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08 March 2016

SharePoint Idea For Rental Agreements

SharePoint iconMost organizations rent equipment or premises and need to manage the contracts for these rentals in an efficient way. When you store and share them in SharePoint, you will have a good overview over what the organization is renting, and you can take steps to make sure that renewals are taken care of in due time.

In a series of articles in the kalmstrom.com Tips section, I share some ideas on how a SharePoint application for rental agreements management can be built.

Content Type
I build the rental agreements lists on a custom content type, so that we have the same metadata columns for all rental agreements lists. In my demos I create the content type from the root site of a site collection, but if you want to use the content type in the whole tenant you should create it in the Content Type Hub, which I described in an earlier article.

List Template
The content type makes sure that the columns of each rental agreements list will be the ones you have specified, but it does not give you the views and list settings you want. Therefore I recommend you to first create one list, add the content type and then create some suitable views and make other settings.

When you have tried the first rental agreements list and found it satisfactory, create a template from it and use that template for further lists of the same kind. The template will be saved to the  List Templates Gallery and show up among the other app templates. This way the same type of lists can be created easily via "add an app".
SharePoint app
If you want to use the template in other site collections, download the template STP file from the List Templates Gallery and upload it to the same library in the new collection.

Reusable workflows
SharePoint Designer 2013 iconWe don't want to miss rental renewal dates, so I create two workflows that will help us remember. First I need one workflow that calculates the renewal date, which I set to two months before the contract expires.

The second workflow will send an e-mail alert to the person who is responsible for the renewal. For this workflow I need to set a retention policy, so that the e-mail is sent on the renewal date calculated in the first workflow.

My intention with these articles and demos is not to tell how to create the perfect application for rental agreements management. Instead I want to point to various options that might be useful when you handle similar information sharing situations in your own organization. You are welcome to take what you need from my suggestions!

Peter Kalmström
CEO and Systems Designer
kalmstrom.com Business Solutions