Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Approvals in SharePoint Online

On of the features of SharePoint in general are approvals. This means that document updates can only ‘go live’ once they have been approved. This functionality is not enabled out of the box. So how do you configure this?

In this case I’ll show you how approvals work with a Document Library in SharePoint Online.

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Navigate to the Document Library in question as a SharePoint Administrator and select the LIBRARY tab at the top left of the page.

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This will expose the Ribbon Menu. On the right of this menu select the Library Settings button.

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Under the left hand General Settings column select the link Versioning settings.

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At top of the page, in the Content Approval section select Yes for Require content approval for submitted items.

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After selecting this the section lower down, Draft Item Security will be enabled. It is generally recommended that you leave this at the default of Only users who can approve items (and the author of the item).

Press the OK button at the bottom of the page to continue.

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If you now return to the Document Library you will find that an extra column, Approval Status, has been added.

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If a user now uploads a document to this library they will see that it’s status is Pending. At this point only the user and an administrator can see the document in the library.

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To approve the document, a user with rights needs to select that document and either from the Ribbon Menu or the ellipse as shown above select Approve/Reject.

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They can then make their selection of Approval Status, leave a Comment and press the OK button.

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When users now view the Document Library they will see the document (provided it has been approved) and it was last modified by the person who approved it.

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So who can approve by default? To do so you’ll need to have at least Design rights.

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You can of course create new permission levels and assign them. In which case you will need to check the Approve Items option shown above.