Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-14

Welcome to the April 5 – 11, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Seventeen features added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Azure Active Directory, Outlook, M365 Compliance, and Microsoft Information Protection.

Several existing meeting series have had additional sessions listed, and there are three new events – 2 Microsoft Teams series (Explore teams and channels, and Use chat and calling features) and a Microsoft Teams Breakout Rooms AMA. The Teams Breakout Rooms AMA session on Wednesday, April 14th at 9am Pacific is also this week’s spotlight event.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include information on the public preview of the OneDrive sync client for Windows 64-bit, a look at what’s new in Yammer in April 2021, details on modern comments in Microsoft Word, and the general availability of Azure Active Directory staged rollout.

Noteworthy item highlights include six tips to get the most out of Microsoft To Do on iOS, April 2021 updates for Microsoft Teams Rooms on Android, a training curriculum for Microsoft Defender for Office 365, and details on Verifiable Credentials in Azure Active Directory.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
M365 Admin center: Translator service for the Service Health Dashboard82267May CY2021Added: 05 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Admin
The new translator toggle in the service health dashboard page translates the content of Incidents and advisories to the language selected by user.
Azure Active Directory: Location Based Access Control Public Preview72205May CY2021Added: 06 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Azure AD
You are now able to create Conditional Access policies to allow/deny access using a new type of Named Location known as GPS. For these policies, the user will need to share their GPS location from the mobile device on which Microsoft Authenticator is installed.
Microsoft Teams: Enable Manage apps page in the Microsoft Teams admin center for GCC customers81182April CY2021Added: 06 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
As an admin, the Manage apps page in the Microsoft Teams admin center is where you view and manage all Teams apps for your organization. Here, you can see the org-level status and properties of apps, approve or upload new custom apps to your organization’s app store, block or allow apps at the org level, add apps to teams, purchase services for third-party apps, view permissions requested by apps, grant admin consent to apps, and manage org-wide app settings.
Microsoft Search: Microsoft Search in GCC72216September CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Search, GCC
Microsoft Search: Organization-wide Search via Search Box in SharePoint, Office.com, and on Microsoft Search in Bing. Customizable Bookmarks, Acronyms, and QnA Answers.
Outlook: For iOS – More actions available in press and hold menus72217April CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – iOS
This coming Outlook for iOS release will make Book a Workspace available in the New Message and New Event press and hold menus.
Microsoft Information Protection: Configure sensitivity labels for encrypt-only protection on Outlook messages72218June CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
In the Microsoft 365 compliance center, you can now create labels that enforce the encrypt-only restriction (available within Office 365 Message Encryption) when applied to Outlook email messages. With encrypt-only, users can send encrypted email to any recipient, whether they are inside or outside the organization, and the protection follows the lifecycle of the email.
Microsoft Information Protection: Outlook support for DisableMandatoryInOutlook and OutlookDefaultLabel settings72219May CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Outlook clients will now support the advanced Azure Information Protection (AIP) settings DisableMandatoryInOutlook and OutlookDefaultLabel.
Microsoft Teams: Org wide backgrounds (Preview)80193April CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Organization-wide backgrounds will now be available in preview. This feature will require an Advanced Communications license when it becomes generally available.
Microsoft Teams: Custom Backgrounds on mobile devices82234April CY2021Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Microsoft provided and user uploaded custom backgrounds are now available on iOS.
Microsoft Teams: Approvals in Teams82332May CY2021 Added: 07 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Get to results faster with Approvals in Microsoft Teams. Easily create, manage, share, and act on approvals directly from your hub for teamwork.
Microsoft Search: Earn Microsoft Rewards when using a work or school account70634May CY2021 Added: 08 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Search
Users in your organization will have the ability to earn Microsoft Rewards points when signed into select Microsoft 365 services (Microsoft Search in Bing) with their organizational (work or school) account.
Outlook: Renaming of Notifications pane on web72213April CY2021 Added: 08 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Web
Outlook on the web will change the Notifications pane title to Activity.
Microsoft Information Protection: Ability to test Exact Data Match72220April CY2021 Added: 08 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
After setting up EDM-based classification, tenant admins will now be able to test EDM sensitive information types (SITs) via the Microsoft 365 compliance center and via PowerShell cmdlet. Classification results returned will include the sensitive type, its count, and confidence.
Microsoft Information Protection: New named entities SITs and enhanced unified policy authoring templates72221July CY2021 Added: 08 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Named entities are sensitive information types (SITs) that can’t easily be identified by a regular expression or a function; these include person names, physical addresses, and medical terms & conditions. This update adds 52 new SITs representing named entities, and 10 enhanced policy templates that can be used in solutions such as DLP and auto-labeling, and cover important regulations, such as US HIPAA and EU GDPR.
Microsoft 365 Compliance center: Continuous compliance assessments72222June CY2021Added: 08 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Automated testing and documentation of scored actions in Compliance Manager with the ability to view or download evidence for an automatically scored action.
Microsoft 365 Compliance center: Out-of-the-box assessments for non-M365 assets72223May CY2021Added: 09 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Introducing pre-configured templates that extend Compliance Manager capabilities beyond Microsoft 365 assets.
Microsoft Teams: Call Merge for GCC51127June CY2021Added: 09 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Call Merge gives end users the capability to merge their active unheld 1-1 call into another 1-1 call or another group call. This applies to Teams VOIP calls and PSTN calls.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Do you need to regularly collaborate with your workgroup where you need to access shared files, apps, and conversation threads? Join us to learn how to extend collaboration, provide visibility, and manage teamwork from a central space. Microsoft Teams is a robust collaboration tool, providing you anywhere, anytime access to your group projects, daily operations, knowledgebase resources, and large scope initiatives. Use teams and channels to collaborate in virtual workspaces with your entire group. In this 1-hour training, you will learn how to: (1) Join and organize your teams and channels, (2) Use channels to streamline projects and operations, (3) Collaborate with your team members, and (4) Create and manage teams as an owner.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

When: Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 9:00am PT | If you are evaluating , kicking off or in the process of moving your organizational data to Microsoft 365 here are some recommendations from the subject matter experts based on their learnings post managing large scale migrations for multiple organizations. Tune in to learn more about the best practices that will help you run an effective, speedy and seamless migration to OneDrive and SharePoint irrespective of the tools you choose to use. The agenda is as follows: (1) Introduction, (2) How to prepare data for migration, (3) How to plan and communicate about the migration, (4) How to run a successful migration, and (5) Conclusion and QA.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

Join us to learn how to extend your circle of communication and collaboration with Microsoft Teams. Easily connect with your colleagues anywhere, anytime and manage all your conversations from one central platform. In this 1-hour training you will learn how to: (1) Send and reply to chat messages, (2) Use messaging tools to enhance your conversations, (3) Manage your chat conversations, and (4) Use calling features.

When: Wednesday, April 14, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Microsoft Teams ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA) for Breakout Rooms in Microsoft Teams! The AMA will take place on Wednesday, April 14, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Microsoft Teams AMA Space. An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering team who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Be sure to add the event to your calendar!

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Join us to learn how to accomplish the fundamental tasks in Teams. Learn how to easily communicate with your co-workers, save time while working and collaborating, and see how teamwork and projects can be managed in a central space. In this training you will learn how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and attend meetings, (4) Align your workgroup and projects, and (5) Collaborate on files and tools.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

As people increasingly shift to remote work, protecting your organization’s information and managing risk should be a top priority. Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk teaches you how to take advantage of Microsoft technologies that identify and remediate risks that arise from creating, storing, sharing, and using sensitive data. In addition, you’ll learn how to protect that data throughout its entire life cycle—on-premises and across devices, apps, and cloud services. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Understand, identify, and protect your most sensitive data, (2) Identify and take action on insider risks and code-of-conduct violations, and (3) Utilize information protection and governance.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Businesses are shifting to a desktop experience that empowers IT and enables employees to be more productive and secure, but not all employees sit in an office or always work from secure locations.  With Windows Virtual Desktop, you can set up a scalable and flexible environment to unlock mobility, productivity and security. This new 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Windows Virtual Desktop. During this session, you will explore how to: (1) Create your first Windows Virtual Desktop architecture, (2) Create images and assign them to users, (3) Operationalize the virtual desktop infrastructure with monitoring, scaling, and image management, and (4) Explore security best practices within Windows Virtual Desktop. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

The workforce relies on Microsoft Teams to chat, meet, and collaborate. But that’s just the beginning. Microsoft Teams can bring the applications and tools you’re already using, into one universal hub your workforce needs to get things done. During this interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Integrate ready-to-use apps into the Teams experience, (2) Maintain control over which apps are accessible for your organization, (3) Create an App that embeds modern SharePoint pages in Teams using App Studio, (4) Manage permission and set up policies through the Admin Center, and (5) Scale business critical apps to your organization. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now. During this interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Work together as a team from anywhere and with more flexibility, (2) Connect instantly with team members for fast-paced decision making, (3) Meet with anyone, anywhere through audio, video, and web conferences, and (4) Boost team culture with the digital equivalent of an open office space.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

We’re excited to announce that the 64-bit OneDrive sync client for Windows is now available as a public preview! We know this has been a long awaited and highly requested feature, and we’re thrilled to make it available for early access. You can now download the 64-bit version for use with OneDrive work, school, and home accounts. To move from the 32-bit to 64-bit (or vice versa) you’ll need to make sure the OneDrive version you install is the same version as you currently have, or newer. The 64-bit version is the right choice if you plan to use large files, if you have a lot of files, and if you have a computer that’s running a 64-bit version of Windows. Computers running 64-bit versions of Windows generally have more resources—such as processing power and memory—than their 32-bit predecessors. Also, 64-bit applications can access more memory than 32-bit applications (up to 18.4 million Petabytes). Note : If you have a 64-bit operating system with an x64-based processor, you can choose to install either the 32-bit or 64-bit OneDrive. For ARM64 devices, you should continue to use the 32-bit OneDrive.

The seasons are changing and we have a lot of news to share! This blog will cover what we’ve recently shipped and what’s coming in the next few weeks. Recent changes include: (1) The new Yammer as the default user experience, (2) New design for Yammer Discovery and Digest emails, (3) Essential Announcements feature, (4) SharePoint News in the Yammer Home Feed, (5) Install Yammer as a Progressive Web App, (6) Suggested Communities feature, (7) New Yammer Insights, and much more! There’s also a peek at upcoming features such as new file views, and collapsed pinned posts.

Workplace collaboration is evolving—and so is Microsoft Word. We’re pleased to announce expanded availability of our new modern commenting experience across Word platforms. Modern comments sets the stage for a richer Word collaboration experience for you and your teams by enabling modern features such as @mention notifications and more. It aligns how comments work across Office on different endpoints, so that you and your team can rely on a consistent experience regardless of whether you’re using Word, Excel, or PowerPoint on any platform. Modern comments was first introduced on the mobile and Web versions of Word where we iterated based on feedback.  Now it is rolling out to Production on Word for Windows, and Current Channel (Preview) on Word for Mac! With modern comments, you no longer have to worry about your comments being seen by others before you’re finished editing them. Now, a comment or reply can only be edited by the person who created it. These new commenting experiences are ideal for today’s remote teams who may be working together from across town or around the world.  Comments eliminate the need to coordinate schedules or conduct in-person discussions, providing greater flexibility and enabling collaborators to provide better insights.  A consistent experience across applications makes everything flow smoothly.

We’re excited to announce that staged rollout to cloud authentication is now generally available! This feature allows you to selectively test groups of users with cloud authentication methods, such as pass-through authentication (PTA) or password hash sync (PHS), while all other users in the federated domains continue to use federation services, such as AD FS, Ping Federate, Okta, or any other federation services to authenticate users. Moving your Azure AD authentication from federation services to the cloud allows you to manage user and device sign-in from a single control plane in Azure AD. Some of the benefits using cloud authentication include reducing the dependency on on-premises infrastructure, which typically includes a farm of servers and proxies that need to be accessible from the internet. In addition, you can take advantage of security capabilities like: Azure AD multifactor authentication (MFA), Conditional Access, Identity Protection for leaked credentials, Identity Governance, and more. New with the general availability, we’ve added the ability to monitor the users and groups added or removed from staged rollout and users sign-ins while in staged rollout, using the new Hybrid Auth workbooks in the Azure portal. | Resource: Staged rollout interactive guide


NOTEWORTHY

When you’re juggling work and personal tasks, having clearly defined to-do lists can help reduce stress and improve productivity. Microsoft To Do helps you manage your tasks so you can get more time for yourself. It seamlessly syncs your tasks across devices, so you always have access to them, whether you use To Do on Android, iPhone, Mac, Windows, or the web. In the third installment of our six tips series, we’ll show you some nifty ways to make the most out of To Do on your iOS device, such as using Siri to add tasks and open lists in To Do, as well as viewing your Microsoft To Do lists in Apple’s Reminders app.

We are thrilled to announce a number of enhancements that are now generally available on Microsoft Teams Rooms on Android. From an updated calendar view to a new touch console experience, users now have more visibility of meetings and easier access to them on these devices. There are also more enhancements when using Microsoft Teams Rooms in Personal Mode.

