The Softies love their SharePoint workspaces. Document workspaces. Meeting workspaces. Mobile workspaces. Think of a workspace and there's little doubt Microsoft's information-worker team is a step (or three) ahead of you.
It turns out there is still at least one workspace stone left unturned. Microsoft has decided to bring the Japanese-language-only "GroupBoard Workspace" to the English-speaking market.
Microsoft's GroupBoard Workspace is a Windows SharePoint Services template that provides small- and mid-sized business users with workflow-routing functionality. GroupBoard Workspace has provided Japanese users with shared access to sites which roughly translated as "the destination bulletin board," "the circulation board," and "telephone memo." The template also features facility scheduling and reservation capabilities in the GroupBoard Workspace add-on.
The Microsoft download page describes GroupBoard Workspace this way:
“The GroupBoard Workspace template creates a space for a group or team to connect and share information in a collaborative environment to improve team efficiency and productivity. The template helps track team member whereabouts and status, and includes a built-in timecard list and organization chart. Meetings can be scheduled with attendees, and meeting rooms and other resources can be reserved. It also enables members to share phone messages and circulate memos.”
Microsoft is planning to make available 40 SharePoint Services 3.0 templates in early 2007, company officials announced last month. Groupboard Workspace is the first of the Microsoft-christened "Fantastic 40." Others include new SharePoint templates for collaborative tasks, such as classroom management, employee self-service, equity research, and timecard management.