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Getting started with CorasWorks

New to CorasWorks?  Let us help you or your employees get started by learning what’s available and what’s possible from CorasWorks.  Anyone who manages a site, builds applications, or owns a business process should have this information.

Below is a collection of links to previous blog posts and videos to help guide you on your path to success.

What does CorasWorks do?  An overview of CorasWorks and apps on SharePoint (Blog/Video).

    • The CorasWorks Cure for Average Joe (Blog/Video)

It can be as simple as 1…2…3 -  Using CorasWorks Widgets (Video)

It can be as sophisticated as a complete application:

      • Buy it- examples of preconfigured applications from CorasWorks:
      • Build it - an example of a processed based application:
        • Getting Things Done application example (Blog/Video)
      • Have us build it with you or for you:
        • An Interview with CorasWorks Professional Services (Blog/Video)

Learn the CorasWorks software - The education and training options (Blog/Video)

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Behind the scenes of an application build

Below is a quick walk-through (less than 12 minutes) of how I snapped together my Getting Things Done application using the CorasWorks software on Microsoft SharePoint.  Remember, I’m not a programmer or developer.  If anything I could be called a “power user.”

If you missed my demo you can go back to my “Getting Things Done – App in Less than 2 Days” post.

For better viewing use the fullscreen mode by clicking the icon in the player controls.


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Why the new self-paced essentials training?

With the recent release of the CorasWorks Essentials Self-Paced Training our customers now have an alternative to classroom training and distance learning.

  • It’s Fast – The same content typically delivered over 2 days onsite, or 2 weeks in distance learning, has been condensed into 9 modules, with more than 50 lessons, in a little over 6 hours total of flash video.
  • It’s Easy - The just-in-time delivery via the CorasWorks learning center means easy access for users, and the electronic table of contents lets them drill down to desired topics within specific modules.
  • It’s Complete - We’ll take you from SharePoint 2010 basics, to the CorasWorks basics, to building a process based application, to extending sites and applications.

A summary of the modules’ learning objectives below provides a self-assessment of sorts; simply ask yourself, end users, power users, business analysts, and developers “do you know…”

Next Steps…

For pricing information email sales@corasworks.net or training@corasworks.net.

After you complete the essentials training it’ll be time to put your knowledge to work.  Here are some suggestions:

  • Do a lunch-and-learn or in-house training session to educate your end users and power users on the capabilities and possibilities of the CorasWorks software.  Feel free to contact training@corasworks.net for assistance with the content.
  • Identify Application Candidates by looking at your custom development backlog or user request.  You can use a CorasWorks solution consultant as a sounding board for ideas and direction, or formally engage CorasWorks professional services for a short-term or long-term engagement.  Email training@corasworks.net and we’ll point you in the right direction.
  • Take the next training step and learn the CorasWorks  advanced components via a 2 day onsite training.  Let us know if you’d like more information, including a course outline, by contacting training@corasworks.net.

Here’s a short video overview (use the fullscreen option after clicking play):

Module 1:  SharePoint 2010 Basics

  1. The basic SharePoint knowledge needed to get value from the platform and CorasWorks.
  2. How to easily access information via SharePoint.
  3. How to work with the SharePoint Ribbon.
  4. How to Customize the navigation.
  5. How to modify a page layout.
  6. How to create new web pages.
  7. How to modify and customize views of information.
  8. How to modify lists with customized columns.
  9. How to create new lists and libraries.
  10. How to add web parts to a page.
  11. How to add pictures to a site.
  12. How to add and modify content.
  13. How to drive business process.

Module 2:  Enabling End Users

  1. How to make end user more productive and self-reliant.
  2. How to get where you need to go using CorasWorks Menu Navigation.
  3. Working with the three CorasWorks Data Displays: Grids, Calendars, and Charts.
  4. How  to use CorasWorks Actions  – doing what you need to do with information.
  5. An introduction to End User Tips – Enabling the End User.

Module 3:  Empowering Site Owners

  1. How your Site Owners can get more from basic SharePoint.
  2. What are CorasWorks Widgets?
  3. How to  add CorasWorks Widget to an existing site.
  4. How to create new SharePoint pages for Widgets.
  5. How to apply and work with a Task Management Widget.
  6. How to connect  to pages and widgets by adding links to the SharePoint Top Link Bar.
  7. How to do on-the-fly customizations to data displays.
  8. How to export information from a CorasWorks display to Excel, PDF, TXT, or Word format.
  9. How to apply and work with a Calendar Management Widget.
  10. How to apply a Tasks by Status Chart Widget.

