If your organization is trying to decide between SharePoint and Confluence, you’ve come to the right place. Both software platforms have been created by two of the most well-respected companies in the technology game; Atlassian, the Australian company that makes software geared for developers, and Microsoft, the American firm that first cornered and then kept the market for office communications tools.
Both firms offer collaboration software; Microsoft’s has SharePoint and Atlassian has Confluence. This article offers a side-by-side comparison of each.
SharePoint vs. Confluence – Commonalities
A surface look at each platform shows that both offer ways to manage documents and tasks via wikis or intranet sites. Both software platforms are now in the cloud, accessible wherever there is a digital connection. This means the ability to edit documents in real-time is a standard feature. They also have good customer service and free trials of the products, along with community discussion boards to share information.
A deeper dive into the features of SharePoint vs. Confluence shows that both platforms integrate well with email and calendars. This is terrific from a project management perspective. Other features for both products include:
1. An API
2. Customer support
3. Training resources
4. Project management tools
5. Live editing
6. Document management
SharePoint vs. Confluence – Differences
The first difference to note is that Confluence does not offer a desktop version.
Both platforms are very sophisticated. Confluence has a nice UI/UX. For users familiar with the Microsoft family of products (who isn’t?), the software will likely feel intuitive. Confluence and SharePoint both make it simple to upload documents and have document templates to give you a head start.
But Confluence integrates with JIRA and HipChat. Microsoft, on the other hand, integrates all of their tools under the Microsoft umbrella, including ERP, CRM, office tools, and more. In this, Microsoft wins the interoperability race.
One con for Confluence is that it does offer fewer features than SharePoint. This makes the software easier to learn. While SharePoint is a more robust tool, it does require upfront training to learn all the features and benefits of the software.
Also, there’s an ongoing complaint about the jump in Confluence pricing, from $10 per month for 10-14 people to $50 a month for 15 to 25 users.
In addition to having more features, SharePoint intranet sites can be published as public-facing sites, something that the Confluence wikis haven’t offered yet. SharePoint also offers an integrated chat feature; Confluence does not.
Probably the biggest difference between SharePoint vs. Confluence is that SharePoint offers advanced customization options. SharePoint also comes with a robust data warehouse, so document storage is pretty hefty. Finally, SharePoint has tons more add-ons than Confluence, although we know Atlassian is working on this.
So, which is better? We generally believe Confluence may be a good option for the very small business or entrepreneurial startup. (Watch that price jump at 15 users though!) SharePoint is a much better option for small businesses with more than 25 people, mid-level companies, or enterprise organizations.
Ultimately, you will have to decide, however, we can offer you a test drive of Microsoft’s SharePoint to see all the features that could help your team collaborate. Contact us to find out more.