Metadata is something that sounds more complex than it is. Put simply, it is data which provides information about other data. Imagine a standard Microsoft word document. Examples of metadata for that word document could include Author, Department, Date created, Hours to create, length, type, file size. It could be a document for a specific customer or vendor. The point of metadata is for structure, organisation and identification of files within the Team. It helps members of the team search for it and discover resources: particularly handy if the Team contains a lot of files. With the new file experience in Teams, metadata can now be surfaced and used within Teams, however it is important to note that it is still created within the document library in the underlying SharePoint site. It is created in two principle ways: through choice columns and through managed metadata. This article will look at adding metadata through choice columns
Over the last few months, I have had several asks regarding how to easily move files across Teams. I decided to write this particular blog because one admin asked me if moving them 'took a unnecessary amount of time by design'. Upon investigation I discovered that the poor admin was unfortunately downloading the files, syncing the underlying sharepoint document library of the new team to their local machine and then manually moving them from the downloads folder to the synced library. Of course, this works in principle - but it takes a ton of time and effort which in the busy world we occupy we want to ideally avoid. From being an Office 365 migration specialist earlier in my career, we also want to avoid moving anything manually at all costs. So the move function within Teams and Personal files is key to when we want to move files across Teams, or Personal Files in OneDrive to Teams, or Files in Teams to OneDrive. There are many business reasons to move files: reorganization, consolidation, new ownership and management. This is one of those small but useful and pragmatic functionalities and one of the many reasons I love Teams
Analyse, Act and Automate. Buzzwords these may be - but the importance of the Power Platform is real. About a year ago, I was sitting in a meeting in Dublin discussing Microsoft 365 with a partner whose business was built upon Power Apps. As much as I was impressed with the app on the IPad they'd recently developed after their receptionist left, it was the dawning on how they viewed Microsoft 365 through the prism of applications. It's very easy to narrate a story on Microsoft 365 around Security, Teamwork or the modernization of devices (three narratives Microsoft typically use today). But I had never considered doing that based upon apps. Never even entered my head.
2019 was, by all accounts, another triumphant year for Microsoft Teams. It won at Enterprise Connect for the second time in a row. It overtook it's principle competitor Slack in terms of Daily Active Users (DAU). It delivered a ton of new features including Private Channels which users had been waiting for for some time.
There are many scenarios when we would want to share a website with the Team: it could be when we are simply browsing and stumble across something valuable, it could be to show what a competitor is doing or provide a solution to the problem we are facing. Yet sharing that with the Team can be unproductive: for example, cutting and pasting the URL and then putting it into Teams. It may only take a minute but that could be several minutes a day, or an an hour or two a week. In addition, we risk throwing ourselves off track on the work we are doing by switching out of context. The Share to Teams Extension provides a good way to circumvent these issues in terms of not having to switch out of context and share without having to cut and paste the URL
Like most people I know, Polly has been my go-to-app for polling in Teams. Why? Because it is easy to setup and Polls are effective in a number of collaboration scenarios - opinions, feedback, choice, sentiment. In a learning context, they are great for formative assessment and driving incremental improvements to the learning. However, imagine my surprise when I recently discovered that Forms can also do polls - something which I either missed in the absolute avalanche of new functionality which has come this year or which has always been there and which is an astounding oversight on my part. Either way, I'm a big advocate of Forms - I use it a ton and am enjoying seeing it mature. On it's current trajectory, I anticipate that it'll displace the use of Polly - particularly for people like me who almost always take Microsoft apps over third parties. Of course, whether it builds on the quick poll context outlined here - as in snap polls of a very simple nature - remains to be seen. You know me. I very much hope it does.
We have previously explored the implementation of DLP and Supervision policies to the Team. We will now look at applying Sensitivity Labels - currently in Public Preview. By definition, Sensitively Labels allow Teams admins to regulate access to sensitive organizational content created during collaboration within teams. In other words, it can keep Teams private (removing the ability to be set as public) and block Guests from being added. The best thing is that labels can be set at a tenant label and easily applied when creating the Team. It gives administrators so much more control over the Team in terms that users cannot simply join the Team and Owners cannot simply add guests which are not authorised to access it's content. It's another layer of protection which should be added in any Teams roll-out. It's also an answer for blocking guest access on a Team by Team basis: this works well if the creation of Teams are regulated.