Over the past few months, we've seen tremendous transformations take place as companies adapt to remote work environments. One key trend has been the rise of virtual meetings, as companies look to maintain their rhythm of business and keep human connections while working remote. However, as the volume of meetings increase, teams face challenges with management, efficacy, and engagement. To overcome some of these challenges, we'll highlight a few popular Microsoft Teams Apps integrations that can help you drive effective meetings while working remote.
Effective meetings require more than corralling a group together to discuss - it requires thoughtfulness around agenda preparation, clarity on objectives, and defines sets of action items. An easy path to plan a successful meeting is to consider apps that streamline the agenda preparation and meeting management process.
SoapBox simplifies the agenda preparation and management process by allowing teams to build, collaborate, and action team meeting agendas without leaving their workspace in Teams. Using its bot and tabs, teams have a single integrated workspace where they can build agenda items, capture meeting minutes, and monitor resolution of action items - removing the administrative hurdles typically experienced with meeting management.
Collaborate with shared meeting agendas
Build agendas collaboratively by adding items to a shared agenda - reinforcing teamwork and helping ensure each attendee is fully aligned and aware of the scope and objectives of the meeting. You can also access an inventory of suggested agenda items that can be used as a supplement. Teams notifications are surfaced each time agenda items are added, closed, and reminders are sent for upcoming meetings to ensure accountability across the team.
Manage your meetings, capture minutes, and assign action items
As your meeting gets underway, tick off agenda items as you cover them, so that you know what items remain outstanding. Any agenda items not covered automatically roll over into you next meeting in the series, as needed. You can also capture meeting minutes and action items from within the app, so that team members have a central repository in Teams to access.
Access AI-powered insights from the conversations you're having with your team
Using machine learning, SoapBox can decipher the topics you're discussing most (and least) frequently across all your meetings. Based on your meeting insights, it will serve up suggested questions and reading materials that will help you better prepare and balance future meetings.
Keeping your teams engaged and connected can be a struggle - especially with a screen taking the place of a person. Prezi Video helps address these challenges by letting you overlay your visuals directly on screen next to you, making meetings engaging and bringing back the human connection element that's missing in remote work. By putting you and your content together on the same screen - you create a natural, human interaction with your audience and make the meeting more impactful.
Maintaining the human connection with your team
Meetings are effective when attendees are engaged and have a connection with the presenter. When you remove that engagement by speaking behind material, you lose that human connection and begin to lose your audience's full attention. With Prezi Video, you strengthen that connection with your team by keeping you and your content together on the same screen for a powerful presentation experience. Attendees remain engaged throughout the live video meeting and can engage in real-time collaboration - creating an effective presentation experience for the entire team.
Send useful pre-recorded, asynchronous updates
When live meetings aren't needed or aren't feasible, you can create a quick video update to share directly in your Teams channel, helping your team stay up to date without interrupting their workflow with asynchronous communication. Easy integration of your must-have information and graphics into your video screen means that team members can share and discuss key data at a time that works best for them.
Balance time and productivity
Without requiring a designer, you can create stunning videos with pre-made templates and high-quality images available on Prezi Video and save precious meeting time for more impactful discussions or even cancel a meeting entirely by sending a video and having the discussion in your team's channel instead, saving everyone time.
Sometimes meetings just need a jolt to keep attendees engaged. Consider introducing short interactive challenges in the middle of a meeting to inject some energy. Kahoot! is a game-based learning platform that makes it easy to create, share, and play learning challenges (kahoots). Whether it's business-focused or for fun, you can gamify the meeting experience to increase attention and engagement. With its recent integration with Teams, meeting hosts can present live kahoots during meetings or assign self-paced challenges after meetings.
Launch a live challenge in your Teams meeting
Host live kahoots during a meeting to keep your attendees engaged and energized. Whether you're looking to kick off the meeting with an ice breaker, facilitating Q&A, or gathering feedback - you can quickly access your kahoots within Teams and share you screen to allow participants to join. You can also import your PowerPoint slides into your kahoot to gamify your existing presentations. Increase engagement and run the entire experience from the Kahoot! app within Teams.
Assign a self-paced challenge in your Teams channel for your attendees
Reinforce discussion points by assigning a challenge to attendees after a meeting, which can be accessed directly from Teams. They'll receive automated reminders to complete and you'll be able to leverage an interactive experience to drive home key point that you want them to remember.
Results and Reporting
If you'd like to view data from the challenge, a report will be linked directly from the podium for the host to review - allowing you to see how your attendees have performed and to measure their level of engagement. Reports for live games hosted within Teams are available by logging into your account on the kahoot website.
