This is the last of a four part series. If you haven’t read parts 1-3, please check out the complete SharePoint Content Types and Metadata series.
Okay, we’re almost finished! We have our content types created. We added our content types to the document library. Now let’s look at adding a document to a library and adding metadata:
- In the document library, click the Documents tab on the ribbon bar.
- Click Upload Document.
- Use the Browse button and locate the document you want saved. Click OK.
After the file has been uploaded, you must now apply metadata. Notice the Content Type drop-down. You have the option to choose from content types currently associated with the library.
Choosing a content type determines the columns displayed to you. After selecting the appropriate content type for the document, type the metadata values you want saved with it. Click Save.
The document with its associated metadata has been added to the library. Anytime you add a document to the library use content types and apply metadata. Metadata will make it much more efficient to locate a document in the future.
Without metadata, the only way to locate a document is by simply browsing for the file name. As time passes and more documents are added, finding that one document you need nine months later can become a powerful exercise in frustration.
Now that documents in your environment have associated metadata, it’s much easier to locate documents using SharePoint search. To use search, simply type the word or words you are looking for in the Search box. In the example, I typed fpweb into the search box. You can see that the results set consists of documents that were saved with fpweb as a value in the metadata fields.
Because it’s such a critical feature that you can leverage when locating specific documents, we’ll look at SharePoint search more in-depth in a future article.
If you haven’t changed the default view of the document library, it may be difficult for you when you need to locate a specific document by browsing.
Creating views will help you quickly locate needed documents.
To create a view of a document library, navigate to the library.
Click the Library tab.
We’re going to modify the existing view, so click Modify View.
The second section is the columns section. Place a check next to those columns you want displayed in the view. Use the Position from Left drop-down for each column to select the column’s placement. After you place a check next to those columns you want displayed in the view (and cleared checkmarks for those columns you don’t want displayed) click OK.
I recommend leaving the Type and Name column selected, as these are linked to SharePoint options and menus. Removing these columns will make it more difficult to perform specific functions. If you accidentally remove these columns from the view, you can easily add it later.
After clicking OK, you will see something similar to the following.
As you can see, it’s much easier to browse for a specific document.
You can click a column name to display the submenu for the column. Using this menu, you can sort by ascending or descending order, or choose to filter and display specific records.
The features and functions available when working with Views are beyond the scope of this introductory post. In the future, we’ll take a more in depth look at using SharePoint views.
Thanks for reading my series on SharePoint Content Types and Metadata. Please let me know if you have any questions.