Microsoft is to add new features to Teams to help increase collaboration and reduce staff turnover for over two billion users. The new tools include mobile features such as location sharing and manager praise, which can be customised to suit workforces on the go.
Microsoft Teams is free with Office 365 and offers group chat and web conferencing. As of September 2018, over 329,000 organisations were using the program for customer-facing roles, such as retail and hospitality.
“Firstline workers such as retail associates play a key role in representing a company’s brand,” said Emma Williams, corporate vice president of Modern Workplace Verticals at Microsoft, in a recent blog post. “Because these employees often need to share information with others inside their organisation, many have resorted to using unsecure 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.”
Staff can share their location with their whole team, enabling more effective collaboration. A smart camera feature lets workers take photos of store aisles, if they work in retail for example, and save them in Teams.
Microsoft Teams’ new Praise Tool lets managers send positive messages and badges to deserving staff. It “gives managers and employees a simple way to recognise co-workers, right in the Teams app where the whole team can see it,” said Williams.
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