Have there been times where you wanted to extend the capabilities of the columns in SharePoint Lists to add features such as format validation, security, or column dependency, but searching for the functionality online keeps sending you to some program called InfoPath? A new-to-you program that means more training, more fees and licensing, and ultimately, a tool that wasn’t designed for the average user but for a SharePoint expert. Don’t be dismayed, Bamboo has the solution for you! Introducing List and Forms Extensions Toolkit! A constantly evolving package of Bamboo’s custom column products, currently containing a total of eight different products in a single installation package.
What is a custom column?
Simply put, a custom column is a unique column type that provides specialized column functionality that SharePoint does not provide out of the box.
How do I use a custom column?
If you are familiar with creating new columns on a Task, Calendar, Announcements, Contacts, or any other list type, you can use Bamboo custom columns. First, go to any list, and select Create Column. Then, provide a Name for the new column and, in the list of available column types, you will see the Bamboo custom columns listed with Bamboo in the front of the name. Select the appropriate column type, configure the column to meet your business needs, and click OK. You have now used the Bamboo custom column using the same familiar steps with which end users are already familiar.
I mentioned that eight custom columns are included in the SharePoint Custom Column Toolkit, so you’re probably wondering what they are and what it is that they do. The best answer I can provide comes from a portion of the SharePoint Custom Column Toolkit product page.
- Column-Level Security
Go beyond basic list-level security and add security to your individual columns with Bamboo Column Level Security. Protect confidential information such as employees’ salaries or quarterly revenue numbers.
- Unique Identification
Move past a simple sequential number created SharePoint to identify your items and documents. With Bamboo Custom Identifier, automatically formulate unique identifiers that can include text, dates and other column values.
- Key Performance Indicators
At a glance, quickly view project statuses with Bamboo KPI Column. Use customizable status icons to visually indicate whether a project is on track, at risk, or under or over budget.
- Cross-Site Lookup
Give users the ability to look up lists not only in the same site but across sites. The Bamboo Lookup Selector even allows users to provide a relationship between columns in a list, automatically filtering the lookup based on another column selection.
- Assess the Value of Items and Documents
Allow your users to discover effective information stored in SharePoint rating lists, libraries, and sites with Bamboo Rating.
- Create Multiple Lines of Rich Text
Easily build descriptions of items that include images, CSS styling and tables with Bamboo Rich Text, which also allows users to find and replace text and to check spelling.
- Standardize Data Entry
With the Bamboo Validator Column, conform all user entries to a predefined format, such as requiring users to enter phone numbers as (XXX) XXX-XXXX. You can even build your own validation format.
- View Task Status and Progress at a Glance
Color code task statuses or display a color-coded or percent-based progress bar to provide a visually pleasing glance of project tasks with Bamboo Visual Indicator.
You may be thinking, “I’m definitely interested in a few of the custom columns now, and even though I may be interested in others at a later date, why would I purchase the List and Forms Extensions Toolkit today?”
Great question! The added bonus with the List and Forms Extensions Toolkit is twofold: 1.) It includes Premium Support, which guarantees a 4 business hour response time from our support team if you have any questions, AND all major releases of included custom columns will be yours for free. 2.) You will receive a discount of over 40% off the combined list price if you had bought each custom column individually.
OK, I think I hear you: “Hmm, I’m still justifying the cost of the initial expenditure to get all eight products at once… do you offer some way to try out the custom columns?”
Glad you asked!
Yes, as with all Bamboo products, we offer a fully-functional 30-day trial, so to try out the List and Forms Extensions Toolkit, simply go to the product page, click the button located at the top of the page in the product banner, and proceed to checkout. This will provide you with the link to download the installation package, and you’ll be working with custom columns in no time.