Written By: Knox Cameron -- 5/10/2011 --
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Categories: Configurations, Design, Features, MOSS 2007, Permission Management, SharePoint 2010
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If you run a "portal" site for an organization, you need to ensure
that the information on the home page is meaningful and relevant for your users,
so they keep coming back. But this becomes difficult when you have a large and
diverse user base. For example, the Sales department will find information about
new lines in promotional goods riveting, but it will have no interest for
engineering. Conversely, engineering will be excited by news about a
breakthrough in material bonding, but it will be gobbledegook to the accounting
One option would be to include all the information on the page that anyone
would be interested in. This will produce a large and "busy" page, which users
will find unattractive and hard to use.
Another option is to have separate pages for each department or group, but
this significantly increases administration, and requires co-ordination to
ensure that important corporate information is repeated on each page. It also
isolates users within their silos rather than fostering the spirit of a single
Enter SharePoint's "Audience" and targeting features. These let you tag web
parts and information for display to particular types of users. Effectively, you
can re-configure the page so people see the information and links that are
relevant and important to them.
In this tip, we will talk about how and where you define an Audience, and how
you can use it to show web parts on a page, items of information and navigation
links. This is known as "targeting" information to users.
These features are available in both SharePoint
Server 2007 and 2010, but note that they are not in WSS or SharePoint
Foundation. Therefore, the discussion and examples below all relate to sites
with publishing features enabled.
We will also review some of the important limitations of this feature.
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