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Developing a Familiarity with the Term Store Tool is an Important Component of a Successful Implementation Plan for Taxonomy for SharePoint 2010

It makes sense for implementation planning teams for organization-specific taxonomies for SharePoint 2010 to develop familiarity with the workings of the Taxonomy Term Store tool included with the product. As we noted in an earlier post to this blog, any draft taxonomy can be developed with an Excel spreadsheet. Once the draft taxonomy is ready for incorporation within SharePoint 2010, then the spreadsheet should be saved in .csv file format (a requirement for seamless incorporation within the Taxonomy Term Store tool). Once this draft taxonomy has been added to SharePoint 2010, any further refinement of term groups, term sets and terms will be accomplished with the Taxonomy Term Store tool.

In a video training course on implementing Taxonomies in SharePoint 2010, Building Taxonomies in SharePoint 2010, Part One, Mike Doane demonstrates the power of the Taxonomy Term Store tool in SharePoint 2010. With simple a right click on a mouse button while the mouse hovers over a term set, users have a range of options, including:

  • Creating Terms
  • Copyting the Term Set
  • Reusing Terms
  • Moving Term Sets (to a different relationship within the set of hierarchies represented by the taxonomy, itself)
  • and, finally, Deleting Term Sets

The key to exposing this functionality is the set up of the Excel spreadsheet as successfully exported in .csv format. Of course, it makes sense to download one of the sample taxonomies provided by Microsoft. After all, the sample taxonomy in Excel spreadsheet format is already arranged correctly; therefore, once modified — as long as columns have been retained in the order provided by the sample — re-incorporating a now customized taxonomy to the Taxonomy Term Store tool should work correctly, with all of the above noted functions exposed for use, as appropriate.

When terms are created, a lower level is added to the taxonomy hierarchy automatically by the Taxonomy Term Store Tool. Term Groups ought to be assigned for top levels in taxonomies, with Term Sets used to represent subordinate processes. This hierarchical relationship can be illustrated with “ABC Company” as the term group and “Human Resources” as one, of several term sets at a subordinate level. We should note that Mike Doane remarks in this video training course that “there are pros and cons to this approach”, which he will explore, in detail, in a later video in this set.

This demonstration of how the Term Store tool works certainly illustrates why it makes sense to draft taxonomies in Excel and then work with them, once they have been successfully added to SharePoint 2010, with the Term Store tool.

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