All right stop! Collaborate and listen (Sharing Points)

January 28, 2009

The importance of Office Integration with SharePoint

Filed under: MOSS, Office 2007 — Tags: , , , — stephenmuller @ 1:14 am

I recently did a talk at the SharePoint usergroup (I apologise about the screen resolution to all who were there) about the importance of focusing on the integrating of Office 2007 and SharePoint.

Typically a SharePoint implementation can make additional demands on users time in regards to saving and opening files from SharePoint. The process of locating the correct Doucment Library and using the correct content type means creating new documents are not as simple as the File New in Word.

Additionally to save a document they need to find the correct Document Library (if they did not create it from there) and then add any meta-data to the file. Again all of which adds additional time (Small yes but add that up for people whose job it is to create and edit documents and it will add up) to the traditional way of creating and saving documents.

However many clients I have spoken to have said that they are happy to spend that additional time if that means that they get a benefit to them, not to management but to them. This includes faster access to the correct file (Searching), one copy of the file (make sure your versioning is turned on) and an interface that is simple and easy (Good architecture and design) and meeting the projects goals of course.

Many users I have found work within the Office products almost exclusively, by leveraging the integration functions within MS Office 2007 and SharePoint users can continue to work within them. This clearly can mean a lot to users as they do not need to change their work habits too much. Training is the key.

I will not go into the features of the integrations but I have added some links below to help you to understand its capabilities.


A good list of all the integrations features


This link compares the office versions and SharePoint versions


Outlook Integration


Integrating OneNote


The link below is from me, but it is something administrators can do to create folders for users. It has the added bonus of being able to be targeted to audiences.


There are addins one can purchase to make the integration even better as well. The best one I have used is from Colligo and it links with Outlook.


To sum up, dont overlook the integration with office as it allows users to continue to work with tools they are familiar with, yet still enable them to interact with SharePoint.

Spend time talking to the users to understand how they work, do they use Word/Excel or Outlook, even products like PowerPoint and One Note can be effictivley integrated with SharePoint. Make sure your architecture makes sense to them and uses terms they are familiar with. Spend time training the users about how to use the integration features. I like to provide cheat sheets to help they are one A4 sheet with pictures broken up by tasks like How to Save or How to open another document. 

Some things can also be done at via the administrator this includes the creating of folders as discussed above and email enabling your libraries.

A sucessfull SharePoint Integration really does depend on the users, if they do not work with it because it does not assist them it will not be as sucessfull as it could.

Note: If people want me to outline the integration features of Office let me know and I will do a post.


Any questions email me.


November 6, 2008

File Locked by another using MOSS user pt 3

Filed under: MOSS, Office 2007 — Tags: , — stephenmuller @ 11:59 pm

I have more information regarding locked files in SharePoint, these have been commonly read posts.

 This is from Ian Morrish’s blog, you should all have it in your feed anyway..

He discusses the traps and tricks for Check in and Check out, but it also has this detail on locking time outs for files

Lock File Timeout

This is interesting and something to beware of when rolling out to different Operating Systems. I wonder how these timeout can be changed esp the Vista one as it seem a little long. Let me know if you find out where…..

Go and read his good post

June 24, 2008

Creating Office Save and Open Shortcuts for Sharepoint

Filed under: MOSS, Office 2007 — Tags: , — stephenmuller @ 11:37 pm

This is a great way in MOSS to push save and open locations to your users so they can access them quickly from inside an office application, and they can be audience driven as well.

Go to the SSP Admin Page. Click on Publish Links to Office Client applications.

Publish Links

Then click new to add in the locations you want your users to save to.

New Publish Location

Click OK to save.

When the users want to save or open an office document, they select My Sharepoint Sites in the Favourite Links Section of the Save As or Open Dialog box of the Office application.

Now there seemed to be a lag when all these folders become available to users, it may well be after a full crawl but just be aware there is a delay.

I do not know if this works for Office 2003 but I do suspect it only works for Office 2007.

Let me know


June 23, 2008

Document Information panel not appearing

Filed under: MOSS — Tags: , , — stephenmuller @ 5:30 am

I finally go a chance to look into this, it has been a problem for me but I just ignored it, until now.

If you have had trouble with your Document Information Panel (DIP) not appearing when you open up word (or any Office document), check the settings on the content type (if it is a content type).  There is a Document Information Panel settings link that allows you to select if you want the DIP to always be visible on open, it seems to be turned off by default.

I hope the image gives you some ide of it, looks a bit blurry to me.

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