Module 4:  Configuring Data Displays

  1. How to create color coded calendars.
  2. How to aggregate, or roll up data, from different sites or site collections.
  3. How to create multiple views within a single display.
  4. How to filter data for a targeted data return.
  5. How to save a modified widget to the web part gallery.
  6. How to apply default actions.
  7. How to create a new view using a CorasWorks default view.
  8. How to create a web part pages library and new Web Part Pages for displays.
  9. How do configure the CorasWorks grid display.
  10. How to create a new view using the custom view settings.
  11. How to apply icons to menu choices for an application look and feel.
  12. How to create different types of chart displays.

Module 5:  Taking Action

  1. How to modify default actions.
  2. How to create an Actions Library.
  3. How to remove default actions and apply custom actions.
  4. How to configure a new, custom action.
  5. How to configure and use the Create List Item action type.
  6. How to configure and use the Email action type.
  7. How to configure and use the Modify List Item action type.
  8. How to configure and use the Edit List Item action type.
  9. How to configure and use the Delete List Item action type.

Module 6:  Managing Business Process

  1. How to bring CorasWorks data displays and actions together to drive business process.
  2. How to create stage gates to manage levels of review and approval.
  3. How to configure the CorasWorks Starter Template.
  4. The role of the data structure in managing a process, and the implications of changing the structure.
  5. How to use complex filters for targeted data return.
  6. How to conditionally format items to provide color codes in a grid display.
  7. How to configure actions to move items forward (approve or resubmit), backward (rework), or stop items in the process (reject).

Module 7:  Distributing Components and Distributing Processes

  1. How to configure CorasWorks displays and actions for importing/exporting or adding to the Web Part Gallery.
  2. How to initiate a request, or kick-off a process, from another site or site collection.
  3. How to distribute stage gates, or the displays and actions related to a stage in a process, to one or more sites where the reviewers are working.
  4. How to create and use CorasWorks Global Variables for ease of configuration and management.
  5. How to configure and reference CorasWorks Central Views -  when you need a single display in many sites, for user consistency and builder maintainability.

Module 8:  Extending and Enhancing Sites and Applications

  1. How to Copy a Central View as a Local View.
  2. How to Create Chained Actions and Publisher Actions.
  3. How to use the Timer Activation and List Activation wizards to automate the execution of actions.
  4. How to use Global Navigation for a consistent user experience across sites and site collections.
  5. How to use Tree Navigation for better administration.

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Getting Things Done – App in Less than 2 Days

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grab a beverage, kick back, relax, and click on the video link below to see a demo of my Getting Things Done application.   If you love David Allen and GTD you should love this app.

Even if you’re not interested in a personal productivity or work management application, the demonstration is a great example of what’s possible in a short period of time using CorasWorks.

Thanks for watching.


TIP -  See the video in fillscreen by clicking the icon from the player controls.

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Bringing Lessons from the Classroom

What does CorasWorks training and education mean to our customers? 

… and how does it help them get more value from our software?  These are questions we frequently ask ourselves and our customers at CorasWorks.  

Historically the answers have gravitated toward the bits and bytes of product features and capabilities, or to the broader “how to’s” related to specific applications and solutions.  And the delivery options have expanded over the years to include workshops, instructor-led classroom training, online learning centers, and “blended” distance learning.  However, today we recognize traditional means aren’t enough, especially in the rapidly evolving world of SharePoint.  So welcome to “From the Classroom,” a blog to bring our various lessons learned from the classroom to you.

The stark reality is that CorasWorks, and its customers, are faced with the enormity of the SharePoint platform and the vast array of “things” being done on it today – with nearly endless possibilities for tomorrow.  It takes me back to an old Microsoft ad campaign “Where do you want to go today?”  Now choices are a good thing, but pose the challenge of where to start, or what’s next, and how to get there?.  

Depending on your role in the organization you’ll have different destinations.  If you’re an executive or senior manager, you’re likely looking to classic goals such as increasing productivity, reducing cost, improving responsiveness to customers, avoiding downtime, or other measurable outcomes that increase the bottom line.  All of which are important.  If you’re an information worker, your goals probably include making work easier, more enjoyable, and more manageable so you can get things done.  All of which are important.  Whatever your role, it’s important that you know where you want to go so we can help you get there.

But the direction isn’t always clear.  In the classroom, we’re able to bring some clarity through the structure of course agendas and objectives, lessons, exercises, and reviews.  In the blog posts to follow I’ll surface various training topics, lessons, student questions and comments, and other information with the goal of helping our readers both see what’s possible to help establish some direction, and connect the dots to facilitate getting there.  I look forward to your comments and interactions to make “From the Classroom” a beneficial read and educational experience.

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