Working from Home with Microsoft Teams (Video)


Ziad: Hello and welcome, everyone, to our live webinar today. My name is Ziad Paracha, and I hope you guys are all staying safe and healthy. I am the account executive in Encore Business Solutions. We are a Gold Microsoft partner and today we are going to be discussing Microsoft Teams. Microsoft has emphasized and had so many, you know, new releases of things on Teams as well as the ability to empower their users and team members and bring efficiencies towards their work. And now that we are working from home or a lot of us are and we are now utilizing different tools to be able to work and collaborate with our teams, Microsoft has actually offered quite a few more offerings for us to be able to utilize.

For some of you guys, you may have utilized Teams already. For others, it’s just brand new and you’re wondering what is Microsoft Teams? I’ll give you a short elevator pitch of what Microsoft Teams is and then we’ll go into a quick poll. Microsoft Teams is basically a new chat-based workplace for Office 365. So it’s embedded within the Office 365 applications and it’s the hub for teamwork. It brings people together, it brings conversations, the content tools, files, so on and so forth, all the things that you need in order to collaborate. And Teams also has the capabilities of recognizing that every team is different and unique.

And so Office 365 allows with their applications and tools for Teams to be a welcoming of all of those different styles of Teams. So I’m gonna get Melissa here to launch a poll to ask, you know, how many of you guys are actually using Microsoft Teams versus don’t. And while you guys are doing that poll…you can open the poll on the chat. While you guys are doing that poll, I’ll talk about a little bit more about what Encore does as a business.

So Encore Business Solutions, like I mentioned, is a Gold Microsoft partner and we’ve been helping businesses worldwide drive efficiencies and success in their businesses since the 1990s. So we’re celebrating our 30th anniversary just this year. And our customers, the idea for our customers is so that we could treat them, you know, with exceptional care. And we do that with our solutions, our services, our support. And we’ve got, you know, over 100 experienced business and technology professionals that are working to guide our customers through the different phases of whether it be an ERP implementation with the Dynamics 365, GP, NAV, AX, business central, so on and so forth, as well as CRM or customer engagement type of implementations and services. BI, we have a business intelligence practice. We can help out with IT infrastructure and cloud adoption strategies, training, so on and so forth. We kind of do it all. It’s a one-stop-shop to do it all.

We are the largest Canadian-owned partner and, of course, over the last 30 years have had a vast amount of changes in our technology and business applications. However, one of the things that stays consistent throughout all these different changing environments is our commitment and our, you know, trust and our partnership with our clients, our belief and our values are always consistent for our partners. Now, of course, like I mentioned, we provide a whole bunch of expertise and services to, you know, thousands of our users across the globe. And today, as part of our initiative to give back to our community, we wanted to have these, you know, in light of these events that have happened, wanted to have these live webinars to help and do our part and making you more efficient, effective working remotely as well.

So we know sustainable success isn’t achieved through technology alone. And it takes, you know, our people to support each other and processes, whether it be in your business or, you know, long-term commitment. And that’s what we do and we love to do. So with that short introduction, if our poll results are ready, let’s share them out so that we can get going to the remaining of our presentation.

Melissa: Great. Thanks, Ziad. Most everyone voted and a large majority is saying yes, 89% saying yes, they currently do use Teams and 11% say no that they don’t.

Ziad: Fantastic. That’s awesome. That’s great. It’s good to know. All the people that don’t have Teams, don’t worry, we can help you out. There’s actually offers that we will send out in a follow-up email as well for how you can get the free version of Teams right now while Microsoft is offering it, as well as for those users who are using it, there’s obviously going to be a different level of users. So some may be just fundamentals and learning the basics right now or just figured out today that they had Microsoft Teams as part of their license and others who may have been a little bit more deep dive into it. We’ll allow for questions at the end of the session. So feel free to save and jot down those questions. And we will, of course, have a follow-up email with all of this information as well.

So let’s get started on one of the slides I really like to emphasize is how the modern workplace is constantly changing. And the ways that organizations work, how companies kind of allow for workplaces to exist have always evolved over the last few years, both the work styles as well as the people working in those work styles, or the workforce, are becoming more and more diverse. And there are several trends that we see as well as several challenges that we see that exist for these organizations.

