SharePoint Governance for Site Owners

A new Site Owner approached me at the Best Practices Conference saying that she didn’t actually get the whole SharePoint governance thing. It all seemed pie in the sky to her.  She wanted to know what it meant to her and why she should care.

It was a good question I thought, so included some ideas into my slidedeck for her.  For the benefit of everyone else that couldn’t attend the conference, here are some examples of what you can do as a Site Owner to govern your world.

You need to decide what’s important to your team.  So the rules you will set up need to be easy for the team to follow, as well align to the overall company SharePoint governance plan.  If there isn’t one, just do what works for you.  Whatever you decide, it is very important to communicate the standards to your team and explain how to do things.

  • Use metadata and views instead of subfolders – you could decide that it is more efficient to store and access information using this method, rather than traditional subfolders.
  • Every document library must have a column which categorizes the documents in it – eg: Security Level – Confidential, Internal, Copyright, Privilaged, Public Use.
  • There needs to be a link to the corporate intranet page on every team site.
  • You may not delete the People and Groups link (2007 users only).
  • All documents need to adhere to the naming standard YYYY-MM-DD – Full Name of Document.
  • Major versioning must be used on each document library and document may not be renamed once assigned the correct naming standard.

Alternatively, create the perfect document library, with all the columns and views and versioning activated, and add a rule that any future document libraries need to be based on your template, not the SharePoint default library.

And that’s it.  It doesn’t have to be overly complicated, but it’s little controls like this that will make your site easier to run in the long term, as well as give you better search results.

So go on …

As Mother Teresa said, “if each of us would only sweep our own doorstep, the whole world would be clean”.

Every bit helps in SharePoint governance.  Start small and grow.



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