SharePoint Business Process Automation

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About this Course

This three-day instructor-led course teaches business professionals how to take advantage of SharePoint 2013’s robust automated business processes. This course is designed to provide students with a deep dive into SharePoint automation ranging from working with documentation to managing records to full workflow processes and task tracking.  Users that have some SharePoint knowledge will find this class perfect for learning and building on advanced SharePoint topics. 

The discussion begins with a quick review of SharePoint 2013 core concepts such as out-of-the-box apps.  This session uses real-world scenarios and goes into detail on how to fully utilize Content Types that not only save users time and effort, but also allow business users to more efficiently organize, manage and handle important content.  From there, the class transitions into Enterprise Content Management and SharePoint’s toolset designed specifically for automating repetitive, everyday tasks.  Students will learn the tools essential to automatically manage large sets of documents, record management, compliance and liability, and easily locate key documents. 

Once students have a solid foundation of basic and advanced tools, the class shifts to web based forms using InfoPath.  In this section students explore form creation in InfoPath by creating List based forms as well as Library based forms. Students learn about InfoPath page design templates, how to use tables for layouts, and how to apply themes for branding.  Students will also learn about field creation and form controls in InfoPath.  The class will then explore more advanced InfoPath tools for validating user data entry in real time and formatting data based on user entry. Action based rules will also be covered for more advanced topics such as prepopulating fields for users, running server-side data calculations, and querying data connections.  This section wraps up with the InfoPath Form Web Part in the web browser.

Next the course will explore the world of workflow.  SharePoint 2013 workflow provides users with many exciting tools for fully integrated automated solutions.  This class will use a real-world approach to out-of-the-box workflows for approval, feedback, issue tracking, collecting digital signatures and record retention processes.  Students will learn how to implement a workflow from SharePoint Apps such as Lists and Libraries, from Content Types for specialization and from SharePoint Sites.  Users will experience how workflows are integrated with Microsoft Office to create a seamless end user experience. 

This class will also study the methods of modifying workflow templates, as well as producing powerful custom workflows from scratch using SharePoint designer to solve actual issues in the work place.  Students will learn how to assign events to start a workflow, apply logic through conditions, and employ actions as basic units of work.  This course will additionally cover how to customize workflow email to create a rich, dynamic message complete with branding and layout.  Students will learn the updated workflows of SharePoint 2013 compared to its predecessors, specifically the addition of loops and conditional stages. 

Finally, students will learn how the many components of SharePoint 2013 come together to create a complete platform.  This class will discuss the difference between a Site and a Page, as well as the Page types available in SharePoint 2013.  Students learn about Web Parts, specifically which Web Parts are designed with automated processes in mind. They will also create Pages combining the power of Web Parts together with SharePoint Apps for tracking of important business activities.

Each section of the class is followed up by practical and relevant hands-on exercises completed in a fully functional SharePoint 2013 Enterprise environment. 

Audience Profile

The target audience for this class is experienced SharePoint users tasked with information management.  The audience includes the following SharePoint roles:

  • Power Users
  • Site Owners
  • Content Editors
  • Information Managers
  • Site Administrators
  • Site Collection Administrators
  • Project Managers
  • Team Supervisors 

At Course Completion

Students will have learned:

  • Manage the relationship between SharePoint Sites and Apps
  • Design custom Content Types to centrally manage business content
  • Use the full capabilities of SharePoint 2013’s Enterprise Content Management
  • Implement SharePoint’s Out-of-the-Box Workflows
  • Create powerful custom Workflows using SharePoint Designer
  • Understand Custom Workflow’s legacy core functions  - Steps, Conditions, Actions and Events
  • Discover new Workflow core functions - Stages and Loops
  • Customize a SharePoint Site with Web Parts to further enhance automation and tracking


Basic computer knowledge and skill is a requirement for this class.  The student should already be familiar with basic SharePoint navigation and should have a good introduction to the basics of SharePoint as this class is a fast-paced, deep dive into more advanced SharePoint topics.  The perfect pre-requisite class would be the SharePoint 2013 Boot Camp.