So for example, you know, we are using four times as many devices per user than we used to, say, five years ago. We have, you know, five different generations working in the workplace. And on top of that, stats for this year say 72% of the workers are working remotely. And it may be more than that now in the last couple of weeks, but we’ve got twice as many teams as there used to be that we are now on. So we may be working for, you know, the marketing team as well as working on the sales side of things. We may be working as an administrator, but also helping the IT teams. We’re working on two different teams, at least, on average. And because we’re working on twice as many teams, there’s obviously a higher number of collaboration that exists between those team members and employees as well. So there’s 80% of the time that’s shared from a workday actually happens in collaboration with something else.

So the challenge here is that, you know, one size doesn’t fit all, right? So you have to have a flexible tool that can be customized and personalize it based on the needs of your team and organization as well as there needs to be transparent rules or data culture where we can easily access the information and turn that into meaningful information and create a diverse work style that is run by the company strategy rather than, you know, your users going and trying to utilize their needs through third-party applications that probably bring about greater risks for the organization than having a strategy of your own.

So the general idea here is the workplace is constantly changing. The desire for working remotely exists. There is a lot of different people collaborating across different generational workforces as well as we’ve got a whole bunch of devices that are being utilized. It is statistically, you know, proven that companies that invest in collaboration and teamwork are five times more likely to be high performing teams or high performing companies. And it’s not just numbers, it’s just the nature of teamwork, right?

And so within the Microsoft Teams, this idea of, you know, twice as many teams or 50% increase in collaboration time that has occurred over the last 5 years, it’s the idea that you can now share with internal and external users outside or beyond the firewall as well. There are teams geographically distributed, not only in different cities, provinces, states, countries. We can now collaborate and use the experience and expertise of all those resources. And of course, we already talked about the diversification of the workforce.

Here’s how Teams has kind of been doing over the last three years. We just celebrated our third anniversary last week. Teams got 45 million active users on a daily basis with over, you know, 658,000 organizations that have more than 10,000 users using Microsoft Teams. Ninety-three of the 100 Fortune companies actually use Microsoft Teams. Over the last 7, 8 days, they’ve added over 12 million users then logged 90 million meeting and calling minutes. So is this the platform that is being utilized constantly? Yes, and it’s been a perfect time for it to be in a position to be able to use across all the different industries and companies as well.

So let’s dive into what Microsoft Teams is. Teams is basically the hub for teamwork. And it does this through four different pillars. One of the pillars is, of course, your chats or calls, meetings within Teams. And most of this has kind of been adopted from Skype for Business as well. So when it comes to chat, you know, you’ve got, you know, fast, fluid, you know, instantly familiar conversations that could take place. You can have phone calls, you can have meetings, you can have text style conversations. And we can kind of show you more of what that looks like in the demo as well.

They’ve got integrated Office 365 applications. So the Office applications and services that we use on a daily basis, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, Planner even, right, Power BI, some D365 applications as well are actually built into Teams. So you don’t have to take the information and the tools that you need, you know, right now, you can actually use them within the context of Teams and actually open the same window. You don’t have to constantly open multiple windows to get different data, go through different systems to extract that data. You can actually do that all within Teams.

The third pillar is the ability for it to be customized and extendable toward basically flexible to each team. So we know, like I mentioned, every group or every team is a little bit unique and you can tailor different workplaces or workspaces to include the different apps and services for your team. So Microsoft Teams obviously allows the ability for you to customize that with tabs, which we’ll talk about, connectors. You can customize, you know, your environment with having bots that use AI and, of course, different other capabilities to basically enable high-performing teams. And the last pillar stands on, obviously, the of the commitment that Microsoft has towards enterprise-level security compliance and for you to be able to manage that, which you would expect from any of the applications in Office 365.

So a little bit of a deep dive into each one of those again. Teams has evolved, you know, obviously, to be a more complete experience. It is a moderate meeting style experience that you can review conversations, you can share the content. You have a wide range of diverse communication styles as well as the ability for you to have private versus public organization-based conversations as well. And you can do these basically on any device, whether it be a tablet, you know, a cell phone, a desktop. It could be, you know, a Mac, Android, and now Linux too. Could be, you know, PC, Microsoft-based, any of the devices are compatible with Microsoft Teams.

