Microsoft Office 365’s powerful cloud-based productivity, collaboration and storage capabilities have made it an essential component of digitisation efforts for organisations around the world.
Supported by Microsoft’s multi-billion-pound investments in cloud security, Office 365 allows employees to access key applications and corporate information in any physical location.
This flexibility enhances productivity, drives efficiency, and enables entirely new ways of working that benefit the business and improve staff satisfaction.
What is Microsoft Teams?
With over 20 million daily active users and the default communication tool within Office 365, Microsoft Teams can be viewed as the glue that binds all of these elements together.
Microsoft Teams offers all of the same features of Skype, such as voice, video and text conversations, alongside new capabilities – such as social networking-esque features – that drive engagement.
The division of staff into individual ‘teams’ and full integration with Microsoft Office 365 means members can find the most relevant content, files and people for their tasks and can collaborate in real time.
Microsoft Teams uses the information entered by users to learn how they work, serving up recommendations and useful content from other Office 365 applications. Teams also supports chatbots and automatic translation, while intelligent search features allow for rapid access to information.
This combination of powerful communication tools and mobile functionality empowers groups within an organisation to work together regardless of location, while automation saves time that can be better spent on higher value activities.
How to get started?
The user experience of Microsoft Teams is designed to reflect the technology that staff use in their everyday lives and elements should be familiar to anyone who has used other Microsoft Office 365 applications.
To maximise the benefits of Teams within an organisation, it helps to have a few pointers:
1. Organise yourself
Individual ‘teams’ can be created for any group within an organisation, such as finance, HR or marketing. It can be beneficial to have a ‘team’ for a particular project. Within these ‘teams’, it’s possible to have multiple channels of conversation – ensuring that discussions about one subject aren’t lost in the mix.
2. Use shortcuts
Microsoft Teams includes a variety of keyboard-based shortcuts that can execute actions or speed up certain tasks. For example; you can type ‘/call’ to initiate a voice conversation with another member of a group.
3. Embrace the intelligence
Intelligent search makes it easy to find the information you need, while there are also automatic translation features and Cortana integration allows for the smart scheduling of meetings. Organisations can also include chatbots to automate certain functions.
4. Integrate with third parties
Although Microsoft Teams works seamlessly with Office 365 services such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, the inclusion of support for third party applications like Trello and Salesforce, allows ‘teams’ to get even more work done. Tabs for these applications can be added in individual channels.
5. Communicate however you want to
The most important tip is to embrace the range of communication options at your fingertips. Voice or video calls can be initiated via the command bar, chat tab or contact page, while the inclusion of GIFs, emojis and ‘@’ allows you the same freedom of expression at work as you have on social media or on consumer messaging apps.
6. Get more tips and tricks
The benefits of Microsoft Teams are numerous, helping organisations to establish smart workspaces and accelerate digitisation efforts.
To maximise the potential of this truly transformative tool, it pays to understand the entire spectrum of its capabilities. The successful implementation of Microsoft Teams is as much about culture as it is technology and will only be effective if staff are actually using it correctly.
Insight’s Smarty Pants Guide to Microsoft Teams offers more tips and tricks to get the most out of Teams and also provides advice on how to deploy the application within your organisation.
Download the Insight Smarty Pants Guide to Microsoft Teams here.