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10 Best SharePoint Features You’ve Never Used (But Should)

A walk through of the advances made in the SharePoint 2010 platform from earlier versions, as well as a list of 10 out of the box features that most end users are not using, but should. From a webinar given on 6-5-2012

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10 Best SharePoint Features You’ve Never Used (But Should)

  1. 1. The 10 Best SharePoint FeaturesYouve Never Used (But Should) Christian Buckley, Axceler @buckleyPLANET
  2. 2. About Christian Buckley, Director of Product Evangelism at Axceler • Microsoft MVP for SharePoint Server • Most recently at Microsoft, part of the Microsoft Managed Services team (now Office365-Dedicated) and then Advertising Operations • Prior to Microsoft, was a senior consultant, working in the software, supply chain, and grid technology spaces focusing on collaboration • Co-founded and sold a collaboration software company to Rational Software. At another startup (E2open), helped design, build, and deploy a SharePoint-like collaboration platform (Collaboration Manager), onboarding numerous high-tech manufacturing companies, including Hitachi, Matsushita (Panasonic), and Seagate • Co-authored „Microsoft SharePoint 2010: Creating and Implementing Real-World Projects‟ link (MS Press, March 2012) and 3 books on software configuration management. • Twitter: @buckleyplanet Blog: Email: cbuck@axceler.comEmail Cell Twitter 425.246.2823 @buckleyplanet
  3. 3. Get the Book Just released from Microsoft Press Order your copy at Tackle 10 common business problems with proven SharePoint solutions • Set up a help desk solution to track service requests • Build a modest project management system • Design a scheduling system to manage resources • Create a site to support geographically dispersed teams • Implement a course registration system • Build a learning center with training classes and resources • Design a team blog platform to review content • Create a process to coordinate RFP responses • Set up a FAQ system to help users find answers quickly • Implement a cost-effective contact management system
  4. 4. Axceler OverviewImproving Collaboration since 2007Mission: To enable enterprises to simplify, optimize, andsecure their collaborative platforms Delivered award-winning administration and migration software since 1994, for SharePoint since 2007 Over 2,000 global customersDramatically improve the managementof SharePoint Innovative products that improve security, scalability, reliability, “deployability” Making IT more effective and efficient and lower the total cost of ownershipFocus on solving specific SharePoint problems(Administration & Migration) Coach enterprises on SharePoint best practices Give administrators the most innovative tools available Anticipate customers‟ needs Deliver best of breed offerings Stay in lock step with SharePoint development and market trends
  5. 5. What’s New in SharePoint 2010• Administration upgrades• Social tools• Content Management capability• Office web applications• Search functionality• Solution Development
  6. 6. • Administration • PowerShell offers more than 550 cmdlets through the SharePoint Administration shell allowing Admins to script deployment and administration tasks. • Health Assessment is a rules engine introduced in MOSS 2007 has been further integrated into the platform, alerting Admins to configuration issues and suggesting best practices. • Web Analytics provides usage analysis and diagnostic logging features to consolidate event logs, performance data, and usage analysis into a single reporting database against which Admins can build their own reports. • Sandbox Solutions can be executed in the context of a User Code Service that provide Admins the ability to monitor and meter solution resource consumption to protect the farm from misbehaving code. Outline by Chris Beckett at
  7. 7. Social Networking Noteboard is a micro-blog where users can post short notes on MySites and aggregate the notes of colleagues they are following. Social Tagging allows end users to provide context to content through use of “I Like It”, comments, ratings and keyword tagging.
  8. 8. • Social Networking • Blogs got a major facelift, including the addition of comments, ratings, and the ability to present calendar-based archives of older posts.
  9. 9. Social Networking Enterprise Wiki is a new repository site template that adds a number of features to the standard Wiki page including the ability to insert reusable content blocks, and customized page layouts.
  10. 10. • Enterprise Content Management • Wiki Editing is now the default page editing experience for SharePoint 2010, providing an easy to use, rich-text experience. • Content Lifecycle Policies have undergone a major enhancement, allowing multi-phased retention and expiration policies to be defined for a site, content type or list. The out-of-box actions list now supports many additional options (beyond just delete) that includes moving, copying, making a record, and custom workflows. • Validation Rules can now be defined on fields and are applied at the object model, not the user interface level. Items created through code, script or the user interface can now have multi-field validation applied consistently. • Default Values are self describing and provide the ability to define intelligent default values on content items. Default values can also be location-aware, allowing default values to be defined down to the folder level.
