Recent Enhancements to the Downloads Area

The "Downloads" area (name may vary by client) is where you can store static documents (manuals, published reports, etc) in PDF, Excel, Word, etc format.

Originally, items in this area were all under standard permission control, with one or more downloads assigned to one or more roles.

Recently, we have made this area much versatile and easier to manage and navigate.

We have defined four types of folders that you can create and use within this area. They differ in their level of security.
  • Public folders contain documents that are available to anyone who has a role that simply includes access to the Download main menu item itself. Without that role, a User doesn't even see "Downloads" in the main menu. With that role, the User will see any new docs you add to a Public folder. You don't have to do anything additional in regard to making the new doc available.
  • Unit-level folders contain documents that are associated with specific Units (schools, foundations, whatever is the defined Unit of analysis on your site). Any User from a given Unit will see only the docs in a Unit-level folder that have been associated during download creation with the User's own Unit. So you can stick a bunch of docs in such a folder and be confident that users will only see the ones associated with their Unit. This means of course that when you set up such a doc as a download, you specify the unit the doc belongs to.
  • Unit-confidential folders contain docs that a User will see only if the User is in the Unit specified by the doc AND IN ADDITION has been given a role that includes specific permission to see Unit-confidential docs. A good example of a Unit-confidential doc would be one that has compensation data on specific people or positions in the Unit. Access to that might be limited just to the senior User at the Unit. When you create such a download, you check a box to identify it as "Unit-Confidential" in addition to specifying the unit it belongs to.
  • A User has access to a doc in a Standard folder if the User has a role which includes permission to see the specific document in question. Access to a specific doc in a standard folder is assigned via a role. This was the original approach used in the Downloads area.
We have also added automatic collapsing/expanding of folders depending on how many downloads are within a given folder and in the Downloads area overall. The aim is to create an outline structure to help get the user to the desired download in the cases where there are a lot of downloads available. You can nest folders within folders, but only once, i.e., you can have two levels of folders.

Please let me know if you find that the automatic process isn't working to your liking. And I am of course happy to help if you want assistance in setting up or redesigning your Download area to take advantage of any of these changes.

No comments:

Blog Archive