Adepteq use Teams ourselves and have successfully planned, deployed, trained on and are supporting Microsoft Teams with many of our clients.
Microsoft 365 has been enhancing businesses all around the world. It is an incredibly powerful platform that is constantly improving and offering new features, and businesses are putting their entire lives into it. However, there is one area where Microsoft 365 falls short, and it is often overlooked by the majority. Backup Solutions.
Below are the most common reasons for data loss in the cloud. Don't let your business be another statistic.
More often than not when a file or document has been accidentally deleted it can be recovered from the recycle bin. Like most platforms, Microsoft 365 has recycle bins which hold deleted files for a limited amount of time. In Microsoft 365 it's 93 days. It's a good amount of time, but not always enough for those who are unaware a file has gone missing. However, it is unlikely to fix the behaviour of a malicious user as files can be permanently deleted from the recycle bin at any time.
Our online world is growing day by day. Business are constantly moving to the cloud and new opportunities are rising up. Unfortunately some of these opportunities bring with them some undesirable characters. Whether it's vulnerabilities in security, or well-meaning users caught out by a phishing scam, the damage caused can be irreparable without a backup in place.
For Microsoft 365, a user license is required to access information. Various permissions and access can be granted to keep users in control and organised. The issue occurs when an account has been deleted due to the user leaving the company or being sacked. All the company information that they held will be lost, and you will likely need to pay for the licenses back of sacked workers. A backup solution can save you grief by allowing you to save important information linked to a dormant user account.
Workflows are a great time saver, and can greatly boost productivity. Workflows are not difficult to create but can seem quite intimidating to new users. A very simple mistake in a workflow can trigger huge problems across various folder, to entire sites. Common errors range from files being moved, overwritten or permanently deleted.
Adepteq has been migrating clients to the Microsoft Cloud for over 10 years and always recommend an independent backup solution. If you are considering moving to the cloud with Microsoft 365 then we can help you with our Office 365 deployment and Email migration services. We can also help you migrate your documents from a variety of sources to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business.
Call us today on 0800 6444 365, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or send us a message via our Contact Us page.
Power Automate is an easy and powerful tool that has allowed us to save time and money, boost productivity, streamline every day tasks and share data faster. In a digital world that is always connected and always working, businesses that use Power Automate are not looking back.
It is never too late to get started.
These day's there's a cloud service for everything. Power Automate is a user friendly way to connect all of your favourite apps and automate the tasks that you find too time consuming. With the option to create your own multi-step workflow or start from one of the many templates, it's simple to automate what you want.
Why waste time constantly checking emails when you can get a text message whenever an important contact emails you? Automating means you can use your time to work on other things, like setting up a flow that manages your Twitter. Has somebody mentioned your company in a Tweet? Let Power Automate take care of it with a flow that follows them, sends a nice reply, adds them to a spreadsheet that gets emailed to you for approval and then adds their contact to Dynamics 365.
You can connect to over 100 services and choose from hundreds of pre-made templates, tweak them, or create your own.
Power Automate is part of the Microsoft Power Platform, alongside Power Apps and Power BI. We use Power Automate everyday in our SharePoint development projects. Often in combination with Power Apps to digitise your paper forms and processes.
We live and breath Microsoft 365 and we love it. Whether you want to just ask us a few questions about Power Automate, arrange training with one of our experts, or discuss an automation project you are considering you are welcome to get in contact with us today. It doesn't cost anything to talk to us, and we are always happy to help.
We are available on 0800 6444 365 or you can send us a message via our contact page.
Video is one of the most powerful ways we connect, communicate and learn today. Breaking down geographic boundaries and bringing a distinctly human element to digital interaction. Myriad platforms exist in the consumer space to upload and share live or on demand in a matter of seconds. As one of the most consumed and shared content types online, video is increasingly an important part of our personal lives, and can be just as impactful in the workplace.
Microsoft Stream is an Enterprise Video service where people in your organisation can upload, view, and share videos securely. You can share recordings of classes, meetings, presentations, training sessions, or other videos that aid your team's collaboration. Microsoft Stream also makes it easy to share comments on a video, tag timecodes in comments and descriptions to refer to specific points in a video and discuss with colleagues.
Microsoft Stream is included in all variants of Microsoft 365 and Office 365, so don't ignore it, embrace Stream in your organisation.
Here are some of our favourite features that we don't want you to miss out on.
Since working from home, Adepteq have been having team meetings several times a week via Microsoft Teams. These meetings are recorded and uploaded to Stream with a little help from Power Automate. Our meetings can last well over an hour and our conversations range from discussing top secret business decisions, to how we are running low on tea bags.
