ProRail is a semi-governmental organization that is responsible for the entire railway infrastructure in the Netherlands. They work 24/7 to make the rail infrastructure safer, more reliable, and more durable to get people and goods to their destination in time. The Netherlands have the busiest rail system in Europe. In 2015 3,3 million train rides were made. ProRail employs approximately 4000 people and has a E3 Office365 enterprise license for every employee.
To support such a scale, ProRail works closely with two preferred solution providers on their various needs, Sogeti and Motion10.
To more easily facilitate provisioning of team and project sites, ProRail looked to Sogeti and Motion10 for a more streamlined process.
ProRail uses Office365 and SharePoint Online to collaborate in teams, departments and project teams. In order to support and maintain SharePoint sites they use several different site templates that are used to provision a site when a new project or team is formed.
All this work is done by the Enterprise Content Management team. To facilitate easy and rapid provisioning of team and project sites they asked to use a more streamlined process.
ProRail defined a button flow for SharePoint administrators for the rapid site creation. ProRail currently uses Mavention Make for site creation, and the button flow uses this solution to create sites. For your own environment you can also use Office Dev PnP as a provisioning solution.
The Administrator can trigger a button flow from anywhere using his mobile app, or from the flow website.
When selecting the button, they can easily provide input parameters such as the site title, the template used and a unique tracking number for the site.
Once every input is filled, a compose action is used to create a JSON message from the inputs. When the compose-action is completed the Flow sends a JSON message to an Azure function that provisions the site. These inputs, combined with additional configuration pre-defined in the Flow, are all that’s needed to easily provision new sites.
As a next step, the team plans to leverage button sharing as well as Approvals to make this ability available for end-users. They will add an approval step to the button flow and then share that button with company employees. This allows for self-service site creation which is monitored by the ECM team. In addition, they will also make self-service creation available with other configurations for SharePoint.
"Flow buttons help us to create sites quicker which makes our customer happy. Another advantage is that a non-technical person can do the job.I can’t wait to see the Flow app in the hands of the end-users. It will help them adopt SharePoint. Most people like apps, don’t they?"
Berna Vink (, ProRail)