Few software makers do office productivity tools like Microsoft. Their Word, Excel, and PowerPoint programs have been mainstays in businesses around the globe since the 1990s, helping them evolve from the world of typewriters to one of computers and printers.
Flash forward to 2019 and technology continues evolving, taking advantage of faster internet connections and cloud-based workflows to make offices even more productive.
Microsoft’s Office 365 takes advantage of this cloud revolution and one of the most important transformative tools it includes is Microsoft Teams.
At Triada Networks, we’ve helped our clients in New York and New Jersey take advantage of the benefits of cloud-based solutions to improve communication, save time, and increase office productivity. We’ve found that while many of our clients use Office 365, often they’re not fully utilizing the power of Microsoft Teams, which is included with their subscription.
Have you been wondering what Microsoft Teams is and how exactly to use it? We’ve got an overview of this cool collaboration tool and tips on how it can streamline your office workflow.
What is Microsoft Teams?
Many know Microsoft Teams as a team chat application, but it’s really much more than that. It acts as a main hub to bring your employees together virtually into one workspace, connecting all the Office 365 tools they use, like Word and Excel, into a single workspace.
How important is team collaboration?
86% of executives say that poor communication and lack of collaboration are responsible for workplace failures. (Salesforce)
To give you an idea of its collaborative power, let’s take a look at an example of a common interaction between a technical department and sales department.
Before Microsoft Teams:
The sales department puts together a new brochure, using all the best marketing speak to grab a buyer’s attention, including a promise of “our gadget saves you 2 hours of time each day!”.
They email this brochure around throughout the draft stage, including to the technical team (responsible for testing exactly how much time their gadget saves per day). The sales team is relying on multiple back and forth emails to get input on their brochure. Once they feel good about it, it’s sent to the printer for thousands of copies.
But unfortunately, in the sea of emails the technical team’s important edit of changing “2 hours” to “1.5 hours” is missed, and now they have to scrap all those brochures and do a reprint, a costly mistake.
After Microsoft Teams:
The sales brochure draft is shared with the technical team in Microsoft Teams, they can then make comments right on the draft document, and chat back and forth in the interface explaining their input. No sea of emails to sort through and no edits missed, the change is made right on the cloud-based document by the technical team themselves, so the final draft is perfect before it goes to print.
The Best Microsoft Teams Features You Should be Using
If you’re not currently using Microsoft Teams, these 7 features may make you rethink that.
1. Chat Channels
Channels allow you to keep conversations organized by department or another attribute, for example you could make an Office Announcements channel that includes things everyone needs to see daily. You can also set user permissions for which team members can access which channels.
This modern team chat saves you tons of time sorting through back and forth emails and keeps things in real-time.
2. Workspace Tabs
Microsoft Teams is a central hub from which you can access all your other productivity software. Adding tabs is easy and it allows you to access many different programs (both Microsoft & 3rd party) right from inside teams, such as:
- Adobe Creative Cloud
3. Video and Audio Conferencing
Like face-to-face meetings? You can have team or client video meetings using Skype for Business right from your Microsoft Teams channels. This takes team collaboration to a whole other level and keeps them connected to all the comments/files having to do with a particular subject or account.
4. Automated Bot Integration
Microsoft Teams supports use of automated bots, which can automate manual tasks and save your staff time. Such as a calendar bot that automatically checks team members’ cloud-calendars for availability to schedule a meeting.
5. Mobile Apps
Using the mobile apps, means your team is connected even when on the go. If your sales person is out in the field and needs that invoice that accounting had sent, they can easily pull it up on their Microsoft Teams app, getting it to the customer right away.
6. Integrate Social Media
Through the 3rd party app integration you can bring a social media apps like Hootsuite or Twitter into Microsoft Teams and allow your social team easy access to comments in order to brainstorm timely responses to your social media followers.
7. Invite Customers and Vendors to Collaborate
Microsoft Teams allows you to take the benefits of team collaboration outside your organization by inviting guests to particular chat channels for collaboration. This makes it easy to connect with vendors during project development or give your large customers their own channel to discuss their investment portfolio or to order additional services/products.
Learn More About Microsoft Teams & How to Use It
Triada Networks can get you set up with Microsoft Teams and Office 365 and customize your interface to streamline your operations and save you both time and money.
Schedule a free consultation online or call us today at 201-297-7778 to take advantage of team collaboration.