The typical SharePoint end user knows less than 1% of the SharePoint Search feature set. In other words, they know how to do a Google search. They just type a word or two, press Enter and hope for the best. Just think what they could do if they just knew a few search properties!
You can really improve search results by adding a Search Administrator to your team and letting them invest an hour or three a week in improving the end-user search experience. Train your end users, add tips to your search pages, create cheat sheets - there’s lots of options.
Just adding a few search tips to the search pages will do wonders:
So, let’s take a look at how users can do a better People search…
Searching for People
Let’s say I do a search for people using the keyword “training”. I could find people in the Training department, people with the word “training” in About Me, and even people with the last name of “Training”. If you would like to focus your search then you can use the predefined search Managed Properties. For example:
While a few of the properties can be used with the equals operator (“=”), most will only return results with the contains operator (“:”). For example, searching for a work phone number using “=” returns nothing. Using “:” will return the person with that number.
Managed Properties for People Searches
Most of the User Profile properties are searchable in a People search by just typing a keyword in the search box. You can also perform a People search using some of the out of the box Managed Metadata properties that are linked to the User Profile Services properties. In the table below you will find most of the User Profile properties along with the matching search Managed Property names. A few of the properties below have obvious names. A few are wrapped up in a single search property named “ContentHidded”. Some are “indexed” (crawled), but do not have the needed matching Managed Property. For most of those that do not have a matching Managed Property you can manually add a property to the search schema.
I will follow up with an article on adding the missing search Managed Properties.
Property for search
Property name found in the user’s profile
|AccountName||Account Name||Example: accountname:contoso\samc|
|Responsibility||Ask Me About|
|PreferredName||Name||This is the full name. “Mike Smith”|
|WorkPhone||Work Phone||To find all users in the same area code or a partial number, use wild cards: workphone=513*|
|Home phone||Mapped to ContentsHidden. Can be mapped to a new Managed Property.|
|Fax||Not mapped, but can be. (People:Fax)|
|Department||Department||This is a String property. This department maps to “Department”|
|Department||This is a Managed Metadata property. Not mapped, but can be. (People:SPS-Department)|
|If you see this list||anywhere but on||TechTrainingNotes.blogspot.com, then it was “stolen” and used without permission.|
|OfficeNumber||Office||Generally used for “room number”.|
|Manager||Not mapped, but can be. (People:Manager) (returned as domain\username)|
|Assistant||Not mapped, but can be. (People:Manager) (returned as domain\username)|
|Birthday||Not mapped, but can be. (People:Birthday) (returned as “2000-03-01T00:00:00.0000000Z”) All birthdays are set for year 2000.|
|Hire Date||Not mapped, but can be. (People:SPS-HireDate)|
This maps to several crawled properties as a single merged property: