SharePoint 2010 – Creating a knowledge base part 1

A couple of weeks ago I saw a tweet from Jennifer Mason (@jennifermason). She asked if someone is using metadata navigation in lists and libraries. This was a coincidence because during one of my recent projects a client asked us if we could implement an internal knowledge centre. This centre had to be used for storing internal procedures. This varied from internal trainings to what to do in a case of an emergency. The customer wanted to create the procedures, in SharePoint 2010, through using text, documents and pictures. The procedures had to be categorized per department. This immediately brought my attention to the enterprise wiki site template and managed metadata navigation.

I would like to show you the final result in this article, and in the follow up articles I will explain how I configured the knowledge centre by just using out-of-the-box SharePoint! The last article dedicated to this subject is going to be about making cool adjustments with a custom page lay-out by using SharePoint Designer 2010. The picture below shows the final result:


The moment the user goes to the knowledge centre he or she gets an overview of all the procedures. The left side of the screen provides a filter mechanism. This is the metadata navigation. The user can click on a department, for example Art Handling, and immediately only these procedures are shown:

Only two procedures are displayed! By using the metadata navigation the user can easily look for the right procedures. There is also an additional filter available called Created By. Let’s say the user want to see procedures created by John Doe? Just type in John Doe’s name and only his procedures are shown. This can help the user if there are a lot more procedures then in my example. The owners of the knowledge centre can easily create new pages by clicking on Site Actions and New Page: 


After naming the new page, the user can add content:

By using standard SharePoint it is possible to add text and pictures. The user can select the corresponding department by start typing in Categories:

By starting to type the user gets suggestions from SharePoint! How cool is that! The user can also click on the little symbol next to the text box:

I personally think the suggestions are really helpful for the user and makes using metadata super user friendly. The last step before the user can save the procedure is adding some extra metadata. The user clicks on Page (in the ribbon) and Edit Properties. There are two interesting fields that can be used:

  • Contact
  • Contact E-mail Address

The user can enter these details and press the Save button to apply the procedure to the knowledge centre. The procedure can now be viewed by the other users! In the next article I want to show you how I configured the knowledge centre.

Hopefully you liked this real world example and the use of metadata navigation with the enterprise wiki. I also want to thank Jennifer for her advice and input J

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