Archive for Brent Harvey

Reorganize Your Content in SharePoint

There is never a bad time to think about how your content can be structured better. This is especially true if you are migrating to SharePoint from an old platform, upgrading, or even sticking with your current SharePoint system. This article will give you a few key areas to think about when reorganizing your content in SharePoint.

First off, I want you to think about the date when your current system was implemented and how your company looked. Now think about how your company has changed since then. Your company could have grown exponentially, departments and teams could now be located in different towns/states/countries, or you might be doing old processes in radically different ways. In any case, it’s safe to say that your company has not stayed the same. So does it make sense for your content structure to stay the same?

Roadmap

Reorganizing your content should be a well thought out process. A formal roadmap will need to be created to get your content from Point A (current structure) to Point B (completed structure). Steps in your roadmap should be well defined, assigned to specific people and time boxed.

PointAtoB

Your plan might be for content to be reorganized in your current system then migrated. If you are migrating to a new SharePoint system, this is great to get your users to experience the new structure in their current environment. Otherwise you can reorganize while the content is in transit, or even after it has been moved. All of this will depend on the tools you are using, timing, business priority, etc. Many factors!

As part of your roadmap, it is always a prudent idea to think about the future of your company. As you thought about how your company changed, you also want to keep in mind how your company WILL change. No one can predict the future, but your company might have a strategic 5/10/20 year plan where they list out their growth strategy. That plan would be a good guideline when planning out your new structure.

 

Some Reorganization Steps

  • Consolidation of Libraries There are many different scenarios why you should have multiple document libraries. Ease of security management, for one. But that doesn’t mean you need multiple document libraries. SharePoint content can start to sprawl, since the ease of adding libraries might not give the user pause when choosing between creating a new library and using a current one.
  • Add Content Types / metadata This can go hand-in-hand with the consolidation of libraries. If you are adding different document types to one libraries, you might want to distinguish them with Content Types or even just columns on the library. How many times have you created a new library for the current year (e.g. Financials 2014 and Financials 2015) when one library would be sufficient with the addition of a year column?
  • Archive content / Keep Content in place Not all data needs to make it over. You can segregate content by putting it into an Archive site or even keep it where it resides (if it’s not going away). Remember, all this content can still be discoverable in SharePoint. SharePoint search can return results of content in prior versions of SharePoint or to other file systems and web sites.
  • Remove Content Not all content is still used or even useful. Why have a survey to determine where the company picnic should be if it was 2 years ago. Backup this content and do not give it the green light to migrate.
  • Rename Content Sometimes “Shared Documents” just isn’t descriptive enough.
  • Consolidation / Creation of Sites Teams and departments may no longer work together or even exist.
  • Move Content to the Front Most people that go to your SharePoint site might not be regulars. It’s also a good idea to determine what might be the most relevant to all users of the site and put that on the home page.

 

If you are moving to SharePoint, upgrading, or migrating to the cloud, it is always a good idea to take a step back and look at your content. It very well may be that it can use a little bit more organization.

 

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BlumShapiro Live Tiles with Count

BlumShapiro is excited to announce that our technology consulting team has created a new app that will help SharePoint users extend the functionality of Live Tiles / Promoted Links. The free app “Live Tiles with Count” allows you to create multi-colored live tiles with the option to add item counts. Instead of your live tile just pointing out the link to open issues, you can also have it show how many open issues are assigned to the logged in user!

Read the rest of this post to see all the features, some screenshots and some sample CAML queries.

Description

Live tiles are a great way to give users quick links to content contained within a site. Live Tiles with Count allows you to get an actual count of items within a specific list on your site. The item count can even be filtered based on a CAML query.

This app allows users to easily create, and personalize live tiles.

BlumShapiro Live Tiles with Count features:

  • Standard live tiles hover functionality
  • Easily create live tiles and add to a SharePoint site
  • Choose different colors for each tile
  • 19 built in background images or upload and use your own
  • Add counts of lists on current site
  • Filter list count by CAML query

Screenshots

 

 

CAML Query Examples

Assigned To field is the current user or group the current user is in.