There are capabilities, of course, of having the way the system is set up, audio, dial in, dial out. You can have internal calls within Teams as well as dial externally, like literally with a keypad, and still be able to make calls. The integrated apps is probably one of the more powerful features of Microsoft Teams as well because you can now integrate all of these different applications into one central system or application and you don’t have to kind of go from one screen to the next or one tab or application to another. You can co-author within here. It really brings about a positive culture within the organization. And we use it at Encore as one of our…basically, we start out our day within Teams and we end our day being in Teams, right?

So it’s something that, you know, you can…it’s integrated within Outlook and with email as well. And I can show you some of that stuff as well in our demo. So, a powerful tool when it comes to using the different applications that are within Office 365 as well. One of the main customizations, a fairly new customization is you can actually pin important applications onto your toolbar as well. You can also pin files for quick reference or share with the team or things like that as well. So there’s some really cool customized ways that you can do that that are still out of the box, but they are more customized to how you wanna tailor it to your team.

There is, like I mentioned, some bot interactions that can take place as well using the natural language, you know, to ask whether it be questions or even perform some transactional tasks as well. You may have heard about the power platform as well, which we’ve done some webinars and events for already. And it’s fairly a new push by Microsoft, but a lot of those applications can now be integrated with Teams as well on the data thread. So everything really works seamlessly. You have one source of truth. Your data is always accurate. It’s always backed up. It’s always there for you in a trusted manner rather than, you know, being able to go into different kind of channels and different data essentially, right?

The last feature, of course, is around the security. So the main key thing I wanna, kind of, mention here is basically Teams supports standards like SOC, right, EU model clauses, HIPAA compliance, and basically all of the ones that exist. And they’ve added, obviously, different features as well, such as now you can have mobile management with Microsoft into [SP]. There’s new features of compliance and litigation support that exists. There’s audit log searches, legal holds for channels or files and chats. So a whole bunch of security, enterprise-level security and compliance that are out of the Office 365 platform embedded within Teams as well, you know, for your team and organization.

A few things that are fairly new over the last month within Teams include, like I mentioned, the Outlook integrated experience. So you used to be able to have things linked from Outlook to Teams. Now, you can actually do it from teams to Outlook as well, so you can actually integrate or you can actually send files and share files out of Teams and send it in an email format and share it within Teams as well. There are mentions and tags for actual…what do you call it, actual, basically targeted communication, they use mentions and tags. Before, you can just, you know, link people but now you can actually create tags that actually come for an entire, you know, department or practice and everyone in that practice would be able to, who was tagged in that, tag and basically get control or basically have the data that they need in front of them.

There is file checking and checkout features as well that are included. Like I mentioned, you can pin apps. There’s a Power BI tab, there’s huge compliance and security compliance that have increased including communication compliance. And I talked about, for example, having administrators detect, capture, and basically report any, you know, inappropriate conversation or messages that may come up. There is different…actually, something that’s coming up real soon in Microsoft Teams as well and they have announced it is a noise suppression is one of the features. So it can minimize the amount of distracting background noises. Like for example, if you’re typing a keyboard or if you’ve got vacuum cleaners or kids coming out the back, you know, while you’re working from home, there’s actually noise suppression features.

There’s already the background blur and it uses similar, kind of, AI functionalities to do that. There’s another feature that’s coming up as well, which can automatically replace the background during a video chat. So you can…for example, if you are working from home and you’ve got, you know, a messy background, maybe your dog’s in the back and, you know, you’ve got a whole bunch of clothes on your bed and you can actually blur it out and replace it with, you know, an office space or something in the back. So really some new features to help people work remotely and work from home are coming up.

Now, I’m gonna show this next slide briefly here and, of course, Encore works with clients to kind of strategize an adoption strategy for our users. And right after this, we’ll go into our demo. Basically, you know, you don’t wanna get started obviously with Teams. Have a rollout or at least have a plan towards how you’re going to, you know, basically strategize a Teams implementation. So have the chats and teams and channels set up perhaps, then include the capability of meeting and conferences, then at the end, add voice capabilities and kind of grow from there. So the idea is to kind of keep building onto Teams rather than, you know, a full-blown-out thing. And sometimes, you know, depending on the organization, we do recommend the ladder as well.