Do you want to become a Microsoft Defender for Office 365 ninja? We can help you get there! We collected content for two roles: “Security Operations (SecOps)” and “Email Security” teams. The content is structured into three different knowledge levels, with multiple modules: Fundamentals, Intermediate, and Advanced. Some topics can be relevant for SecOps as well as for Email Security teams. This training will be updated on a regular basis to ensure you have access to the most current information available. COMING SOON: After each level, we will offer you a knowledge check based on the training material you have just finished! Since there’s a lot of content, the goal of the knowledge checks is to help ensure understanding of the key concepts that were covered. Lastly, there’ll be a fun certificate issued at the end of the training! Disclaimer: This is not an official Microsoft certification and only acts as a way of recognizing your participation in this training content.

We started on a journey with the open standards community to empower everyone to own and control their own identity. I’m thrilled to share that we’ve achieved a major milestone in making this vision real. We’re announcing that the public preview for Azure AD verifiable credentials is now available: organizations can empower users to control credentials that manage access to their information. This blog post provides an overview of our standards-based platform, and the first solution we’ve built on that platform–to enable a new form of identity verification. We’re also sharing lessons learned from customers during private preview and next steps for improving interoperability with other standards-based systems. Azure AD customers can now easily design and issue verifiable credentials to represent proof of employment, education, or any other claim, so that the holder of such a credential can decide when, and with whom, to share their credentials. Each credential is signed using cryptographic keys associated with the DID that the user owns and controls.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-13

Welcome to the March 29 – April 4, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were nineteen features added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, SharePoint, Outlook, Word, M365 Compliance, Azure Active Directory, and Yammer.

Some of the existing meetings had new April sessions added. The one new event is also the spotlight event of the week – an Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) with the Microsoft Planner team on Wednesday, April 7th at 9am Pacific.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a look at what’s new in Microsoft Teams for February and March 2021, the March 2021 roadmap pitstop for SharePoint, details on new capabilities for admins in Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise, the availability of the Viva Connections desktop app, and seven Zero Trust adoption strategies from security leaders.

Wrapping up the post is a look at recent visual improvements to Outlook mobile, the Project updates for March 2021, information on the April 2021 updates for Workplace Analytics, a native external sender callout on email in Outlook, and a look at the data points Microsoft uses to provide unique capabilities in Microsoft Defender for Office 365.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
SharePoint: SharePoint News Boost70810April CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
Prioritize important news and announcements to appear at the top of news feeds across Microsoft 365. You can boost the visibility of a news article for a set time, until an employee has seen your content, or until a viewer has seen the item in their feed a set number of times.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Collection of Teams conversation as transcript in Advanced eDiscovery70812June CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
eDiscovery managers will soon have the flexibility to collect Teams messages as transcript items. Transcripts will aggregate and thread messages in the same Teams conversations into a single HTML file that is available for review and export. Customers will continue to have the ability to collect Teams messages as individual items as offered today.
Microsoft Teams: Admins can install Apps in Meetings81086May CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
We will enable IT admins to select Teams apps that can be installed in meetings for their organization.
Microsoft Teams: Tags are available in GCC High81091June CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Tags are available in GCC High. Tags in Teams let users quickly reach a group of people without having to @mention or type out everyone.
Microsoft Teams: Manage tags in Teams programmatically – Microsoft Teams Tags APIs are now in public preview81093June CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
This set of APIs can be used to programmatically assign users tags in a team, making tag creation and maintenance faster and easier. Using these new APIs, developers can now: create tags in a team and assign users, get a list of tags in a team, update tags or delete tags.
Microsoft Teams: Tags are available in DoD81096August CY2021Added: 29 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, DoD
Tags are available in DoD. Tags in Teams let users quickly reach a group of people without having to @mention or type out everyone.
Word: Dark Mode65136March CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word
Dark Mode in Word will provide a modern look for documents while giving users the ability to reduce eye strain and accommodate light sensitivity from long hours at a computer screen.
Yammer: Nested Replies in Yammer70809April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
Yammer conversations will soon have nested replies. This threading makes it easier for users to read and engage with conversations that have many comments by organizing replies together in a way that maintains context. This feature also includes improvements to: deleting comments, allowing users to deep link to specific replies, and improved community feed ordering.
Microsoft Compliance center: Data loss prevention (DLP) solution overview page70814April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
The DLP solution overview page will appear in the Microsoft 365 compliance center and house policy recommendation widgets and other actions and guidance related to your available DLP solutions.
Azure Active Directory: Password Protection Enforced for all Changes72197April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Azure AD
Currently password updates made through Graph do not have banned password enforcement, along with B2C users and Service Principals. This change will enforce Password Protection for all password creations and changes.
Microsoft Graph: Graph connectors Results in All tab72198April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Graph
Microsoft Graph connectors for Microsoft Search provide a set of out-of-the-box search connectors and search %26amp; indexing APIs that enable Microsoft 365 customers to connect Microsoft Search to data sources outside of Microsoft 365. With this feature, users can explore results from Microsoft Graph connectors in the All vertical.
Office 365: Microsoft feedback management controls72199April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365
We are introducing new cross platform policies to help administrators better manage the feedback experience for their organization. They will be able set feedback collection policies per AAD group for Microsoft 365 products.
Microsoft compliance center: New DLP alert management dashboard72206April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
A new data loss prevention (DLP) alert management experience within the Microsoft 365 compliance center will enable admins to review, investigate, and manage DLP policy match events, related content, and associated metadata, as well as edit alert configuration options as a part of the DLP policy authoring experience. The dashboard shows alerts for DLP policies that are enforced on these workloads: Exchange, SharePoint, OneDrive, Teams, and Devices.
Azure Active Directory: Temporary Access Pass72242April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Azure AD
Temporary Access Pass (TAP) is a time-limited passcode that can be used to registration Passwordless FIDO2 and Phone Sign-in. TAP also makes recovery easier when a user has lost or forgotten their strong authentication methods and needs to sign in to register new authentication methods.
Azure Active Directory: Application Proxy traffic optimization72248April CY2021Added: 31 March 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Azure AD
You now can now designate which region your Application Proxy service connector group should use. By choosing the closest region to your applications and connectors, you can improve performance and reduce the latency to the App Proxy service.
Azure Active Directory: B2C Identity Protection & Conditional Access72251April CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Azure AD
You can enhance the security of Azure AD B2C implementation with Azure AD’s Identity Protection and Conditional Access capabilities. Identity Protection allows organizations to automate the detection and remediation of identity-based risks, investigate risks, and export risk detection data to third-party utilities for further analysis. Conditional Access is the policy engine that brings signals together to make decisions and enforce organizational policies. Together, these capabilities give application owners significantly greater control over risky authentications and access policies.
Azure Active Directory: Conditional Access authentication context72253April CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Azure AD
Conditional Access authentication context lets you target policies for data and actions within an app so you can refine your Zero Trust policies for least privileged access while minimizing user friction.
Azure Active Directory: Verifiable credentials72255April CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Azure AD
Verifiable credentials let organizations confirm information about someone without collecting and storing their personal data. Organizations will be able to issue digital versions of a variety of credentials such as physical badges, loyalty cards, and government-issued paper documents based on open standards.
Microsoft Teams: Breakout Room Presenter support81118 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Extend the management of Breakout Rooms to specific presenters.
Microsoft Teams: Roaming bandwidth control81350May CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Enhanced UX for participant assignment. This includes new capabilities such as sorting participants and rooms and performing multiple selections and assignments to rooms.
Microsoft Teams: New assignment experience in modal window for Breakout Rooms81389June CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
You now can now designate which region your Application Proxy service connector group should use. By choosing the closest region to your applications and connectors, you can improve performance and reduce the latency to the App Proxy service.
Microsoft Teams: Breakout Room pre-meeting room creation and participant assignment81390May CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Introducing capability for organizer to perform breakout room configuration and participant assignment before the meeting starts.
Microsoft Teams: Separate Window Teams Live Events Producer Experience81804May CY2021 Added: 31 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
With this new feature, you are now able to produce your Teams Live Events as a Producer in a separate window, allowing you to effectively manage your event.
Outlook: Updates to attachments in received mail72212April CY2021Added: 02 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook
We are consolidating the options to manage a received file under a single dropdown menu similar to Outlook for Windows and Mac. For customers with OneDrive enabled, we are adding the ability to directly edit Word, Excel, and PowerPoint attachments in the corresponding desktop or web app.
Outlook: Admin-set organization logos in Outlook for iOS and Android72214May CY2021Added: 02 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Android, iOS
Admins can set an organization logo through Azure Active Directory, and users will see this logo in certain multi-account scenarios to better differentiate between work and personal mail.
Microsoft Teams: Teams webinar capabilities general availability80099April CY2021Added: 02 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Schedule and deliver 1,000 person webinars with the same Teams app you use for meetings! Webinar capabilities support registration page creation, email confirmation for registrants, host management for attendee video and audio, attendee reporting, plus interactive features like polls, chat and reactions.
Microsoft Teams: New manage tag experience and other enhancements81803April CY2021Added: 02 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Tags in Teams let users quickly reach a group of people without having to @mention or type out everyone. Tags now can be managed as a Tab and you can receive notification for tag membership changes or search for tags in Teams. Tags will also now have a description field so that you can add more details to a tag.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Join us to learn how to accomplish the fundamental tasks in Teams. Learn how to easily communicate with your co-workers, save time while working and collaborating, and see how teamwork and projects can be managed in a central space. In this training you will learn how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and attend meetings, (4) Align your workgroup and projects, and (5) Collaborate on files and tools.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

When: Tuesday, April 6, 2021 at 9:00am PT | Moving to Microsoft 365? There are several tools and methods offered by Microsoft to help you through this journey. In this webinar we will demonstrate the various options available to enable you to successfully migrate your organizational data to Microsoft 365 so that you can empower your users for collaboration and productivity. The agenda is as follows: (1) Introduction, (2) Migration from file shares and SharePoint servers, (3) Migration from cloud providers, (4) Future investments, and (5) Conclusion and QA.

When: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 at 9:00am PT | Last year, we hosted several “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) sessions for Planner—and they were a huge hit! We heard from customers around the world who asked about our plans for future feature releases, technical difficulties, integrations with other Microsoft 365 apps, and much, much more. The conversations were engaging and enlightening: our team learned even more about your needs to make Planner the best task management app for your work. If you’re curious about the kinds of questions and answers in these sessions, check out the November AMA summary. Coming on the heels of several app enhancements, like more labels, and the Reimagine Project Management with Microsoft digital event, we’re excited to be hosting our first AMA of the year on Wednesday, April 7 at 9 a.m. PST right here on Tech Community. Make sure to save the date! To join, simply visit the Planner AMA space at the time of the event and select “Start a New Conversation” to post your question. This session is open to all Tech Community members. Representatives from both the product and engineering teams for Planner will be on hand to answer your questions.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 9:00am PT | If you are evaluating , kicking off or in the process of moving your organizational data to Microsoft 365 here are some recommendations from the subject matter experts based on their learnings post managing large scale migrations for multiple organizations. Tune in to learn more about the best practices that will help you run an effective, speedy and seamless migration to OneDrive and SharePoint irrespective of the tools you choose to use. The agenda is as follows: (1) Introduction, (2) How to prepare data for migration, (3) How to plan and communicate about the migration, (4) How to run a successful migration, and (5) Conclusion and QA.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

As people increasingly shift to remote work, protecting your organization’s information and managing risk should be a top priority. Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk teaches you how to take advantage of Microsoft technologies that identify and remediate risks that arise from creating, storing, sharing, and using sensitive data. In addition, you’ll learn how to protect that data throughout its entire life cycle—on-premises and across devices, apps, and cloud services. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Understand, identify, and protect your most sensitive data, (2) Identify and take action on insider risks and code-of-conduct violations, and (3) Utilize information protection and governance.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

It’s been a busy, productive couple of months. We announced a lot of exciting product updates and offerings at Ignite earlier this month, and many of these are now generally available. However, those aren’t the only new features and capabilities to launch in February and March. In fact, there’s a lot. So, grab a cup of something and let’s see what’s new in: (1) Meetings and webinars, (2) Calling, (3) Devices, (4) Chat and Collaboration, (5) Power Platform and custom development, (6) Management, (7) Security, compliance, and privacy, and (8) Government.

Related:

This post includes all the SharePoint and related tech updates that rolled out in March 2021. This is the all-inclusive roadmap release recap for all things SharePoint and related technology. March was a month that brought more Viva goodness, refined SharePoint and Lists experiences, and a few gems for your content migrations. Blink and it’s April, but first, let’s review March. March 2021 brought some great new offerings: Microsoft Viva Connections, SharePoint app bar, Focus mode for SharePoint pages and news, images in SharePoint Events web part, SharePoint page analytics, Integrate menu for Microsoft Lists, Graph-based people picker for Person columns, Box migration into Microsoft 365, guest access in Yammer, and more. All the features listed began rolling out to Targeted Release customers in Office 365 as of March 2021 (possibly early April 2021).

