You can share documents with others in your organization as well as those outside your organization in a few simple steps. When you share documents from SharePoint, you no longer have to worry about saving and editing multiple copies of the same document. You can share the live, editable file if you need to collaborate with someone, and any changes they make are tracked and saved automatically.
You can also share documents with others in a “read only” format, so that they can view the document but they’re not able to make changes. You can even share documents from locations that other employees might not normally have access to if you need them to be able to view or edit a specific document or folder. All of this is done with a simple link, so let’s explore.
From SharePoint Online, locate the document that you wish to share and click the check mark next to it. Then click the “share” button. In the pop-up, choose who you would like the link to work for—such as anyone with a link, only those within your organization who already have access to that folder or that file, [or] only the specific people that you send this link to. You can even set an option to allow them edit or not, as well as set an expiration date. This is really handy if you don’t want them to be able to access that file after a certain date.
Set your options, hit “apply.” Then just enter in the name of the employee that you want to send the file to. Since SharePoint is connected to Office 365, it automatically knows all of the contacts in my organization. Additionally, I can also type in an email address, say, if I want to send it to somebody that’s outside my organization.
If I want to, I can add a message, which is optional, just to give context to why I’m sending them this link. Then, whenever I’m done, I can click “send.” This will automatically send them an email that comes from me and provides them a link to this file in SharePoint, as well as the message that I typed out for them.
Alternatively, if I want to share this file but I don’t necessarily want to send it in an email, I can click the “copy link” button which will copy the link to that file to my clipboard which I can then paste anywhere. I can put it on a website, I can put it in a document—really, anywhere that you can put a link, you can place that link to that document. All of the same options that you already selected for who can access it and for how long still apply.
If I want a little bit more customization on the email that I’m sending with this link to this file, I can click the Outlook button which will actually launch the message inside of Outlook with the link already in there. It allows me to do more things like formatting, and if I want to attach other files or other things to it, I can do that.
If you already have a document open in SharePoint Online or from within an Office app on your computer, your phone or your tablet, you can perform the same sharing actions by clicking that “share” button when viewing and editing it. Let me demonstrate. If I open this file here—then from here, if I want to share it, I just go to the top right and I click the “share” button. Notice, this gives me the exact same pop-up with the exact same options.
Whether you are sharing a document that’s in a folder and you’re not looking at it, or whether you’re actively working on and viewing a document, you can share it in a few simple clicks.
Instead of having to download copies, send copies and attach them to emails and different versions—and somebody updates one and doesn’t update the right one, and now we’ve got multiple copies floating around and there’s five different versions of this—I just can send a simple link and all the changes and edits are saved automatically into that document. It’s live and I know it’s always current and up-to-date.
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