Is Microsoft Teams becoming the next Outlook?

Dux Raymond Sy, chief marketing officer of Microsoft partner and data management firm AvePoint explains the platform’s uprising

Elly Yates-Roberts
By Elly Yates-Roberts on 23 August 2019
Is Microsoft Teams becoming the next Outlook?

How is the modern workplace using Teams as its main collaboration tool?
Microsoft Teams serves as the hub for teamwork. It’s a place for groups of people to actively and effectively get their work done together in business units, departments or project teams. It also addresses the challenge of disjointed collaboration and communication that we have all started to accept as the norm, for example, through an organisation’s emails, file shares, file synchronisation and share tools, and various messaging tools. Microsoft Teams allows groups to work together through instant messaging, group chats, audio and video calls and document co-authoring in a central location. 

What are the main differences between Outlook and Teams? 
Microsoft Teams is nothing like Microsoft Outlook. Outlook is designed around targeted and asynchronous communication. Microsoft Outlook is not a collaboration and group communication tool.  When using Outlook to communicate on a team project, users must copy many people into the e-mail and attach several documents. If they then request feedback on these documents, they can have several e-mails from each recipient about each document, which can result in a mass of information that is difficult to organise. That’s where Microsoft Teams come in – it streamlines and centralises team collaboration and communication where e-mail just can’t.

People are not moving away from Microsoft Outlook, but for those seeking team collaboration and communication, Microsoft Teams is the better option. 

How can organisations undergo a full and fast Teams implementation? 
To drive sustainable adoption of Microsoft Teams in 90 days, organisations need to: ensure leadership buy-in, make it easy for everyone to do the right thing, and showcase quick wins.

It is essential for business leaders to be onboard and support the deployment of Microsoft Teams within the organisation. Apart from the obvious benefits of improved collaboration and communication, key stakeholders should understand the positive impact Microsoft Teams can offer, so much so that they themselves will be adopting and enforcing the use of it. Without top-down enforcement, Microsoft Teams will just be another tool in the toolbox.

Based on relevant needs, policies and use cases, organisations should establish, configure and automate the necessary governance settings for Microsoft Teams provisioning, operational management and information lifecycle. Firms also shouldn’t just turn Microsoft Teams on and then leave the individuals to figure it out for themselves. While it may seem effective initially, analyst firm Gartner has identified that issues such as sprawl, unauthorised data access and ineffective governance can quickly become a problem without sufficient staff preparation. 

When it comes to showcasing quick wins, companies should focus on how Microsoft Teams can enhance day-to-day business activities and on general use cases such as improved project management, departmental communication or cross-team collaboration. In addition, they should concentrate on specific business scenarios such as event planning, board meetings or software release management. By introducing Microsoft Teams this way, employees will immediately see its value.

With AvePoint Cloud Governance, we can complement what’s available today in Microsoft Teams to make it easy for people to implement it correctly. 

Find out more about AvePoint and how it can help organisations make the most of Microsoft Teams. 

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