March was an exciting month for the Microsoft 365 Apps community. We know that IT admins like you are continuing to play a critical role in keeping your organizations focused and productive, which is why we’re always innovating new features and services for Microsoft 365 Apps. Read on to discover more about the latest capabilities, including Microsoft 365 Apps health, extended offline access, and device-based subscription. And if you missed any of our Microsoft Ignite sessions, watch the on-demand videos to learn more about what we’re developing to help make your role easier. | Related: Deploying Microsoft 365 Apps for Mac with Microsoft Endpoint Manager – A Deep Dive

The next step in the journey towards greater employee experience is here. Earlier this month, we announced that Microsoft Viva Connections would soon be available for desktop and today, we’re excited to share that you can now download and install the Viva Connections desktop app in your organization. The mobile experience for Viva Connections will be available in Teams in the summer of 2021. In conjunction with the release of the mobile experience, we will also release an update to the desktop experience that will focus on improvements for IT administrators and deployment enhancements. This summer update will combine both the mobile and desktop configuration and deployment into the Teams admin console. In this summer update we will also release web parts for the “dashboard” and “feed” to align with the mobile experience. These new web parts will enable the dashboard experience, authored in SharePoint, to be constant across all end points. As web parts they will be available to add to any of your sites and allow you to leverage multiple columns and other advanced layouts on the desktop.

Microsoft considers Zero Trust an essential component of any organization’s security plan. We have partnered with Cloud Security Alliance, a not-for-profit organization that promotes cloud computing best practices, to bring together executive security leaders to discuss and share insights about their Zero Trust journeys. We recently sat down with 10 executive security leaders from prominent energy, finance, insurance, and manufacturing companies in a virtual roundtable, to understand what has worked and discover where they needed to adjust their Zero Trust security model. Our collective goal was to learn from one another and then share what we’ve learned with other organizations. Discussions like these give us valuable opportunities to grow and led us to publish an eBook to share those conversations with other cybersecurity professionals. We are publishing the “Examining Zero Trust: An executive roundtable discussion” eBook as a result of those conversations. The eBook describes how the Zero Trust security model involves thinking beyond perimeter security and moving to a more holistic security approach. The eBook complements other resources we have published to help organizations expedite their journeys in this critical area, such as the Microsoft Zero Trust Maturity Model and adoption guidance in the Zero Trust Deployment Center. Zero Trust assumes breach and verifies each request as if it originates from an uncontrolled network. If Zero Trust had a motto, it would be: never trust, always verify. That means never trusting anyone or anything—inside or outside the firewall, on the endpoint, on the server, or in the cloud.


NOTEWORTHY

Outlook for iOS and Android brings together email, calendars, contacts and files in one app so you can quickly connect, organize, and get things done. Over the last year, Outlook has worked on several enhancements designed to provide a clear separation between work and personal accounts, in addition to, helping users quickly identify external messages. These enhancements include: (1) Account switching, (2) Contact separation, (3) Organization logos, and (4) External sender tag.

This post has a look at what’s new and upcoming for Project, including features such as: (1) Export Timeline to PDF, (2) Email Assignment Notifications, (3) Project Accelerator, and (4) Overall effort in the Project details pane. Upcoming features include: (1) Import from Project Desktop, (2) Assign tasks to non-group members, and (3) Actions on Project Home.

We are pleased to announce a new feature release for April 19, 2021. The new release includes a few exciting updates: (1) Integration of Microsoft Teams chats and Teams calls into the Collaboration hours metric and refined Collaboration hours logic to better accommodate overlapping activities, and (2) New “is person’s manager” and “is person’s direct report” attributes available in Person-query participant filters. (Please note that these became available on March 29, 2021.). Additionally, we’ve implemented a handful of improvements to other metrics: (1) Outlier improvements to Email hours and Call hours metrics, and (2) Better alignment of After-hours collaboration hours and Working hours collaboration hours to total Collaboration hours, and of After-hours email hours and Working hours email hours to total Email hours.

We know that some of our customers leverage Exchange transport rules to prepend subject line or insert the message body to show the email is from external senders. This approach has a few limitations including: ending up with duplicate [External] tags in the subject line if there are additional replies from external users, and adding things to the subject line breaks Outlook conversation threading. There can also be localization issues, as transport rules have no knowledge of client language that end-users are using. We have heard the feedback on this, and are working on providing a native experience to identify emails from senders outside your organizations (which can help protect against spam & phishing threats). This is achieved by presenting a new tag on emails called “External” (the string is localized based on your client language setting) and exposing related user interface at the top of your message reading view to see and verify the real sender’s email address.

In the previous two blogs in this series, we detailed the evolution of business email compromise attacks and how Microsoft Defender for Office 365 employs multiple native capabilities to help customers prevent these attacks. In Part One, we covered some of the most common tactics used in business email compromise attacks, and in Part Two, we dove a little deeper into the more advanced attacks. The BEC protections offered by Microsoft Defender for Office 365, as referenced in the previous two blogs have been helping keep Defender for Office 365 customers secure across a number of different dimensions. However, to fully appreciate and understand the unique capabilities Microsoft offers, we need to take a step back. When we talk to customers about Microsoft Defender for Office 365, we always mention not only the size of our service, but the volume of data points we generate and collect throughout Microsoft. These things together help us responsibly build industry-leading AI and automation.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-12

Welcome to the March 22 – 28, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-two features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Microsoft Viva, Outlook, Office App (Desktop), M365 Compliance, and Microsoft Information Protection.

More sessions for existing meeting series have been added for March and April. There are two new events focused on migrating files to OneDrive / SharePoint Online, taking place on April 6th and April 13th. The spotlight event of the week is the Customer Immersion Experience sessions for “Protecting Identity, Apps, Data and Devices” scheduled at 9am Pacific and 12pm Pacific on Thursday, April 1st.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a look at 7 urgent trends for leaders in the shift to hybrid work, availability of live transcription with speaker attribution in Teams meetings for English (US), best practices for migrating to SharePoint and OneDrive, and a new option to block Bcc messages to distribution groups in Exchange Online.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items such as information on Yammer Live Events Insights, the availability of Windows release health in the M365 admin center, details on how to get started with trials for Microsoft Viva Topics, and a new export to PowerPoint from Microsoft Word for the Web.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Twenty-two features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Microsoft Viva, Outlook, Office App (Desktop), M365 Compliance, and Microsoft Information Protection.

Due to some issues with table formatting in the WordPress editor, the roadmap updates for last week are available via download as listed below:

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed in the files are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.


UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Tuesday, April 6, 2021 at 9:00am PT | Moving to Microsoft 365? There are several tools and methods offered by Microsoft to help you through this journey. In this webinar we will demonstrate the various options available to enable you to successfully migrate your organizational data to Microsoft 365 so that you can empower your users for collaboration and productivity. The agenda is as follows: (1) Introduction, (2) Migration from file shares and SharePoint servers, (3) Migration from cloud providers, (4) Future investments, and (5) Conclusion and QA.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 9:00am PT | If you are evaluating , kicking off or in the process of moving your organizational data to Microsoft 365 here are some recommendations from the subject matter experts based on their learnings post managing large scale migrations for multiple organizations. Tune in to learn more about the best practices that will help you run an effective, speedy and seamless migration to OneDrive and SharePoint irrespective of the tools you choose to use. The agenda is as follows: (1) Introduction, (2) How to prepare data for migration, (3) How to plan and communicate about the migration, (4) How to run a successful migration, and (5) Conclusion and QA.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Businesses are shifting to a desktop experience that empowers IT and enables employees to be more productive and secure, but not all employees sit in an office or always work from secure locations.  With Windows Virtual Desktop, you can set up a scalable and flexible environment to unlock mobility, productivity and security. This new 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Windows Virtual Desktop. During this session, you will explore how to: (1) Create your first Windows Virtual Desktop architecture, (2) Create images and assign them to users, (3) Operationalize the virtual desktop infrastructure with monitoring, scaling, and image management, and (4) Explore security best practices within Windows Virtual Desktop. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

As people increasingly shift to remote work, protecting your organization’s information and managing risk should be a top priority. Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk teaches you how to take advantage of Microsoft technologies that identify and remediate risks that arise from creating, storing, sharing, and using sensitive data. In addition, you’ll learn how to protect that data throughout its entire life cycle—on-premises and across devices, apps, and cloud services. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Understand, identify, and protect your most sensitive data, (2) Identify and take action on insider risks and code-of-conduct violations, and (3) Utilize information protection and governance.


BLOG ROUNDUP

We’ve published our first annual Work Trend Index: “The Next Great Disruption is Hybrid Work—Are We Ready?” We surveyed more than 30,000 people in 31 countries, analyzed trillions of productivity and labor signals across Microsoft 365 and LinkedIn, and talked to experts who have studied collaboration, social capital, and space design at work for decades. Our research uncovered seven key trends leaders need to know now to make hybrid work, work. One thing is abundantly clear: We are no longer bound to traditional notions of time and space when it comes to how, when, and where we work. It’s a big mental shift—one that will require leaders and organizations to fundamentally reexamine and rewire their operating model. And there are big changes ahead. Our research indicates that nearly half (41 percent) of the global workforce is considering leaving their employer this year, and 46 percent say they’re likely to move because they can now work remotely. Your approach to hybrid will ultimately impact who stays, who goes, and who seeks to join your company. We hope this research-backed guide can help business leaders on their own hybrid-work journeys. The next phase will bring challenges and opportunities, but we’re optimistic about the future. If we take what we’ve learned from overcoming a once-in-a-hundred-year challenge and use it to chart a path forward that gives people the flexibility they need, together we can build a better world of work for everyone. | Related: The philosophy and practice of our hybrid workplace

We’ve all been in situations where we’re double-booked or joined a meeting late. You don’t want to interrupt the flow but need to catch up quickly. Or, for accessibility reasons or ambient noise situations, you need help following the conversation and understanding who’s speaking. Wouldn’t it be great to have transcription with speaker attribution built into the meeting? We’re excited to now offer live transcription in Microsoft Teams meetings for English (US). Live transcription is a written record of the spoken text that occurs during a meeting. It identifies each speaker, is captured automatically in near real time, and is available during and after the meeting. Live transcription in Teams uses a meeting’s invitation, participant names, attachments, etc. to improve the accuracy and recognize meeting-specific jargon for each transcript automatically, without any human involvement. This means no one at Microsoft ever sees the meeting’s content, and the models are automatically deleted immediately after each meeting. In addition, Microsoft doesn’t use or store this data for improving its own AI.

Last year, many IT organizations found themselves scrambling to quickly get people access to tools and information they needed to work from home effectively. Now, they’re in a position to think more strategically about the best ways to support a remote workforce. For organizations who’ve deployed Microsoft 365, one of those ways is by migrating content to SharePoint and OneDrive. No matter what your reasons for migrating to SharePoint and OneDrive, the process can seem overwhelming. You have so much to consider: What content do you have, and where is it stored? What will you move? What needs extra consideration, like regulatory compliance? How will you get data from file shares or third-party cloud apps into SharePoint and OneDrive? And those are just some of the logistical aspects—you also need to think about things like timing for the migration and how to communicate what’s happening to the rest of the organization. To help, we’ve outlined some critical steps for you to consider for a successful migration.

We all know that email distribution groups (DGs) are great for easily sharing information or engaging in discussions with a large group of people. Whether it is a DG for business-related discussions or a DG about upcoming yard sales this weekend, DGs have been a helpful part of email life since the beginning of… well… email. Yet, the amount of traffic for some DGs can overload your inbox and become a distraction from all the other important tasks of your job. How do you handle this torrent of enticingly distracting DG messages? One way is to create an Inbox rule to move messages sent to the DG to a specific folder, so instead of a flood of messages in your inbox, you can automatically store them in a folder for later review. However, sender behavior can break this process. To reduce the noise generated by Reply All’s to a DG message, some senders add the DG to the BCC line. This stops Reply All’s to the DG but is also considered bad email etiquette. And for privacy reasons, Inbox rules don’t evaluate anything on the BCC line, so the message ends up as noise in your inbox instead of going to special folder you created. Twice a year at Microsoft we let our developers go wild and come up with innovative features or new tech outside of their normal work. A few Exchange Transport engineers who were dedicated members of an internal “for sale / want to buy” DG had this exact problem: people would BCC the DG so these emails would bypass Inbox rules and land in inboxes as unwanted noise during the business day. So, these devs-gone-wild came up with a solution to block messages when the DG is on the BCC line. Admins can now thwart people from adding a DG to the BCC line with a new “-BccBlocked” switch on the Set-DistributionGroup cmdlet.


NOTEWORTHY

Over the last year, there has been a massive rise in the number of Yammer Live Events. Understandable. With so many people working remotely, Yammer Live Events are an awesome medium for organizations to connect with employees. Because of this, one of the recurring things we’re hearing from customers is the ability to understand the impact of these events. We’re thrilled to announce Yammer Live Events Insights. This gives organizations the insights they need to measure reach and engagement and build more powerful events. | Related: Guest Access in Yammer is now Generally Available

We have started the rollout of Windows release health to the Microsoft 365 admin center. Windows and Microsoft 365 IT admins now have easy, integrated access to essential information about monthly quality and feature updates, the latest features and enhancements for IT, servicing milestones, and lifecycle updates. The Windows release health experience on the admin center also offers insights into known issues, workarounds, and resolutions related to Windows updates. This will be a phased rollout and we expect this information experience to be available to all applicable customers by the end of April. In addition, you can also see Windows-related notifications in the Message center and customize your notification preferences just as you would for any other product or service in the Microsoft 365 admin center.

In case you missed Microsoft Ignite earlier this month, we’ve been busy adding new capabilities to help you secure and manage your apps in the cloud and on-premises with Azure AD. These updates will help: (1) Increase IT efficiency with new enterprise app management capabilities, (2) Modernize your app authentication from Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) to Azure AD, and (3) Secure your on-premises apps with Azure AD application proxy. Read on to learn more about these new capabilities!

