I am facing the following 2 problems inside my team site, and I can not find a suitable column type that can satisfy my requirements :-

  • I need to create a site column which contain a list of external users, and which allow to select multiple users. Now the default drop-down list column type will not satisfy this as it does not allow multiple selection, also the checkbox option will not be user-friendly as I might have around 20-30 users.

  • Currently I have created a site column named “Project Managers” of type “Person or Group ” and I associated with a security group which contain our project managers. But inside this site column I want to add some out sourced project managers, which are not defined inside our active directory. So how I can manage such as list ? as the default “People or group” column type will not be sufficient in this case, because when using "People or Group" column type the associated users have to be defined inside the active directory which is not the case for our out sourced users.

Can anyone advice on how I can manage the above 2 site columns ? as seems the default column types will not satisfy our requirements?


1 Answer 1


You can create additional SharePoint list and add all internal and external users there like simple list items (if you want, you can map internal users to real AD accounts by the adding Person or Group field in this list, fill in this field for internal users and leave empty for external). Then, you can create multi lookup column from your main list to this new list, which will be rendered on the forms like this multi lookup

  • thanks a lot for the help. can you explain your point in more details please. now for the external user i can create a custom list based on the "Contact" content type, then i can add all the external users inside the list (full name, email,etc). then i can define my site column to be of type "lookup" and specify that the look-up need to get its value from the custom list,, this is great. but how i can add internal users inside the list ,, should i add them manually same as i did for the external user? or i can link it to a security group as i do for the "People or group" column type?
    – John John
    May 28, 2015 at 16:02
  • i did not understand your point on why i need to leave external users empty
    – John John
    May 28, 2015 at 16:05
  • 1
    Yes, you can add internal users manually to this list or you can write some powershell script for getting all users from any SharePoint group and create list items in your "Contact" list by this users, if there are a lot of such internal users and you don't want to waste a time for creating it manually. May 28, 2015 at 16:15
  • 1
    What about "leave external users empty" - that was just my proposal like you can identify, if this is external or internal user. You can create additional "People or Group" field in "Contact" list and set it by the real SPUser value for internal users, which have AD account. May 28, 2015 at 16:16
  • but in this way how i can force the "lookup" list column to contain both internal and external users? now for external users i will be adding them manually as they do not exists elsewhere inside the site , but for internal users they already exists inside our AD . so can i use the same look-up list column to include both the external users that i am going to add them manually inside the custom list , and also internal users retrieved from a security group ?
    – John John
    May 28, 2015 at 23:00

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