The modern workplace now revolves around collaboration. Our roles are now intertwined with others, so our optimum output requires the inputs and expertise of a team.
Diverse teams spanning different departments, locations and hierarchical positions are now central to a high performing business, pinning collaboration tools as must-haves. We fall back on technology and collaborative platforms to bring our diverse teams together. Facilitating teamwork, whether it be in person on virtually, is now essential.
However, most teams require multiple platforms to be able to collaborate, which becomes highly annoying... and stressful. And here we introduce the latest productivity tool, made for teams! Think of it as a 'one stop shop' type of platform for all your collaboration needs, for all the teams you are a part of. Exciting right?
It's name, Teams. It's creator, Microsoft.
What is Teams?
Designed to be a platform for collaboration, Teams reduces the friction of working as a team online, allowing for a one stop shop for all teamwork communications, which is stored for easy future retrieval.
And for that ad-hoc one on one communication? It's also supported.
Teams is essentially a group messaging platform organized around chatrooms, but that's not all it does! Because this platform is fully integrated with the Office 365 suite, you can create and upload OneNote, Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents that can be worked on as a group.
The list of features that Teams includes covers all your collaboration bases. With Microsoft Teams, you can:
- Host group chats, including threads
- Conduct group video meetings
- Create group notes using OneNote
- Create and share documents in Teams using Word, Excel and PowerPoint
- Upload, work on and store documents
- Create and collaborate on documents as a team
- Full stored history of all communication and documents on Teams
- Integrate some of your favorite third party tools into your Teams, such as Twitter and Polly.
Best of all? Teams is free to get if you are an Office 365 user!
How is it useful?
When collaborating, there are so many platforms you can use to communicate, collaborate and store information, but most of them are limited in the type of sharing they support. You easily use 5 different platforms such as skype for business, dropbox etc. that fill different needs. Then multiply that by how many teams you are a part of....
It adds up. Fast.
The beauty of teams is that it is your one stop shop for all the tools you need to collaborate. You don’t need to be signed up to every collaboration software, you have access to all your different teams and information you need on one platform.
Our experience using Teams: Why we moved from Slack
Similar to many other businesses, we had Slack as our main coolaboration tool between teams. Post its release, moving to Microsoft Teams became a must for us. It's seamless integration with the Office 365 suite (which we already used), as well as the ability to cut down on the accounts we needed to access for coolaboration, quickly became attractive.
It's still early days in our migration, but we have had positive feedback from our team. We have found the backend integration of Sharepoint files and the ability to logically group information one of the best outcomes so far.
And a plus? all the social emails that we used to send around the office can now live in the "conversations" feed of MS Teams, therefore cutting the number of back and forth messages, saving the inbox for other matters (you know, the official work "things").
As with any new technology, Microsoft is still catching up on integrations with third parties. So, in comparison with Slack, there is still room for improvement.
Finally, another important point to be aware is that, in order to gain access to Teams, businesses must have a license for Office 365 (if you aren't already on 365, click the image below and we can help!).
All in all, Microsoft teams is a fantastic business tool driven to help your business communicate more effectively, and efficiently. If that is an item on your agenda, join us!