Microsoft Teams: The Productivity and Collaboration Tool Your Business Needs
Meet the Productivity and Collaboration Hub that Helps Your Team Achieve More Together
If you work for or own a small business, chances are you are always on-the-go. You try to keep up with everything you are involved with from helping customers to managing projects. For your updates, you probably send an e-mail to one of your co-workers or you labor over figuring out the right keywords to type into your e-mail client to find the file or e-mail message that you seek. From experience, you know this slows you down and limits your productivity.
Lucky for us, Microsoft created Teams to help businesses maximize productivity and organization through powerful features.
What is Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams is an application that integrates people, content and tools to help companies be more productive through effective communication. Teams is available for use via a web browser, as a desktop application or as a native mobile application for both iPhone and Android devices.
How Would a Business Use Microsoft Teams?
Businesses that use Microsoft Teams benefit from a simple interface that allows easy chat communication, online meetings and calling capabilities. Team members can also collaborate using the integration of Office 365 applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
For example, let’s say you have an upcoming presentation, multiple team members can work on the same PowerPoint presentation simultaneously. A team member could make edits while waiting at the airport through the Teams’ app on their phone while another team member is doing the same thing back at their desk in the office. No more back and forth e-mails with attachments and confusion as to who has the most up-to-date version of a file. The file is securely updated and saved to OneDrive ensuring everyone has the most up-to-date version of the file.
What are Some Useful Features of Microsoft Teams?
One Application to Communicate and Collaborate
The most useful feature a business can take advantage of when using Microsoft Teams is having everything in a single application with an intuitive interface. Team members can easily manage projects, communicate and find files without having to bounce from one folder or application to another. No more shared drives, lost notes in someone’s hard drive and no more searching endlessly through an email inbox to find accurate information.
Integration with Third-Party Applications
Within Microsoft Teams, you can integrate different applications to have them available in one interface. For example, you can add applications such as Adobe Creative Cloud which allows for team members to find, view and share assets within Microsoft Teams. There are hundreds of apps in the Microsoft Store that are ready for integration. Here a few of the most popular ones:
- Microsoft Office 365 applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)
- Microsoft Planner
Think of the intelligent bot feature in Microsoft Teams as a personal information seeking automated assistant you chat with. For example, if you want a bot to help you search for flights and hotel rooms for certain days you might install the Hipmunk bot to your team. Then type "start a conversation" with the bot such as "@Hipmunk find hotels in Houston for August 5-7". The bot would then go out and bring back all available results and show them to you within Microsoft Teams. What a time saver!
As with the integration of third-party applications for Microsoft Teams the Microsoft Store also has hundreds of intelligent bots available. Here are a few of the most popular ones:
- FreeBusy – An online scheduling assistant which can schedule meetings.
- BayMax – Finds doctors and can even schedule appointments.
- Meelo - Your personal knowledge bot.
If one of the hundreds of bots available don’t meet your needs, you could build your own bot!
How Much is Microsoft Teams and How Can I Get Teams for My Company?
Microsoft offers Teams bundled in their Office 365 Business Essentials and Business Premium plans. Teams is also offered for free, but this plan has various feature limitations.
View Office 365 Plans and Pricing
Need Help Selecting the Best Office 365 Plan for Your Team?