So let’s dive into the demo at this time and I’ll share my screen here. I basically got…so this is just a demo environment that I’m using here today. And so if you go to your portal at, you can see, you know, this kind of application with all of the applications that you can utilize within your license. So you’ve got, obviously, the different ones and some of these ones you might not have like Power BI if your license doesn’t allow for it or Dynamics if you don’t have that environment. I’ve kinda got all of it here right now as an admin.

So one of the things I wanna show you is around the admin functionality. So if I click this admin feature, you can actually see all the different…you know, kind of within your admin center, all the different things that are part of your platforms. One of those things is Microsoft Teams. So if I click on Teams, it will actually take me to a dashboard that shows me all of my, you know, whether it be usage, whether it be, you know, the activity that has happened over the last few days. Again, like I mentioned, this is a demo environment, not my organizational activity.

You can see usage, you can see, you know, all sorts of different information that your company has kind of gone through from a Teams perspective as well as a whole bunch of materials underneath as well I can show you. So if you can also manage team and team policies as well through here. If you open this, you can see all the different teams that are created already. You can restrict that so that only, you know, the organization can create teams or you can allow your users to create independent teams as well. It just depends on the strategy that you wanna go. I can get some high-level information here as well as I can add more teams. I can edit particular teams and members through here as an administrator, right, and so on.

And I can change, you know, perhaps the role from an owner who basically has all access to a member who may only have restricted access or restricted capabilities within, you know, the team itself. I can, you know, change the settings. I can, you know, control how the meetings take place. I can have different analytics and reports come out of that, which I don’t have right now integrated. But you can actually select different types of reports. For example, how much is the team usage, just put in, you know, a range and you can run a report that would actually give you…of course, I don’t have nothing right now…would give you insights onto how, you know, your organization is utilizing that. So from an admin perspective, you know, there’s a couple different things that are here.

More than the admin perspective, I wanted to show you how the Teams, basically, UI kind of looks like. And so I just clicked the Microsoft Teams online. It will ask me, or should ask me, or would have asked me if I wanted to do it online or on an application. And of course, you could have an application depending on your license on your toolbar as well. For me, I’ve just kind of used the online version. So this is just the URL for that team site. A general layout for how the Teams is basically set up is, of course, you’ll see on the top there is a task, you know, search command feature that’s up here. That basically helps for you to be able to search anything.

So, for example, the bots that I was talking about, one of those bots could be, for example, you know, the who bot and I can ask within my organization who, for example, knows about marketing. And it will actually, using AI technology, search for all of the different users that will actually utilize or knows about marketing right here. So we’ve got a director of marketing, we’ve got a budget analyst who may have mentioned marketing, we’ve got a marketing manager that’s on there. And of course, I can do a whole bunch of other things as well, such as, you know, maybe call, you know, Megan, right, and it can actually call. I’ve actually turned off the capabilities for microphone and camera right now. But if you were to keep those on, block that for now, you can actually do that and continue with the call and so on and so forth. So that’s, again, a feature that exists within the box functionality of the command.

General layout of it, there is, of course, your activity feed over here. You will basically…this is kind of like your feed for any social network platform, whether it be Facebook or so on and so forth, you kind of get notifications here. You could see your activities or you can see people that have tagged you or mentioned you. For example, if I was to mention, you know, any one of these people, this would pop up in their feed and say, “Hey, somebody, you know, mentioned you in this particular area,” you know, here’s where you wanna kind of go to see what that conversation looks like. So this is the activities feed, you can obviously filter through that and see what kind of information you’d like to see or what kind of information you would not like to see so you’re not getting bombarded with notifications.

Then you’ve got a chat functionality here. Again, like I mentioned, this is adopted straight from Skype and way more functionality on top of that. I’ve got a who bot, of course, over here. And then I’ve got different chat conversations that I can create based on the context that I have and/or a new conversation from the beginning. So I can create a new contact group or a new conversation, but if I wanted to have a chat with anyone, you’ve got, you know, of course, the capabilities for, you know, text but also you can, you know have different options such as having attachments come directly from your OneDrive in a chat-based thing or uploaded straight from your computer.

