Integrating Microsoft Teams with SharePoint
How does Teams relate to SharePoint?
Teams and SharePoint Team Sites are organised by topic, project, organisation, or another focal point for a team of users. Teams and channels will often follow a similar structure to SharePoint Team and Project Sites.
A SharePoint Team Site is automatically associated with every Microsoft Team, allowing for a place to store channel documents. Each channel is stored in the sender’s OneDrive for Business Folder.
There are a number of advantages to storing Teams documents in SharePoint and OneDrive for Business:
- The OneDrive sync client works on Windows or Mac, so it;s easy to sync all the files for a Team
- Document co-authoring and the online versions of Office applications depend on two special protocols (WOPI and FSSHTTP); since they are built into SharePoint and OneDrive, they also work in Teams
- SharePoint provides previews for more than 300 file types, which are displayed directly in the Teams file tab
- SharePoint and OneDrive have comprehensive data governance and compliance features, so Teams documents are protected as well. These include:
- Automatic classification and labelling
- Data loss prevention
- Document retention policies, disposition review, and event-based retention
- eDiscovery and legal holds
- Files are discoverable in Delve and SharePoint search
SharePoint Pages in Teams
It is also possible to add SharePoint pages as tabs in Teams. This provides a much easier approach to building tabs compared with the typical approach of building a custom website from scratch. All the information on a team site home page can appear there, providing the best of both SharePoint and Teams in the same user interface.
A tab can also be used for an entire document. This can be useful to share and key presentation or to track information in a spreadsheet that’s easily accessed by the whole team.
Conversations and News
There have been many attempts at bringing conversations into SharePoint. Discussion lists and news feeds were part of SharePoint but never caught on, as well as a number of 3rd part offerings working to address this as well. Many of the more successful 3rd party offerings focus on the “outer loop” of communication – that is, broader corporate communication. Yammer is the tool of choice for this within the Office 365 suite.
Now Microsoft Teams has been placed on the center stage, and SharePoint augments this with documents and other shared information. You can now have a conversation about a document directly.
The same conversation in shown in the channel along with a link to the document, so people can’t miss it.
Modern SharePoint sites include a light-weight publishing system for news pages. These pages bubble up on web parts, in Hub sites, on the SharePoint home page, in the mobile app, and now in Teams. Soon new news items will be announced right in the channel.
SharePoint web parts as tabs
A new feature that has been announced will allow SharePoint Framework web parts to be used as tabs in Teams. This will allow easy reuse of web parts, and bring Teams tab development in easy reach of SharePoint developers. It also removes the question of where to host a custom tab: the hosting is automatic, and tab properties are set using a variation on the familiar web part editing experience.
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