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Microsoft 365 - What is New

Integration and Automation with Microsoft Teams, Focus on Productivity, Outlook, Edge, and More.

Microsoft 365 is the productivity cloud that brings together best-in-class Office apps with powerful cloud services, device management, and advanced security. It basically integrates everything that you need in one place. Different devices can be synced to guarantee you a great experience working from the office or remotely anywhere. 

The new capabilities, announced by Microsoft will make the apps more integrated, intuitive, and powerful. The new features and capabilities will be present in Microsoft Teams, Fluid Framework, Project Cortex, Outlook, and Edge. They represent the latest innovations in our ongoing effort to build tools that enable Microsoft’s clients to stay connected and productive from everywhere. They will also introduce the new Microsoft Lists App.

Microsoft Teams

At this point, you are probably used to Microsoft Teams and its functionalities, such as call, video conferences, meetings, etc. But Teams can deliver much more integration options to the clients when it is used in full potential.

Productivity

The customized templates and new tasking capabilities will introduce fresh ways to stay productive in Teams. For example, when creating a new team, you’ll soon be able to pick from a variety of customizable templates. Choose from common business scenarios, like event management and crisis response, as well as industry-specific templates, like a hospital ward or bank branch. Each template comes with pre-defined channels, apps, and guidance.

Admins will also be able to create new custom templates and templatize existing teams in their organization, allowing them to standardize team structures, surface relevant apps, and scale best practices. Templates in Teams will roll out in the next few months and appear automatically, once they are available.

 

Automation

New enhancements will be added to the Power Platform that makes it easier to integrate and scale with Teams.

Easily create and manage chatbots in Teams—Integrating with Teams is also easier: Just select the bot you want to use and then click Add to Teams. Power Virtual Agents now supports single sign-on (SSO), so users will no longer have to reauthenticate when using Teams for the first time.

Quickly add custom apps and automated workflows to Teams—Developers and admins will soon be able to add their custom applications from Power Apps to Teams with a single click of the Add to Teams button. To get started, open make.powerapps.com, click “…“ next to the canvas app you’d like to publish and select Add to Teams.

Meanwhile, new Power Automate business process templates for Teams will allow creators to streamline workflows using pre-built templates, or as a base to customize their own. Finally, new Teams-specific triggers and actions will enable users to create custom message extensions, automate @mentioning, and message posting to channels, and customize bot names.

These features are also coming soon.

Share Power BI reports in Teams—Power BI users can now share reports, or specific charts in reports, to Teams with the new Share to Teams button. Senders can also direct the recipient’s attention to a specific chart in a report or share it with an entire team. To get started, select Send to Teams from the Power BI portal and type in the team name you’d like to share with.

 

Meetings and Events 

We the current “new normal” scenario companies and employees are facing a routine where to stay connected and collaborate are in high demand, when you add different time zones and social distancing requirements, it can be a challenge to organise gatherings for large and small groups. New Teams capabilities help you design the best experience for every occasion.

Schedule virtual appointments via Bookings in Teams—Organizations will now be able to schedule, manage, and conduct business-to-consumer virtual appointments through the new Bookings app integration in Microsoft Teams. With a single scheduling experience, you can manage multiple departments or locations and securely host everything from candidate interviews and student office hours to financial consultations and medical visits, for example.

Broadcast events and create studio productions—With so many organizations working remotely, and travel at a record low, it can be quite difficult to recreate the same experience as an in-person presentation or interview, for instance. The new Network Device Interface (NDI) support and Skype TX interoperability for Teams. It offers a more advanced set of production options for both public and private, customized, and high-scale broadcasts.

NDI for Microsoft Teams will transform a Teams meeting into a virtual stage by converting each participant’s video into a discrete video source that can be used in the production tool of your choice: OBS, Wirecast, Xsplit, StreamLabs, and many more.

 

Extend the Shifts app in Teams—New capabilities in the Shifts app extend functionalities and enables integration with existing systems. First, the Graph APIs for Shifts are now generally available, so can you integrate them with any other external workforce management tool, including custom workforce management systems. Plus, new Power Automate actions enable developers to take information from Shifts and create customized workflows with other apps or perform operations at scale. Finally, new triggers and templates will help support a variety of timesaving and process-optimization scenarios, like enabling auto-approvals for shift requests in scenarios where a manager’s approval is not needed.

 

Fluid Framework

At Ignite 2019 Microsoft announced the public preview of Microsoft Fluid Framework, their new technology and set of experiences designed to make collaboration seamless, more adaptable, and focused. Outlook and Office.com will benefit from this feature.

Fluid components and workspaces in Outlook and Office.com—The first Fluid Framework integrations in Microsoft 365, coming to Outlook and Office.com, will enable users to collaborate on dynamic content and create connected components that can be shared simultaneously and seamlessly across apps. Tables, charts, and task lists can be easily inserted in Outlook for the web, so your sales numbers, project tasks, and research reports, for example, are always up to date.

Within Office.com, fluid workspaces can be created and managed, including within your document activity feed, recommended list, and @mentions—or search for them across Office.com. The fluid framework components are lightweight, so, edits are instantaneous, resulting in a fast and flexible experience

These features will be available for Microsoft 365 enterprise license in the next few months.

 

Project Cortex 

Project Cortex, which was announced last year will be available this year. The new service applies artificial intelligence (AI) and the Microsoft Graph to create a knowledge network that connects your content in Microsoft 365, along with external sources, to organize content and expertise across systems and teams. You can then manage your information and streamline processes with advanced security and compliance controls, along with automated workflows.

Outlook

As probably one of the Microsoft Apps with broader usage all over the world, Outlook would not be out of new features and capabilities. The new features aim to help users to be more productive.

Save keystrokes in Outlook—Outlook on the web can help compose email messages with text predictions, pretty like Gmail. The features use intelligent technology to infer meaning and intention, and it can help you compose faster, avoid typos, and craft polished email messages.

 

Yammer in Outlook—Outlook for Windows, Outlook for Mac, and Outlook mobile users can now view and reply to Yammer conversations, polls, questions, and praise without leaving their inbox. This feature will automatically become available for users who have email notifications from Yammer turned on.

Microsoft Edge

Explore relevant Pinterest collections—Pinterest can now deliver suggestions at the bottom of your collection, so it is easier to find additional similar content. Clicking on a suggestion will open a board of similar, trending Pins so you can quickly find and add ideas relevant to you.

Save time while searching and profile switching — Microsoft is also introducing sidebar search so users can search for things without opening a new window or tab. And for those who use Microsoft Edge for both work and personal use, they are introducing the Automatic Profile Switching, which will detect that the link you’re trying to open needs work credentials, and then switch you to your authenticated work profile.

Microsoft Lists

With Lists, you can easily track data and information to stay updated on the latest status across Microsoft 365.

Track information with Microsoft Lists—Using lists you can create, share, and track data and information—like issue tracking and status reporting—directly within Microsoft Teams, SharePoint, and the soon-to-be-released Lists mobile app. Lists are easy for anyone to create and customize with templates, colour coding, If/Then workflows, and more.

In a year marked by social distancing and working remotely as much as possible, Microsoft is accelerating the development of integrative and collaborative features to their apps. Such tools are essential to keep companies moving forward during a year of unprecedented changes and adaptations.

*The article above was based on information provided by Microsoft. 

Microsoft 365 Courses at New Horizons Ireland

At New Horizons Ireland we offer a wide range of Microsoft courses to prepare you to achieve your Microsoft certification. If you are not sure which path would be more suitable for you, contact one of our Account Managers, they are ready to provide you with the best IT career advice.

Microsoft 365 Popular Courses

 

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