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How to Select the Best between SharePoint Server and SharePoint Online

The decision of using SharePoint basically depends on the case of business , and there are a number of factors that have to be considered.

The objective of business should be at the priority when deciding options among the server and  the hosted SharePoint deployment.

One of the most complex questions for many organizations is that, which SharePoint model to use. In that case, here are the decision factors that can help the business owners to take the right decision.

The Decision Factors

There are the deciding factors to determine in making a SharePoint deployment decision.

Privacy and Compliance

This decision factor plays a vital role in terms of moving SharePoint Server to the cloud. If you find that these factors have met, but there is  still one question about relying on the Microsoft as a vendor. According to a survey, around twenty-five percent of respondents indicated that they were not planning to switch to the cloud, and one-third of those respondents said that this is because of some legal constraints.

Data sovereignty

Data sovereignty is one of the most common concerns especially for companies in regions across the United States when it comes to moving to the cloud. Over this factor, there is minimum control with SharePoint IaaS and SharePoint Online.

Sites having poor WAN (wide area network) connections

Sometimes, the remote sites have poor uplinks. In that scenario, they generally have their own local deployments of SharePoint. Moving these sites to SharePoint Online can be complicated as you have to be online in order to use the service. Companies can face getting more issues if there’s a bad user experience in accessing SharePoint Online. In comparison to SharePoint Online, companies get quite more control with IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) SharePoint deployments.

Capacity management & Scalability

The SharePoint Online is a kind of the part of a multi-tenant environment and that factor could also affect the search performance. If the company is experiencing issues related to capacity and scalability management then the SharePoint Online should be avoided. This factor is not a big issue with the premises-based and the IaaS-based SharePoint deployments.

Requirements for an RTO & RPO

Microsoft doesn’t publish RTOs (recovery time objective) and RPOs (recovery point objective) for the Office 365 services. It means the companies can’t determine the downtime accurately with SharePoint Online, according to a research, even though the Microsoft does provide the service level agreements.

On-Premises deployments

The strong point of SharePoint Server deployments is having the full control and the close proximity to the other record systems. Plus, server deployments involve an experienced IT skill set. The SharePoint Server costs for high availability, extranet complexity, disaster recovery, and the requirement of having a dedicated staff for maintenance and support.


On SharePoint Online, the customized solutions are not supported. Apart from that, if the business solutions need a reliable solution, it is also not supported on SharePoint Online. But, it is possible that a third-party can provide such support. The companies can try a dedicated SharePoint Server and the SharePoint IaaS to support customization.

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