It has been awesome to watch customer excitement growing since last month’s launch of Microsoft Viva Topics. Viva Topics applies AI to empower people with knowledge in the apps they use every day, automatically organizing content and expertise across your systems and teams to create topics with built-in security, compliance, and workflow. Across the team we’ve been humbled by the enthusiasm and uptake. We know many of you are eager to start working with Viva Topics, and we want to provide answers to some of the most frequently asked questions. | Related: Resources for setting up Viva Topics and Viva Connections

Have you ever wished you could easily export your Microsoft Word document into a PowerPoint presentation with just a few clicks? Now you can! We are excited to announce this feature is now available in Word and PowerPoint for the Web with your Microsoft 365 subscription, and we cannot wait for you to try it out! This feature uses artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities to save you time and provide you with slide suggestions powered by Designer in PowerPoint. The slides are derived from your section headers in the document, so make sure to organize your Word document accordingly for optimal suggestions. Based on key words in your document, Designer in PowerPoint will suggest imagery, icons, videos, themes and fonts to arrange your content. You can always change the suggested content if needed. | Related: PowerPoint for the web introduces Auto Fix: A new time-saving feature to clean up your slides!

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-11

Welcome to the March 15 – 21, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Please see the Office 365 Roadmap section for more details on the latest features added to the roadmap.

There were lots of sessions added for existing meeting series, primarily for next month (April). The spotlight event of the week is the “Secure and Protect Your Organization” Virtual Training Days on Thursday, March 25th and Friday, March 26th.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a spotlight on how to use Office apps with Microsoft Teams to enhance collaboration and creation, new features and platform expansion for PowerPoint Presenter Coach, a recap of Ignite 2021 announcements regarding Cortana integration with Microsoft 365, and new features for Azure Active Directory Domain Services.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items such as information on the latest features for Workplace Analytics, Microsoft IT Showcase articles on Company Communicator app and implementing a Zero Trust model, and a look at the different types of encryption keys used in Microsoft Information Protection.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Forty-four features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, SharePoint, Microsoft Information Protection, Microsoft 365 Compliance, and Yammer.

In order to keep the length of the blog post to a minimum, the roadmap updates for last week are available via download as listed below:


UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Join us to learn how to accomplish the fundamental tasks in Teams. Learn how to easily communicate with your co-workers, save time while working and collaborating, and see how teamwork and projects can be managed in a central space. In this training you will learn how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and attend meetings, (4) Align your workgroup and projects, and (5) Collaborate on files and tools.

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

In 2020, remote and hybrid working became the new normal. Through Microsoft Teams, we came together; connecting, collaborating – and keeping our teams productive, creative and secure. Microsoft is hosting a three-day digital event, The Microsoft Teams Summit, commencing the week of March 22, 2021. It’s an event you won’t want to miss. You’ll hear from experts on how Teams can supercharge the way you and your organization work and discover best practices from customers who’re using Teams to achieve amazing successes. To make sure you’re getting information tailored to your needs, each of the three days will be dedicated to a different group of Teams users: Business leaders, IT professionals, and our everyday users.. So, however you’re using Teams, join us to discover new ways to enhance your skills, and bring your teams closer together to achieve more.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Businesses are shifting to a desktop experience that empowers IT and enables employees to be more productive and secure, but not all employees sit in an office or always work from secure locations.  With Windows Virtual Desktop, you can set up a scalable and flexible environment to unlock mobility, productivity and security. This new 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Windows Virtual Desktop. During this session, you will explore how to: (1) Create your first Windows Virtual Desktop architecture, (2) Create images and assign them to users, (3) Operationalize the virtual desktop infrastructure with monitoring, scaling, and image management, and (4) Explore security best practices within Windows Virtual Desktop. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

As people increasingly shift to remote work, protecting your organization’s information and managing risk should be a top priority. Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk teaches you how to take advantage of Microsoft technologies that identify and remediate risks that arise from creating, storing, sharing, and using sensitive data. In addition, you’ll learn how to protect that data throughout its entire life cycle—on-premises and across devices, apps, and cloud services. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Understand, identify, and protect your most sensitive data, (2) Identify and take action on insider risks and code-of-conduct violations, and (3) Utilize information protection and governance.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Over the past year, we’ve learned a lot about working remotely, but recognize that spontaneous creativity and rich collaboration can be a challenge. A lot of us miss the hallway conversations that took place on our way to and from meetings that sparked new ideas, huddling around a whiteboard to visually capture the conversation, and the luxury of “reading the room”. We need solutions designed for extreme flexibility so people can collaborate from anywhere and at any time. According to research conducted for Microsoft’s Work Trend Index, more than 80 percent of managers say they expect more flexible work from home policies post-pandemic, and more than 70 percent of employees say they expect to take advantage of them. Relying on tools that require everyone to be physically present simply isn’t viable anymore. We’ve seen the growing need for virtual team creativity solutions usage of our products. Over the past year, we’ve seen a 12 fold increase in monthly active users of Microsoft Whiteboard, a clear signal that our customers are hungry to digitally connect and create together.

We’re excited to announce that PowerPoint Presenter Coach is now available on all platforms. PowerPoint Presenter Coach was first introduced in PowerPoint for the web, and both students and professionals have been utilizing this feature to become more confident presenters. Now, you can use this beloved feature on all platforms—on the web, Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android—when and where you need it, on the go, or at home. Presenter Coach leverages AI to help anyone—professionals, students, and even those who just want to practice a speech for a wedding or graduation. Especially in this hybrid work and learning environment, presentation skills are more important than ever, with more meetings and presentations than ever before. Presenter Coach provides users with feedback on their pace, use of monotone pitch, use of filler words, poor grammar, lack of originality, use of sensitive phrases, and more while they rehearse their presentations. At the end of each rehearsal, Presenter Coach users receive a Summary Report highlighting the key pieces of feedback to help them become even better, more confident presenters.

Time is priceless and while we can’t own it, we can make the best use of it. Balancing work and life continues to challenge us daily. Over half of working parents surveyed, said it’s been difficult balancing household demands while working from home. Using Cortana, your personal assistant in Microsoft 365, you can take back control of your day, organize your work, and plan ahead to achieve more. Why? Because work should be impactful, seamless, and fluid. AI in Microsoft 365 lets you take control of your time. At Microsoft Ignite in March 2021, we demonstrated our continued investments in bringing natural, voice-driven experiences to Microsoft 365 apps and services to help you work smarter in addition to new innovation to help individuals, managers, and leaders personalized and actionable privacy-protected insights that help everyone in an organization thrive. In this article we’ll recap announcements from Ignite and where you can learn more from the sessions.

New capabilities in Azure Active Directory Domain Services will make it easier for you to move your legacy, on-premises apps to the cloud. The additional capabilities in our managed domain services solution include: (1) geo-redundancy, (2) faster sync, and (3) resource forests. With replica sets, your Azure AD Domain Services applications gain enhanced performance and disaster recovery for your business by adding geo-redundancy in different regions. To improve the sync experience, we’ve made changes to the synchronization engine between your managed domain and Azure AD. You can now create a resource forest-based managed domain without password hash synchronization. In a resource forest, user objects and credentials exist in the on-premises Active Directory Domain Services forest, while still enabling you to lift your resources that use legacy authentication protocols onto Azure. This is great for customers who use smartcards to sign in to their applications.


NOTEWORTHY

Last month (February 2021), we used this space to announce Microsoft Viva Insights, part of the broader Microsoft Viva initiative that’s empowering and connecting employees in new ways in our evolving digital age. In addition to Viva Insights, the Workplace Analytics team has introduced other feature updates over the past few weeks. This update describes expanded support of worldwide languages in query results (UTF-8 encoded characters allowed in metric names), and the release of an R package for Workplace Analytics.

Microsoft is rolling out an application that will directly connect employees with company announcements and feature updates they need—all through the new Microsoft Teams app. Called Company Communicator, the new app enables leaders and communications specialists to send messages directly to multiple teams, employees, or any subset of an internal audience, over chat or in a Teams channel. This decision was supported by survey data from Microsoft employees, who rely on Microsoft Teams as a hub for all their teamwork and communication needs like video meetings, chat, phone calls, and critical business applications. Additionally, 77 percent of survey participants said they wanted to receive communications over Microsoft Teams chat, which kickstarted the implementation of Company Communicator.

The increasing prevalence of cloud-based services, mobile computing, internet of things (IoT), and bring your own device (BYOD) in the workforce have changed the technology landscape for the modern enterprise. Security architectures that rely on network firewalls and virtual private networks (VPNs) to isolate and restrict access to corporate technology resources and services are no longer sufficient for a workforce that regularly requires access to applications and resources that exist beyond traditional corporate network boundaries. The shift to the internet as the network of choice and the continuously evolving threats led Microsoft to adopt a Zero Trust security model. The journey began a few years ago and will continue to evolve for years to come.

Microsoft Information Protection (MIP) is a built-in, intelligent, unified, and extensible solution to protect sensitive data across your enterprise – in Microsoft 365 cloud services, on-premises, third-party SaaS applications, and more. MIP provides a unified set of capabilities to know your data, protect your data, and help prevent data loss across Microsoft 365 apps (e.g., Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook) and services (e.g., Teams, SharePoint, and Exchange). Microsoft offers a variety of encryption keys that support various customer scenarios. While it could be a daunting task to understand various encryption key types and their applications in the context of the environment, we will describe the various Microsoft Information Protection (MIP) encryption key types through this blog. This blog expands on each key offering, highlights unique aspects, differences, benefits, challenges, typical use cases, and a high-level architectural overview of each key type. Our intent is to keep the right level of technical depth that will help readers get a good understanding of the various key options. Refer to NIST 800-57 for best practices of key management. The blog outlines key elements that enable encryption, discusses rights management services, various key types and concludes with a comparison tables that helps to choose the appropriate key types.

Office 365 Planned Service Changes – March 2021 Updates

The Office 365 Weekly Wiki has been updated with the latest Office 365 Planned Service Changes as of March 11, 2021. Please be sure to review the Update Log for details.

Notes:

  • All changes may not have been communicated to your tenant / environment.
  • If there are discrepancies between the information posted on the wiki and the linked source articles and/or Message Center, then the other (official Microsoft) sources are authoritative.

If you have any feedback or questions, please reach out via email – contact [at] office365weekly.blog.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-10

Welcome to the March 8 – 14, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were nineteen features added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Forms, OneDrive, Planner, SharePoint, Microsoft Information Protection, and Yammer.

There aren’t any net new events for this week’s post, but there are additional sessions now listed for several existing meting series. This week’s spotlight event is the “Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA)” session for Microsoft App Assure on Tuesday, March 16th at 9am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include the launch of Microsoft Whiteboard for Microsoft Teams channels and chats, a Project Accelerator tool that extends Microsoft Project, and the general availability of Azure Active Directory External Identities.

Noteworthy item highlights include the public preview of Out of Office scheduling in Microsoft Teams, a recap of what’s new in the Microsoft 365 admin center, granular conditional access for sensitive data and actions, and the introduction of a Microsoft 365 Solution for Legal.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Microsoft Information Protection: Configure external sharing for sensitivity labels in Teams and SharePoint sites70735March CY2021Added: 09 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
With this update, you can set controls on external sharing while configuring a Team or site protection policy. For example you can set a very restrictive one for a Team or site labeled ‘confidential’—restricting sharing with people outside the organization or set a very relaxed one for a Team or site labeled ‘general’—allowing anyone with a link to access without requiring sign-in.
Microsoft Information Protection: Migrate legacy exchange DLP policies to the M365 compliance center70790April CY2021Added: 09 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
The Exchange DLP migration wizard will enable you to seamlessly migrate the exchange DLP policies managed in the exchange admin center to the compliance center. M365 compliance center provides access to advanced classification capabilities like EDM, ML etc. along with rich alerts, incident management features and more.
Microsoft Teams: Availability of Praise for GCC80913April CY2021Added: 09 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
GCC support for Praise.
Microsoft Teams: Tasks and Task publishing for GCC80914April CY2021Added: 09 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
GCC support for Tasks and Task Publishing.
Microsoft Teams: Walkie Talkie on iOS (Preview)80915June CY2021Added: 09 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Walkie Talkie, a push-to-talk experience that enables clear and secure voice communication over the cloud, enables teams to communicate instantly and always stay on the same page. This native built-in app in Teams turns employee or company-owned iOS smartphones and tablets into a walkie-talkie, reducing the number of devices employees must carry and lowering costs for IT.
Yammer: New Yammer experience as default for all users70689March CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
Default to new Yammer experience for all users on web.
SharePoint spaces: Embed Web Part and Annotation70732March CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
Show SharePoint pages or HTML embed content as an interactable overlay on a SharePoint space.
Microsoft Teams: Get Template Graph API70793April CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Get team templates list and team template details via Graph API.
Microsoft Teams: Customized Website Tab Apps in Team Templates70794April CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
This feature enables Admins to add customized website tab apps in custom team templates.
Forms: Forms response receipt – GCC/GCC High/DoD support70803March CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms, GCC, GCC-High, DoD
A new approach for form responder to get their response receipt in GCC/GCC High/DoD environment.
Forms: Forms Design Page Printing – GCC/GCC High/DoD support70804March CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms, GCC, GCC-High, DoD
This feature allows form designer to print a blank form/quiz to responder who cannot fill the online form.
Microsoft Teams: Policy package assignment to groups80241March CY2021Added: 10 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Streamline assignment of policy package with group assignment. Group assignment empowers admins to assign a policy package to a group instead of individual users.
Microsoft Planner: Move tasks to any of your plans70738April CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Planner
You can now move tasks to any plan you’re a member of. Comments cannot move to a plan in a different group, and labels do not move across plans.
SharePoint: Focus mode for modern SharePoint pages70800March CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
SharePoint page authors and viewers will be able to focus on page content by using the Expand content button on the command bar to hide the site header, site navigation, and global navigation bar. Focus mode will persist when page viewers select links to pages within a site, but not when they select links to pages outside of the site (even if they are within a hub site).
OneDrive: Quickly change permissions in OneDrive/SharePoint share controls70806March CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
Users can now have the ability to change permissions more easily from the OneDrive/SharePoint share controls.
Microsoft Teams: Manage meeting options for GCC-High72168April CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC-High
Organizers will now be able to modify the user experience, or customize the safety and security settings for their meetings using the new “Meeting Options” feature.
Microsoft Teams: Manage meeting options for DoD72169April CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, DoD
Organizers will now be able to modify the user experience, or customize the safety and security settings for their meetings using the new “Meeting Options” feature.
Microsoft Teams: Improvements for managing attendee audio permissions in Teams Meetings80261April CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Meeting presenters and organizers can manage attendee audio permissions with greater flexibility. Attendees no longer must request to speak for the organizer or presenters to allow them to unmute, and presenters and organizers can prevent individual attendees from unmuting instead of all attendees at once.
Forms: Poll in teams meeting support 1k meeting/webinar80619April CY2021Added: 12 March 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
For the large meeting, Forms poll will support the overall user experience and to help presenter could improve the meeting engagement.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

When: Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Microsoft App Assure ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA)! The AMA will take place on Tuesday, March 16th, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Microsoft FastTrack AMA Space. An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering team who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Be sure to add the event to your calendar!

