Sharing Office Document Templates from SharePoint

Sharing Office documents centrally from SharePoint Online have been commonly asked feature from the field. There haven’t been really a simple way to do it without any tricks – until recently with new organization asset libraries.

Setting this up only requires few simple steps, depending on your current configuration.

#1 Setup a Library for Templates

First you need to have a document library for your templates. I suggest having a descriptive name for the library, like “Office templates”. Note that, if you already have organization asset libraries configured for hosting your images, you need to set up this library to same site collection.

#2 Configure Library for Hosting Office Templates

Configure the library as an asset library for Office templates with SharePoint Online Management Shell

Add-SPOOrgAssetsLibrary -LibraryUrl https://<tenant>.sharepoint.com/sites/assets/templates -OrgAssetType OfficeTemplateLibrary -CdnType Private

Set OrgAssetType attribute to OfficeTemplateLibrary and CdnType as preferred. You can also set a thumbnail, if preferred.

#3 Copy Your Templates to the Library

Now you can just copy your Office template to the newly created library. Remember that templates need to by saved as a template, otherwise they are not visible on Office clients. You can also use folders for grouping templates and it is possible to configure multiple libraries for hosting templates. I would suggest keeping it simple and have a clear naming of actual templates.

After a while Office 365 tenant and asset library will be visible on your Office clients and your can access templates added to your library.

Template library on Word
Templates on PowerPoint

This is a great improvement for organizations utilizing Microsoft 365 ecosystem.

I also wrote overview of organization asset libraries and how to publish your images centrally with them: https://mattipaukkonen.com/2019/09/26/sharepoint-organization-asset-libraries-explained/

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