Of course, you’ve got smiley faces and emojis and GIFs and different things to kind of increase, you know, collaboration between or increase the kind of culture. You can actually create meetings straight from here with that person. So if you notice that Megan is still right here, the contact, put in a title, right, “urgent meet” or whatever, have a date and time. We can set occurrences, so whether we wanted to repeat based on different trends, you can customize these recurrences as well. Which channel you may want that meeting to be, so perhaps it could be, you know, our project eight, just a general meeting that we want, the location, we gotta have, you know, different board rooms or things like that or just be an online meeting via Microsoft Teams.

Another thing here that’s really important or cool is the scheduling assist, so it can actually show you where different people and it can obviously have other required attendees that I want here and a list of all of their calendars and availability where they’re free or not. And basically be able to see when is the best time to book and schedule that meeting. So once you’ve got, you know, a time, this looks like it’s going to work for everyone. Once I go into the details, I click send and now that meeting invite has been sent to Megan via Outlook if it’s integrated within Teams and she’ll get notifications that we need to attend this meeting. And then I can obviously have a response back from Megan as well saying whether she accepts, declines, or proposals a new time.

Within the Teams environment itself, you obviously got Microsoft Teams. And within each of these, you’ve got, they call it teams. So one is the Mark 8 project, retail, and sales and marketing. So I’ve got three major teams within my channel. You can create these industry-specific, you can have, you know, project-based teams here, you can have, you know, just, you know, any sort of conversation, any team that exists right now or any project that may exist, you wanna have it set up this way. You can have the teams, of course, you can join or create, whether it be private or public teams. So in this particular case, the functionality is open for the ability for me to create a team.

So if I was to just create a team, whether it be from scratch or from an existing group or team that I’ve already created, similar to these ones, let’s say it’s the same users or same kind of layout, I wanna build it from scratch. It’ll ask you whether you wanna build it from a private team or something where you need someone’s permission to join, a public team where anyone in the organization can join, or the entire org-wide team where, you know, everyone in the organization is already there. This can be great for like if you wanna have, you know, maybe HR onboarding or some, you know, online capability where everyone can kind of see all the news and things, everyone is in the loop and the organization.

Now, keep in mind, everything in Teams also is basically backed up to OneDrive or SharePoint. It all kind of is the same from the backend perspective. Teams is just the front-facing component of the collaboration side of things. So let’s create a private team where, you know, someone who needs to have permission to be able to join this team, right, and you can basically, you know, have a description saying, “This is what this team is all about. Let’s create a team.” And now we can add different people within that team. So if you notice, the team actually pops up right here. Of course, I can customize changes, you know, make this team a little bit nicer by having, you know, whether it be, you know, a display image or other people on it. But let’s play around with this a little bit more.

Of course, you can do this from these functions here as well, as well as from here if I click manage team. I can add different channels to it. Channels are basically these sub-headings. And within these sub-headings, you can have, for example, this one has a lot. So you’re gonna have a general team where everyone kind of gets updated with general conversation. You can have specific, you know, mini-teams, I guess, or mini, you know, sub-headings underneath each of these, which kind of talk about the different work that’s being done there as well. But within this, of course, you can add different teams, you can add channels, you can add different members within those groups as well.

And of course, you can leave or, you know, make someone leave a team if they’re no longer required. You can edit the team, like I mentioned, to have, you know, maybe a different name or maybe you wanna now make it public and so on and so forth. So it’s not, you know, once you’ve built that, you can’t go back. And this is where those tags come in, right? So I don’t have any tags in this particular team, but I can create the tags. Anyone who is part of that tag can actually get updated when someone tags them, right? And of course, we can delete a team and manage it that way as well.

So if we were to manage a team from within here, we can actually, you know, add different members into the team. And you know, for example, Megan, I wanted her to be in on a conversation, I could add her. Now, from within here as well, I can add her as a member or as an owner. Now, you can restrict that access too to only have, you know, for example, an administrator be able to do that. But basically, you can…So let’s say I want her to be owner, now she can edit and make all the changes within the team, like on the backend, similar to what I’m doing. Whereas a member would not be able to do something like that.

