If you’d like to collaborate more easily with your colleagues and clients, you could use cloud-based Microsoft Teams. They’ve released some great new business IT solutions – take a look …

Here at ProDrive we’ve been using Microsoft Teams to great effect through the COVID-19 crisis, to keep everyone informed, share documents, hold video conferences, make calls – and, naturally, to post messages to make each other laugh!

10 new business IT solutionsWhether you’re new to Teams or know it well, now is a good time to use it because they’ve just announced a whole raft of exciting new releases to make it even better. Some of them are especially pertinent during the pandemic – here are our favourites:

10 new business IT solutions from Microsoft Teams

1. Touchless meeting experiences

Microsoft has provided more ways for people to avoid having to touch shared device controls. They include Room remote for Microsoft Teams Rooms, Support for Teams casting for Surface Hub and Microsoft Teams Rooms, Proximity Join on Surface Hub, and Cortana voice assistance for Microsoft Teams Rooms on Windows. They’re also releasing meeting room capacity notifications to help users maintain social distancing practices.

2. Wellbeing and productivity insights

Users will get insights personalised to their role, with recommended actions to change habits to improve productivity and wellbeing. Next year, Headspace guided meditations will be added to help you relax.

3. Together mode background scenes for meetings

As they’ve been saying a lot recently, ‘we’re all in this together’ – and with Together mode you can choose background scenes to transport your team to a variety of meeting settings – like an auditorium, a conference room, or a coffee shop. Great for setting a tone to your meeting.

4. Custom layouts

With custom layouts, you can customise more of what participants see during the meeting. For example, now you’ll be able to display a Powerpoint slide in the background and have your own video feed (perhaps of you presenting), in the foreground. It makes it more personal and engaging.

5. Breakout rooms

Organisers will now be able to divide meeting participants into smaller groups to facilitate brainstorming sessions or workgroup discussions. Presenters can choose to hop between breakout rooms, make announcements to all breakout rooms, and/or close the breakout rooms, then bring everybody back into the main meeting.

6. Meeting recap

Never ‘miss’ a meeting again! Coming this year, you’ll be able to see a recap with every meeting recording, transcript, chat, shared files etc. It will be shared automatically in the meeting Chat tab and viewable in the Details tab – as well as being available in the meeting event in your Outlook calendar.

7. Webinar registration and reporting

For virtual events like webinars, organisers will be able to use event registration with automated emails to make it easier to manage attendance. There will also be a detailed reporting dashboard so you can monitor and measure engagement. These new features are expected by year-end.

8. New Calling experience

Coming soon in Teams, the call information will be streamlined to display contacts, voicemail and calling history together.

9. More Calling Plan countries

New Microsoft Calling Plan countries have been added, including Austria, Denmark, Italy, Portugal, Sweden, and Switzerland.

10. Teams templates

Teams templates can be useful as they come with pre-defined channels, apps and guidance for specific industries or business scenarios. Also, administrators can create custom templates for their organisation.

As mentioned, these are just some of the new releases from Microsoft Teams. There are many others including a new search experience, available by year-end, which will make finding messages, people, answers and files faster and more intuitive. And there’s plenty for business IT support pro’s in there too, including the latest automation features.

All very exciting! If you’d like to discuss business IT solutions with us, please contact us below.