Bulk Metadata Editing in SharePoint

Bulk Metadata Editing in SharePoint
Tom Rock

Microsoft announced this week that they are rolling out a brand new Bulk Metadata Editing Feature, as part of the New Experience list view.  The feature is rolling out to Targeted Release customers from January 17th (Targeted Release is the new name for First Release – which is an opt-in program).

For those of you who’ve been around SharePoint for a while, this is a welcome development, as the previous options were:

  • Manually Edit each item (very time consuming, and not advised for large numbers of updates)
  • PowerShell (powerful, but not accessible to standard users)
  • Datasheet View (worked well, but did not make it to SharePoint 2016/ SharePoint Online)
  • Quick Edit View (works, but can be buggy and not work with all column types)
  • Inline Editing (this worked well for quickly editing fields in a grid view, but unfortunately did not make it from SharePoint 2010 to SharePoint 2013 and beyond)

I for one am keen to see how robust the new method will be.  It is really important for documents in SharePoint to have decent metadata – for all kinds of reasons, but in particular to make search effective.  Hopefully the new feature will empower end users to migrate their own documents to SharePoint Online (e.g. from legacy fileshares), rather than having a dependency on IT staff and SharePoint specialists to intervene with respect to the metadata.