Deep search allows me to search transcripts of videos to find the exact point a word or phrase is mentioned. It has saved me a huge amount of time as I no longer need to scrape through a video trying to remember when we were discussing certain topics.
What's even more impressive is I don't need to know which video to search through. Stream gives me the option to find a spoken word or phrase across all videos.
So I can get the content I need in seconds, and keep my mind focused on the work at hand. Perfect.
I'm sure everyone at some point has struggled with background noise. Finding a quiet place to record a video is increasingly difficult at the moment. Voice Enhance eliminates distracting background noise so viewers can keep their attention on you, not what's happening around you. Focus disrupters are common in workplace videos, and even more now so many people are working remotely. You can keep focused during your training video by easily silencing background noise with just one click.
Voice enhance was developed in collaboration with Microsoft Research Asia (MSRA) with the vision of helping employees better focus on what's most important to them in the workplace.
You can record, edit and personalise video all from your mobile. Easily create unique videos that include annotations, text and emojis directly from the Stream mobile app. It's simple and fun to create short video communication to share top of mind, team updates or any moment that is important to you. With editing features like trim and re-ordering video clips - you have a variety of ways to create customised communications.
Plus, videos created with the Stream mobile app are secure and permission based, so the content you create never lives on your mobile device, it's always kept securely in your organisations ecosystem.
Microsoft's Power Platform (PowerApps, PowerAutomate, PowerBI, Power Vitual Agent) is to put it bluntly, pretty powerful.
You can securely add intelligent video into custom business apps with the Microsoft Stream + PowerApps integration. PowerApps provides organisations with a no-code options for building apps that enhance business processes, quickly and easily. Bringing Stream videos into these apps brings all the keyword powered search, permission based access and improvements with knowledge retention that come along with video.
Here at Adepteq we live and breathe everything Microsoft 365 related.
If you are not using Stream and would like to learn more then please contact us today or phone us on 0800 6444 365 . We are always happy to help.
If you have any questions about Stream or need help migrating from Office 365 Video then our experts are on hand to assist.
Microsoft continue to invest in Stream and we are looking forward to sharing more features with you soon.
Working from home (WFH) or remote work presents its challenges and opportunities. Here are five proven tips to help you successfully work from home. These tips are useful whether your remote work is because of challenging times or because you're a distributed worker.
You cannot do your job effectively without the right tools. This applies if you go into an office or if you work from your house. Make sure you have the proper tools you need to do your job, including your home office setup and the technology you choose.
Invest in a proper home office setup if you can. The right work environment should include a suitable desk, chairs, monitors, Wi-Fi and any other hardware you need to get your job done. The perfect home office isn't always achievable. But, investing in a few small items can make a big difference.
For example, consider purchasing some lighting, microphones and headphones if you're routinely on video conference calls. You should also consider purchasing ergonomic accessories like wrist protectors that make the physical act of working at home more comfortable.
Additionally, establish you have the right software tools for the job if you can. Tools like Microsoft Teams were built with remote working in mind by combining chat, meeting, calls and collaboration all in one place.
Remote workers should take particular care that they're remaining secure, both physically and digitally.
From a physical perspective, be aware of your surroundings when you're dealing with sensitive company information. Some best practices include locking your computer when it's not in use and not discussing sensitive company details on calls in public.
Additionally, you must make sure the tools you use have security in mind. These safeguards should apply to your secure email, a VPN, productivity tools, cloud storage and any digital tool you use for work.
It sounds basic to say, but one of the biggest challenges of working from home is that you're not in the office. That means you may not hear the hallway conversations, the chatter before and after meetings and you can't just pop by a colleagues desk for a clarifying question. Your business communication skills are always essential, but especially so when you work remotely.
It's vital to communicate with your coworkers or employees in a clear manner. Try not to leave room for ambiguity about your requests, and don't be afraid to ask clarifying questions. You can do this via email, chat or through a phone call.
You may have to "over-communicate", and that can feel awkward for some. But, it's better to over-communicate at the front-end to ensure there's alignment.
Working remotely typically means you have the flexibility to handle personal tasks like childcare or doctor's appointment during the day. Just be sure you're communicating that to coworkers and employees who rely on you.
You don't have to divulge every personal detail. Just remember to update your Out of Office messages, as well as your status on any chat system. Your availability and status are especially helpful if others rely on your decisions or approvals to move forward with projects and tasks.
Your company culture is a decisive factor in attracting and retaining employees. This involves a lot of things like compensation, working conditions industry and the day-to-day interactions with employees. That last part can be different for a remote worker.
