Is your team equipped with the best solutions for remote work, communication, and collaboration? “Telecommuting offers many benefits for workers, including flexibility and better work-life balance, as well as for employers, who enjoy cost savings and an expanded talent pool, to name a few. As people continue to jump on the telecommuting bandwagon, it’s more important than ever to find ways to stay productive, connected and happy.”
Computers Nationwide is proud to partner with Microsoft to offer clients an innovative hub for teamwork in 2020. Microsoft Teams creates the environment for everyone you work with to chat, meet, call, and collaborate all in one place, no matter where you are.
“Almost overnight, video conferencing has become a big part of our daily life and work. A few weeks in, my team and I at Microsoft have adjusted to the new reality of seeing each other’s homes, complete with dogs, cats, and other family members. Everyone around the world is now working, learning, and connecting with colleagues, friends, and family through the power of technology. From kitchen tables to living room couches, and from home offices doubling as home schools—people are relying on Microsoft Teams to work and learn.” Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President for Microsoft 365
A few of the many benefits of Microsoft Teams:
- Chat from anywhere: Whether you have teams telecommuting, collaborating remotely, or just working across the office cubicle, business chat software and apps are the latest must-have workplace essentials. Share your opinion, and your personality. Send gifs, stickers, and emojis in a group chat or in one-to-one messages. Read 5 ways to make group chats the best place at work!
- Meet from anywhere: Instantly go from group chat to video conference with the touch of a button. Teams of 10 or 10,000 can meet in one place, no matter how many places they’re in. Video calling makes it possible for people to see each other, get a feel for personality and mood, and pick up on nuances and intonations – which makes it easier to share ideas, have tough conversations, and make your case.
- Call from anywhere: Make clear and reliable calls. Never yell “who just joined?!” ever again. Use Teams calling, Phone System, Calling Plan, or Direct Routing to take the stress out of conference calls. Now you can add a phone system designed for Microsoft 365 to your existing plan.
- Collaborate from anywhere: Never do that frantic, searching-for-files thing ever again. By giving you one central location where everyone in your group can work on the same files in real time – and see what the others have done – you can maintain version control and simplify the creation process. In Teams you can access, share, and edit Word docs, PowerPoint, and Excel files in real time.
- Integrate your apps and automate workflows: Make Teams work for you! Add your favorite Microsoft, partner, and custom apps and workflows to your experience.Connect hundreds of apps and services you already use and love, including Office apps. Use tabs, connectors, bots, and more to integrate them directly into your Teams experience.
- Enjoy using pre-made app templates: App templates are production-ready apps for Microsoft Teams that are community driven, open-source, and available on GitHub. Each contains detailed instructions for deploying and installing that app for your organization, providing a ready-to-use app that you can install and begin using immediately. The complete source code is available as well, so you can explore it in detail, or fork the code and alter it to meet your specific needs.
- Microsoft’s commitment to privacy and security: They offer a variety of privacy and security controls to allow you to manage who participates in your meetings and who has access to meeting information. Microsoft protects your identity and account information, protects personal data, defends against cybersecurity threats, and complies with global, national, regional, and industry-specific regulations.
“By adding Microsoft Teams, we’ve definitely heightened global cross-brand collaboration. It provides the central heartbeat for our projects.”
Check out the “10 best Microsoft Teams tips for business pros” from TechRepublic.com:
1. Share to Outlook from Teams: A February update from Microsoft allows users to share either a chat or channel conversation as an email to Outlook—without ever leaving Teams. Within the message or channel, click More Options, select Share to Outlook, choose recipient, customize the email, and send.
2. Assign tags to names: Rather than copy and pasting the same message to each member of a group, Microsoft now allows users to assign team members with specific tags. For example, if the head of a warehouse wants to send a message to all managers, they can simply select the @manager to send the message to those individuals. People can be grouped by common attributes, roles, projects, locations, and more.
3. Create teams across the organization: Small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) can automatically have a single team channel within Microsoft Teams. Global Admins with a team of fewer than 5,000 users can select the ‘Org-wide team’ from the ‘Build a team from scratch’ option within the platform. The group will automatically keep membership up to date through the Active Directory as users join and leave the company.
4. Sync files to your desktop from teams: Teams users worldwide can sync files directly from the platform to their PCs or Mac. Powered by Sharepoint, Microsoft recently released its new file experience that also allows users to see previews of documents across more than 320 file types, view document life-cycles, pin files to the top, and more. Business professionals can now save their most important files directly to their devices from a Teams message or collaboration.
5. Record Teams meetings and group calls: All Microsoft Teams users can now record their Teams’ meetings and group calls, capturing audio, video, and screen sharing activity, which can be helpful during long presentations or when important information is discussed. Users must have access to Microsoft Stream, however. A recent Microsoft article explains how leaders can ensure their employees have access to Stream.
6. Add important apps to Teams: Users can also use their favorite apps within teams. To find an app, go to Apps on the left hand side and either search an app or browse the app categories. Once the app is located, the user clicks Add. The app can then be added as a tab in channels, group chats, or individual conversations through the Add a tab button.
7. Test out Slack integration: Slack, another popular collaboration platform, announced on Wednesday its beta for the Microsoft Teams Calls app, ZDNet reported. Last week, the Slack CEO said Slack is intending to integrate directly with Microsoft Teams calling, and it seems to be following through. The Microsoft Teams Calls beta can be seen in the Slack App Directory.
8. Mute conversations: If you need to stay focused, users can now turn down the noise in Teams channels. Go to a conversation, select ‘More options,’ then ‘Turn off notifications/Turn on Notifications,’ and get some work done in peace.
9. Pin apps to the left-hand rail: A newer, and perhaps lesser-known, feature is the ability to pin personal apps to the Teams app bar on the left, making them more accessible. Users simply locate the app, right-click on it, and select Pin.
10. Play with QBot: Designed for educators and students, QBot allows teachers, tutors, or students to answer one another’s questions within the Microsoft Teams collaboration platform, which is especially useful during the coronavirus shelter-in-place orders. Leveraging Azure Cognitive Services, students can ask a question on the channel by @tagging QBot, and QBot will either tag instructors or provide an answer.
“With Microsoft Teams and the Microsoft Power Platform, field employees could access everything they needed—in one place, accessible from any device.”
“Anyone overseeing global teams and/or a virtual workforce has experienced first-hand the challenges that come with remote management. But the popularity of teleworking is only rising – so investing in the technology you need to create collaborative experiences, develop personal relationships, and deliver standout projects only makes sense.” Learn more about managing remote teams is easy with these collaboration tools!