So let’s see if anyone else wants to join this team. We can put, you know, Debra here and we can maybe make her just as a member. For now, that’s enough. And you’ll notice those people will actually populate here. And as a member, you’re right here. And you can, of course, take those roles and change those roles as administrator as well. Some people might request to be a part of this meeting. You will get those requests on this tab here. Different channels that exist, obviously, so you can search for the channels. I haven’t created any channel besides general. There are different settings that you can go to, for example, have a team picture. So I can change this picture. I can change the member permissions and restrict access here as well.

So you can kind of see all the different ones here. For example, all our members create or update or move tabs. These are tabs up here and I’ll show you what they look like on the team. For example, you can pin tabs that you’re using, you can restrict people from doing that or allow them to do it as well. You can allow them to delete their messages or not. There’s guest permissions enabled here. So if you wanna allow guests to be able to create, update channels, or to delete channels, you can just click those and that’s it, right? And now guest permissions are people that are outside of your organization can now access that.

There’s obviously mentions, like I mentioned, as well where you can have the dimensions or team codes that you can generate out of this to share so people can join your team code. And of course, you can allow or restrict, you know, this fun stuff tab, all the emojis, memes, and stickers that are there as well. And again, only owners can tag, you can restrict that, or just everyone can create a tag and have it. So depends on, again, the strategy that your organization is wanting to make for your users. Then you can get, obviously, some analytics similar to how you got it on your admin center as well. You can get some data created here as well. So how many teams may have been created, how many users have joined which teams and so on and so forth. Different types of data that you can get from a wide range of dates.

Here’s some applications, for example, that are a part of it, but you can actually get more applications that are part of your teams as well. So for instance, within here, you can actually go to the app store and basically search for any app, and there are hundreds and hundreds of apps. There’s Microsoft Flow or Power Automate, right, Zoom, right, Yammer, Spreadsheets, you know, Trello, Evernote if you use that, Survey Monkey. Some good ones. There are a whole bunch of other ones that are used all the time. Power BI, again, is one of those. We saw most of the Apple, or most of the Microsoft ones are, for example, Planner or OneNote, right? ADP Payroll is there. So there’s a whole bunch of third-party apps that you can actually use in your team as well. And I’ll show you how you can do that. I mentioned bots. So these are all the different types of bots or electronic connectors that you can use as well. You can look at, you know, what the top picks are for some, right, and so on and so forth.

So that was the general side of Teams. Now, within those teams, I haven’t created it here, but let’s look at something that’s already been prebuilt for us here. You’ve got for example, the general team. You’ve got these tabs that are…these are the tabs that are on top. So you’ve got posts. So anyone who makes posts, my urgent meet request that I’ve sent for this meeting, you’ve got files that people may have shared here that you can create folders or you can add particular documents here that you can upload as well from files that are on your desktop and/or the cloud. You can sync this to like, whether it be OneDrive or SharePoint, wherever.

You can copy a link to this particular team or file section to share internally and/or externally, depending on your strategy. You can download different files, of course, add storages, whether it be, you know, whichever storage you’re more comfortable using, as well as add different tabs as well. So, you know, for example, Wiki is already here. Let’s say I wanna add YouTube as a tab because we watch videos all the time. It’s as easy as clicking app and it’ll ask me for a couple things. So for example, if I wanted to have a particular video maybe or something like a URL, I could add that here and go save and it’ll show up here. Or I could, let’s say, add, you know, OneNote because we take meeting minutes all the time. It’ll ask me what type of OneNote you’d like to publish here. And this is the team that we have and we can publish that team. And you notice the OneNote actually comes right here and opens within the same Teams page. It doesn’t…it’s empty obviously, but it opens within this team’s page. We don’t need to open OneNote as a separate application.

And similarly, you could do the same for if it was, let’s say, we wanted to create a new document for an Excel spreadsheet or a Word document, you know, and we could create one, right? It opens up in that format, saved within the files, but now I can do all of the capabilities that I can do with Excel on a desktop within Teams, right? So within the same window, it’s in the Teams environment. I can edit it, I could share it. If I collaborate with other people, it can actually tell me over here who’s edited what so I can see the different…you know, basically, all the people that have made changes to it and so on and so forth. That’s powerful as well. Of course, you can change all of that as well.