If you're working from home, you'll likely have to make more effort to connect with coworkers and employees. Simple things such as asking how things are going before a meeting starts and being genuinely interested goes a long way. These "small talk" moments can create deeper connections between workers.
Find other opportunities to engage in "water cooler talk" or to appropriately "goof off". Stay within proper boundaries, of course. But, nobody minds when you talk about the latest football game in the office for a few minutes. Likewise, you can sometimes engage with employees or coworkers through chat rooms about things that aren't strictly related to work.
There are many great things to working from home: flexibility, no-commute, and in some cases, increased productivity. But, one of the downsides is that some find it hard to disconnect from work.
It's tempting to work around the clock when your home is your office. But, this can be counterproductive. Studies suggest overwork can lead to less productivity, worse project outcomes and even adverse health.
Finding a proper work-life balance is key when you're working from home. Some tips for maintaining this balance:
Microsoft Teams has vastly improved the way we, at Adepteq operate and collaborate while working from home. A seamless user friendly experience is a must for all business and organisations, and Microsoft Teams delivers. If you would like to learn more about Teams or Office 365 and how they would benefit your organisation please contact Adepteq today!
Over the last few weeks we have seen a large increase in the number of people conducting Microsoft Teams meetings as they move to remote work arrangements. Whether you are brand new to the tool, or conduct all of your meetings on Teams, we want to provide you tips on how to have the best online meeting experience.
With Teams, you can host online meetings with people both inside and outside of your organisation. The next time you schedule a meeting in either Teams or Microsoft Outlook, simple include the email address of your external guests and Teams will take care of the rest - including sending an email invitation complete with instructions on how to join your online meeting. Your meeting guest can click on the link, enter their name, and join the meeting from their browser - all without having to install a plug-in or download the Teams client.
Teams provides the meeting organizer with many options when it comes to defining the roles and permissions for online meeting participants. For example, you can choose to enable a meeting lobby, which lets the organiser define when and who is admitted into the meeting. You can also designate who can present, mute attendees, and start/stop recordings, just to name a few.
If you can't meet in person, meeting online with video is the next best thing. Encourage everyone in your Teams meeting to turn on their video. Turn on background blur to keep the focus on you instead of what's behind you.
When sharing content in Teams meetings, you control what others can see. You can decide whether you need to show your entire desktop, or just a specific window. If someone is sharing their desktop or an application, you can request the presenter to give you control.
Whether running a few minutes late, or double-books with a fire drill, there's a good chance that someone will miss the meeting. Instead of bringing them up-to-speed in another meeting, simply record your Teams meeting. not only is the recorded meeting stored in the cloud - and a link provided in the meeting chat - but participants can search the meeting transcript and jump to the point in time of the meeting where it was mentioned.
Microsoft Teams has vastly improved the way we operate and collaborate here at Adepteq. A seamless user friendly experience is a must for all business and organisations, and Microsoft Teams delivers. If you would like to learn more about Teams or Office 365 please contact Adepteq today!
The change of a Site Address in SharePoint is a feature that has been heavily requested for some time by partners and clients.
Adepteq, will take you through the different processes to change a site URL and if you would like to speak to us directly, about this or any other SharePoint question you have, please visit our contact us page.
As a global or SharePoint admin in your organisation, you can change the URL for the following types of sites (previously called "site collection"):
Before you change the address of a site, it's important to communicate the change to site users (generally anyone with the ability to edit or view the site). This can help reduce user confusion and calls to your help desk. Review the effects of changing a site address and let users know the following information:
1. Sign in to https://admin.microsoft.com as a global or SharePoint admin to open the Microsoft 365 admin center. (If you see a message that you don't have permission to access the page, you don't have Office 365 administrator permissions in your organisation.)
2. In the left pane of the admin center, under Admin Centers, select SharePoint. (You might need to select Show all to see the list of admin centers.).
3. If the classic SharePoint admin center appears, select Open it now at the top of the page to open the new SharePoint admin center.
4. In the left pane of the new SharePoint admin center, select Active sites.
5. Click the site name to open the details pane.
6. In the Properties list, next to URL, select Edit.
7. Enter the new site address, and then select Save.
(Note: You can't change the address of hub sites, sites that are locked or on hold, or of sites that have BCS connections.
When you change a site address, a redirect is created a the previous address. If you want to reuse the previous address, you need to delete the redirect.)
(Note: If you installed a previous version of the SharePoint Online Management Shell, go to Add or remove programs and uninstall "SharePoint Online Management Shell."
