Access your workspace documents and folders easily from Teams

Prior adding Teams, did you had a Office 365 Groups with a set of folders in the Document Library? Did you notice it is not that easy to access your old folders from Teams? Or do do you have another Document Library in some other workspace you want to add to your Team but you don’t know how – yet? 

What is great about Teams, you can customize your team to suit your needs. It is your interface for work after all. You can collect all necessary resources , your teem needs, into one user interface – to a team.

Add a document library as a tab

The old, but reliable, way to organize data into your Team. Just add a existing SharePoint library, from any site you have access to, into the team as a tab. This does not grant any access to your team members – they just get link there (a tab). 

If the doc lib is not in the relevant sites list, then you can add the site (or library) url to the dialog and continue adding the tab.

This is especially beneficial if somebody has added folder the doclib root level.Usually this is needed if a team site/group has been used without Teams and Teams UI is added to it later. 

Adding a document library into Files-tab

You can also add a access to document library in Files-tab. This time it is called a cloud storage. While admin may have disabled almost all cloud storages, the SharePoint remains there. 

The good: the link to the document library is in Files-tab, so it makes it easy to let people know you can access all files from a single place. The bad: you may want to rename it and you need some extra clicks. And when the link is in files, you can’t access it via mobile app. For that the tab is much better.

Third option

If you don’t have that many folders that are spread outside Channel folders, you can always move the folder structure into Channel. 

First, you need to open the document library in SharePoint to do that. Choose the folder and choose move. Select a channel folder as target and move all contents into it. 

The bad? URLs change.  This can be a problem, so don’t use move unless everyone knows about it.

What’s next for document libraries in Teams?

Document libraries will soon(ish) get new features  in Teams. They will be ”just like in SharePoint”, thus allowing different kind of views and formatting. Using metadata will be easier – directly from Teams. And what is more important: you get Sync your libraries easily to your desktop using OneDrive. 

More functional document library views can already be used with Teams – if you add the doclib as a web page tab. This has some drawbacks, the biggest being that you will most likely have to re-authenticate yourself into SharePoint.

Migrating files into Teams?

I’d say the most of the time if you migrate your files into Channels (folders in doclib) you get it right. In case you already migrated into the root structure – just reread this blog and work it from there 🙂

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