SharePoint has introduced a number of social features that can help people work in groups and constructively collaborate.
A great social business uses tools to strengthen the collaboration that’s already going on in their organization, and help provide new opportunities for communication that will help break down the traditional limitations of departments, geographies, and job categories.
This is why we were excited about the SharePoint Newsfeed. Available in SharePoint configurations including SharePoint Server 2013 and Office 365 SharePoint Online, Newsfeed is a new tool that lets you see what’s going on in your organization throughout the day, as well as share your own ideas, updates and observations.
This post will cover the new social features including viewing and posting Newsfeed updates, using following to stay updated on things important to you, changing what updates others see, tagging updates for people to see, and how to make Newsfeed updates on the go.
Viewing Your Stream of Newsfeed Updates
To see a steam of your Newsfeed updates on the people, documents, sites and tags you’re following, on the global navigation bar [Click] NEWSFEED.
Viewing Different Updates
You can view different categories of updates on the Newsfeed.
To show different newsfeed updates, under the conversation field [Click] FOLLOWING to show updates on the people, documents, sites and tags you’re following.
To see all updates open to you, [Click] EVERYONE.
To see all updates in which you were mentioned, [Click] MENTIONS.
To see all your site activities, [Click] , then ACTIVITIES.
To see a feed of your likes, [Click] , then LIKES.
Following a Site
To get Newsfeed updates on a site, follow it:
1. Navigate to the site you want to follow.
2. [Click] .
Note: This also displays the followed site on the SITES start page, accessed by clicking SITES on the global navigation bar.
Following a Document/File
For Newsfeed updates on when a document was modified and shared with others, you can follow the document:
1. Select the document/file by [Clicking] the column next to it.
2. Choose FILES, FOLLOW .
Following a Person
Follow the activities of a colleague to see when they tag content, change their work status, accomplish a task, and more.
1. On the Newsfeed page, on the left column below the I’M FOLLOWING heading, [Click] the number of people you’re following.
In this case, [Click] the number “0”.
2. [Click] .
3. Enter names and email addresses of site members to follow.
4. [Click] FOLLOW.
1. Search for a person .
2. In the search results, [Hover] over a profile.
3. [Click] FOLLOW.
On your SharePoint Site, [Click] a person’s name in a list or library, then [Click] .
Engaging in Newsfeed Conversations
SharePoint 2013 allows you to post short messages (or “microblogs”) to the Newsfeed stream. Posting a message in a Newsfeed conversation is like posting an update on a social network like Twitter. But the goal for most organizations is for Newsfeed conversations to facilitate internal communication.
To post a new message:
1. Open your Newsfeed by [Clicking] NEWSFEED.
2. To change who to share with, [Click] the group next to SHARE WITH and choose a group.
3. Type a message into the field below.
4. To add an image, [Click] , then BROWSE to find an image. Choose an image, then [Click] OPEN, UPLOAD.
5. [Click] POST.
To respond to a Newsfeed post:
1. [Click] REPLY.
2. Type a message and/or attach an image.
3. [Click] POST.
Show or Hide Your Activity
Other people in your organization can see whom you follow and who follows you when they visit your profile, but only if you update your privacy settings to allow this.
To allow or prevent others from seeing whom you follow and who follows you:
- In the top-right corner, [Click] your name(ie. ), then ABOUT ME.
- [Click] .
- [Click] , then NEWSFEED SETTINGS.
- To enable/disable others from seeing the people you follow and who follows you: check/uncheck the box next to the PEOPLE I FOLLOW heading.
- Under the heading ACTIVITIES I WANT TO SHARE IN MY NEWSFEED, choose what you want to share and what not to share in your newsfeed.
- Click SAVE ALL AND CLOSE.
Referencing People Using @ and Tagging Topics with Hashtags
“@ mentions” and hashtags should be familiar to most users of Twitter and other social networks. @ mentions are used in Twitter to make sure someone knows they’re referenced, are being posed a question, are engaging in a conversation, or being otherwise included in a message. Similarly, hashtags are used to make it easier to find specific topics and related updates. These methods of categorization help messages get found by the right people, and not get lost like virtual pins in a haystack.
SharePoint 2013 also uses @ mentions and hashtags so that users can make their updates more easily found.
Using @ Mentions
To include someone in a message, Type “@” then the first letters of their name, then choose one of the suggested contacts. Their name will show with an @ symbol (ie. @John Smith).
To see the posts and activities of a person mentioned, [Click] their name (preceded by @).
Using # Tags
To tag a message with a theme or category, type “#” then a keyword (ie. #HR). Six tags can be used in a single post.
To see all posts tagged with a keyword, [Click] the tag (preceded by #).
To follow a tag, On a post that includes the tag, [Click] FOLLOW #[tag], or [Click] then FOLLOW #[tag]. Or, [Click] a tag, then .
Liking a Newsfeed Update
Liking a Newsfeed Update shows you appreciate the item or comment. It also promotes the post’s importance and lets whoever created the post know you found it interesting.
1. On the top navigation, choose NEWSFEED.
2. At the bottom of the post, [Click] LIKE.
To see your liked posts, access your Likes feed by [Clicking] , then LIKES.
Mobile Newsfeed Updates on iPhone/iPad or Windows Phone
You can continue your Newsfeed conversations online using some specially designed apps for Windows Phone and iOS (for your iPhone or iPad).
Simply install the SharePoint Newsfeed app for Windows Phone or install the SharePoint Newsfeed app for iOS mobile devices, then install it on your phone.
The app will allow you to see your Newsfeed:
Start a Newsfeed Conversation on Mobile
- [Tap] in the top right corner.
- To change who sees your message (from the default: everyone), [Tap] EVERYONE to see a list of the team sites you’re following, then [Tap] a team site to direct the message to.
- Type a message.
- To send, [Tap] POST.
Reply to a Conversation
- To reply to an existing conversation on your Newsfeed, at the top of the post [Tap] , or if there are other comments, it will appear as where the number is the number of comments already left (ie. ).
- Type a message.
- To post your response, [Tap] POST.
Being able to view and participate in conversations can be accessed anywhere wherever you want is one of the great things about SharePoint Newsfeed.
We hope you find that the social features of SharePoint can help you and co-workers stay in the loop at your organization, and work better as a team.
Do you have any tips on making your organization more social with SharePoint 2013? Please let us know in the comments!