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Do we use new Collaboration for the way it was intended?

When Microsoft changed their focus for their main communication platform to Teams, a big shift in the way we approached UC platforms happened.

In recent years, it was not unusual to use a communication platform such as Skype for Business across a business to let employees communicate internally and remotely. These platforms were great, as it took away the need for a standard PBX setup in an office and removed that need for a physical handset to answer calls. But really, other than sending IMs, hosting conferences and inbound and outbound calls, this was really the extent the platform could handle. Obviously, the setups around it could change and vary dependent on the individual business need, but it was predominantly for communication.

Collaboration is where Teams has now changed the game. Teams now allows you to open, edit and save multiple applications and files from one single platform. The platform was built to allow us to create open channels of communication with colleagues to share and communicate ideas around a certain topic. This keeps things as relevant as possible letting you have Channels within Teams; meaning you can keep the relevant people informed on project progress updates and ask questions easily to the whole group without having to jump on a call. However, when the communication aspect of Teams was introduced, we now have a whole solution that allows you to both collaborate and manage your communication across one individual application.

Now the question is, by combining both collaboration and communication, are we using each of them in the correct way?

I’m going to break this down into two sections that I feel may be a big help to making the most of collaboration over communication.

Chat

Sending an IM is probably the easiest and most effective way to speak to a colleague or even external customer and get a quick response. However, how many of us send and message in an IM sharing a file etc? When this could be handy to send in a Team or Channel.  An IM is easy, it’s what we are used to from previous tools, but what’s the point of discussing ideas with one colleague, then having another chat with another colleague about the exact same thing. A Channel allows you to create an open communication between all of you to brainstorm, rather than messaging each other about different things and being on different pages.

Editing files in Collaboration

I think we are all used to editing a file on an application across our PC. We hit save, send it across to our colleagues but then they have amendments, they send it back to you, you make the amendments and we follow the same process all again.

Using the collaboration aspect of editing a file within Teams, allows us to all be in the file, making changes and amendments in real time and making sure that we may not be duplicating the work. We can get real time feedback on the work through comments and notes, letting us make amendments as we work on the file rather than updating remotely and sending back. This helps us to always have access to the most relevant document, and not leaving anyone with any outdated information.

These two tips to an aspect of collaboration we will not have been used to before Teams. But they can really transform the way you work and the way which you use Teams to make the most of collaborating. After all, implementing Teams is not easy, but once you make the most of collaborating and communicating across one platform, your return on investment will quickly come.

If you want to check out everything we can do with Microsoft Teams and how we can make sure your business is using all aspects of Teams, head to the link below, or if you want to know even more about our solutions contact me at Jacob.elliott@codesoftware.net  

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