  11. 11. Enterprise Search Faceted Search provides refiners that allow users to add additional filters to search results, configured based on metadata, user context, location, and time periods. People Search Results have been improved, with results now appearing in a business card format.
  12. 12. • Office Web Applications are finally available, with the Microsoft Office suite now offered as web-based extensions, allowing multi-user authoring and real-time collaboration.• Microsoft is positioning Office Web applications as an extension to the desktop experience, not a replacement, and the Office Web Applications CALs are included as part of a Microsoft Office desktop license.
  13. 13. • Solutions Development • Client Object Model (OM) is a subset of the SharePoint object model extended to client runtime environments including JavaScript, .NET and Silverlight variations. The Client OM provides unified and simpler access to SharePoint content. • Visual Studio 2010 Templates for just about every type of SharePoint custom artifact, the ability to develop visual web parts based on User Controls, and native support for solution packaging, deployment and debugging. • Silverlight Web Part that now natively supports Silverlight applications, including the ability to save Silverlight XAP applications as content in document libraries and render them in a Web Part. • RESTful Data Services for accessing SharePoint content items, and the ability to develop custom RESTful services based on ADO.NET Data Services and future support for WCF Data Services. The REST-based API includes support for returning results in both AtomPub and JSON formats. • InfoPath Forms are now natively integrated into the Ribbon UI for Lists and Libraries allowing custom list views to be easily created and publishing from InfoPath. The improved InfoPath Web Part now supports connections allowing InfoPath forms to consume and provide data to other Web Parts, and InfoPath now supports sand-boxed code-behind without requiring the form to be Administrator- approved. • Access Web Applications are a new capability in Access 2010 to create and publish browser-based Access applications that deploy as SharePoint site templates, and use native SharePoint lists for data storage. Applications can include custom forms, navigation and reports and can include custom scripts for data validation and application commands, actions and events.
  14. 14. Ok, now it’s time forThe 10 Best SharePoint FeaturesYouve Never Used (But Should)
  15. 15. 1. Document SetsWhat are they?• Document Sets are like folders that contain multiple documents or files, allowing you to apply metadata and rules to the set of documents, as well as to each individual item inside.• Think of a Document Set as a Bill of Materials.• They enable an organization to manage a single deliverable, or work product, rather than needing to juggle several separate documents or files.
  16. 16. • Document Set authors can: • Create new multi-document work products quickly and easily by using the New Document command in a document library. • Capture a version history snapshot of the current properties and documents within the Document Set. • Start workflows on the entire document set or individual items within the Document Set to manage common tasks such as review and approval. • E-mail a link to the Document Set. • Use the Send To command to move or copy the Document Set to another location (the destination must be configured within Central Administration). • Manage permissions for the Document Set.
  17. 17. 2. Document IDsWhat are they?• A document ID is a unique identifier for a document or document set and a static URL that opens the document or document set associated with the document ID, regardless of the location of the document. • Provide a consistent way to reference items such as documents and document sets in SharePoint where URLs can break if the location of the item changes. • Creates a static URL for each content item with a document ID assigned to it. • Allows you to move documents or document sets at different points in the document life cycle. For example, if you create a document on a MySite or Workspace page and then publish it on a team site, the document ID persists and travels with the document, circumventing the broken URL problem. • Allows you to customize the format of the IDs that the service generate via the document management API, enabling custom document ID providers.
  18. 18. Document IDs must be activated as a SiteCollection feature, and then enabled
  19. 19. • You can configure some setting by going to Site Collection Settings >> Mange Document ID’s• To view it in a library, simply modify the view and include the attribute.
  20. 20. • You can view all of your Document IDs as a column • If you right click on the Document ID and select Properties, you can see the URL. Note that it is not an explicit path to the library – instead, it goes to the document ID Redirector, which finds the document wherever it has been moved.
  21. 21. • You can use the document ID Redirector in the DocCenter to find the documentNote that for existing documents some action has to be taken on the document to cause aDocument ID to be generated (like check-in/check-out.) Any new documents will have aDocument ID generated on upload... Or you can go into Site Collection Administrator and force atimer job to stamp all the documents.Additionally, Document ID’s are indexed so you can search on the property DocID
  22. 22. • Another way to find the Document ID is in View Properties
  23. 23. 3. Organizational ChartsWhat are they?• Organizational Charts are a new Silverlight control available through MySites.• Provide a sleek new UI for team profiles.• Highlight the need to build out your user profiles (whether or not you enable the full capabilities of MySites)
  24. 24. • For organizations that have their end users complete their user profiles, the organizational charts can be very helpful. They are found on the tabs on your MySite
  25. 25. • The Silverlight control makes the traditional org chart visual and simple, with management chain above, peers on the side, and direct reports below, allowing end users to quickly identify contacts within an organization and better understand relationships.
