James Paola

Exchange vs SharePoint for email management, which is better?

Learn about the challenges of using Microsoft Exchange for email management, the pros and cons of using SharePoint as a document management system (DMS) and how MacroView software provides the ultimate upgrade.

Email management in Microsoft Exchange

Many organisations use Microsoft Exchange as their primary email storage as it is included with Microsoft 365 and allows users to work in Microsoft Outlook — one of the most popular and feature-rich email clients on desktop.

While it is a fantastic service for online collaboration, many organisations and IT stakeholders don’t consider the importance of long-term retrievability, security and privacy of their internal and external email communications and whether Exchange meets their requirements.

Let’s examine the most common drawbacks of using Exchange to manage emails.

Searching for Outlook emails in Exchange is slow

The most common drawback of Exchange is that searching for emails in Outlook can be slow, mainly when using public folders or searching large volumes of emails. Often only recent emails are cached, resulting in long delays when searching for older communications.

If users save emails in their personal mailbox, they are stored in a single PST file, which can grow significantly over time, causing slow Outlook performance and hindering search and sync times.

Duplicate emails in Shared mailboxes or public folders

Users often save emails in their personal mailboxes, even if their organisation uses shared mailboxes or public folders, leading to potential duplication and additional file storage.

This especially becomes problematic when staff leave the organisation, and their personal mailbox is the only place where some critical correspondence is stored.

Vulnerable to corruption or data loss

Outlook can also be vulnerable to corruption and data loss because it stores the emails on the local computer in the PST files. A power outage, malicious attack, improper shutdown or even hardware failure may damage that file, resulting in data loss. If you don’t have a backup of your PST file, you may be unable to recover them.

There are also some security and privacy risks to consider. As Outlook stores your emails in local PST files on your hard drive, anyone with access to your computer can read them. This can be a problem for users who share a computer or if it gets stolen or hacked.

Moreover, Outlook may not be configured to automatically encrypt emails, meaning they can be intercepted and read by bad actors on your network or the internet.

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How to manage emails in SharePoint

SharePoint is a powerful document management platform that can manage emails efficiently and securely, and best of all, you can do all of this within Outlook using MacroView DMS.

Here are 10 reasons why storing emails in SharePoint is better than Outlook:

  1. Security: Protect your emails from unauthorised access or loss using SharePoint’s security and backup features. Encrypt emails or apply sensitivity labels to control view and edit access.
  2. Metadata: Record and organise your emails using additional metadata, such as project, client, or topic, instead of just folders, making it easier to find and filter your emails later.
  3. Workflows: Create workflows and alerts based on your email content, such as sending a reminder to follow up on a task or notifying a team member of a new message.
  4. Any device, any location: Access emails from any device and location with just an internet connection and a browser.
  5. Collaboration: Collaborate with colleagues on emails, such as adding comments, annotations, or attachments. You can also share your emails with external partners or clients with the appropriate permissions.
  6. Archive: Archive emails in SharePoint for compliance and retention purposes. Set up rules and policies to automatically delete or preserve your emails based on specific criteria.
  7. Automation: Integrate emails with other SharePoint features, such as lists, libraries, calendars, or web parts. Use Power Automate to connect your emails with other Microsoft 365 apps or third-party services.
  8. Customisation: Customise your email experience in SharePoint using templates, themes, or web parts. Create your own email apps or solutions using SharePoint Framework or Power Apps.
  9. Reports and insights: Analyse email data in SharePoint using reports, dashboards, or Power BI. Use AI or machine learning to extract insights from your email content or sentiment.
  10. Reduce duplication: Save storage space and costs by storing your emails in SharePoint instead of your mailbox or local drive. You can also reduce the risk of duplicate or outdated emails.


First Bump Between Colleagues At Work. Everyday Work In The Office.

So why aren’t organisations using SharePoint as a document management system?

Although we’ve identified several benefits of using SharePoint as an email and document management system, two big problems hinder user adoption, those being:

  • Users are comfortable using Outlook.
  • Too many steps to Save and Open files from SharePoint, let alone configure it, set it up, and train users.
Macroview Dms Tree View

SharePoint and Outlook, together at last

Here is where MacroView DMS comes in.

MacroView DMS brings SharePoint and Outlook together, integrating the two systems seamlessly, allowing you to get the business benefits of SharePoint and the productivity benefits of Outlook.

MacroView provides an end-to-end document and email management experience, including:

  • The initial set-up and creation of SharePoint sites and document libraries that automatically capture important metadata without user input.
    • You can also capture further metadata unique to your organisation and set up automated provisioning of new SharePoint locations using MacroView Provisioner.
  • Integration in Microsoft Outlook, and for MacroView DMS Pro users, further integration in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Adobe Acrobat.
  • No user training for everyday usage, with users able to navigate SharePoint using a tree view.
Macroview Dms File List
  • Intuitively interact with files using a file list similar to Windows Explorer.
  • Ability to automatically file emails to SharePoint based on personal email filing rules, or Managed Filing rules set up by your organisation to ensure complete ease of use.
  • Built-in SharePoint search functionality, allowing you to find documents and emails using metadata.
  • Easy software deployment to your team using Group Policy or Microsoft Intune.

Already use SharePoint for saving emails?

If you already use SharePoint to store emails, we also provide software to extract and record metadata from existing emails. This makes them easier to find using SharePoint search in the browser or MacroView DMS.

Get started with a free trial today, no credit card required.

Or request a demo with one of our friendly expert consultants.