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Join us to learn how to accomplish the fundamental tasks in Teams. Learn how to easily communicate with your co-workers, save time while working and collaborating, and see how teamwork and projects can be managed in a central space. In this training you will learn how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and attend meetings, (4) Align your workgroup and projects, and (5) Collaborate on files and tools.

In 2020, remote and hybrid working became the new normal. Through Microsoft Teams, we came together; connecting, collaborating – and keeping our teams productive, creative and secure. Microsoft is hosting a three-day digital event, The Microsoft Teams Summit, commencing the week of March 22, 2021. It’s an event you won’t want to miss. You’ll hear from experts on how Teams can supercharge the way you and your organization work and discover best practices from customers who’re using Teams to achieve amazing successes. To make sure you’re getting information tailored to your needs, each of the three days will be dedicated to a different group of Teams users: Business leaders, IT professionals, and our everyday users.. So, however you’re using Teams, join us to discover new ways to enhance your skills, and bring your teams closer together to achieve more.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Businesses are shifting to a desktop experience that empowers IT and enables employees to be more productive and secure, but not all employees sit in an office or always work from secure locations.  With Windows Virtual Desktop, you can set up a scalable and flexible environment to unlock mobility, productivity and security. This new 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Windows Virtual Desktop. During this session, you will explore how to: (1) Create your first Windows Virtual Desktop architecture, (2) Create images and assign them to users, (3) Operationalize the virtual desktop infrastructure with monitoring, scaling, and image management, and (4) Explore security best practices within Windows Virtual Desktop. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

The workforce relies on Microsoft Teams to chat, meet, and collaborate. But that’s just the beginning. Microsoft Teams can bring the applications and tools you’re already using, into one universal hub your workforce needs to get things done. During this interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Integrate ready-to-use apps into the Teams experience, (2) Maintain control over which apps are accessible for your organization, (3) Create an App that embeds modern SharePoint pages in Teams using App Studio, (4) Manage permission and set up policies through the Admin Center, and (5) Scale business critical apps to your organization. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

We are pleased to announce the Public Preview of the Microsoft Whiteboard app for Android and the launch of Microsoft Whiteboard in Microsoft Teams channels and chat. For projects and longer-term discussions, you can now create a whiteboard associated with a Teams channel or chat. Members of the channel or chat can iterate and collaborate on the whiteboards over time. Leveraging the completely rebuilt Whiteboard for Web and Teams experience we announced in 2020, Whiteboard for Android moves us one major step closer to achieving our vision of a collaboration space for ideation that is accessible from any device and integrates seamlessly into the collaboration workflows teams already use. Whether on Teams, Web, Windows 10, iOS, or now Android, Microsoft Whiteboard provides an infinite canvas where imagination has room to grow. You can draw, type, add a sticky note, stack things up, and move them around.

For a lot of people, a project is more than a set of tasks with the team members assigned to work on them. You may need to track issues or risks or a process to decide which projects even get funded. This all can be done by extending Project for the web through Power Apps. To make it easier for you to get started, we are providing the Project Accelerator, which builds out these kinds of scenarios for you. The Project Accelerator enables several scenarios in Project: (1) Proposals, (2) Programs, (3) Risks, (4) Issues, (5) Changes, and (6) Status.

Microsoft Information Protection and Microsoft Cloud App Security are a dynamic duo, here to protect data wherever it resides in your applications. If you’ve never been introduced, Microsoft Information Protection gives you the ability to take your files through the many stages of your workloads: Google Drive, Workday, Salesforce, Box, Exchange, Teams, SharePoint, OneDrive, and more. Regardless of your platform, we’ve got you covered. Information protection is a key component of a CASB, and should deliver an integrated, nuanced understanding of your organization’s sensitive-labeled data as it’s leveraged in your cloud environment.

Last Spring (2020), we shared our vision for Azure Active Directory External Identities and encouraged customers to preview self-service sign-up, our first step toward unifying Microsoft’s identity offerings for employee, partner, and customer identity. During the past year, we’ve made significant improvements to Azure AD External Identities with the help of our preview customers, who view this work as critical to making their workflows more flexible, secure, and scalable. We are now taking additional steps on this journey with the general availability (GA) of several External Identities features and a few new previews for B2B and B2C scenarios.


NOTEWORTHY

At Visio, we are constantly working on new features to enhance the Visio for the web experience. In this blog, we provide a step-by-step guide on how to design a flowchart leveraging some of the latest capabilities in Visio for the web. Learn how to create and coauthor professional-looking flowcharts for effective decision making and process execution.

Out of Office scheduling in Teams is now in public preview! Set up a message to let others know you’re on vacation or not available to reply. Your out of office status will also sync with your Outlook calendar, your presence and contact card information. This feature is rolling on Desktop and Web, starting March 14, 2021. This feature is supported on Windows, Linux, macOS, Edge, Firefox, Chrome and Safari.

Updated: March 10, 2021 | This update covers a few of the things talked about at Ignite 2021: (1) We’ve revamped the Message center to help you discover relevant messages and added a more flexible reading experience. We’ve added a new Service column to help you scan which Service a message applies to and filter messages by Service and other metadata. You can favorite a message to mark it for follow up, choose which columns appear in the message list, and navigate between messages with the back and next buttons. We’ve also improved the process to make it easier to give feedback on Message center posts. To learn more about the new features, check out Manage messages in Message center. (2) We’ve made improvements to how you view the “What’s new” features for users in the Office apps. You can now see the rich content in the What’s new pane that your users can see. You can also learn more about the feature before you decide to let your users know about the feature. For more info, check out Manage which Office‎ features appear in What’s New.

We are incredibly excited to introduce Conditional Access authentication context, because it really empowers you to apply policies in exactly the ways you’ve told us you want to. Your HR handbook and secret plans in SharePoint can have different access policies, and your company’s financials app can apply a different standard between reading balances and wiring funds. Conditional Access authentication context lets you target policies for data and actions within an app so you can refine your Zero Trust policies for least privileged access while minimizing user friction. With the public preview, which will start soon, we are adding support to several Microsoft services as well as support for SaaS apps and line-of-business apps. Look for the public preview in April!

At Microsoft, we understand the importance of data privacy. Law Firms have the additional burden of protecting Client Matter Data as a commitment to the customers that they serve. At Microsoft, our mission is “to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more”.  The goal of Microsoft 365 Solution for Legal is to address the concerns over blind subpoenas while helping Law Firms realize their full potential using the most secure cloud and leverage Microsoft Teams in a way that is curated and configurable to meet those requirements. For as long as Microsoft has had a cloud offering, it may have felt like we were ignoring these concerns that law firms have. In many ways, we lacked some of the controls that were needed. Indeed we are listening! We recognize the value of Document Management Systems (DMS) providers and are working with many of the core software solution providers in this space to guide Client Matter Data to the DMS and keep it out of SharePoint and OneDrive when necessary. If data accidentally lands in SharePoint or OneDrive, we can leverage our file encryption technology to ensure that it is illegible to Microsoft (rendering it worthless to the blind subpoena) and only usable by you. The solution recognizes that each Law Firm is unique and have their own level of comfort with the cloud. So we also created an approach that can be modified to accommodate the needs and unique requirements that each Law Firm feels ready to adopt. We have developed a 4-phased approach to 1) Enable, 2) Empower, 3) Differentiate, and 4) Transform your journey to Microsoft Teams leveraging Microsoft 365 security and compliance tools.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-09

Welcome to the March 1 – 7, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Last week everyone was focused on Microsoft Ignite March 2021. There’s a ton of content in this week’s digest, so the intro will be short. You can find recordings, and related content at Microsoft Ignite On-Demand.

Note: Lots of new dates for existing events have been added since last week. There are also a couple of new events – the “Ask the Expert: Microsoft 365 Networking” session at 10am Pacific on Wednesday, March 10th, and an “Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) for Microsoft App Assure” on Tuesday, March 16th at 9am Pacific.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

With Ignite March 2021, there were lots of updates to the Office 365 Roadmap last week – 63 new features to be exact! Microsoft Teams had the highest number of features by far with 35 total, followed by Microsoft 365 Compliance (9) and Microsoft Lists (6).

In order to keep the length of the blog post to a minimum, the roadmap updates for last week are available via download as listed below:


UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Join us to learn how to accomplish the fundamental tasks in Teams. Learn how to easily communicate with your co-workers, save time while working and collaborating, and see how teamwork and projects can be managed in a central space. In this training you will learn how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and attend meetings, (4) Align your workgroup and projects, and (5) Collaborate on files and tools.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and felt it wasn’t productive and not much was accomplished? Join us to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive, and meaningful. Use Microsoft Teams for your entire meeting experience. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Schedule and join meetings and initiate calls, (2) Use collaborative tools such as sharing, whiteboards, meeting notes, recording, and more, (3) Easily access important meetings and related content at any time, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Do you need an online, collaborative workspace for your project or workgroup? Join us to explore effective, virtual workspaces for projects and workgroups. Microsoft Teams offer the flexibility to set up a workspace that suits your needs. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs, (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams to enhance productivity.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Do you use Microsoft Teams on a regular basis and want to learn more? Are you looking for ways to increase your efficiency and productivity in Teams? Join us to discover ways to enhance communication and increase your efficiency and productivity within Teams. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In this training, you will learn how to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed and responded to, (2) Integrate tools and best practices to streamline and collaboration process, and (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

When: Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 10:00am PT | Network connectivity in the Microsoft 365 admin center includes aggregated network connectivity metrics collected from your Microsoft 365 tenant and measurements from Office desktop and web clients that use Microsoft 365. Informed network routing enables third-party SD-WAN solutions to receive application-level feedback on network quality to make better decisions about the best routing path to use. Come learn about these new network-related features from the engineering teams that built them. Be sure to add the event to your calendar!

When: Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Microsoft App Assure ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA)! The AMA will take place on Tuesday, March 16th, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Microsoft FastTrack AMA Space. An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering team who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Be sure to add the event to your calendar!

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

In 2020, remote and hybrid working became the new normal. Through Microsoft Teams, we came together; connecting, collaborating – and keeping our teams productive, creative and secure. Microsoft is hosting a three-day digital event, The Microsoft Teams Summit, commencing the week of March 22, 2021. It’s an event you won’t want to miss. You’ll hear from experts on how Teams can supercharge the way you and your organization work and discover best practices from customers who’re using Teams to achieve amazing successes. To make sure you’re getting information tailored to your needs, each of the three days will be dedicated to a different group of Teams users: Business leaders, IT professionals, and our everyday users.. So, however you’re using Teams, join us to discover new ways to enhance your skills, and bring your teams closer together to achieve more.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Businesses are shifting to a desktop experience that empowers IT and enables employees to be more productive and secure, but not all employees sit in an office or always work from secure locations.  With Windows Virtual Desktop, you can set up a scalable and flexible environment to unlock mobility, productivity and security. This new 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Windows Virtual Desktop. During this session, you will explore how to: (1) Create your first Windows Virtual Desktop architecture, (2) Create images and assign them to users, (3) Operationalize the virtual desktop infrastructure with monitoring, scaling, and image management, and (4) Explore security best practices within Windows Virtual Desktop. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

The workforce relies on Microsoft Teams to chat, meet, and collaborate. But that’s just the beginning. Microsoft Teams can bring the applications and tools you’re already using, into one universal hub your workforce needs to get things done. During this interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Integrate ready-to-use apps into the Teams experience, (2) Maintain control over which apps are accessible for your organization, (3) Create an App that embeds modern SharePoint pages in Teams using App Studio, (4) Manage permission and set up policies through the Admin Center, and (5) Scale business critical apps to your organization. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Note: If you’re looking for one post to summarize Ignite 2021, this is it. | For some people, 2020 felt like the year work and learning moved home. For others, work continued to happen on-site—with the added challenges of staying safe on the job and learning new ways to connect to remote colleagues. But the reality is: 2020 is the year work and learning moved to the cloud. And it’s clear that flexible work is here to stay: According to research conducted for Microsoft’s Work Trend Index, over 80 percent of managers say they expect more flexible work from home policies post-pandemic, and more than 70 percent of employees say they expect to take advantage of them. So we can anticipate some pretty significant changes in the weeks and months to come. To thrive in this new hybrid world, people and organizations need solutions that are fluid, dynamic, and cloud-powered. At Microsoft, we’re building experiences to help everyone thrive in this new hybrid world of work and learning. At Microsoft Ignite March 2021, we announced new features designed for a hybrid world. From new digital event experiences in Microsoft Teams designed for internal and external attendees to new availability announcements about Microsoft Viva, there’s so much to share. | Resource: Microsoft Ignite 2021 Book of News

We announced innovation coming to Microsoft Teams to help people connect, collaborate, and accomplish more together! This blog post provides details for all the Microsoft Teams announcements from Ignite March 2021. This post outlines what’s new in: (1) Meetings, (2) Webinars, (3) Chat and collaboration, (4) Security, compliance, and privacy, (5) Calling, (6) Devices, (7) Power Platforms and custom development, (8) Management and more.

