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Jazz Up Your SharePoint Dashboards With Graphical Indicators

Posted by workerthread on October 9, 2008

Many SharePoint users have variants of the out of the box Team Site for the bulk of their collaborative efforts, and many of these end up with a landing page displaying web parts such as “Tasks Assigned to Me”,  “Overdue Tasks”,  “Project Status” or similar.  Where possible it’s good to make the status pages a little more interesting by providing some form of graphical representation of the current state of play.

Standard lists like Project Tasks come pre-configured with a view which lets you see a simple Gantt view which is often a good starting point, and several of the free application templates from Microsoft have nice overall status graphs on their front page, like this:

taskstatus

If you want to do something similar yourself, then providing you are OK using SharePoint Designer or Visual Studio, there are several articles which show you how, for example this one from Bill Burke, or this from Paul Galvin.  As Bill points out, there is also a section on dashboards in Application Templates Under the Hood giving more information. 

If you want to display status indicators against individual list items (as opposed to the “rolled up” view above) I would recommend taking a look at Christophe’s Path to SharePoint blog.  Christophe has come up with the idea of using calculated columns to write HTML, within which you can generate coloured bars, traffic-light symbols etc, like this:

ProgressBar

or this:

Indicators

The nice thing about Christophe’s approach is that you don’t need SharePoint Designer – just the calculated column to create the HTML, and a Content Editor web part in which you put Christophe’s JavaScript.  This is a really interesting approach and certainly something I would never have thought of before.

In fact, the Content Editor web part can be used in lots of other scenarios – take a look at some more examples at the Content Editor Site which is dedicated to “enhancing the lives of SharePoint users around the world, one CEWP at a time”.

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4 Responses to “Jazz Up Your SharePoint Dashboards With Graphical Indicators”

  1. […] Jazz Up Your SharePoint Dashboards With Graphical Indicators (WorkerThread Blog)Many SharePoint users have variants of the out of the box Team Site for the bulk of their collaborative efforts, and many of these end up with a landing page displaying web parts such as “Tasks Assigned to Me”,  “Overdue Tasks”,  “Project Status” or similar.  Where possible it’s good to make the status pages a little more interesting by providing some form of graphical representation of the current state of play. […]

  2. Greg Nockolds said

    The progress bar is great, has anyone worked out if it can be tweaked to provide a “floating bar” and hence be a working replacement for the gantt view which has no timescale adjusment?

  3. Hi Greg,

    Not sure you could do that with the JavaScript Progress Bar. Bamboo Solutions have a Calendar Plus web part with lots more views but only a single timescale for GANTT I think. More Bamboo details here http://store.bamboosolutions.com/ps-31-2-calendar-plus-web-part-release-25.aspx .

    Derek

  4. Update for Greg –

    Christophe at Path to SharePoint has a new post on “How to scale down the SharePoint Gantt view” here http://pathtosharepoint.wordpress.com/2008/11/08/how-to-scale-down-the-sharepoint-gantt-view/

    Derek

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