<View><Query><Where>

<Or>

<Membership Type=’CurrentUserGroups’>

<FieldRef Name=’AssignedTo’/>

</Membership>

<Eq>

<FieldRef Name=’AssignedTo’></FieldRef>

<Value Type=’Integer’>

<UserID/>

</Value>

</Eq>

</Or>

</Where>

</Query>

</View>

 

All items where the ID is greater than or equal to 1

<View><Query><Where>

<Geq><FieldRef Name=’ID’/><Value Type=’Number’>1</Value></Geq>

</Where>

</Query>

</View>

 

 

BlumShapiro Live Tiles with Count

 

Description

Live tiles are a great way to give users quick links to content contained within a site. Live Tiles with Count allows you to get an actual count of items within a specific list on your site. The item count can even be filtered based on a CAML query.

This app allows users to easily create, and personalize live tiles.

BlumShapiro Live Tiles with Count features:

  • Standard live tiles hover functionality
  • Easily create live tiles and add to a SharePoint site
  • Choose different colors for each tile
  • 19 built in background images or upload and use your own
  • Add counts of lists on current site
  • Filter list count by CAML query

 

Screenshots

 

 

CAML Query Examples

Assigned To field is the current user or group the current user is in.

<View>

<Query>

<Where>

<Or>

<Membership Type=’CurrentUserGroups’>

<FieldRef Name=’AssignedTo’/>

</Membership>

<Eq>

<FieldRef Name=’AssignedTo’></FieldRef>

<Value Type=’Integer’>

<UserID/>

</Value>

</Eq>

</Or>

</Where>

</Query>

</View>

 

All items where the ID is greater than or equal to 1

<View>

<Query>

<Where>

<Geq><FieldRef Name=’ID’/><Value Type=’Number’>1</Value></Geq>

</Where>

</Query>

</View>

 

 

Customize Related Items field in SharePoint 2013

Related Items

SharePoint 2013 introduced a new field to the Tasks’ list called “Related Items”. This field allows you to link other SharePoint items and/or documents to a specific task. The association occurs by using a wizard to look up and relate items anywhere within SharePoint.

Figure 1: Related Items Wizard


Figure 2: Related Items field with one relation

It’s a welcome change from prior versions, where one solution might have been to create a lookup into another list or library. A solution like that was not only restrictive (to just one library), but also not restrictive enough (all items in that list). So if the item you were trying to reference was located in a very large list, trying to find that item or document becomes a hassle since you only have the title to search upon. The Related Items wizard allows you to search using the different views, filter on columns, and even add new items!

Figure 3: Lookup field

I will say that lookups do have their place, and they are very handy with their cascading/restrictive delete functionality. Related Items which are deleted, will automatically be removed as a reference.

Customizing Related Items

As SharePoint fields go, the “Related Items” field is quite shy. By default, it’s located in the “_Hidden” group, which means when creating a new column on any list, it will not appear.

Note: You have to change its group in order to use it in other lists.


Figure 4: Related Items site column

Not only that, it only shows up on the “View Properties” page, and not even on the “Edit Properties”, which makes it such an under-utilized field. One that could be overlooked entirely!

And when viewing it on the list view page, it doesn’t even want to reveal what its holding! Two related items? Which two?

Figure 5: Out of the box view of Related Items

Note: its actually stored as json: [{ItemId:'[ID]’,WebId:'[GUID]’,ListId:'[GUID]’}]

 

Customize Related Items

Now, let’s try to get “Related Items” to come out of its shell a little bit, and show what those related items are. In order to do this, you will need to override its view display, which SharePoint easily lets you do.

For this example, I’ve modified the sp.ui.relateditems.js file to do our bidding which is to list the related items, like on the edit form, removing the “Add Related Item” and “Remove” links.

To use my example, you will need to upload the sp.ui.relateditems.custom.js file into your site collection. Copy the URL. And then paste it in the “JS Link” box on the list view page.


Figure 6: List View webpart properties

Note: I uploaded mine into the Master Page gallery as a “Design File” for simplicity sake. And used the JS Link value of
~sitecollection/_catalogs/masterpage/sp.ui.relateditems.custom.js

Now, instead of the “2 related items” text, we get the actual items and what they show! No more guessing what the related items are, because they now render (asynchronously).


Figure 7: Related Items custom template

This is just the starting point. You can easily override it even more, starting with having the Related Items field appear on the edit form.

 

sp.ui.relateditems.custom.js

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