1. Legacy Status
‘Legacy – relating to software or hardware that has been superseded but is difficult to replace because of its wide use’
In January 2014, Microsoft announced that their investment in InfoPath had come to an end. With no significant roadmap in sight from preceding years, this was an inevitable conclusion to their e-forms product. Four different alternatives were offered for forms building – Excel, Word, Access and Forms on SharePoint Lists (FOSL), with some of these offerings not yet available, while others have since been canned – e.g. FOSL. To rectify this situation they’ve decided to give it a lifeline with inclusion in SharePoint 2016, but the damage has already been done. It’s now a legacy software.
2. The Limitations
InfoPath was never built for SharePoint to begin with – a valid fact that many users and developers missed. It was retro-fitted to support SharePoint, so Microsoft could provide a forms solution to be used on SharePoint, but there were always limitations!Several years ago, we encountered that even when using Microsoft InfoPath for client projects, we struggled with building a tangible business case for them. The tangible return on investment became difficult to prove for business process enablement projects, because a significantly large proportion of work was still required to go into workflow development.
3. The New Digital World
HTML5, mobile, cloud, analytics, social – people working in real-time, anywhere, anytime, empowered. New demands, new technology required. What’s the answer?