Mixing between custom metadata AND folders to manage the documents inside our customer intranet

john john 791 Reputation points

We are working on building a document management for our customer using SharePoint online. the documents will have those 3 categories (metadata)

1) Client. ClientA, ClientB, ClientC, etc.

2) Type. General, Know-How, Procedures, Rules, etc.

3) Department. HR, IT, Finance, etc.

Now we are thinking of doing the following:-

1) When a new client join the company >> to create the folder structure.

2) Then users will be uploading documents to the root folder >> tag them by defining the 3 metadata >> then we will have a power automate flow which will move the document to the related folder based on the metadata applied. we will have this folder structure:-

Client Name (Main Folder) >> Type (first level Sub-Folder) >> Department (Second level Sub-folder)

now I have the following three questions:-

1) is it a bad practice or it is a good practice to define metadata for the documents + arrange them inside folders? or this is considered redundant ? as based on folder location you can know the metadata?

2) what determine if we should create separate libraries for each client? or store all the documents for all the clients inside the same library ?

3) what should determine how many libraries we should have? the number of permission sets? or the number of clients? or both?


A group of Microsoft Products and technologies used for sharing and managing content, knowledge, and applications.
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SharePoint Server Management
SharePoint Server Management
SharePoint Server: A family of Microsoft on-premises document management and storage systems.Management: The act or process of organizing, handling, directing or controlling something.
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  1. Yanli Jiang - MSFT 8,361 Reputation points Microsoft Vendor

    Hi @john john ,
    1, You can organize the metadata in a way that makes sense in your business and use the metadata to make it easier to find what you want.
    For more details, please refer to: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/managed-metadata

    2&3, They should be determined according to your actual situation. But for SharePoint itself to limit the number of libraries:

    Lists and libraries
    2,000 lists and libraries combined per site collection (including main site and any subsites).

    For more details, please refer to:https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/office365/servicedescriptions/sharepoint-online-service-description/sharepoint-online-limits
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