On the Download Center page, select your language and then click the Download button. You'll be asked to choose between downloading a x64 and x886 .msi file. Download the x64 file if you're running the 64-bit version of Windows or the x86 file if you're running the 32-bit version. If you don't know, see https://support.microsoft.com/help/13443/windows-which-operating-system. After the file downloads, run it and follow the steps in the Setup Wizard.)
2. Connect to SharePoint Online as a global admin or SharePoint admin in Office 365. To learn how, see Getting started with SharePoint Online Management Shell.
3. Run the following command to verify that the site address can be changed:
[Start-SPOSiteRename -Identity <SiteUrL> -NewSiteUrl <NewSiteUrl> -ValidationOnly]
4. Run the following commange the change the site address:
[Start-SPOSiteRename -Identity <SiteUrL> -NewSiteUrl <NewSiteUrl> -ValidationOnly]
For more info about the cmdlet, see Start-SPOSiteRename
While change is in progress, the site is set to read-only, and a redirect is created. After the change is complete, users are redirected to the new URL if they've saved the site as a favourite or if they click a link to the site.
People who have permission to access the site can access the site during and after the site address change.
After the site address is changed, sharing links will automatically redirect to the new URL.
The OneDrive sync app will automatically detect and seamlessly transfer syncing to the new site URL after the site address has been changed. Users don't need to sign in again or take any other action. (Version 17.3.6943.0625 or later of the sync app required.) If a user updates a file while the site address is being changed, they'll see a message that file uploads are pending during the change.
Any files in the recycle bin will be lost when the site address is changed.
Recent lists in Office apps
The Word, Excel, and PowerPoint desktop apps and apps for the web will show the new URL after the change.
If users have a notebook open during the site address change, they'll see a notebook sync error. After the address is changed, the following OneNote apps will automatically detect and seamlessly sync notebooks to the new site URL.
Users don't need to sign in again or take any other action.
Teams (for Office 365 group-connected sites)
After the site address is changed, users won't be able to view the team's files within the Teams app, but they can access them from Teams by selecting Open in SharePoint. This issue is actively being worked on and will be addressed soon.
SharePoint mobile apps for Android and iOS
The SharePoint mobile apps will detect the site's new URL. Make sure that users have updated their apps to the latest version.
If apps in your organisation refer to the site's URL, you might need to republish the apps when you change the site's address.
Flows will need to be recreated after the site address change.
PowerApps will need to be recreated after the site address change.
If the site is associated with a hub, it will need to be reassociated after the site address is changed.
InfoPath forms that refer to URLs might not work after the site address is changed.
SharePoint workflow 2013
SharePoint workflow 2013 will need to be re-published after the site address is changed.
Site customisations and embedded code
Site customisations and embedded code that refer to URLs might need to be fixed after the site address change. Changing the site address will preserve data stored in SharePoint but won't change URL dependencies in custom solutions.
Keep your Dropbox (or other cloud file service) with Microsoft Teams.
Your organisation has made the sensible decision to move to Microsoft O365 because it is the right thing to do.
The IT department have been tasked with migrating documents to SharePoint and OneDrive from Dropbox (or another cloud service).
When migrating documents, it is always best to review what documents exist, who has access to them, if they are shared externally, if there are requirements to keep them as records, when were they last used and do they really need to be migrated? Maybe a lot of documents could just be deleted.
The IT team cannot answer all these questions themselves and must speak with document owners and users. Generally, if a user is asked what needs migrating they will instantly reply "Everything".
If you ask the same user to go through all documents and decide which document library to migrate them to and what metadata should be added then they will quickly change their mind about migrating everything and say, "Just leave everything where it is and I will start afresh in SharePoint".
The ideal migration plan would be somewhere between the two.
The way forward is to spend some time making users aware of all the ways that using SharePoint and OneDrive will improve the way they work with documents. Show them a well-built document library as an example. This should allow them to quickly make a well-informed choice about the most important documents to move over, the documents to delete and the documents that should maybe stay where they are.
Generally, it is not a good idea to leave documents where they are but rather create an archive area in SharePoint for these documents. This is mostly unmanaged and read-only so that if a user feels the need to edit a document, they must first move it to the correct place in SharePoint or OneDrive. At least these documents are now searchable, accessible, secure and backed up.
So which documents would you consider leaving where they are?
Users may have been successfully working with Dropbox to share documents with their team and external partners. Whilst these could be moved to SharePoint these would cause major disruption to ongoing projects and require retraining of the team and external partners.
With the Introduction of Microsoft Teams, it is easy to have the best of both worlds in an easy to use interface that shows all your documents in the same place as seen in the images below.
If you are considering deploying Microsoft Teams or would like to know more about the services we offer please call Adepteq on 0800 6444 365 or Contact Us and we will be happy to help.