Step 1: Administrator
configures SharePoint KB lists and performs mappings
step is for the administrator to choose a
SharePoint site, under which a new list ‘TeamKBSettings’
would be created, to store the KB metadata,
mappings and other configuration data.
special list will act as a central KB
settings data source, so that support staffs
scattered in different geographical
locations can still access the mappings and
other administrative defined configurations
by all members of the support staffs.
In short, this list will act as a KB
Settings data source, and other users with
their Team KnowledgeBase User add-in would
connect to it.
store the KB settings dat in a special SharePoint
Because your team members can be scattered in
different geographical locations, and might not have
access to the company’s local network remotely,
using a network database or shared folder won’t be
feasible. Instead, in Team KnowledgeBase, the KB
configuration and settings data are stored in a
special SharePoint list (having the name 'TeamKBSettings')
which is accessible to all staffs, on the local
network, WAN or via the WWW.
Choosing SharePoint KB Lists and Mappings
Before you and other staffs can start searching and
choosing KB articles from SharePoint and insert to
outgoing email replies in Outlook, the KB
Administrator needs to choose destination SharePoint
lists where the KB articles will be collected and
Admin chosen SharePoint lists containing KB
It is followed by
fields mapping between the Outlook mail and
SharePoint list. A mapping is nothing but an
association between an Outlook field (e.g., subject
of the mail item) to a specific SharePoint list
field (e.g., Title). You have complete control over
which data goes to the SharePoint list from Outlook.
Each KB article can also be tagged with a Category
and Type. Typically, administrator will gather all
the problem areas that the support team will be
attending to and feed them into the categories list.
Further each category can have their own list of
types. So, what you have will be nested tiers of
categories/types which are complete representation
of your organization's support model and act as
somewhat of a guiding decision tree for publishing
and searching KB articles.
Step 2: Team
members install Team KB User tool
able to access and make use of the KB articles from
SharePoint in their Outlook,
every team member must install the Team
KnowledgeBase User tool (TeamKBUserSPSetup.exe) in their system.
Once installed, the user will be
prompted to specify the KB Settings Data Source,
which is nothing, but a special SharePoint list
having the title 'TeamKBSettings', which was
configured previously by your administrator.
If the ‘Configure KB Settings Data Source’ panel does not
show up, you can invoke from the Outlook > Team
KB toolbar > My Options menu…
'Browse...' to specify the SharePoint site where the
'TeamKBSettings' list is located
Enter the SharePoint URL site to
show all available sub-sites and lists. If your
administrator had already configured Team
KnowledgeBase, there would be a list 'TeamKBSettings'
that stores KB configurations including destination
SharePoint lists and their corresponding mapping
settings. Select that list to maintain a permanent
link between the Team KnowledgeBase User add-in and
the KB data source.
Now, click the Save button, to
confirm the selected KB Settings Data Source,
such that Team KnowledgeBase User add-in can connect
to this list and retrieve the KB logic and settings
data to the local system automatically.
Step 3: Accessing
KB articles from Outlook and inserting to email
Even though KB articles are stored on your
SharePoint list, every technician can make use of it
in Microsoft Outlook to reply to emails in a snap.
When you navigate to any Outlook mail folder, the
Team KnowledgeBase toolbar and ribbon are available
in the Outlook explorer and inspector window. With
the ‘Reply with a KB’ button, you can choose one of
the relevant KB article directly for replying to
tickets or emails.
KB articles, stored on a particular SharePoint
list, grouped and arranged in by category and type:
specific ribbon available in the Home tab of the
Outlook Explorer window.
Team KnowledgeBase specific ribbon available in the
Message tab of the Outlook mail inspector window
A pop-up dialog box
allows you to browse through the existing knowledge
base articles, and select the relevant article to be
embedded either as attachment, inline or as URL into
the email reply.
You can insert
selected KB article in 3 ways to outgoing email:
1. Inserting chosen KB article
as PDF or XPS file attachment to the email reply
Selected KB article can be applied or inserted
into the replied email in varied format. You can
choose to insert as attachment in the form of a word
document (*.doc), Adobe PDF (*.pdf), Microsoft XPS
(*.xps) or as single file MHTML (*.mht).
2. Inserting chosen KB article as inline content to
the email reply
You can also embed the selected KB article directly
into the body of the email reply. Any inline images
and formatting are preserved in its original state
in the reply also.
3. Inserting chosen KB article as hyperlink URL into
the email reply
Alternatively, if your SharePoint site is opened
(i.e., accessible via the web), then you can also
insert the hyperlink or URL of the selected KB
article into the reply, so that the recipient can
simply click the hyperlink to open the relevant
article in their web browser.