Related:

In the recent months, we’ve witnessed sophisticated attacks, like the recent SolarWinds incident, as well as the devices and online experiences have become more central to the way we work, learn, and live. Working alongside customers and partners, Microsoft takes cybersecurity, privacy, and compliance to the next level with innovation and a unique comprehensive approach. At Microsoft Ignite Spring 2021 we are excited to announce the following new security and compliance capabilities in SharePoint, OneDrive, and Teams that help you to secure and govern your data holistically in this remote work era. Here is what’s new in: (1) Secure external collaboration, (2) Securing access with contextual and conditional policies, and (3) Comprehensive compliance. | Related: OneDrive Roadmap Roundup – February 2021 | SharePoint Roadmap Pitstop – February 2021

Microsoft completed rolling out Microsoft Lists in Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams last year (2020) – along with the release of Microsoft Lists for iOS earlier this year. We have received a lot of positive feedback and usage is growing fast. We are pleased to share future Lists innovation, as announced at Microsoft Ignite March 2-4, 2021.

Last month (February 2021), we announced Microsoft Viva, the first Employee Experience Platform for the digital era. At Microsoft Ignite March 2021, we are pleased to share a set of exciting news and updates across the four Viva modules (Connections, Insights, Learning & Topics), summarized in this post.

Related:

The past year has led to an evolution in not only how we think about work, but more importantly, where work gets done. Arguably, gone are the days that your organization’s data is limited to the protected confines of your corporate network as your people continue to work remotely, return in some capacity to the office, or even adopt some hybrid of the two. With your people working across networks, devices, clouds, and apps, how do you ensure your data remains not only secure but compliant? A culture of security starts by securing data where people get work done. We have been investing in innovation to make this easier, and we’re sharing with you some additional capabilities that enable you to extend data protection and governance across apps, clouds, endpoints, and on-premises file repositories that keep your people collaborative and productive while ensuring your most valuable asset—your data—remains secure and compliant wherever it lives.

Related:

More than ever, organizations need to strengthen their defenses to give employees, partners, and customers the flexibility to work from anywhere using apps that live inside and outside the traditional corporate network perimeter. That’s why Zero Trust, a security strategy that combines maximum flexibility with maximum security, is so crucial. For IT pros and security professionals, the implementation of Zero Trust should be simple and straightforward. For users, it should never get in the way, and it should fit into familiar workflows and habits. This week, on the virtual Microsoft Ignite stage, we announced several Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) innovations that will help make life easier for you and your employees now—and help you stay prepared for whatever comes next.

Related:


NOTEWORTHY

In the past year, we’ve seen explosive growth for video in the workplace. Video has become central to engagement, communication, and productivity as more organizations than ever before embrace asynchronous work. Leading the evolution of workplace video, the Microsoft Stream team embarked on a journey to integrate fast, intelligent video across Microsoft 365. We announced a new vision for Stream—one in which users can create, share, discover, and manage video —just as they would any other file in Microsoft 365. We’re glad to announce we’ll be entering the next phase of our journey to the new version of Microsoft Stream in Q3 2021. In this phase, we’re on track to start bringing new experiences for sharing, discovery, and video playback on top of the Microsoft 365 file experience.

Delighting our customers with faster, smoother, and richer experiences in Excel for the web is an uncompromised goal across our Excel team. Recently we shared how we’ve continued to improve performance to make opening workbooks, navigating a workbook, and other interactions faster and smoother for you. We’re introducing several additional features to help you better navigate and manipulate your Excel files in a browser: (1) Easier worksheet navigation, (2) Multiple range selection, (3) Zoom in/out, (4) Excel keyboard shortcuts by default, (5) Version history, and (6) Regional settings.

In July last year we mentioned that time is one of the most precious and scarce resources we have, and 9 months later that still seems to hold true with people still struggling to effectively prioritize and organize their time, manage meetings, and find time to focus. Almost 2/3 of information workers have had their typical work routines highly affected, add to that how their personal space has also been disrupted and so makes sense why people are struggling to organize their time. To help you organize your time and meetings, we are bringing 2 new capabilities to Outlook – (1) Organize everything your way with the new Outlook calendar board, and (2) Get intelligent scheduling assistance for your meetings.

To help you keep your devices protected and productive, in the coming weeks, Microsoft is launching Windows release health on Microsoft 365 admin center. Microsoft 365 and Windows administrators will now benefit from an expanded version of the Windows release health hub, with more in-depth information about Windows updates, known issues, safeguards, lifecycle updates, and related news. With life and business more virtual than ever and dependent on healthy large-scale environments, it is essential to make IT administrators’ work easier. Windows release health in the Microsoft 365 admin center will be available for organizations with applicable Microsoft 365 and Windows subscriptions. Windows release health will appear as a new menu item (image below) under the Health section.

In May and September 2020, we announced new cloud-based capabilities in the following three areas: intelligent insights, servicing automation with controls, and Microsoft 365 Apps health. Since then, we’ve seen over 11 million devices running Microsoft 365 Apps onboard to Inventory. We’ve also provided IT admins with over eight million app health metrics and delivered servicing updates to over 500,000 devices with our new Servicing Profile, keeping them continuously secure with the latest security improvements and up to date with improvements for collaboration and remote work. We are excited to announce improvements and more new capabilities to keep devices up to date, give you greater control and enable you to more easily manage Office as a service: (1) New in Microsoft 365 Apps Inventory and Servicing Profiles, (2) General availability of Skip and Rollback, and (3) General availability of Microsoft 365 Apps health.

As we return to the workplace, moving to a hybrid work model will not just be about continuing the great work-from-home experiment many of us have been participating in for almost 12 months now. We will need to change our behavior by developing new skills and habits to help us stay healthy, finding new ways to engage and stay connected as we adopt this new way of working. It is going to take a collective effort for organizations to make a successful transition to a hybrid workplace. There are big changes ahead for those of us moving to a hybrid work model. Like any organizational change initiative, we must be thoughtful about how we guide people through the journey. If not, organizations face risks such as decreased productivity, increased turnover, or employees that are just not engaged. To help our customers lead their organization’s transition to a hybrid workplace we have launched a SharePoint site template on the SharePoint look book called the Workplace transformation site as well as new end-user training to help employees learn new habits and skills that support hybrid work.

To provide a unified and streamlined customer experience, the Azure Information Protection labeling and policy management in the Azure Portal, and the AIP classic client, will be deprecated on March 31st, 2021as announced in our previous blog. We highly recommend customers on classic AIP labeling to migrate to unified labeling before this sunset timeline for a seamless transition to unified labeling. Note: This deprecation does not apply in the following scenarios: (1) For customers who have already been approved for extended support. Customers with extended support will continue using the AIP area in the Azure Portal with no impact until the end date of their extended support, and (2) For GCC/GCC-H/DoD customers. Support is extended for GCC/GCC-H/DoD customers until the end of September 2021. The deprecation does not affect the Azure Information Protection areas in the Azure portal related to the on-premises scanner and analytics. AIP analytics is still available in the Azure Portal, but we encourage customers to start using the Microsoft 365 Compliance center Activity Explorer.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-08

Welcome to the February 22 – 28, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-four features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Forms, Exchange Online, SharePoint, Microsoft 365 Compliance Center, and Yammer.

An “Ask Microsoft Anything” for Microsoft Teams Virtual Events is the only brand new event over the last week. Note: Some of the existing meeting series only have on-demand sessions listed. It’s possible that there is a pause in activity due to Microsoft Ignite and the list of events for later in March hasn’t been published yet. Speaking of Microsoft Ignite, it’s the spotlight event of the week!

Highlights from last week’s blogs include published Ignite guides for several services, such as Teams, Microsoft 365 Apps, and Security, as well as a look at how to accomplish more during your day with Microsoft Teams and OneDrive.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items such as the latest updates for Visio for the web and Microsoft To Do, information on upcoming changes to mailbox receiving limits in Exchange Online, a look at Business email compromise phishing attacks, and details on the launch of new industry clouds.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Forms: Split sending and sharing entry point79450March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
To remove the confusion between collecting response from others and collaborating with others, we decouple entry point of sending and sharing into separate paths. In future iterations, more sending options and effective channels will be added to keep improving the detailed sending experiences.
Microsoft Teams: AI based poll question suggestion for Teams meeting79493March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
When user wants to create poll for their Teams meeting, Forms intelligence service will suggest some polls based on their meeting purpose.
Microsoft Teams: AI based historical poll suggestion for Teams meeting79494March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
When user wants to create poll for their Teams meeting, Forms intelligence service will suggest this user’s historical polls based on their meeting purpose.
Microsoft Teams: AI based option suggestion for Teams meeting polls79495March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
When user is creating poll for their Teams meeting, Forms intelligence service will suggest some options for their question when applies.
Microsoft Teams: Data reports for polls after Teams meeting79498March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
If user has used Forms poll in a Teams meeting, a summary report for all the polls used in this meeting will be generated and shared with meeting organizer and presenters.
Microsoft Teams: Data reports after Teams meeting class79499March CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
If a teacher has used Forms polls in a Teams meeting class, a summary report for all the polls used in this meeting will be generated and shared with teacher.
Microsoft Forms: Correct Answer choice feature added to Microsoft Forms Poll in Teams Meetings80519April CY2021Added: 24 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
This feature introduces the concept of a Correct Answer choice to Polls within Teams meetings. Correct answer choices can be selected on multiple choice questions only. Correct answer can be a single option, or multiple if “multiple answers” is enabled. Correct answer choice will be shown after voting in the Results card. This feature exists for: Teams Meeting polls (that pop up as a window on the screen) and Polls used within Teams Chat both inside and outside of meetings. It also will be displayed if you open these polls on your Forms site (read only mode).
Microsoft Teams: Polls in Teams Meetings for GCC70727March CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Forms polls for Teams meetings provides an easily discoverable and seamless experience that will help you conduct more engaging and productive meetings. With Forms polls, meeting presenters can prepare, launch, and evaluate polls before, during, and after meetings, respectively, all from one place under a tab in the Teams meeting.
Microsoft Teams: Forms Polls in Teams Meetings Improvements79448March CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Admin Center
A set of top asks will be addressed with this general release. Polls in Teams Meetings now support guests and an optimized mobile experience.
Microsoft Teams: Support open-text question poll for Teams meeting79464April CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
For Microsoft Forms poll in Teams meeting, there is a new question type – open text. You can use this question type to collect attendees’ open-ended information before/during/after the meeting.
Microsoft Teams and Forms: Word Cloud for Polls in Teams meeting and Forms Surveys79497April CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, Forms
When users have collected responses for an open text poll / question in a Teams meeting or in a regular form, word cloud data insight will be available to help them get a quick view on the top text phrases people answered.
Exchange: Exchange Admin center80626April CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange
The new Exchange Admin Center is a modern and a performant portal. The EAC will be available to all the customers from April 2021. This new portal has all the functions that were available in Classic EAC portal and a lot of other value additions like T2T Migration, Automated G-Suite Migration etc. A personalized dashboard with reports and insights is also available that makes the user more productive.
Exchange: Exchange Admin center for GCC80627April CY2021Added: 25 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange, GCC
The new Exchange Admin Center is a modern and a performant portal. The EAC will be available to all the customers from April 2021. This new portal has all the functions that were available in Classic EAC portal and a lot of other value additions like T2T Migration, Automated G-Suite Migration etc. A personalized dashboard with reports and insights is also available that makes the user more productive.
Microsoft 365 compliance center | Advanced eDiscovery: Discover only the document version that has been shared70718June CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Many customers often consider shared documents or cloud attachments as a form of communication, and therefore are required to preserve and make that content discoverable. While end users benefit from quickly sharing files for visibility and collaboration, this practice has been challenging for eDiscovery and legal professionals. To help customers efficiently meet their regulatory obligations for discovery, Advanced eDiscovery plans to support the ability to discover the version of the document at the time that it was shared. This helps ensure that the correct document information is available to eDiscovery processes.
Microsoft 365 Compliance Center: Ability to delete a record label70723March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
With the update, you will be able to delete unused record labels within Microsoft 365 Records Management.
Microsoft 365 Compliance Center | Records management: Increased file plan import limits70724March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update will allow an unlimited number of characters in the description for file plan imports.
Office App: All files list for Office.com70728February CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Office App
The “All” list is a comprehensive list of the files and content you have access to or have been shared with you, and gives you NEW filtering tools to narrow or group that list in a really fast way with a real-time “filter as you type” and filetype filters! This is an update to the existing Recent list on Office.com.
Microsoft 365 Compliance Center: Information barriers for GCCH and DoD70729June CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance, GCC-High, DoD
Information barriers is a compliance feature to restrict communication and collaboration between two groups to avoid a conflict of interest from occurring in your organization.
SharePoint: Immersive reader is coming to modern SharePoint pages and new posts70737March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
The Microsoft Immersive Reader, which is currently built into Word, OneNote, Outlook, Teams and other Microsoft apps, will be available for SharePoint pages and news posts. The Immersive Reader uses proven techniques to improve reading and writing for people regardless of their age or ability.
Exchange Admin Center: Another User Feature in New EAC70739March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange
Another User feature is now available to the users that will help the admins adjust rules and out-office messages on other user’s behalf.
Exchange: Exchange Admin Center supports Delegated Admins70740April CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange
Delegated admins, with necessary permissions, can now open the mailbox, and view, add and remove the contents of the mailbox they have access permissions for.
Yammer: Essential Announcements70741March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
This feature allows Yammer community admins to achieve a guaranteed distribution of important community announcements via email for all members of that community, even if its outside of their preferred notification settings.
SharePoint: Events web part will display event images70791March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
Page authors in SharePoint who use the Events web part will be able to turn on an option to show event images within the web part. When the option is on, each Event shown in the web part will display the image used in the title area of the Event page. Existing Event web parts will not be updated, but new web parts added to pages will show images by default.
Microsoft Teams: New Teams Live Events eCDN – Ramp80825March CY2021Added: 26 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
We will be enabling a new eCDN provider, Ramp, for live events. You will be able to use this new eCDN for your live events needs.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Learn tips and tricks for managing and organizing work and communications in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed (and responded to), (2) Easily find files, chats and projects, (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work, and (4) Simplify your workday.

