Microsoft PinPoint, for those that don’t know, is a directory of Microsoft partners. In Microsoft’s own words:
“Pinpoint helps business customers find technology experts, software applications and professional services that solve specific business issues and support long-term goals. At the same time, Pinpoint helps developers and technology service providers get applications and professional services to the customers who need them.”
It is intended as a two way street. Partners add themselves, what they do, and where they are – in the hope customers will find them. Customer can then search the directory to find software and services near to them that they will hopefully find useful.
The site has been around for a fair while now, and has lots and lots of partners on it. A quick search for ‘SharePoint’ returns 1177 results in the UK. Flipping over to the US site returns 3176 results.
Once you select a result you can view the company details. This is a basic profile of the company, what they do, and to contact them. It also displays their Microsoft competencies and certifications. The other interesting thing is the ‘Reviews’ section, where clients can rate the company and provide comments on how they found the service and products offered.
Just how useful is PinPoint?
I’m interested in just how useful people (that is Microsoft partners and customers) find PinPoint. My personal experiences are mixed. Working with different partners, I’ve spent lots of time trying to get good reviews on there. It always seemed without a bit of strong arming, clients where unlikely to stumble on the site and add a comment. As a customer, I’m not sure what the benefits are over Google? Reviews are useful, but a bit staid. And the rest of the info can be found on the respective companies websites. Google works well as a directory of sorts. I guess everything in once place is useful, and filtering by country or Microsoft competencies is handy. I don’t know, the site just feels a bit stale, a bit static.
What do you think?
I would really like to know what you guys think though. If you are a customer, or a partner, please leave a comment and let me know any of the the following:
- Do you use PinPoint at all?
- Is so why? What do you like about it?
- If not why? What puts you off?
- Have you ever added a review or comment?
- Do you think the partner profile pages are any good?
- Do you think PinPoint is useful and serving a purpose?
- What improvements would you make?
Let me know below, it would be great to get a few different views.