Now, let’s say if this was the document, and like I mentioned, we can, you know, we can check in or check out this document. So if I check out this document, no one is gonna be able to edit it. And you notice this red arrow here as well as I can check this in and/or discard my checkout, right, because there was a mistake. I can copy a link to this particular file, right, to make this a tab. So this is one of those…maybe a policy or something that we wanna make sure everyone in this team has. You can do that, all of the other functionalities here as well for you to be able to utilize, right? There you go.

And then you’ve got the calendar component of it as well, so this is all, you know, integrated within your Outlook. Again, you can have a meet now feature, you can have video and audio conferencing here. You can add a new meeting similar to what we did before with a meeting invite, right? Right. You can, of course ,schedule a meeting for later. You can have a live event or a live webinar as well, and you get a full calendar view within here where you can see where people are busy or active. You can create one by just highlighting a section, right, and letting go. You can create another meeting or book out a time, so on and so forth.

Calling capabilities also within here, like I mentioned. So we can have speed dial, we can have contacts that we have. I haven’t added any right now. There’s obviously voicemail as well that it can get directed. You can make a call via a dialpad or…this is just internal. So if I had the VoIP capabilities, it would actually pop up where the dialpad here where I can make a call. In this particular case, I could call, you know, internal users, you know, within, whether it be video or audio conferencing and I just call and Debra on the other side will receive that call and notification, right? There are your files right here, so you can actually have…because I’ve got already the OneDrive stores, like you can add other storage, like I mentioned, as well and be able to, you know, all of these different cloud storages for it to have a backup on those ones as well. Okay.

These are just some of the recent ones that I have worked on, right? So for example, the file that I’ve created, the OneNote that I used and the other ones that I’ve collected over the last, you know, few days, you can see the environment or you can see the recent files. You can filter those files, right, through different types of files that you’d like to see or when they were modified or which team they’re on, so on and so forth, right? So these are all that you can all, you know, filter them in any way, shape, or form.

Again, an easy way to go to the apps is just by going here. I mentioned to you some capabilities to pin. So for example, if I use…and of course you can search for more apps here, but I’ve got just a couple of them here. If I use this all the time, Planner, I can just go pin and you’ll notice that pop up right here. Same thing with, let’s say, OneNote, I can pin and unpin these important tabs all the time. And if I wanna unpin them, you know, just click that. And if I wanted to go into Planner and now I don’t have to, you know, search for Planner, I can actually just populate out of my tab here.

This, of course, is an application that I’m using for my own personal thing and I can share it out as needed as well. Now, a lot of people will ask, well, you know, can I add guests or people from outside of my organization into the meeting? And yes, you can. You share basically with guests. So even within here, if you were to manage your channel or…well, not just for this particular channel, but if you were to manage a channel, you can change the restriction and the permissions that are here as well as when you are sending out meeting invites and/or projects or files, you can add guests. So as a member, you can add over here an email address, you know, any email address, and when you add it, it will say, you know, are you adding basically a guest and you say yes. And now they are a guest onto…which it will come up right in here on this team as well. So we got members, guests, and owners, right, that are all part of, you know, your team.

Okay. We’re running low on time and I wanna give you guys some time to ask questions as well. And any questions that, you know, we don’t answer here because of time, we can carry out, of course, later on in our follow up as well. So feel free to, you know, give me…I’ll share my email address as well. So feel free to give me a shout and I’ll follow up as well here with you on that.

This is the free version that Microsoft has offered. So if you need help setting that up, we will send this in a follow-up email as well for you guys to follow through in case you don’t have Teams and wanna try it out. And of course, there is support that’s available for all of this stuff through Encore as well. There’s some, obviously, content that’s not gonna be shared in the free version that I’ve showed you here today and/or, for example, like the extra storage space as well as the voice capabilities. But, you know, here’s my contact information as well. Thank you so much for joining in on our webinar today. And I look forward to your questions. If you’ve got any questions, you can populate them now. Melissa, if there are some questions already, I will be happy to answer them now. Sure.

