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Microsoft add new features to Teams

Microsoft is set to add new features to Teams in order to help increase collaboration across teams and contribute to the reduction of staff turnover. With over two billion Firstline Workers globally (those that work in task orientated roles across industries such as retail and travel), the new tool includes mobile features such as location sharing and manager praise which can be customised to suit individual workforces that are active.   

Below we take a look at some of the features Teams has to offer.  

New features  

Office 365 offers Microsoft Teams free and includes group chat and web conferencing for users. From September 2018, approximately over 330,000 organisations were using the program for customer-facing roles. 

In a recent blog post, Emma Williams, corporate vice president of Modern Workplace Verticals at Microsoft mentioned “Firstline workers such as retail associates play a key role in representing a company’s brand. Because these employees often need to share information with others inside their organisation, many have resorted to using unsecured consumer chat apps to communicate with co-workers. But this poses security and compliance risks, as well as process inefficiencies.” 

“Workers need different capabilities depending on their role. While some might need access to private chats, calendars and calls, others may only need access to teams and channels. IT administrators can now give each employee role-based access to the primary Teams features they need.” 

Share your location  

Using Teams staff can share their locations with their whole team, which means more effective collaboration across the board, especially for customer facing roles in a workforce such as sales, hospitality and retail. There is also a smart camera feature that allows workers to take photos and store them in Teams.  

Praise your team for their great work  

The new Praise Tool lets managers send positive messages and badges to deserving staff, resulting in increased rapport and morale across different teams. IT administrators can now give each employee role-based access to the primary Teams features they need. The IT team can create a custom policy or use the newly available Firstline Worker configuration policy template, which means that employees will be able to customise their experience by pinning the modules they need most.  

New API’s  

Microsoft are also introducing new API’s which handle important workforce information. The first of these will be Graph API for Shifts, the schedule management tool in Teams. Shifts are now available in Teams for all customers, and the new API makes integration between Shifts and enterprise scheduling systems possible, enabling seamless access to workforce management systems for managers and employees, directly from Teams. The Graph API for Shifts will be available for public preview in the first quarter of 2019.  

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