File Structure & User Access Setup - Help

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I am migrating an offline file server to a Sharepoint site. Using the Office 365 Version of Sharepoint, all users already have hosted accounts.


Goals are:

1. One central storage "site" for administration, backup, etc. of all documents/libraries

2. User control with the ability to make each folders/libraries hidden, view only, read and write, or owner to different users (some users would gain access to multiple folders/libraries but would not have access others, each user would have a different access)

3. Offline access to files (OneDrive) which automatically syncs all changes to the cloud.


The question is; how is the best way to handle this in terms of number of sites, sub-sites, document libraries, user permissions, etc.? How would you organize this structure? 


My apologies if this is a rudimentary question, just learning Sharepoint. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

3 Replies

Hi @jestorx ,


Here is the advice I would give my clients if they were looking to do this:-


Against you points - 

1. Cleanse the File Server, get your teams in your business to review and delete all data that is out with retention policy. Create a fileplan per team on the fileserver and get them to move the data they want to keep into the structure that makes sense to them. Assume users have access to this? Create Site collections per Team. How many users/Teams/data? 


2. You cannot stop users creating folders if you give them edit rights to files. From the fileplan in point 1 give them advice and train a user in each team to maintain the first 3 levels of folders so that users dont mess up the fileplan.


3. OneDrive Sync client does sync any changes to the cloud. First off users would need to select the document libraries or folders they want to have a copy of (structural copy - files are not downloaded until accessed or users selects to "Always keep on this device"). Any changes they make get synced automatically if they are online. 


Organise in line with your company structure, every org is different so there is no right or wrong way just ways that people have done it in the past. For we mostly settle on creating a site collection per business team due to future proofing for Teams. 


Thank-you @Andrew Hodges 


I have reorganized our file structural appropriately and found what works for my group.


What I'd like to do now is create sub-sites for Teams where users would gain access to the files in view-only mode or edit mode depending but where the files are actually hosted on the master sharepoint site that they would not have access to.

I've seen that this was possible in previous versions but I haven't be able to grasp how to do it.

Any tips?

Hi @jestorx ,


I would suggest site collections per team and link them by navigation. Try and not break inheritance of permissions as it makes things easier but in all orgs is inevitable. 


You can then add a Microsoft Team at a later date to the site collection per business team.