SharePoint Tiles I’d like to see

TilesWhen I first saw the new Microsoft tile design I was not too impressed. The tiles were, in my opinion, merely space-wasters that could have been replaced with a snappy icon or just a word.

However, I have changed my opinion. The tiles provide us with a canvas on which to display various “properties” of the content.  That saves time troubleshooting.

End users often ask me for help. Functionality does not behave as expected, people get access denied messages, or other things happen that the site owner does not understand. In those cases I explore the site in question. Usually I can find my way pretty fast, but in large sites it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact troublemaker without clicking until I see #0070C6 in the face.*

I often wish that SharePoint would make things a little easier for me, by providing me with icons that tell me if there is anything special in this list. I usually have to make 3 clicks from the “All Site Content” page to find if any special settings have been applied.

So I have tried to create those tiles that would help me most. You will notice that I am not exactly a designer, so please treat these as concepts only 🙂

For libraries:

BrokenPermissionsThis library (left) does not inherit permissions from the parent site. If I could choose one tile addition, it would be this one. Most help questions have to do with permissions and security.
I sometimes wish that site owners would only be able to add new members on site level…

Unlimited versioningThis library (right) has (unlimited) versioning enabled. This is helpful when trying to find out why a library or documents takes up a lot of storage space or the system is very slow.

This library (left) has a workflow. This is helpful to see if this library can be easily moved to another location, broken up in pieces when it contains a large number of items, if versioning (shown on top right of course) can be turned off easily, if there is workflow history to clean up, if this may be the cause for a performance issue.

Email enabledThis library (right) is email enabled – prepare for a messy structure with few relevant metadata.

LastModifiedThis (left) is the latest change date of the library. The default “5 months ago” can be too vague and can be overwritten by the date of the latest service pack update. I would be so happy if I could always see the exact date!

NightmareThis library (right) is a nightmare, regardless of last change date. This should be dealt with as soon as possible 🙂

For lists:

All the above would be useful, as well as:

AnnouncementsThis list has attachments enabled. Once again, it tells me why it takes up a lot of storage space, if there is a chance to move the content via a template, if I can export the content to spreadsheet if it is old but the content needs to be kept, etc.

What would you like to see?

Would these tiles be useful to you as well? And which other ones would you like to see?

* According to the RGB Color Calculator.

Bathroom tiles image courtesy of 89studio at


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