When: Tuesday, March 2, 2021 – Thursday, March 4, 2021 | Join our digital experience on March 2–4, 2021 to learn, connect, and explore new tech that’s ready to implement. All skill levels welcome. Save the date! Registration is now open.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Explore ways to determine the best approach for creating workspaces for projects and workgroups. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs (chat versus teams & channels), (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience​, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams​ to enhance productivity.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and still felt it wasn’t productive? Have you attended a meeting only to leave feeling like not much was accomplished? Join this class to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive and effective. Microsoft Teams can help make your meetings worth showing up for. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Use Teams for your entire meeting experience, (2) Record your meeting, making it easy for those who couldn’t attend to get caught up, (3) Keep important meetings at your fingertips by pinning them for easy access, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

When: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Microsoft Teams ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA) for Virtual Events in Microsoft Teams! The AMA will take place on Tuesday, March 9, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Microsoft Teams AMA Space. An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering team who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Be sure to add the event to your calendar!

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

In 2020, remote and hybrid working became the new normal. Through Microsoft Teams, we came together; connecting, collaborating – and keeping our teams productive, creative and secure. Microsoft is hosting a three-day digital event, The Microsoft Teams Summit, commencing the week of March 22, 2021. It’s an event you won’t want to miss. You’ll hear from experts on how Teams can supercharge the way you and your organization work and discover best practices from customers who’re using Teams to achieve amazing successes. To make sure you’re getting information tailored to your needs, each of the three days will be dedicated to a different group of Teams users: Business leaders, IT professionals, and our everyday users.. So, however you’re using Teams, join us to discover new ways to enhance your skills, and bring your teams closer together to achieve more.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Microsoft Spring Ignite is just around the corner and we’d like to share a preview of what you’ll see from Microsoft Teams at this event. This spring we will be focused on external collaboration, meetings, and digital events and webinars. We’ve created sessions that span the breadth of Teams to give you a view into our product capabilities, answer your questions, and provide insights into how your organization can create an even better hybrid workplace with Microsoft Teams.

Related:

In May 2020, we discussed how to modernize servicing by introducing a new Monthly Enterprise Channel, and in September, we introduced new cloud-based admin capabilities to help IT admins service Microsoft 365 Apps for their organizations. This time at Ignite, we’re bringing you more! Learn what’s new and ask our Microsoft 365 Apps deployment experts any questions you have during one of our Office Hours Q&A sessions, or head over to the Microsoft 365 Apps discussion space and post your question there. Be sure to also check out the on-demand sessions, blogs, and Microsoft Docs articles below to learn more. | Related: Windows & Devices at Microsoft Ignite 2021: March edition

We are so excited to have you virtually joining us either live or catching the event on-demand. Our product and engineering teams have been working hard over the past six months to bring you the latest product news and announcements that will be shared during the event. Below is a comprehensive list of all sessions and opportunities to engage with Microsoft experts. There is a lot to explore during Microsoft Ignite, so we hope you take some time to watch, participate and learn!

For most people, remote work—whether part-time or full-time—is the new way of working. That’s why over 115 million daily users rely on Microsoft Teams to connect and collaborate, and also why Teams was recognized as a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service. We designed Teams, your digital hub for teamwork, and OneDrive, your personal cloud storage that lets you access your files from anywhere, to work seamlessly and securely together. You can use Microsoft 365 Apps including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, or OneNote notebooks to create your work, store those files using OneDrive, and share them securely with colleagues in Teams, where you can co-author documents, meet with your teammates, and chat or meet with people inside or outside organization, all in one place. Let’s walk through a day of using OneDrive and Teams together for work.


NOTEWORTHY

At Visio, we are constantly working on new features to enhance the Visio for the web experience. In this blog, we provide a step-by-step guide on how to design a flowchart leveraging some of the latest capabilities in Visio for the web. Learn how to create and coauthor professional-looking flowcharts for effective decision making and process execution.

Microsoft To Do gives you a personal and intuitive way to stay organized and make the most of every day. Today, most of our tasks involve collaboration with multiple people – something that list sharing can make easier. Whether you want to share a list of work items with your colleagues or a grocery list with a loved one, To Do makes it easy to collaborate and get things done together. List sharing in To Do was originally restricted to sharing between personal accounts and sharing between work (or school) accounts within the same organization. However, many of you wanted to be able to share between personal and work accounts. We listened to your feedback and are pleased to announce that you can now share lists from personal accounts to work accounts in Microsoft To Do.

To ensure optimal mail flow performance for all customers and protect the health of Exchange services, Microsoft is updating the way in which we enforce our mailbox receiving limits. With the growth of digital transformation and remote work, having access to emails is more critical than ever. Microsoft is committed to delivering a safe and reliable email experience for all customers, which requires us to balance our service across mailboxes. If a mailbox or tenant is allowing extremely high message volume, this can negatively impact other customers and cause email delays. Mailboxes that exceed our thresholds will consume resources from other mailboxes. As a large and global platform, we must enforce these limits to provide an equal experience for customers. Starting in April 2021, we will progressively roll out the new enforcement, starting at a higher threshold and incrementally lowering it until we arrive at our established limit of 3600 messages per hour, per mailbox.

Business email compromise (BEC) is a type of phishing attack that targets organizations, with the goal of stealing money or critical information. BEC has become a top-of-mind concern for CISOs – according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in 2019, BEC was the costliest type of cybercrime, accounting for 50% of all losses worldwide. Since 2016, BEC has accounted for more than 26 billion dollars in losses. Large corporations to small businesses, all have fallen victim to these attacks. At Microsoft we have been actively working to block these attacks and working to disrupt attacker networks that look to propagate such crime. Microsoft Defender for Office 365 provides industry leading capabilities to protect against these sorts of attacks. So how do these attacks work? How can organizations best protect themselves? In this blog series, we will explore the evolution of BEC attack tactics, provide a refresher on existing and new capabilities in Defender for Office 365 that help detect these attacks, and best practices that customers should follow to secure themselves against BEC attacks. | Related: Business Email: Uncompromised – Part Two

Over the past year, we have experienced dramatic disruption around the world. Companies in every industry have turned to digital technologies for the resilience and agility necessary to survive. The urgency for entire industries to transform at scale has never been greater. In response, we have accelerated our efforts to support and co-innovate with customers and partners — both now and long term — with industry-specific cloud offerings that can provide a launchpad for further innovations. We’re announcing another milestone in those efforts with three new industry-specific cloud offerings: Microsoft Cloud for Financial Services, Microsoft Cloud for Manufacturing, and Microsoft Cloud for Nonprofit. We are also announcing the first update to Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare, and the public preview timing for Microsoft Cloud for Retail, introduced in January at NRF. We created the Microsoft industry clouds by bringing together common data models, cross-cloud connectors, workflows, APIs, and industry-specific components and standards, with the breadth of Microsoft’s cloud services, including Microsoft 365 and Teams, Azure, Microsoft Power Platform, Dynamics 365 and security solutions. Through these industry clouds, we aim to empower everyone to deliver value faster, adapt quickly to changing conditions, build for the future and do all of this with security at the core.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-07

Welcome to the February 15 – 21, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were eleven additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Planner, SharePoint, Outlook, Microsoft 365 Compliance Center, Microsoft 365 Admin Center, and Microsoft Information Protection.

There is one brand new event, the Microsoft Teams Summit from March 23 – 25, 2021. This week’s spotlight event is the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams sessions on Wednesday, February 24th and Thursday, February 25th at 10am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include an overview of the capability to pop out apps and tabs in Microsoft Teams, details on two new features for Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise, information on how to use Microsoft Endpoint DLP to protect sensitive information on devices, and the February updates for Azure Active Directory.

Noteworthy item highlights include information on updating federation with Microsoft due to an upcoming change to online federation service in early summer 2021, details on the upcoming commercial preview of Microsoft Office LTSC, and the next Windows 10 Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) release in the second half (H2) of CY2021.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Word: Dictation in Word for the Web now available for GCC and GCC-High Tenants79599February CY2021Added: 17 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Web, GCC, GCC-High
Dictation is now available for those in government GCC and GCC-High Tenants.
Outlook and Word: Dictation in Desktop and Mac now available for GCC and GCC-High Tenants79600February CY2021Added: 17 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Desktop/Mac, GCC, GCC-High
Dictation is now available in Outlook and Word for both Desktop and Mac in GCC and GCC-High Tenants.
Word: Dictation in Word for iOS and Word for Android now available for GCC and GCC-High Tenants79606February CY2021Added: 17 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Android/iOS, GCC, GCC-High
Dictation is now available in Word for Android and Word for iOS in GCC and GCC-High Tenants.
Planner: More labels for GCC-High and DoD80456March CY2021Added: 17 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Planner, GCC-High, DoD
Add up to 25 labels to your tasks in Planner.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Insider Risk Management analytics70633March CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
The Microsoft 365 Insider Risk Management solution will now provide aggregated and anonymized analytics to help identify potential insider risk activity within the organization.
Excel: Natural Language Queries in Ideas60775March CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Excel
With Natural Language Queries, Ideas in Excel allows you to ask questions about your data, whether it is retrieving a specific fact or summarizing the data in your preferred way. For example you can ask ‘total number of products’, ‘top 10 products by sales’, or even more complicated questions like ‘what percentage of products have sales higher than 2000 in 2018?’
Microsoft Information Protection: OneDrive for Business location picker supports security groups and distribution lists70708March CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Data loss prevention (DLP) for OneDrive for Business will soon support user accounts and groups as part of the policy scoping location picker, enabling more granular control of DLP policy scope (i.e. to include/exclude particular departments, business units, geo-specific security groups, etc.)
Visio for the Web: Organization Charts78150April CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Visio – Web
Build your organization charts in Visio for the Web.
Microsoft 365 admin center: Improvements to Service Health Dashboard and Incident Communications80175April CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Admin Center
Microsoft is updating the Service Health dashboard to make it quicker and easier to find out about active issues of the services. Incidents and advisories will be now be displayed directly on the landing page of the Service Health dashboard. For high impacting incidents we will continue to provide the regular updates but now in addition to those Microsoft will also provide smaller and more frequent updates intermixed with the regular updates labeled as quick updates in the details panel.
Word for Windows: Text Predictions80179March CY2021Added: 19 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Windows
Text Predictions in Word for Windows helps users write more efficiently by predicting text quickly, timely and accurately.
SharePoint: Page Analytics70635March CY2021Added: 20 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
View rich page analytics on SharePoint Pages, including page views, page viewers and page traffic.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Microsoft Teams can help your employees stay connected and collaborate with each other, especially in the current unprecedented time where remote work is a reality of employees around the world. Being able to chat, do video meetings and collaborate on Office documents within Teams can help companies stay productive. Whether you are a small business, a non-profit or a large organization, you can get started with Teams within Microsoft 365 or Office 365 suite – even before deploying any other Office app or service. Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review Teams implementation for collaboration, chat and meetings. We’ll share key configurations, considerations, best practices, and resources to get your users up and running quickly. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Recognize key success factors for technical and user readiness, (2) Identify pre-requisites and tenant setup for your environment, (3) Install the Teams clients appropriate for your organization, (4) Configure policies that enable your preferred user experiences, and (5) Leverage collaboration features to enhance remote work scenarios.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and still felt it wasn’t productive? Have you attended a meeting only to leave feeling like not much was accomplished? Join this class to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive and effective. Microsoft Teams can help make your meetings worth showing up for. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Use Teams for your entire meeting experience, (2) Record your meeting, making it easy for those who couldn’t attend to get caught up, (3) Keep important meetings at your fingertips by pinning them for easy access, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs.