  26. 26. 4. “Ask me about” feature (user profile property)What is it?• On your MySite, the overview tab includes an “Ask Me About” web part that helps users in your organization find answers from people with the right answers. It’s a simple feature, but extremely effective at exposing skills and interests in a readily consumable format.• You can build your skills and interests from available keywords already stored in SharePoint or create new ones that are immediately available in the keyword store, such as industries, internal project names, or technical capabilities to help end users identify skill matches.• Once added, these terms are displayed on the overview tab, where you can click each one to find other users with similar traits.
  27. 27. 5. Promoting (user-generated) tags to your taxonomyWhat is this?• As end users add tags / metadata to content, there is a need for proactive governance of the metadata, promoting terms into the managed taxonomy. Feature Create or delete term sets Add, modify or delete terms Arrange terms in hierarchies Define synonyms Import terms Promote managed keywords into managed terms Create multi-lingual taxonomies
  28. 28. • Groups represent defined security boundaries in terms of taxonomy governance. Multiple groups may be created within a Managed Metadata Service, with each Group having multiple Terms Sets. Management (create, edit, delete) of Group properties takes place here.• One or more Term Sets (up to 1,000) are defined as part of a Group. Term Sets can be created manually or imported through the interface. Management (create, edit, delete) of Term Set properties, including Term hierarchy, takes place here.
  29. 29. • Individual words or phrases are added to a Term Set with governance and proactive management (create, copy, reuse, merge, deprecate, move or delete)
  30. 30. A copy of the term will be created within the original term set.Copy the term The new term will be named Copy of <original term name>. No child terms for the source term will be copied. Adds the reused term underneath the selected term in the tree view pane.Reuse a term You must have Contributor rights for the group for any term you want to reuse. The selected term, as well as any of its synonyms and translations, will be merged into the selected target term. The original IDs of each term are preserved so that tags that used the old term IDs still work for search (old IDs will not be available for new tagging).Merge a term with another Content tagged with the merged term will not be updated, but it will be returned in searches for the term that is the merge target. Terms can be merged only if they are siblings in the hierarchy in all term sets in which they both exist. To merge terms, you must have contributor rights to the groups for both terms. This action makes any instances of this term in any term set to which it belongs unavailable for tagging. Any child terms of the term are not deprecated.Deprecate a term To make the term available for use again, point to it, click the arrow that appears, and click Enable Term.Move a term Moves the selected term, and any child terms for that term, to the selected target location. Deletes the term and any child terms below it. If this term is a source term for terms that are reused in other locations, it will be placed in the Orphaned Terms term set in the System group.Delete a term If the term is a unique term (not reused in other locations), the term is completely deleted. If the term is a reused term, it removes the term from the current term set.
  31. 31. 6. Conditional routingWhat is this?• SharePoint Server 2010 introduced metadata routing and storage by using Content Organizer. Content Organizer builds upon document routing features that were introduced in the Records Center site template in SharePoint 2007.• With Content Organizer, new site level features make it easier for administrators and users to classify, route, and store content by using rules based on metadata.• Instead of directly uploading a document to a library or folder, users can save, route, and automatically apply rules to a document.
  32. 32. • To do some basic routing, you need to ensure the feature has been turned on.• Once activated, youll see that the Site Administration section (in the Site Settings page) has a link for Content Organizer Settings and one for Content Organizer Rules.
  33. 33. • When you go back to the site, youll also notice that a Drop Off Library has been created. This is your documents point of entry. Once a document is placed in this Drop Off Library, the document will be checked against your rule and routed to its final destination
  34. 34. • In order to route the document, you’ll need to create your rule. Go to Site Actions > Site Settings. Under the Site Administration section, click on the Content Organizer Rules link. You will see a blank list.• Click the Add New Item link and a form will appear. Give your rule a name, select the content type that the rule will apply to, select the destination, and set the conditions – such as routing a document based on a value in a field, selecting the column from the dropdown provided and enter in the criteria.
