Microsoft Teams – Your One-Stop-Shop for Team Productivity & Collaboration

What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is Microsoft’s flagship collaboration solution that incorporates everything an organisation needs to stay productive in today’s modern management landscape.

It includes integrated solutions that allows end users to chat, meet, call and collaborate in real time with simplicity and ease.

Microsoft Teams Features

Microsoft Teams provides several modern remote working features to support organisations in their journey to modern workplace:

  1. Video conferencing – Increase end user productivity and making meetings more personal by collaborating in real time.
  2. Screen sharing – Presenting and sharing of content to keep everyone on the same page by sharing your screen.
  3. Custom backgrounds – Leveraging pre-built virtual backgrounds or fully customisable virtual backgrounds, removing the distraction of surroundings and environments.
  4. Together mode – Providing a digital seating arrangement to make it look and feel as if you’re in the same room together.
  5. File sharing – Collaborate and co-author data and files in real time. Providing secure storage to access shared files from anywhere.
  6. Apps and workflows – Utilising Microsoft’s Power Platform with Teams integration allows for the streamlining of critical business processes.
  7. Market availability – Microsoft Teams is available in 53 languages, 181 markets and supportability for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.
  8. Privacy and security – Industry-leading compliance offerings to meet the most stringent regulatory requirements.

Microsoft Teams Adoption

Microsoft Teams was widely utilised prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, with total user consumption numbers at 8 million prior 2019, according to Microsoft.

However, global government policies forcing many to work from home has pushed the total user count to over 115 million during 2020.

This has accelerated the digital evolution of organisations significantly, forcing them to adopt more modern collaboration and communication technologies to allow employees to continue being productive, regardless of their working location.

Now with COVID-19 vaccines becoming available to the global population, employees will begin to return to the office in some capacity. However working from home policies will be kept in place due to the adoption of more modern technology to support employees, like Microsoft Teams.

Key Considerations Once You’ve Deployed Teams

Numerous organisations have not made the most out of this solution, due to having to implement  Teams quickly to enable remote working whilst creating more robust working from home policies.

Many organisations are consuming Microsoft Teams in an uncontrolled and disjointed manner due to this hasty implementation.

Although Microsoft makes the basic functionality of the platform available to all users, further thought and analysis is required to make sure that employees are maximising the solution to be as productive as possible in the new remote-first world.

There are many other key points to consider, following a fast deployment of Microsoft Teams:

1. Security and Compliance

Some organisations have missed the key concepts of security, governance and compliance when consuming the platform. Securing the environment that most employees work within is critical.

The significant increase of cyber attacks executed during the pandemic this year only makes this consideration more urgent and it’s important that IT teams review the best practice security guidelines provided by Microsoft.

2. Data and Collaboration

A lot of organisations only see Microsoft Teams as a video conferencing and instant messaging platform. Increased utilisation of the platform is required to ensure that businesses are making good use of the variety of features it offers, such as:

  • Real time co-authoring of documents.
  • File storage and file sharing.
  • Translation in 35 languages.
  • Data governance – ensuring data classification and retention policies are defined.
  • Data isolation – securing access to data via private Teams channels.

Once these fundamentals have been adopted throughout the organisation, productivity rates increase due to the seamless integration and collaboration of data.

3. Apps

Microsoft provides several natively integrated applications to improve employee wellness and productivity such as:

  • Poly – an engagement app that captures instant, contextual feedback from your team.
  • Stream – the intelligent video service within Microsoft 365.
  • Tasks – a task management tool.

All these applications have been designed with Microsoft Teams as the orchestration platform, seamlessly integrating and providing a single point of truth when it comes to collaboration.

4. Workflows

Leveraging Microsoft Power Platform, which has been developed to integrate and interact with Microsoft teams to improve legacy business processes, provides intelligent automation to free up employee resource by performing repetitive, task-driven processes.

With integration support for several major 3rd party applications, this allows organisations to visually design business process automation, ensuring that key 3rd party applications are integrated into the streamlined automation.

Microsoft Teams Implementation

If you think it’s time for you to review your Microsoft Teams deployment to establish whether you’re maximising the solution, then Camwood can help.

We’ll work with you to understand where you are now, where you’d like to get to and build a clear path to deliver the relevant optimisations to your Teams set-up.

From the initial deployment, to specific chat and meeting capabilities, ensuring you’re secure and compliant to implementing automated workflows with Microsoft Power Platform, in one seamless project.

For more information about how we can help you get the most from Microsoft Teams get in touch today

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Daniel Williams
Daniel Williams is the Head of Technology at Camwood.
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