4 KPI Best Practices

Use SharePoint Promoted Links to Display Project KPIs

March 29, 2017 by

If you are managing projects from a vanilla SharePoint site, you may wish to make your KPIs easily accessible on your project site. You could use SharePoint Promoted Links to display Project KPIs with some simple steps.

For this example, I am going to add a RAG on my project homepage on a SharePoint Online site. This solution will work on a SharePoint 2013 or 2016 On-Premises solution too – all using SharePoint Promoted Links!


Use SharePoint Promoted Links to Display Project KPIs

1. Upload Images

I have created some images to use for the SharePoint Promoted Links that you can download from here. If you go with your images, I would recommend the same naming convention for the process outlined in this blog to work.

I also suggest uploading the images if possible to a central location e.g. the top of the site collection, so you don’t have to repeat the upload on a site per site basis. However, if you don’t have access, that’s no problem!

For the site where you wish to add the images:

  • Browse to Site Contents

5. Site Contents


  • Create a new document library

6. Doc Library


  • Name the library “KPI Image Repository”.
  • Upload the images to the “KPI Image Repository” library. You can use drag and drop to make it faster.

7. Image Repository


  • Tip: Note the path of the image repository up as far a Forms/ e.g. https://samplesite.sharepoint.com/sites/sandbox/KPI%20Image%20Repository/

8. URL

  • Tip: All images must be in the same file format e.g. PNG, JPEG.



2. Add the SharePoint Promoted Links app to your project site

You’ll need to add the promoted link app to the site first.

  • Browse to Site Contents

1. Site Contents


  • Click on “New” and then on “App”.

2. Add App


  • Search for “Promoted Links”.

3. Promoted Links


  • Click on the image.
  • Enter the name for the list e.g. “Project KPI’s.”

4. Promoted Link Name

  • A Promoted Links app by the name “Project KPI’s” is now available on your project site.



3. Add New Columns to the “Project KPIs” Promoted Links list:

You will need to add several columns to the list to let the underlying formula to work. It is possible to do some of this in SharePoint Designer for those of you comfortable using it.

Create a SharePoint column

  • To create a column, click on “List” and “Create Column”.

9. Create Column

Columns to Create

NameImage Location
TypeSingle Line of text
Default Value[SiteNameWhereImagesAreStored]
 e.g. https://samplesite.sharepoint.com/sites/sandbox/KPI%20Image%20Repository/
10. SiteName
NameFile Format
Default Value[FileTypeofImages]
 e.g. .png
11. File Format
Choice CategoriesUp
12. Trend
Choice CategoriesRed

13. RAG




4. Delete and Recreate “Background Image Location” Column

In SharePoint Promoted Links there is an internal column called “Background Image Location”. We need to delete this and recreate as a calculated column type, concatenating the columns we recreated earlier on.

Delete a Column

  • Click on “List”/”List Settings” on “Project KPI” SharePoint Promoted Links list.

14. List Settings


  • Click on “Background Image Location” under the “Columns” section.

15. Background Image Location


  • In the address bar of the browser, go to the end of the URL and note the internal field. It should be BackgroundImageLocation

16. Field URL


  • Click on “Delete” to remove the column

17. Delete


  • Back on the List Settings page, click on “Create Column”

19. Create Column

  • Create the column as outlined below. Note there are no spaces in the Column name and it must be named exactly BackgroungImageLocation

18. Concatenate



TypeCalculated Column
Formula=CONCATENTATE([Site Name],[RAG],[Trend],[File Format])
Calculated Column TypeSingle Line of Text

What this does, is create a URL to the location of the images that were uploaded


5. Add the “Project KPIs” Sharepoint Promoted Links web app to a page

For this example, I added to the homepage of the project site as I like to keep my KPIs front and center of my project page.

  • Browse to the project home page
  • Click on “Page” in the ribbon
  • Select “Edit Page”

20. Edit Page


  • Select the area that you would like to add the “Project KPIs” Sharepoint Promoted Links and click on “Add a Web Part”

21. Add a Web Part

  • From the Apps Category, click on “Project KPIs” then Add.

22. Add KPIs


  • Back on the ribbon at the top of the page, click on “Stop Editing”.

23. Click on Stop Editting


  • The KPIs should now be on the home page.SharePoint Promoted Links



6. “Update KPIs” Quick Launch link

Now that you have it the “Project KPI’s” Sharepoint Promoted Links appearing on the dashboard, you may want to make it easy for project managers to update.

  • Browse to the site contents
  • Click on the “Project KPIs” Sharepoint Promoted Links app
  • Click on “List” / “Create View”

24. Create SharePoint View


  • Click on “All Promoted Links” under Start from an existing view

25. Copy SharePoint View

  • Call the view “Update Project KPIs”
  • Only make visible the RAG and Trend columns. Click OK.

26. RAG Trend


  • Copy the URL of the page view e.g. https://samplesite.sharepoint.com/sites/sandbox/CiaraTestTeamSite/Lists/Project%20KPIs/Update%20Project%20KPIs.aspx
  • Go to Site Settings
  • Create a new link, e.g. Update KPIs on the Quick Launch using the URL that was just copied. How this is done differs from the SharePoint versions.
  • When the user changes the KPIs from there, it will update the images on the Promoted Links!


SharePoint Promoted Links



Ciara McCarthy
Latest posts by Ciara McCarthy (see all)