#Office365Challenge – Considerations before creating Document Libraries in SharePoint: During the first couple of years in my SharePoint career, I was a bit of a cowboy. And not a good one at that! I created apps on the fly, faster than you could explain it to me over the phone. By the time you said goodbye, it was built and the URL was mailed to you. It impressed the socks off everyone, but was a painful learning curve for me, as I would then spend weeks after creating that app, supporting it and making changes. Why? I didn’t ask the right questions, or take all into consideration. There’s a reason why they say 80% of your time should be spent on planning and only 20% on the actual build.

Day: 90 of 365, 275 left
Tools: SharePoint
Description: Considerations before creating Document Libraries in SharePoint

Every app in SharePoint has certain settings to consider before you proceed. Today we’ll look at document libraries. These are the things every SharePoint Business Analyst should know by heart. Let’s take a look at the Library Settings:

Library Tab > Library settings:


I won’t be covering each of the settings, but will mention the most important ones as a start.

List name, description and navigation:
What will the name of the app be (remember to create your apps with Acronyms first so the URL is short – then rename the app afterwards). See my blog Around the Office in 365 Days: Day 75 – SharePoint Apps – Building a Task List for more detail on this
The description of the library
Should it appear on the Quick Launch (left) or not

Versioning settings:
Should the library have content approvals
How many versions to keep and which type
Who can see draft items
Should check in / check out be enabled

Advanced settings:
Will the library have its own content type (different to default)
What is the default open behaviour for browser-enabled documents
Does it have a custom send to location
Will you allow users to create folders
Should items of this library appear in search results
Are you allowing Quick Edit in this library

Validation settings:
Should the data have validations / error messages
“Specify the formula you want to use to validate data when new items are saved to this list. To pass validation, the formula must evaluate to TRUE. For more information, see Formulas in Help.”

Audience targeting settings:
Do you need to enable Audience Targeting
“Enabling audience targeting will create a targeting column for this list. Web parts, such as the Content Query Web Part, can use this data to filter list contents based on the user’s context.”

Rating setting:
Should items in this library be rated
See my blog Around the Office in 365 Days: Day 38 – Ratings in SharePoint for more information

These are admin related settings, used after the app is already created:
Delete this document library
Save document library as template
Permissions for this document library
Manage files which have no checked in version

Workflow Settings:
Will the library have any workflows running

Enterprise Metadata and Keywords Settings
Will you be adding an Enterprise Keyword column
“An enterprise keywords column allows users to enter one or more text values that will be shared with other users and applications to allow for ease of search and filtering, as well as metadata consistency and reuse.
Adding an Enterprise Keywords column also provides synchronization between existing legacy keyword fields and the managed metadata infrastructure. (Document tags will be copied into the Enterprise Keywords on upload.)”

Information management policy settings
Will there be Information Management Policies running on content types

RSS settings:
Allow RSS for this list

Other considerations are:
Alerts to be setup
Views to be created
Which columns must be added
Can this app be reused
By adding a category column or two – can this app be used for more than one department
What type of reporting do they require (will they export data to excel, should some of the views have totals in etc.)
Should the library be email enabled

By considering the above, you’ll be building better apps which need less support afterwards.

Overview of my challenge: As an absolute lover of all things Microsoft, I’ve decided to undertake the challenge, of writing a blog every single day, for the next 365 days. Crazy, I know. And I’ll try my best, but if I cannot find something good to say about Office 365 and the Tools it includes for 365 days, I’m changing my profession. So let’s write this epic tale of “Around the Office in 365 Days”. My ode to Microsoft Office 365.

Keep in mind that these tips and tricks do not only apply to Office 365 – but where applicable, to the overall Microsoft Office Suite and SharePoint.