5 SharePoint Hacks End Users Love

“How do we best customize SharePoint so that our end users will find it useful?” is a common question that I get whenever I teach SharePoint courses for Learning Tree International.

“How do we best customize SharePoint so that our end users will find it useful?” is a common question that I get whenever I teach SharePoint courses for Learning Tree International.

Let me share what I tell my students, here are 5 SharePoint hacks that will contribute to a better SharePoint experience to your end users:

  1. Configure PDF IFilter
    By default, the search engine in SharePoint (WSS or MOSS) does not index PDF files which means PDF files are not searchable. Make sure you install the PDF Ifilter from Adobe and also, add the PDF icon as well so PDF documents will show up with the appropriate PDF icon.Learn how to configure the PDF Ifilter from: The Worker Thread Blog.
  2. Install the fantastic 40 SharePoint templates
    Now before you go and start developing a custom SharePoint site that your user asks for, check if what they need is already available. Microsoft gives away the fantastic 40 SharePoint templates that have site templates focused on inventory tracking, IT Helpdesk, Fantasy Sports League, etc. Download these great templates from Microsoft.Also, if you want to preview what each of the site template looks like, visit Techblog.
  3. Enable Item-Level Security for Document Libraries

    In WSS and MOSS, SharePoint lists can be customized so that list items can have varying security levels. See what I am talking about:

    However, this feature is not available in Document Libraries. Don’t blame me – I am just the messenger. A lot of times end users would want this capability for documents. Fortunately, Matt Morse figured out how to enable this feature for document libraries.

  4. Add a “Print List” option to the actions menu of a list toolbar
    More often than not, end users would need to print a SharePoint List. The problem is, the printer prints everything visible on the browser and sometimes cuts of the pertinent content.Worry no more, Ishai Sagi has a solution on how to enable a “print list” option in for your lists where it will only print the list items without the formatting around it. Check it out:

    The result:

  5. Enable Microsoft Office Integration
    Check out this video showing how you can synchronize Excel and SharePoint. If you want end users to fully benefit the integration of SharePoint and Microsoft Office, make sure client integration is enabled. To do this:
    1. Go to SharePoint Central Administration.
    2. Click the Application Management tab.
    3. Under Application Security, click Authentication Providers.
    4. Click Default.
    5. Under Client Integration, select Yes for Enable Client Integration.
Any other cool SharePoint hacks that you can share will be greatly appreciated. Enjoy!

2 thoughts on “5 SharePoint Hacks End Users Love

  1. Hi, George –

    It takes a while for some people to realize the potential of SharePoint. The idea of having information accessible not only from a web browser but also most if not all Office apps just blows my clients away.

    All the best!

  2. Hi, I am currently working on some Sharepoint stuff too and was looking for some cool hacks. These 5 are definetly on my 101-List for building a new Sharepoint site.

    I love the office integration and how to link data in excel to a sharepoint list. It’s awesome how easy it is and coworkers dig it right away.

    I especially like to build own applications using custom lists and link them together into a working app. Often I just hide some lists that the user does not need and still have some great functionality for admins and authors.

    The templates are OK! I build my own helpdesk using 2 lists. One for the submitted problems. By adding a new item it fires a workflow that adds an item in the second list that is used for the support-guy. For every update in the second list (by the support-guy), the customer gets a notification via email and the item in list 1 gets updated accordingly. I did this because I wanted a clean look for the customer and enough functionality for the support-guy. Using custom workflows (I use Sharepoint Designer 2007) you can accomplish a lot! Just love using Sharepoint 🙂

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