Melissa: Yeah, I do have a question here. It says I have been…sorry. I have an automated reply set up and my team’s profile shows that I’m out of office because of this. Also, during a scheduled meeting, it doesn’t show as “in meeting” on my status. Is this normal?

Ziad: Whether it be in meeting or do not disturb, you just have to set up how you’d like…so based on what I’m presenting right now, you can actually because you’re presenting, be able to say, okay, do not disturb at this time. And therefore, any messages, team messages, calls will go straight to voicemail or they would notify the other users that, you know, this a do not disturb kind of status right now. So yes, it should give you a do not disturb thing, otherwise it’s not set up on the backend for you to be able to say when I am doing this particular task, I want this status to show, and it’s easy to set up a couple of different ways. So I wouldn’t go through it now, but if you wanna reach out to me again, like I said, I can show you the different ways that you can set that up to have a different status compared to designated for the different tasks that you would be doing at that time.

Melissa: Okay. Thanks. We’ve got some more questions. I may have missed this, but can you attach a photo within a chat?

Ziad: Yes, you definitely can. You can attach photos, you can have different attachments like files, you can have it from your cloud storage and/or you can attach files, photos, videos, all of those things from your file folders as well.

Melissa: Okay. And another one is, I’m getting notifications in chat, but not in teams. Is this part of the setup?

Ziad: So if you’re saying chat, I imagine you are getting the notification within here, but you’re not getting a notification either on the feed or you’re not getting a notification within the team. So it depends how that person is sending a chat. If they’re sending you a chat directly to a particular person, that’s not part of a team. You will receive it within the chat and get a notification for it. But if they are sending you a chat, let’s say, within a team similar to here and either mentioning you, right, or saying something like, “I need help,” I don’t know, anything like that, you should receive that not only within the team, also within the notification section as well. So I would have to look at what your team looks like and how it’s responding to it to be able to tell you if that’s normal or not. But generally speaking, that is how the notifications would work, or conversations.

Melissa: Okay. Another question is where is the whiteboard?

Ziad: So once you join a meeting there is a whiteboard that comes on. I didn’t join any meeting today cause I didn’t have a meeting. But if I was t…and maybe it would be a good time for you to give me a call and I could show you what that looks like. But if I joined that meeting, let’s go to my calendar and see if I can quickly join one. Okay. Anyways, continue with that audio or video. Okay. And join. Within the team meeting itself, I can actually have full whiteboard capabilities. There’s the chat feature that exists within the meeting. I could see all the people that are a part of it. I could share my screen and/or the whiteboard that comes right here. All right. And then, of course, you can collab on the whiteboard and everything like that as well.

Melissa: Okay. Do you have time for one more question?

Ziad: Sure.

Melissa: Would you suggest using Teams from large meetings like 10-plus? I’ve heard that only four cameras can show at one time. Is there a way to see everyone during a meeting?

Ziad: So the way the cameras work is, I mean, if you were, let’s say you had, you know, 200 people in a meeting and you can, right you would have really, really small video cameras show for each person if you were to have all the cameras show up. Right now, all the four come up. So this was the meeting screen. There’ll be split into four and the four people who are basically talking to most, kind of, come up or at least having a conversation. So when you do talk in that meeting, your video will show and populate here.

So it’s the four that are basically collaborating all the time. The other ones will show up on the bottom here as a plus sign and you can obviously see them as well as they speak or see who’s kind of join the meeting as well in that way. So is there a way to see everyone? Not for…so far only four, but yes, there is a way to be able to collaborate with them. The reason for that, again, is so we can take and make use of most of the screens, most of the screen space that’s there. There has been conversation around Microsoft Teams allowing a different way of seeing everyone as well, not yet rolled out for Microsoft Teams.

Melissa: Thank you. There’s other questions.

Ziad: If there are other questions, yeah, like I said, email and we can go from there.

Melissa: Yeah, I can forward them along to you because I think we’re just about at time now. So I’ll forward those questions to you for after.

Ziad: Fantastic. And I will reach out with a follow up as well for you guys. And if there are any other questions, like I mentioned, you know, reach out to me directly. I’ve shared my details here and we can go on from there. Thank you so much for coming on today. Stay safe and healthy and I will see you guys again or at our next webinar, and thank you so much.

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18 Warning Signs You Need The Cloud

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