Control your content with Organizational Site Assets

One of the key pieces of functionality that I get asked for, when talking to customers about intranets, is how can we provide a gallery which contains all of our branded imagery, or our stock images. In the past, with SharePoint, this has always been something which needed to be conceded with a work around, or by diving into customisation's to be able to achieve.

With SharePoint Online, you have the capability to declare a Document Library as an Organizational Assets library. Think about Site Assets, which we traditionally used to store this local to a SharePoint site, but on global scale across my whole SharePoint Online tenancy.
This currently isn't available as a configuration option through the SharePoint Admin Center, but it can easily be achieved with a small amount of PowerShell.

So how does it work? When we define an Organizational Asset library, we define that library as being a private content delivery network (CDN). A SharePoint CDN is an area of SharePoint that is designed to host static objects for use across your tenancy. It uses a number of different caching techniques to improve the performance of the pages which are using those assets, giving a better experience to your users.

Now that we know what we want to do, and how it works, let's have a look at how to do it.

Create a SharePoint Library

First of all we need a document library which we can nominate to be an organizational assets library. This doesn't need to be a special library, it could be the standard document library which gets created on a site, but for the purpose of this article I'm going to use my own library which I will call "Corporate Images".
This will be the document library which will be managed by my Marketing department. Now that we have a document library, we need to configure it to be available to all sites across my tenancy.

Configure the Library using PowerShell

In order to configure the library, we need to revert to good old PowerShell and do some work at the command line. But first, we need to make sure that we have the SharePoint Online Management Shell installed. If you've never installed it before, you can download the SharePoint Online Management Shell here.

Once it's installed, we can fire up our preferred method of running PowerShell, which for me is PowerShell ISE, purely because this is available on pretty much every Windows OS, so there's no need for me to install anything else. If you prefer, however, feel free to use VSCode or any other PowerShell editor.

The first command that we need, is the command to connect to SharePoint Online to allow us to configure the library. When you connect, you will connect to the SharePoint Online Admin Site and prompted for your credentials, so make sure that you have SharePoint Admin rights.

Connect-SPOService -Url ""

When the connection has been successfully established, you can then run the commandlet to add the organizational assets library. For this we need one piece of information, the URL to the document library. There is an optional parameter which we can provide to the commandlet which is the thumbnail URL, so that when you view the library, you can have an image associated with it.

Add-SPOOrgAssetsLibrary -LibraryURL "" -ThumbnailUrl ""

Once you see the "Document library added successfully" message, we are ready to go and use it.

Using the Organizational Assets

In order to test our Organizational Assets library, we simply need to go and create some content. The easiest way to demonstrate this is to create a new News Post
Let's go ahead and add an image to the page which will immediately open the image selector window. On the left hand side, you will see the usual suspects of Recent, Web Search, Site etc, however also notice that you have "Your organization" listed.
When you select "Your organization" you will see the libraries which you have configured to be Organizational Assets.
When we then select our images, we will be able to see the images which were stored within the Corporate Images library.

These images can now be accessed across my SharePoint Online tenancy.


The Organizational Assets library is one of those features of SharePoint Online which doesn't seem to get the attention that it needs. It's an extremely useful piece of functionality that excites companies who are highly brand aware and want their users to create content using imagery which has been sanctioned.

It is really easy to implement. With a single document library and two lines of PowerShell I can empower the users of SharePoint to create content using my images. SharePoint will configure the library to be a private CDN, a repository that is tuned to supply content in an efficient way so that the users have the best possible experience when viewing the page. Just remember that you need to be a SharePoint Administrator to be able to run the PowerShell.

If you have different teams with different libraries which need to be shared, you can add multiple libraries into the organizational assets list to allow the users to easily reuse the content.

I hope you found this blog useful, and as always, feedback is very much welcome.