Employees in the modern workplace are now spending 50% more time engaged in collaborative work, such as meetings, phone calls and replying to email threads. This is likely to increase as companies are becoming multi-locational, teams are becoming cross-functional, organisations are implementing remote and flexible policies and a combination of generations are bringing different expectations and ways of collaborating.
As it is no longer possible to rely on in-person meetings as the only way to foster teamwork, advances in technology can be used to redefine what productivity looks like and empower employees to work smarter. Organisations need to adopt a forward-looking approach to their digital transformation in order to successfully restructure the way their workplace collaborates.
Why do we need collaboration tools?
A key goal for modern organisations across a multitude of industries ought to be ensuring effective collaboration, as team work is an engine for innovation and creativity and can lead to a more cost and resource effective business model. With modern workplace trends, it is important for businesses to deploy collaboration technology to ensure employees are able to communicate and share information from multiple locations. Unified Communication platforms are making changes the world of enterprise IT by offering a number of communication and coworking features, cloud-based delivery models that can be scaled up and down and cost effectiveness and agility.
What does Microsoft Teams offer?
Innovative technology platforms can help organisations respond to changes in the work environment and incentivise and engage the future workforce. Launched in 2017, Microsoft Teams is a transformative unified communication system that offers a broad portfolio of apps, communication tools and shared space functions. Teams has been designed as be an extension to the existing Office 365 productivity suite and integrates with tools the majority of organisations will be using day-to-day. The technologies of instant messaging and the ability to share and work on the same document are not new in themselves, however Teams offers these functions – and more – in a single unified package, built with group work as its main focus.
Recognising that collaboration is at the centre of the modern workplace, Microsoft Teams brings together the following tools and communication methods:
- Instant chat, meetings, video and voice conferencing capabilities to fulfil the needs of a diverse workforce, offering fast functions, low overheads and is immediately familiar
- Integration with the apps employees are already using, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, SharePoint and a new planner task management to ensure ease in the user experience
- A complete modern meeting experience with the ability to review conversations before the meeting, share content during the meeting, organise minutes private and group functionalities to adapt to the digital workplace
- Ability to be fully integrated with bots and artificial intelligence (AI) tools which will help to improve productivity and improve ROI
- Integration of enterprise-grade security of Office 365 that fits into Microsoft’s primary solution for identity and access management and allows for organisations to maintain control over data.
Digital transformation with the help of organisational change management
Microsoft Teams has collaborative working at its core and is about sharing information at the right time in the most efficient way. When the aim of a digital transformation is to adapt to fundamental changes in the way employees interact and communicate, adjustments in culture and behaviour will be crucial. Change management and education will be required, but combined with the innovative technology of Teams, it is possible to empower employees to engage with business and move to a fully transformed and collaborative workplace.
Benoit Grosso is Arkadin's sales director for Unified Communications
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