Course Outline

Lesson 1:  Working with Sites

Definition of a Site – Why do we create new Sites?
Site Components revisited
Site Templates explained for Business Process Automation

  • Team Site
  • Project Site
  • Records Center
  • Document Center

Site Settings and Features
Creating Sites

  • Initial Settings: Title, URL, Template, and default Permissions and Navigation
  • Default layout based on template selection
  • Editing Navigation: Top Link Bar and Quick Launch
  • Site Settings
  • Tree View

Lab 1: Creating a Site Structure – BPA Example

  • Create a Site Collection Top Level Site
  • Default Groups and Permissions
  • Settings and Features
  • Create Child Sites – BPA Example
  • Simple site branding: Title, Logo, Composed Looks
  • Navigation

Lesson 2:  SharePoint Lists

What are Lists?
Using Lists to manage Business Processes Automation
Available List Apps
Creating Apps using List templates

  • Creating common Lists from templates
  • Building a Custom List
  • Importing from Excel

Working with the Tasks List App

  • Parent/Child Tasks
  • Using the Timeline
  • Using the different Views

Working with Issue Tracking
Working with Key Performance Indicator (KPI) List

  • KPI from SharePoint List
  • KPI from Excel Spreadsheet

Advanced List Topics

  • Validating a List Column
  • Advanced Settings
  • Deleting Lists
  • Saving as a Template
  • Enterprise Keywords
  • Using Alerts

Working with Views

  • Exploring existing Views
  • Creating a new View

Lab 2: Working with Lists in the SharePoint BPA Site

  • Create Lists in the SharePoint BPA Site
  • "BPA" Tasks
  • "BPA" Calendar
  • Custom "Classes" List

Lesson 3:  SharePoint Libraries

What are Libraries?
Using Libraries to manage document information lifecycle in the Enterprise
Library Architecture

  • Content Types- Documents
  • Metadata
  • Importance of Metadata
  • Folders vs. Metadata
  • Columns/Fields Types
  • Views

Available Library Apps
Creating Apps using Library templates

  • Creating a Document Library
  • Creating a Report Library

Using Version Control

  • Major Versions
  • Major and Minor Versions
  • Content Approval

Advanced Library Topics

  • Validating a List Column
  • Advanced Settings
  • Deleting a Library
  • Saving as a Template (with content)
  • Generating a File Plan Report

Working with Views

  • Exploring existing Views
  • Creating a new View

Lab 3: Working with Libraries in the SharePoint BPA Site

  • Create Libraries in the SharePoint BPA Site
  • Create a Document Library
  • Upload documents and create new documents
  • Enable Version Control
  • Work with documents with Version Control
  • Create a File Plan Report
  • Create a Reports Library
  • Upload and work with reports

Lesson 4:  Content Types

What are Content Types?

  • Site Columns
  • Content Types
  • Document Sets

Lab 4: Working with Site Columns and Site Content Types

  • Create Site Columns in the SharePoint BPA Site
  • Create Site Content Types in the SharePoint BPA Site
  • Allow Management of Contents in Document Library
  • Explore Content Types

Lesson 5:  Enterprise Content Management

Importance of ECM – What is ECM?
Folders vs. Metadata
Views and Metadata Navigation

  • Metadata Navigation Settings
  • Configure Hierarchies and Key Filters

Default Column Values
Information Management Policies

  • Retention
  • Auditing
  • Barcodes
  • Lables

In-place Record Management

  • Record Declaration Settings
  • Manual Record Declaration

File Plans

  • Identify Kinds of Records
  • File Plan Settings
  • Creating File Plan

Record Management

  • Record Center Site
  • Create Lists and Libraries
  • Adding Existing Content Types
  • Information Management Policies

Content Organizer

  • Content Organizer Settings
  • Create Routing Rules for Content Types

Document ID Service

  • Enable and Configure Use of Document IDs in a Site Collection

Managed Metadata
Managed Metadata Navigation

Lab 5: Working with Enterprise Content Management

  • Create Views in a Document Library
  • Enable Metadata Navigation in a Document Library
  • Enable Default Column Values in a Document Library
  • Enable Information Management Polices in a Document Library
  • Configure In-place Records Management in BPA Site
  • Create a File Plan
  • Configure Content Organizer in BPA Site
  • Configure Document ID Service in BPA Site
  • Create Managed Metadata in BPA Site
  • Enable Managed Metadata in a Document Library
  • Create and Configure Managed Metadata Navigation

