Ever since the announcement of SharePoint 2016 release at Microsoft Ignite there has been a steady flow about the new features on the Office Blogs.

Taking a realistic view of our customer base, more than half are still running SharePoint 2010 or earlier. Should they upgrade to SharePoint 2016 or not? Unfortunately, this question can be best answered with “it depends”. If you have ever been part of a SharePoint upgrade process, you know it’s not without hurdles, and undertaking an upgrade project should be based on both business and technical needs.

From an investment perspective
The majority of changes in SharePoint 2016 over SharePoint 2013 has been made mostly under the hood. Basically lessons learned from running SharePoint on-line brought down to on-premises. If you patch your SharePoint 2013 often, then you know that coordinating outage schedules from business users to IT resources can be a challenge. From an end-user functionality level, bringing the Data Loss Prevention (DLP) feature from Office 365 to on-premises, a new responsive design, and the release of SharePoint mobile apps may be enough reasons to consider upgrading, but for others maybe not.

What are the improved features?
If you want a closer look at what’s new in SharePoint 2016, Microsoft summarized them here. Keep in mind that Microsoft has no plans on releasing new versions of InfoPath or SharePoint Designer; so you’re “stuck” with using the 2013 versions of these two products.

Take your time
Test out the new features first, document the gotchas, specifically if you have customizations or complex solutions. Before deciding on upgrading to SharePoint 2016 you should also consider if moving to Office 365 or SharePoint on-line might be a better option.

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