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Overview of Office 365 and few applications


Most organizations have strong governance over their O365 tenant and it is critical to their

operations and security. The Governance would take care of the site requests and approval,

Navigations, Branding or Theme (Layouts, colors, logos, icons and fonts), page contents and most

importantly the roles and responsibilities of the various users.

To ensure governance, organizations may have detailed site provisioning scripts that use Pattern

and Practice(PnP) provisioning engine that need to be applied each time a new site is created. That

includes defining security levels for documents, custom lists, document libraries, custom pages etc.

In Office 365, SharePoint Modern sites are created by various ways namely MS Teams, O365

groups, Planner etc. Continuous monitoring of the newly created sites through these apps and

applying governance manually or individually is a tedious job.

To help this scenario, Microsoft introduced Site designs and Site scripts to apply your governance/customization during the site creation event for Modern sites (Modern Team sites and

Communication sites). They can automate the custom configurations of modern sites across the


Overview of Office 365 and few applications

Microsoft Office 365 includes the Office suite and collaboration apps. To help this scenario, Office

365 supports Microsoft’s vision of cloud computing, specifically that of running a company’s

groupware suite of apps.

With Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and Lync Online, users get all the benefits of accessing

their email, calendar, company resources, and communication tools without the need of an

extensive infrastructure or a big IT department.

O365 subscription includes many applications. Let me brief the ones relating to SharePoint tenant

and Site designs.

SharePoint Online: SharePoint Online brings its world-class collaboration and information-sharing

platform to the cloud. Organizations using older versions of SharePoint on-premises can migrate

their content and take advantage of all the new features. One thing to note if you are planning to

migrate your old SharePoint solution to SharePoint Online is that custom on-premise solutions may

not work or be supported. This can add significant cost to your migrations. White Paper

Customizing SP Modern sites using Site Design & Site Scripts

Microsoft Teams: Members of the modern enterprise workforce are very familiar and comfortable

with chat applications. To satisfy the needs of those employees, Office 365 now includes Microsoft

Teams, a chat-based workspace that integrates people, content, and tools into a single platform.

Microsoft Flow: Microsoft Flow is a service that helps you create automated workflows between

your favorite apps and services to synchronize files, get notifications, collect data and more. It is

very similar to SharePoint Designer Workflows but connects many applications and will easily

replace SPD workflows going forward.

Site Design & Site Scripts

Site Designs are templates that can be used each time a new site is created to apply a consistent set

of actions. Site Designs are created and registered to one of the modern site templates i.e Modern

Team site or the Communication site and Site scripts help to apply your own customization during

the site creation event for Modern sites (Modern Team sites and Communication sites).

Site Design & Site Script is capable of,

  • Branding sites: Apply company theme or custom home page at the time of creation.

  • Custom scripting: Site designs invoke associated site scripts to automate consistent site creation.

  • Custom solutions: Trigger MS Flow to execute PowerShell scripts and apply custom configurations.

White Paper Customizing SP Modern sites using Site Design & Site Scripts

Flow of Site Design & Site Scripts

When a custom site design is selected in “Create a site” window, SharePoint creates the new site,

and runs site scripts for the site design. The site script contains the actions such as creating new lists

or applying a theme. These script actions are run in the background. The progress bar will be

displayed, which the user can click to view the status of the actions being applied.

Anatomy of the Site Script

Site scripts are JSON files that specify an ordered list of actions to run when creating the new site.

The following example here is a script that has two top-level actions. First, it applies a theme that

was previously created named Custom theme. It then creates a Customer Tracking list. White Paper

Customizing SP Modern sites using Site Design & Site Scripts


"$schema": "schema.json",

"actions": [


"verb": "applyTheme",

"themeName": "Custom theme"



"verb": "createSPList",

"listName": "Customer Tracking",

"templateType": 100,

"subactions": [


"verb": "SetDescription",

"description": "List of Customers and Orders"



"verb": "addSPField",

"fieldType": "Text",

"displayName":"Customer Name",

"isRequired": false,

"addToDefaultView": true



"verb": "addSPField",

"fieldType": "Number",

"displayName": "Requisition Total",

"addToDefaultView": true,

"isRequired": true



"verb": "addSPField",

"fieldType": "User",

"displayName": "Contact",

"addToDefaultView": true,

"isRequired": true



"verb": "addSPField",

"fieldType": "Note",

"displayName": "Meeting Notes",

"isRequired": false





"version": 1




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