Podcast

Helping your users understand Microsoft 365 terminology

As Microsoft 365 practitioners, it’s our job to help information workers and end-users understand how to work with Microsoft Teams, Planner, SharePoint, OneDrive, etc. Having a common set of defined terms helps your users stay on top of M365 feature changes and capabilities. If your organization hasn’t done so already, I recommend coming up with a M365 “style guide.” The style guide should define the way in which you refer to M365 products and features. For example:

  • How will you refer to a Microsoft Teams team? And how will you distinguish that team from the Teams product or from a SharePoint team site?
  • Will you double-up on descriptive terms like “Planner plan” and “Teams team” when you refer to specific M365 groups?
  • Will you use capitalization alone to denote an individual plan from the Planner product?

In this episode of M365 Voice, we discuss the challenge of building our enterprise Microsoft vocabulary. Listen in for ideas on how you can consistently refer to your M365 features and products. Enjoy!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

 

Which Microsoft 365 mobile applications do you use most? And which apps are your favorite?

We went mobile for this episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice, discussing which mobile apps we use most and why. Our top 10 list of apps include:

  • Outlook
  • Microsoft Teams
  • OneDrive
  • OneNote
  • Microsoft 365 Admin
  • Power Automate
  • SharePoint
  • Office
  • Power Apps
  • To-Do

We discussed trends we’ve seen in organizational adoption of the M365 mobile apps, along with differences in our work vs. personal use. (Hint: The OneDrive and OneNote mobile apps win for most-used personal apps…)

Enjoy!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

 

Determining if you should enable Microsoft Self-Service

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To drive effective utilization of Microsoft 365, we have to create new Microsoft Teams, Planner plans, Yammer communities, and SharePoint Online sites on a timely basis. But many organizations have gatekeeping reviews or regulatory requirements that require reviews and/or approvals prior to creating new teams, plans, communities, and sites. The tension between quick creation and required governance leads to difficult decisions:

  • What (if any) approvals should be required in order to get a new team, plan, community, or site?
  • How quickly should the new team, plan, community, or site be provided? Is 2 hours quick enough? How about 2 days? 2 weeks?
  • Who should be able to request a new team, plan, community, or site? And should they have to declare a business purpose or specify the type of data (e.g. company confidential, personal information, highly classified, etc.) included?
  • Who will approve the creation of teams, plans, communities, and sites?

You also need to decide what type of self-service model you’d like to leverage. A request and fulfillment model begins with an employee completing an intake request for a team, plan, community, or site. This intake would then be processed on an automated or manual basis. If the request was found to be valid (within appropriate parameters), the new team, plan, community, or site request would be fulfilled. A create and certify model enables employees to create and use their new teams, plans, communities, and sites immediately. Creators would then receive required attestation or registration forms that must be completed within an allotted time period or their new team, plan, community, or site will be deleted. Some companies use a certify and create model where employees complete a required registration process and are then provided a new team, plan, community, or site.

Your organizational culture, regulatory requirements, and governance/auditing needs should drive your decisions on enabling Microsoft 365 self-service. There is no one-size-fits-most model for success. In Episode 24 of the Microsoft 365 Voice, we share ideas for choosing a self-service model, provide examples of what we’ve seen work well, and give some getting-started ideas. We hope you enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

 

Microsoft 365 is huge. Where should companies start?

In this week’s episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice, we were asked where & how companies should get started with M365. It’s far from a one-size-fits-most answer, as company needs differ widely. Drivers to get to the cloud can include:

  • Need to support Work From Home during COVID
  • Need to support regulatory requirements for data classification, version control, etc.
  • Need to support a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) strategy for a distributed, remote, and mobile workforce
  • Need for stronger employee collaboration
  • Need to move off old hardware that is too expensive to maintain/support
  • Need to drive parity in software versions for all employees
  • An upcoming renewal fee that requires getting off a legacy system

And many more…

We shared our experiences guiding clients through the M365 onboarding process, recommending a start in the identity and security space. From there we examined workloads across M365, sharing how we’ve seen other companies proceed. While many organizations start with email first, we also discussed rollouts of Microsoft Teams (both with and without SharePoint/OneDrive enablement), Stream, and Yammer.

