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I'm working on a project that has a large number of lists. I'd like to group these lists to make it easier for users to find the list they are looking for.

I'd like a structure like the following:

Site Content
  \Group A
    Main List A
    \Supporting Data
      Lookup 1 for Main List A
      Lookup 2 for Main List A
  \Group B
    Main List B
    \Supporting Data
      Lookup 3 for Main List B
  \Common
    Lookup Used By Several Lists

I could make subsites for each group, but it is my understanding that a lookup column can only reference a list in the same site. I would be able to access data in the current or the parent site, but not sibling or child sites.

This will make my structure look like the following:

Root Site
  Lookup Used By Several Lists
  \Subsite A
    Main List A
    Lookup 1 for Main List A
    Lookup 2 for Main List A
  \Subsite B
    Main List B
    Lookup 3 for Main List B

While this will reduce the number of lists a user is sees at any point in time, it does not provide a clear indicator as to which list is the "Main List" for this group.

I've created new folders in SharePoint Designer, and moved my lists into these folders, but the only thing this appears to effect is the URL.

2

You could solve this with the navigation. In the Site Settings -> Navigation create folders for each group and then links for each list in the corresponding group.

  • I don't see a Navigation option under Site Settings. I'm using a Team Site in SharePoint 2013. Should I use a different template when I create my site? – cadrell0 Aug 7 '13 at 20:37
  • If you are working in sharepoint 2013, Navigation is in "Site Settings" -> "Look And Feel" -> "Quick Launch". Try that. – Garima Aug 8 '13 at 4:46
  • This is definitely a good solution for a few lists. However, I'm going to have something like 30-40 groups, with an average of 4 supporting lists in each group. This will create a very tall Quick Launch menu. – cadrell0 Aug 8 '13 at 13:41
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Here is what I ended up doing.

  1. Create a new list and enabled folders. This list has two columns, Title, and Url.
  2. Create one folder per group.
  3. In those folders, Create a record with the Main Lists' title and url.
  4. Create sub folder "Supporting Data"
  5. In those folders, create records for each supporting list.

I used the method described by yannisgu to add a link to the navigation panel to this directory list. I then instructed users to go to that link instead of Site Contents.

This probably isn't the greatest solution, but it works.

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