To Folder or Not to Folder(In SharePoint). That is the question.

Should I use folders in SharePoint?

I am always in search of opinions on the use of folders within SharePoint.

Arguments For Folders in SharePoint:

  • End users are comfortable with them.  The transition to any new technology is always easier, and adoption rates higher the more end users can apply “old school” ways to any new interface.
  • Folders, although merely logical in SharePoint, provide a hierarchical structure, and some standardization.
  • For the power user, you can get rid of the infantile folders, and create a custom view that eliminates them.
  • There is always the 2,000 (or is it 3,000? or maybe 4,000?) object limit within any view.  My understanding is that folders in SharePoint can break up you library into segments so you dont need to worry about these limits in rendering a list.
  • Logical structure can help down the line for any reorganization, export or migration of data and files.
  • For scanning to SharePoint, most advanced capture technologies provide custom foldering as a migration method to SharePoint.  Why not use it if it is there?
Arguments Against Folders in SharePoint Libraries:
  • Folders are “old school”, and have no place within SharePoint libraries, especially in SharePoint 2010.  Customized views, content types and document sets should be utilized for organization and viewing.
  • SharePoint should not be used like a file system, it is a database, and the search interface should be used to find what you are looking for in the content databases versus the folder “Hunt and Peck” method.
  • Encouraging end users to create folders within a SharePoint Library will only lead to the end users “gone wild” scenario that happened to our file share system.
Did I miss anything?  Any enhancement of this post would be greatly appreciated.
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Posted in folders, scanning, Search, sharepoint, sharepoint 2010, viewing

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