration Evangelist, Community Builder and Strategist (@joeloleson).
  3. Todd Klindt, SharePoint Consultant, Rackspace Hosting (@toddklindt).
  4. Christian Buckley, Chief Evangelist, Metalogix (@buckleyplanet).
  5. Laura Rogers, Senior SharePoint Consultant, Rackspace Hosting (@WonderLaura).
  6. Jeremy Thake, VP of Global Product Innovation, AvePoint Inc. (@jthake).
  7. Marc D. Anderson, Management and Technology Consultant, Sympraxis Consulting LLC (@sympmarc).
  8. Dux Raymond Sy, VP of Customer Strategy & Solutions, AvePoint Public Sector (@meetdux).
  9. Jeff Willinger, Director of Collaboration, Social Business and Intranets, Rightpoint, World-wide SharePoint Speaker and Evangelist (@jwillie).
  10. Spencer Harbar, Managing Director, Triumph Media Limited, Enterprise Architect, Microsoft (@harbars)

The complete list is shown below:

Read the full Dana Gartner interview here.

Leora Borgenicht
Marketing Programs Manager