  35. 35. 7. Asset libraryWhat is this?• A digital asset is an image, audio, or video file, or other reusable rich content fragment that an organization uses in applications across the enterprise. The asset library in SharePoint Server 2010 enables users to easily create, discover and reuse existing digital assets within the organization.• In SharePoint Server 2010 you use an asset library to store and share digital assets with users. The asset library is a SharePoint Server 2010 library template that is customized to use content types designed specifically for storing and cataloging rich media assets.
  36. 36. An effective solution for managing digital assets specifies:• The metadata to provide for each type of asset.• The amount of storage space that is required for the assets.• The performance issues to consider for serving the assets to users.• Where to store assets at each stage of the life cycle.• How to control access to an asset at each stage of its life cycle.• How to move assets within the organization as team members contribute to creation, review, approval, publication, and disposition of assets.• The policies to apply so that asset-related actions are audited, retained or disposed of correctly, and protected as necessary.• How assets are treated as corporate records, which must be retained according to requirements and corporate guidelines.
  37. 37. • From the Create page, simply select Library and then Asset Library. Give it a name and click Create
  38. 38. • Assets are presented visually, making them searchable by metadata, asset type, and other attributes.• Assets can be previewed
  39. 39. 8. Aggregated calendar (with Outlook sync)What is this?• Teams can keep multiple calendars (up to 10) in sync by creating layers, allowing end users to see color- coded, overlapping activities.• Users can then sync calendars to Outlook, comparing their personal calendar side-by-side.
  40. 40. • Within a site, edit the Group Calendar by changing the color of each entry.
  41. 41. • Go to the target calendar where you want to provide the aggregated view, and within the ribbon, select Create Calendar Layer. You will be able to select each calendar view by URL.
  42. 42. • These aggregate views must be recreated for each location in which you want the multiple views
  43. 43. • You can also link to Outlook from within the context menu by selecting the option on the ribbon.
  44. 44. 9. Personal viewsWhat are they?• Personal views allow you to easily find content that you use regularly. When you leave a page after sorting and filtering content, you lose all of your settings.• By creating a personal view (with the right permissions), you can organize your content the way you want to view it each time you visit the site.• When you create a view, you can configure the audience for the view to be personal or public. A personal view is available only to you when you look at the list or library. A public view is available when anyone looks at the list or library.• If you do not have permissions to create public views, the option to create one is grayed out, and you are able to choose only to create a personal view.
  45. 45. • Create and modify your view by adding, removing, and sorting columns from an existing view and use it as your baseline.
  46. 46. • You cannot change a personal view to a public view or a public view to a personal view. You can use a public view as the starting point for personal or public views. You can use a personal view as the starting point only for personal views.• When you create a view, if Create View is disabled you do not have the necessary permissions to create a personal or public view. If the Create a Public View option is disabled you do not have the necessary permissions to create a public view.• To create a personal view, you must have the contribute permission level for the list or library, such as by being member of the default site name Member group. To create a public view, you must have the design permission level for the list or library, such as by being member of the default Designer SharePoint group for the site.
  47. 47. 10. Meeting workspacesWhat are they?• SharePoint workspaces provide direct bi-directional synchronization of library and list content between a SharePoint site and a workspace on an individual client computer.• Creation of a SharePoint workspace enables individual SharePoint users to check out and check in SharePoint library documents from their local computers, bring SharePoint documents and lists to their computers where they can work online or offline, and synchronize local content with a SharePoint site.
  48. 48. • A Meeting Workspace is created by selecting the option on a new calendar items, allowing members of the event team to share documents and assets for the purpose of organizing the event, and is a great way to focus collaboration.
  49. 49. • If your meeting materials — such as agendas, related documents, objectives, and tasks — are often scattered, a Meeting Workspace site can help you keep them all in one place.
  50. 50. • The Meeting Workspace template is simple but effective in keeping your event content organized. At the end of an event, content can be saved off / archived to another location, and the workspace and unnecessary content deleted.
  51. 51. Get the most out of OOTB• Before you spend any time on customizing SharePoint, understand what is possible out-of-the-box• If you’re worried about “learning” on your primary (production) system, look into test / temporary environments from Fpweb or CloudShare
  52. 52. Questions?Feel free to email me directly
  53. 53. Contact meChristian Order your copy at

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A walk through of the advances made in the SharePoint 2010 platform from earlier versions, as well as a list of 10 out of the box features that most end users are not using, but should. From a webinar given on 6-5-2012


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