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

The top 5 Microsoft Teams features every business user should know

20200713_155334454_iOSIn this week’s episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice, we were asked to share the top 5 Microsoft Teams features every business user should know. We couldn’t stop at 5, so welcome to our top 19 Teams features! A quick list of features discussed is provided below. Watch the episode for more details.

  1. Adding apps (e.g. Yammer) to your Teams navigation rail
  2. Live captioning
  3. Integrating key documents into Teams tabs
  4. Using two Teams instances (Teams application and Teams in your browser) when sharing your screen in meetings
  5. Blurred background
  6. Raise your hand
  7. Teams mobile app
  8. Automated permission enablement of files shared in a private chat
  9. Teams command bar
  10. Ability to share conversation history when you add someone to a chat
  11. Meeting notes & whiteboarding
  12. Transcription of recorded Teams meetings (just let everyone know they’re being recorded!)
  13. Creating a well-designed Team (using tabs, adding quick links to key documents, etc.)
  14. Ability to email a Teams channel
  15. Quickly notify team members of a key channel post by typing @team in your post
  16. Using tags in Microsoft Teams to notify key team members
  17. Using the Files tab in your Teams navigation rail to see recently-edited Microsoft 365 files
  18. Teams camera switching (useful if you have multiple webcams)
  19. Pinning a video during a Teams meeting so you can zoom in on a speaker

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

How quickly can you deploy Microsoft 365 during COVID?

In this week’s episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice, we discuss how quickly you can onboard an organization to the Microsoft 365 cloud. This is particularly relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic, when organizations are accelerating their M365 deployments.

We share our experiences working with organizations to deploy Microsoft Teams, Exchange, OneDrive, etc., including typical migration timelines and how orgs are condensing those timelines to enable a huge remote workforce. From accelerating migration timelines to disabling cloud throttling limits, we outline what we’ve seen work (and not work) during an abbreviated deployment schedule.

Moving an organization to M365 within weeks instead of months is a huge lift. It requires a willingness to accept/embrace change, a strong executive and IT support system, and additional funding. Listen in to learn how organizations are managing it.

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

Overcoming SharePoint adoption hurdles

In this week’s Microsoft 365 Voice episode, Mike, Antonio, and I share ideas on overcoming SharePoint user adoption hurdles. Key topics discussed include:

Enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

What’s your favorite Surface device?

20200727_144913246_iOSThis week’s Microsoft 365 Voice episode is all about Surface devices! Antonio, Mike, and I discuss which Surface devices we own and how we use each device. Listen in to hear our thoughts on the Surface Laptop, Surface Pro, Surface Go, and Surface Book.

Key topics discussed include:

  • Use cases (which devices we prefer using for presentations, demos, entertainment, travel, etc.)
  • Preferences in choosing Surface devices (screen size, weight, storage capacity, etc.)
  • How and when we chose to upgrade our Surface devices (e.g. going from the Surface Pro 3 to the Surface Pro 6)
  • What types of files we store locally on our devices

Enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

 

Choosing when to use a Teams private channel, a Yammer community, or a SharePoint site

This “what to use when” episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice explores when to use Teams private channels versus Yammer communities or SharePoint Online sites. Key topics discussed include:

  • Prerequisites for creating Teams private channels
  • Use cases for Teams private channels
  • Overview of how Teams private channels are secured
  • Types of Yammer communities you can create (public, private, and secret)
  • Use cases for private and secret Yammer communities
  • Discoverability of Teams private channels and Yammer communities
  • Granular access controls for SharePoint
  • How to choose the right solution for your collaboration needs (e.g. ease of use, accessibility of files, and desired audience).

Enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.

 

What is the difference between SharePoint home sites and hubs?

This episode of the Microsoft 365 Voice is all about SharePoint home sites and hubs. Key topics discussed include:

  • What are home sites and hubs? And how do they differ?
  • How many home sites and hubs can you have in your Microsoft 365 tenant?
  • How do you get started with home sites and hubs?
  • How are home sites and hubs created?
  • Can a hub be a home site?
  • Will hubs be included in SharePoint Server 2019?
  • Tips for using hubs, including “sticky” hub site branding.

Correction: During the episode, we said we weren’t sure whether admins could remove a home site once it was defined in their tenant. A huge thank you to Microsoft for clarifying – you can use the Remove-SPOHomeSite PowerShell command to remove a home site.

Enjoy the episode!

Have a Microsoft 365 question? Submit it online! Your question may be featured in a future podcast episode.