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How to Make Sharepoint Easier to Access

How to Make Sharepoint Easier to Access

06/04/2015

Out of all the Office 365 programs, Sharepoint tends to be the most confusing to new users. Two of the most common questions we get are, “How do I get to SharePoint?” and “How does my employee know to go there?” The answer to both is actually pretty simple: the ‘Sites’ page.

You can get to the ‘Sites’ page by clicking the apps launcher at the top left corner of the screen once you’re signed into Office 365.  By default, it only lists two items – a ‘Team Site’ and a ‘Public Site’, which works for a simple SharePoint deployment. But updating this page can drastically improve your SharePoint experience.

There are two ways you can customize the interface for your users:

TilesTiles

At the admin level, you can customize which tiles are shown to users as links. Here's how (please note: you must be a SharePoint administrator):

  1. Click the “Manage the promoted sites below” link near the top left of the page.
  2. You’ll be given the option to ‘Add a promoted site’. Complete the form with the necessary information.
  3. Refresh your page and you’ll see the new links.

When you add new links, you change the image - though there are a few parameters:

  • Site images should be 150x150 pixels. Any other size will result in your image being off-centered and real goofy looking.
  • If a user doesn’t have permissions to see the image you're using as a site logo (maybe you stored it in your OneDrive) – they won’t be able to see the image. To keep the permissions simple, store your image in your main site collection’s asset library. By default everyone should be able to view it.

You can also control who can see which links. You can access these permissions in the SharePoint Admin Center ( SharePoint Admin Center > User Profiles > My Site Settings > Manage Promoted Sites > Edit > Target Audiences).

Following Sites

SitesThe other option for customizing the sites page is to teach your users to ‘follow’ sites. To follow a site, click on the ‘follow’ button at the top right corner of the screen.  Following a site does two important things:

First - it adds a link to your sites page, allowing you to easily access that site.

 Second, following a site allows Office 365 to work intelligently for you through Delve. After choosing to follow a site, Delve’s search feature combs through it and determines what documents may pertain to you. If you haven’t used Delve before, read our previous blog post on Delve to see why it’s useful.

Using one or both of these options should make it much easier for your users to access Sharepoint. If you have any questions about using Sharepoint or how to set up a Sharepoint site, please contact us.

   
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