Are you looking to ensure users have optimal experiences with meetings and voice capabilities in Teams? During this session, we’ll discuss tools, reporting and best practices to help you manage service quality — from establishing a proactive  strategy to resolving common quality issues as they arise. We’ll build upon best practices from Teams experts and make it real with examples of common scenarios that may arise as your organization embraces meetings and voice capabilities in Teams. Join us for an expert-led workshop for guidance on key resources and actionable insights to manage audio and video quality with Microsoft Teams. Your users will thank you for it! After this session, you will be able to: (1) Define key service metrics and user experience factors for quality, (2) Recognize concepts and metrics in core tools and resources that help you assess usage and quality, (3) Identify key indicators of poor experience in common scenarios and relevant actions to address, and (4) Establish a proactive quality management strategy to ensure optimal user experience.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review high-value scenarios including incident management (help desk), employee engagement, and productivity that can be enhanced through simple integrations in Teams. We focus on popular enterprise applications your users may already be using every day. Come see how easy it is to connect your systems, increase automation, and deliver improved experiences by bringing the apps your organization relies on into Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand common app integrations for Teams across multiple scenarios and user personas, and (2) Understand third-party apps available for key scenarios.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams.

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Explore ways to determine the best approach for creating workspaces for projects and workgroups. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs (chat versus teams & channels), (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience​, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams​ to enhance productivity.

Are you ready to add PSTN calling capabilities to Microsoft Teams? Join Microsoft Teams Engineering subject-matter-experts as they demystify the options for adding PSTN calling to Teams, provide you with best practices for configuring calling options and show you how to monitor call quality. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Understand the history of voice services in Microsoft products, (2) Identify what calling options in Microsoft Teams are right for you, (3) Configure your calling options in the Teams admin portal, and (4) Monitor and use call quality tools in Teams.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Learn tips and tricks for managing and organizing work and communications in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed (and responded to), (2) Easily find files, chats and projects, (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work, and (4) Simplify your workday.

To be productive in a remote environment, your employees need to be able to safely collaborate from anywhere. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Enabling Remote Work with Microsoft Teams helps you provide a remote workforce with the tools, resources and solutions they need to stay connected and productive. Join us to learn how to get the most out of Microsoft Teams online meetings, calling, video and chat, and empower your workforce to work from any location on any device. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Enable your people to meet and collaborate from home, (2) Make productivity applications available on any device, and (3) Deliver the best remote user experience.

When: Tuesday, March 2, 2021 – Thursday, March 4, 2021 | Join our digital experience on March 2–4, 2021 to learn, connect, and explore new tech that’s ready to implement. All skill levels welcome. Save the date! Registration is now open.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

With the dramatic shift to remote work, we all continue to seek creative ways to stay connected and productive in our jobs. How do we recreate those meetings, calls, and large events that previously brought us together and helped us achieve our business goals? Do we have the right tools and devices to do so? And how do we do all of this while keeping security top of mind? These aren’t easy questions to answer. This one-hour session will give you the opportunity to test drive Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Power BI in a live cloud environment. A facilitator will guide you as you create a virtual company-wide meeting and explore how to: (1) Build a communication and collaboration hub, (2) Engage employees through chat and polls, (3) Set up automated meeting captioning, translation, and transcripts, and (4) Use analytical tools to make sense of data, categorize it, and make it easier to visualize. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

The workforce relies on Microsoft Teams to chat, meet, and collaborate. But that’s just the beginning. Microsoft Teams can bring the applications and tools you’re already using, into one universal hub your workforce needs to get things done. During this interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Integrate ready-to-use apps into the Teams experience, (2) Maintain control over which apps are accessible for your organization, (3) Create an App that embeds modern SharePoint pages in Teams using App Studio, (4) Manage permission and set up policies through the Admin Center, and (5) Scale business critical apps to your organization. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Join us for this session and leave this with everything you need to start using Teams. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

When employees are confident in their ability to collaborate remotely and securely, they are free to achieve more without worry. Learn how to protect data, devices, and applications while simplifying IT and minimizing the impact on employees at Microsoft Security Virtual Training Day: Secure and Protect Your Organization. During this free two-part learning event and accompanying Q&A, you’ll form the foundations to safeguard your company’s digital footprint. During this training event, you will explore how to: (1) Craft identity synchronization, protection, and management, (2) Utilize security in Microsoft 365, and (3) Integrate cloud app security and device management plans.

To support your efforts to deliver and deploy updates to the Windows 10 devices being used by remote, onsite, and hybrid workers across your organization, and manage those devices effectively, we are continuing our series of weekly “office hours” for IT professionals here on Tech Community. During office hours, we will have a broad group of product experts, servicing experts, and engineers representing Windows, Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Microsoft Intune, Configuration Manager), security, FastTrack, and more. They will be monitoring the Windows 10 servicing space and standing by to provide guidance, discuss strategies and tactics, and, of course, answer any specific questions you may have. Office hours are text-based; there is no audio or virtual meeting component. To post a question, you just need to be a member of the Tech Community. Simply visit the Windows 10 servicing space and click Start a new conversation. At the start of office hours, we’ll pin a post outlining the individuals on hand, and their areas of expertise. Can’t attend at the designated time? Again, no problem. Post a question in the Windows 10 servicing space up to 24 hours in advance and we’ll make sure we review it during office hours.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 15 participants, reserve your seat now.

In 2020, remote and hybrid working became the new normal. Through Microsoft Teams, we came together; connecting, collaborating – and keeping our teams productive, creative and secure. Microsoft is hosting a three-day digital event, The Microsoft Teams Summit, commencing the week of March 22, 2021. It’s an event you won’t want to miss. You’ll hear from experts on how Teams can supercharge the way you and your organization work and discover best practices from customers who’re using Teams to achieve amazing successes. To make sure you’re getting information tailored to your needs, each of the three days will be dedicated to a different group of Teams users: Business leaders, IT professionals, and our everyday users.. So, however you’re using Teams, join us to discover new ways to enhance your skills, and bring your teams closer together to achieve more.

Remote work requires smarter workflows. Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows shows you how the Microsoft Teams developer platform makes it easy to integrate your apps and services to improve productivity, make decisions faster and create collaboration around existing content and workflows. Join us to learn how to build apps for Teams and create integrated, people-centered solutions that can transform productivity in your organization, whether you’re on-site or working remotely. During this two-part training event, you will explore how to: (1) Build modern enterprise-grade collaboration solutions with Microsoft Teams, (2) Transform everyday business processes with Microsoft 365 platform integrations for Power Platform, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, and (3) Use the wealth of data in Microsoft Graph to extend Microsoft 365 experiences and build unique intelligent applications.


BLOG ROUNDUP

For millions of users, Microsoft Teams is the digital workspace where work gets done. It’s where we come together to collaborate with teammates and where we integrate apps and processes to work on projects. And in this digital workspace, we rely on multiple apps and windows to work through tasks whether independently or with others – so having access to the tools we need without context switching is essential. That’s why we’ve expanded the capability to pop out multiple windows over the past several months – starting with chats and meetings to now personal apps and tabs! In this post, we’ll show you how you can use these capabilities and stay focused to keep your workflows ongoing.

Related:

A huge benefit to being in the cloud with Microsoft 365 is having the flexibility to provide employees working across different roles and locations with the latest features and updates—a critical task for any IT organization. That’s why we’re excited to announce two new features for Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise—extended offline access and device-based subscriptions—that remove critical blockers and enable customers to deploy Microsoft 365 across their entire environment, streamlining deployment and administration. These capabilities will help you ensure that employees who are offline for months at a time or rely on shared devices and workstations can benefit from the same user experience and stay productive and secure no matter where they’re working. | Related: Enabling remote work and new scenarios with Microsoft 365 E3

On November 10, 2020, Microsoft announced the general availability of Microsoft Endpoint DLP (Data Loss Prevention). Endpoint DLP is a native integrated experience that identifies and protects sensitive information accessed by information workers in the applications they use every day. It is part of Microsoft Information Protection, an intelligent, unified, and extensible solution to know your data, protect your data, and prevent data loss across all the touchpoints within an enterprise – including Microsoft 365 apps and services, on-premises file stores, endpoint devices, and third-party SaaS applications and services. As a Microsoft Defender for Endpoint customer, you can take advantage of a seamless onboarding to Endpoint DLP.

We’re excited to share the latest Active Azure Directory news, including feature updates, support deprecation, and new capabilities that will streamline administrator, developer, and user experiences. These updates show our commitment to simplifying identity and access management, while also enhancing the customization and controls you need. With the general availability of user-based collections in Azure AD My Apps, users can now create and manage their own personalized app collections while freeing IT resources and time for other tasks. Three new risk detections—the Microsoft Cloud App Security (MCAS) New Country, Activity from Anonymous IP Address, and Suspicious Inbox Forwarding Rules—are now generally available. Reminders regarding support for unmanaged Azure Active Directory accounts ending in October 2021, and the deprecation of old versions of Azure AD Connect sync.


NOTEWORTHY

Federation, or external access, is a way for Microsoft Teams users to find, call, chat, and set up meetings with users at other organizations in Teams. You can also use federation to communicate with people from other organizations who are still using Skype for Business (online and on-premises). Microsoft is preparing to retire our internal Skype for Business on-premises infrastructure. To support this change, we will move our federation service online in early summer 2021. When we make this change, federation with Microsoft will break for organizations that use Skype for Business on-premises and do not allow partner discovery. This document provides guidance on how to add Microsoft as an allowed domain and retain federation.

We are pleased to announce the availability of Flexible Deployment for Project for the web.  As a part of the Microsoft Dataverse (formerly known as Common Data Service (CDS)) platform, Flexible Deployment enables you to create different environments based on organizational, business unit, or team needs. In addition to the existing Default environment, you now have more choices to spin up different kinds of Dataverse environments for the Project for the web: Production and Sandbox. With Production, your organization can create specific environments such as limiting access to data for the HR department, deploying different customizations for different sets of users, or staying compliant on data residency requirements if your users and tenant are not located in the same country. The Sandbox environment allows for Application Lifecycle Management to develop and test customized solutions for Project before rolling out to production.

We’re pleased to provide an update on Microsoft Office Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC), the next perpetual release of Office. A commercial preview of Microsoft Office LTSC will be available in April. We have built Office LTSC for a limited set of specific situations: regulated devices that cannot accept feature updates for years at a time, process control devices on the manufacturing floor that are not connected to the internet, and specialty systems that must stay locked in time and require a long-term servicing channel. We expect that most customers who use Office LTSC won’t do it across their entire organization, but only in specific scenarios. The good news is that you can deploy both Office LTSC and the Microsoft 365 version of Office with the same deployment tools. With this release, we will bring Office and Windows into alignment in support of the same limited scenarios. Both Office LTSC and Windows 10 LTSC will remain governed by the Fixed Lifecycle Policy. Both products will be supported for five years, and both the next perpetual version of Office LTSC and Windows 10 LTSC will be released in the second half of this calendar year. Without access to the cloud, Office LTSC will include only a subset of the value found in Microsoft 365 Apps, building on the features included in past releases. New Office LTSC features will include accessibility improvements, capabilities like Dynamic Arrays and XLOOKUP in Excel, dark mode support across multiple apps, and performance improvements across Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint. As with previous releases, Office LTSC will still be a device-based “perpetual” license.

Windows 10 introduced Windows as a service, a method of continually providing new features and capabilities through regular feature updates. Semi-Annual Channel versions of Windows, such as version 1909, version 2004, and version 20H2, are released twice per year. In addition to Semi-Annual Channel releases of Windows 10 Enterprise, we also developed a Long Term Servicing Channel for Windows, known as Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC, and an Internet of Things (IoT) version known as Windows 10 IoT Enterprise LTSC. Each of these products was designed to have a 10-year support lifecycle, as outlined in our lifecycle documentation. We are announcing that the next version of Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise LTSC will be released in the second half (H2) of calendar year 2021. Windows 10 Client LTSC will change to a 5-year lifecycle, aligning with the changes to the next perpetual version of Office. This change addresses the needs of the same regulated and restricted scenarios and devices. Note that Windows 10 IoT Enterprise LTSC is maintaining the 10-year support lifecycle; this change is only being announced for Office LTSC and Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC.

Office 365 Planned Service Changes – February 2021 Updates

The Office 365 Weekly Wiki has been updated with the latest Office 365 Planned Service Changes as of February 10, 2021. Please be sure to review the Update Log for details.

Notes:

  • All changes may not have been communicated to your tenant / environment.
  • If there are discrepancies between the information posted on the wiki and the linked source articles and/or Message Center, then the other (official Microsoft) sources are authoritative.

If you have any feedback about the new approach, site, or questions about Office 365 Weekly, please reach out via email – contact [at] office365weekly.blog.