6 min read

Content:
What’s new and where are we going with Power Apps Portals.

Below are the questions and answers from the April 2022 Meetup Session. 

Q. Tell us a bit about yourself? – City, family, hobbies, job title
A. I live in a small town called Halden in Norway with my husband and two children age four and nine. I love my job and periodically work takes up much of my time. Then, I do community content like write blog articles, host user group meetings, presentations and webinars, and podcast episodes like this one. I run as often as I can! If there’s time left, I love cooking and baking sourdough bread, gardening and sewing! Think old-lady-hobbies, and that’s what I like.

Q.Tell us something about yourself that not many people know about you?
A. I used to be a PHP developer!

Q. What does a typical workday look like for you?
A. Get up at 6 am for my morning strength training. Get the kids ready for school from 7, and by 8.30 I’m at the office or back at the home office. Email time until 9 am and then I dive in for to hours of focus time. Lunch at 11 am, then standups, meetings, email. Focus time until the afternoon, often destroyed by meetings and standups. Dinner around 4 pm and another hour of work at night after the kids have gone to bed at 8pm. 

Q. 1st job out of college
A. Straight out of university I worked full time at a fast fashion jewelry store for three months before landing my first job as a SharePoint Consultant.

Q. Your 1st version of SharePoint that you experienced and what year
A. 2010 and it was SharePoint 2007.

Q. Last challenging project and why? (this should relate to your demo)
A. I work full time on a project now with a client that want to replace customer reporting on Excel spreadsheets with reporting on a Power Apps Portal. The user interface requires an editable grid – not something that comes out of the box with Portals forms and views.

Q. What is the biggest mistake that your feel holds back your clients from the results they want (this should relate to your demo)
A. They fail to adopt the agile way of working. We often see customers think they know how to work in agile projects, but when it comes down to it they still want detailed specifications and estimates. It’s not their fault really. Agile projects are all about trust, and that’s our responsibility, not theirs.

Q. Describe a SharePoint train wreck project, and what did you learn?
A. We created a full-blown intranet with all the bells and whistles, beautiful branding, intelligent individualization of content and a whole training site dedicated to user adoption. It was heavily rejected by the customer as it wasn’t identical to the Photoshop sketches I had shown them some months ago. They wanted pixel perfect. We failed to properly align their expectations and showed them too high resolution sketches too early in the process.

Q. Your favorite M365 feature/tool and why?
A. Accessibility checker – All apps – and especially Power Platform products should have it. For obvious reasons.

Q. Where do you think Microsoft is going with M365?.. Be totally honest
A. Don’t follow the product releases close enough to know. Right now it seems like it’s the Teams back office. Q. What are the 3 cool features of the demo?
A. I will demonstrate how to extend Power Apps Portals with WebApi and vue.js to create a better user experience then what we can create out of the box.

• Portals WebAPI
• Vue.js
• Portals CLI

Q. What is the sizzle?
A. It’s new, smart and cool. 

Q. What was your first job out of high school?
A. Fast fashion store called Glitter

Q. What’s your biggest nightmare project you have worked on … And what did you learn from this experience?
A. I worked for a client where everyone in my project groups went to meetings all week and rarely got anything done. We spent almost a year doing training and maturing the organization to enable them to adopt the new digital tool, but never got into production on my watch. In the end I needed to move on to another project and let someone else handle the client. I learned that I am a creator, and in order to feel fulfilled at work I need to make stuff – create something – not just project manage, have meetings and move Devops tasks around.

Q. What’s the best and worst tech advice you’ve been given?
A. The best advice must be SCSS framework for CSS. It lets you divide your CSS into multiple files, structure them in a new way, use functions (mixins) and variables. It has made CSS work fun, smart and delightful.
Worst tech advice has need to always look out for other people’s motives for giving you some of their limelight. If someone put me on the stage or shine a little light on me I don’t want to ponder about their motives. I will enjoy my moment in the sun and make the best of any opportunity, no matter why I got them.

Q. What are you working on to become a developer/consultant / CTO?
A. I will start to learn Reach after the summer as a first step towards becoming a full-blown front-end developer.

Q. Where do you want to be in 5 years?
A. I want to be a front-end developer and work full time creating amazing user experiences for people. Making a difference in people’s lives by creating delightful user interfaces is what I want to do.

Q. What’s your blind spot in your Microsoft knowledge? Pitfalls
A. I’m terrible at security and feel that security measures these days are invasive and destroy good user experiences. There should be a balance – but these days the security consultant seem to enable every security measure they come across just to be sure.

Q. Where do you source your knowledge? – Twitter- who do you follow, site urls
A. Microsoft Documentation and other bloggers are my primary source. I do like to take certifications and love Microsoft Learn. Twitter is a good source of inspiration, but I do learn the most from answering other people’s questions on community forums. Portal Community Call every month by Nicholas Heyduk and The Up Podcast by Lisa Crosby and Megan Walker are my two constant sources of knowledge that I cannot go without.

Q. In your mind, if there was 1 song that could describe Sharepoint, what would it be? – David Bowie – Heroes
A. Cannot answer that one, sorry.

Q. Where can people find you?
A. Twitter @ulrikkeakerbk – LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/ulrikke – ulrikke.akerbak.com