Lesson 6:  InfoPath Form Services

What is InfoPath

  • InfoPath Form Filler
  • InfoPath Form Designer
  • The Future of InfoPath

Creating List based InfoPath forms.
Working with Library based InfoPath Forms.
InfoPath page design, layout, and themes.
Using tables for advanced layout.
InfoPath Fields and Form Controls.
Managing Rules

  • Validating Data
  • Formatting Data
  • Actions
  • Query for Data or Submit to a Data Connection
  • Set a Field Value
  • Switch Views

Publishing InfoPath Forms
InfoPath Form Web Part

LAB 6: Working with InfoPath Form Services

  • Create an InfoPath Form from a List
  • Create an InfoPath Form and Publish to a Library
  • InfoPath Form Web Part

Lesson 7:  Discussion of Alternatives to SharePoint Forms


Lesson 8:  SharePoint Designer

What is SharePoint Designer?

  • History
  • Versions
  • Basic User Interface

Common Uses of SharePoint Designer

  • Site Creation
  • User Groups and Permissions
  • Lists and Libraries
  • Columns
  • Views
  • Content Types
  • Site Columns
  • Site Content Types
  • Workflows

LAB 7: Working with SharePoint Designer

  • SharePoint Designer Basics

Lesson 9:  Business Process Automation using Workflow

Out-Of-The-Box Workflow

  • Approval Workflow
  • Feedback Workflow
  • Digital Signatures Workflow
  • Three State Workflow
  • Publishing Workflow
  • Disposition Workflow

Workflow Settings

  • Task List
  • History List
  • Adding Users to Workflows
  • Serial Workflows vs. Parallel Workflows
  • Stages
  • Due Dates
  • Duration Per Task
  • Content Approval

Workflow administration

  • Manually Starting a Workflow by an Authenticated User

Workflow Creation from the Web Browser

  • List/Library Workflows
  • Content Type Workflows
  • Site Workflows

Complete a Workflow Task

Lab 8: Employing Out-of-the-box Workflows

  • Creating List/Library Workflows
  • Creating an Approval Workflow
  • Creating a Feedback Workflow
  • Creating Content Type Workflows
  • Creating a Digital Signature Workflow
  • Creating a Three-State Workflow
  • Creating Site Workflows

Lesson 10:  Creating Custom Workflows

2010 Custom Workflows supported in 2013

  • Create Rules Based Workflows
  • Steps
  • Actions
  • Conditions
  • Events

2013 Workflows

  • Changes from 2010 Custom Workflows
  • Create Rules Based Workflows
  • Stages
  • Actions
  • Conditions
  • Events
  • Loops

Lab 9: Creating Custom Workflow with SharePoint Designer

  • Creating a 2010 Custom Workflow
  • Creating a 2013 Custom Workflow

Lesson 11:  Advanced Workflow Topics

Email Customization

  • Layout, Markup, and Branding

Creating Custom Workflow Forms

  • Modifying InfoPath Forms Used in Workflows

Workflows and Quick Parts

  • Creating Reusable Content in Word for use in Workflows

Initiation Forms

  • Collection Information from Users to Reference in Workflows

Workflow Variables

LAB 10: Advanced Workflow Topics

  • Working with Advanced Workflow Topics
  • Email Customization
  • Creating Custom Workflow Forms
  • Workflows and Quick Parts
  • Initiation Forms with Workflow
  • Workflow Variables

Lesson 12:  Customizing a SharePoint Environment for Business Process Automation


  • Page Types
  • Choosing the right Page type
  • Creating Pages

Web Parts

  • What are Web Parts
  • Using the common Web Parts
  • Web Part properties

Page Design

  • Creating Pages
  • Page layout
  • Placing components on your Page

LAB 11: Customizing your BPA Site

  • Creating a new Page
  • Configuring Pages and Web Parts for BPA