With content at the heart of every organisation, content management is key to keeping businesses as effective and sustainable as possible. As Microsoft stated at the recent Ignite conference, it must “…be organised and managed with robust processes, security and compliance.” With the introductions of AI and Copilot, content is more valuable to growth than ever before, and so too is an innovative management solution for it.

This is where SharePoint comes in. It powers:

  • OneDrive
  • Teams
  • Syntex
  • Viva
  • Loop
  • Stream
  • Microsoft 365 Copilot

And now there’s more, with SharePoint Premium.

This is an “advanced content management and experiences platform” and the next Microsoft Syntex evolution.

Building on from the current content experiences, processing, and governance, Premium brings AI, automation, and added security to SharePoint. Premium will also be transitioning the services already released as part of Syntex. Services, such as SharePoint Advanced Management, will join others in the SharePoint services family alongside some new content experiences.

SharePoint Premium enhances content engagement, security, and productivity by offering AI-driven solutions, content processing automation, and effective content governance, preparing it for Copilot for Microsoft 365.

With SharePoint, Microsoft aim to empower users to “…collaborate, inform, and deliver with dynamic sites, personalized news, and secure file sharing.” By hosting managed content in SharePoint, you can create fully managed and controlled content that is secure and trusted within your business.

We explored the last round of SharePoint innovations here, so you can get up to speed before we explore what Premium has to offer.

We have also outlined all that you need to know about Microsoft Syntex here that could be of interest to you.

So, onto Ignite 2023 and, more specifically, SharePoint Premium.

Content Experiences  

Microsoft are extending Office collaboration to their integrated file viewer. Premium enhances content collaboration by supporting over 400 file types and adding features like ink, comments, mentions, and tasks. 

The Business Documents app in Teams is the new solution for working with high value documents. It provides actionable insights and alerts for high-value documents like contracts, invoices, and more. 

Users can now create contracts using standard templates with content assembly, compare contracts with AI-driven rules deviation engine, and route them for signature with SharePoint eSignature. 

You will be able to upload high-value documents, and AI-driven clause analyzer will automatically check them to find contracts that might be risky or need special attention, highlighting the problems it finds. 

The new Document Portal enables collaboration with external parties on selected documents while maintaining security and branding alignment. 

Content Processing 

Microsoft Syntex offers AI-powered tools to classify, tag, and secure documents, streamlining content creation and optimising workflows for new AI experiences like Copilot. SharePoint eSignature is rolling out in early 2024, with Adobe and DocuSign integration. Third-party integration with Adobe Acrobat Sign and DocuSign is also coming in 2024. 

Microsoft announced that new pay-as-you-go services for SharePoint Premium will be available by December 2023. These will include translation for files and Stream video, AI-powered video cleanup, autofill columns, PII detection, multilabel classification, and redaction. These services will be able to transform content creation and discovery and will be integrated into custom apps using Microsoft Graph APIs. 

These services are available to all Microsoft 365 users with no extra licensing costs, and a limited-time promotion from January 2024 allows customers to try some of these services for free before charges apply to additional content processing. 

Content Governance 

SharePoint Premium enhances content governance by extending control to content owners and creators which Microsoft have said that this will prevent accidental oversharing and sensitive data exposure. It offers Data Access Governance (DAG) reports to identify potentially overshared sites, triggers site access reviews, and introduces Restricted Access Control policies for overshared sites. AI-driven policy recommendations and Content Event Insights will also provide valuable insights into content management. 

Additionally, administrators can use Copilot in the SharePoint admin centre to identify and address issues like oversharing, missing classifications, or inactivity, streamlining policy management and improving productivity. 

Microsoft 365 Archive

Microsoft 365 Archive helps organisations manage storage costs and safeguard information by moving older content to a secure archive storage within the Microsoft 365 environment. Archived content retains its security and retention policies, allowing administrators to search for it and perform compliance actions. It is removed from direct end-user access and search but can be easily restored to active storage if necessary. Microsoft 365 Archive is now available in public preview at a cost-effective pricing structure based on storage usage beyond allocated Microsoft 365 storage.

Microsoft 365 Backup

To safeguard important data from threats like ransomware attacks, Microsoft is introducing Microsoft 365 Backup, which, along with partner solutions from AvePoint, Cohesity, Commvault, Rubrik, Veeam, and Veritas, offers fast, scalable, and reliable backup and recovery options. Microsoft 365 Backup will enter paid public preview in late 2023 and is anticipated to become generally available in the first half of 2024.


SharePoint Premium is ready to use today.

Content processing services are already generally available under the Syntex brand. To most Microsoft 365 plans this will be on a pay-as-you-go basis. Under the SharePoint Advanced Management (“SAM”) brand, content governance is also available to purchase now.

These current Syntex services will move to SharePoint Premium in 2024, which will include two licensing models.

  • Content Processing Services (incl. document processing, eSignature, PII detection, autofill columns, content assembly, translation, image processing) – Pay-as-you- go in most 365 plans.
  • New capabilities (incl. Business Documents app, Documents Hub, enhanced file viewer, SharePoint Advanced Management) – seat licensed services that can be added to Microsoft 365 plans.

– The pricing for this will be announced at GA in 2024.

Microsoft 365 Archive and Microsoft 365 Backup will be available in paid preview by the end of the year.

As mentioned previously, SharePoint Premium will be made broadly available in the first half of 2024, with Microsoft stating that “Both SharePoint Premium seat licenses and PayGo services can be used independently and combined to meet your business requirements.”

SharePoint Premium is set to revolutionise content management with advanced AI-driven features, enhanced content collaboration, robust content processing capabilities, and improved content governance. With a focus on content security, productivity, and engagement, it can help users to collaborate and deliver dynamic content.

The introduction of Microsoft 365 Archive and Microsoft 365 Backup is an indication of Microsoft’s commitment to data protection and storage management. These features, along with SharePoint Premium, offer organisations comprehensive solutions to meet their evolving content management needs.

With SharePoint Premium available today and a range of innovative services on the horizon, Microsoft is looking to provide businesses with the tools they need to thrive in the ever-changing digital landscape.