Shared with Me, new feature in Office 2016 Windows / Mac and more

A recent Office addition is ‘Shared with Me’, a list of the documents you’ve been invited to collaborate on with others.  It’s available in Office 2016 Windows/Mac and the iPad, iPhone and Android Mobile apps.

According to Microsoft ‘Shared with Me’ ” lets you see the files others have shared with you” Our checks show that ‘Shared with Me’ is not as great as the hype.

Shared with Me

Say for example your manager has invited you into a document and wants your comments on the document by end of day. The document automatically appears in your Shared with me list. But you are scared to ask your manager where to find it? No worries look at the below steps:

It’s such a simple thing, you might wonder what took them so long.

Go to File | Open | Shared with me

This will display the documents directly shared with you (more on that below). Wow! That’s so much easier than searching your email, folders or SharePoint for the document, right?

Click the document you want to work on and the document appears in front of you. If you’re online you are seeing the latest versions that your File owner had shared with you. Make changes or add comments to the document and when you are about to close it. The system confirms if you want to save your latest work and thus your modifications are saved onto the File owner’s destination folder.

If there are no explicitly shared documents available, you’ll see this:

Limited Options

Right-click on the document to see the ‘Copy path to clipboard’ option.

Sadly, some of the features of the Recent or Open panes aren’t available in ‘Shared with Me’.  You can’t ‘Pin’ to the top of the list nor add to the Recent pinned pane.   ‘Open file location’ would also have been useful but isn’t available.

The list is not sortable by name or date either. In fact, the order isn’t obvious at all.  Microsoft only says “Office will try to show you more relevant shared documents at the top of the list. which tells us nothing.

It seems the list puts most recently shared documents at the top. People with longer ‘Shared with Me’ lists have no options to manage it.

What documents show as ‘Shared with Me’

‘Shared with Me’ does NOT show all documents shared with you.

From our tests, only documents explicitly shared to you will appear in ‘Shared with Me’.  In other words, someone has sent a invitation’  link for a single document.

We created a new document in OneDrive then shared that document with another user (using File | Share | Invite ).  The document appeared in the receivers ‘Shared with Me’ within seconds, even though the document hadn’t been opened.

If the specifically shared document is deleted, it disappears from the ‘Shared with me’ list.

Shared folders are NOT included

Shared OneDrive/Dropbox etc folders are not included in the ‘Shared with Me’ list.

If someone adds a new document to a shared folder, that document will NOT appear in ‘Shared with Me’.  There’s no automatic notification inside Office at all.

If you’ve been sent a document sharing link separately (using a ‘Copy Link’ option), it won’t show up in ‘Shared with Me’ because the link isn’t tied to a particular user.

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