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Knowledge Base in Microsoft Lists

Knowledge Base in Microsoft Lists

I won't dwell on why you should have a knowledge base for your team or organisation (you should).

There are many ways to approach this. Recently a team needed to get something up quickly. After talking through what they needed I showed them how they could do it using MS Lists. They really liked it so I thought I would share.

If you have a Business Microsoft 365 subscription then you have access to Lists. Lists are fantastic and I recommend having a play and using them where it makes sense.

We could dive into the basics of Lists but here I will assume some working knowledge.

Create a new list and give it a meaningful name.

Save it in a group that makes sense. Unless it contains sensitive information, I suggest using a public team channel or a fairly commonly used group.

It won't have much in it when it is created. Let's add some columns to hold the information and to manage what is there. We will add some to make it easier to find the information too.

The Title column can be our title for the entries. Let's add some more.

Adding Columns

Column Name: Article
Type: Multiple lines of text (Turn on rich text)
Purpose:  This is the main reason we are here. This is where people can share information.

Column Name: Article Status
Type: Choice
Purpose:  This allows us to filter out old items and we can set up approvals for content if we wish.

Column Name: Keywords
Type: Choice
Purpose:  This will help people filter items down to what they are looking for. Enable the option for adding items manually, this will allow users to add keywords as they add content. Also allow multiple selections as things can be more than one thing at once!

That's it for the columns we will create. We do want a few more but they already exist. We just need to show them. I will show you how to quickly edit the view.

Click on All Items and then Create New View.

Give the view a sensible name. Here I am naming it "Full View" Because I will also have a simple view available for people to use which will also be the default.

Once this is created, click the Full View and then Edit current view.

Select the columns: Attachments (great for pictures or documents supporting the article), Created (when it was created), Created By (who created the article), Modified (when it was last modified), Modified By (when it was last modified). Click OK to save the view.
When you reload the list it will show the columns you selected. Follow the above steps but with different selections to create other views.

Adding an Article

Click new. Add in a simple title.

To edit the article text, click the small edit icon. This will open a text editor.

Select a status.

When adding the keywords, start typing and then use any suggestions that fit. Words that you type that are new will be added.

Once you click save there will be a brand new article for users to reference. You can open and edit the items easily. 

To search the list, use the search function at the top, super simple.

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