Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-24

Welcome to the June 14 – 20, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Nineteen features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Viva, Outlook, Whiteboard, SharePoint, and Microsoft Defender for Office 365.

There are no new events, but a few of the existing meeting series have added a session or two for the remainder of June. The spotlight event of the week is the “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) session for Microsoft Viva on Wednesday, June 23rd at 9am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include details on new hybrid work innovations across several Microsoft 365 services, the OneDrive roadmap roundup for May 2021, information on new functionality in Teams to create trackable tasks from Teams messages, and an update on Basic Authentication in Exchange Online.

Noteworthy item highlights include the latest updates for Excel for the web, on-demand workshops for Microsoft Lists, details on automated diagnostics for troubleshooting various Office 365 issues, and the general availability of Essential Announcements in Yammer.


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 Teams: Teams Meetings Auto Recording83054June CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
This feature allows users to auto record meetings by choosing auto record option in meetings options.
Microsoft Teams: RTMP Streaming Support83562July CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Enables support for your users to stream their Teams meetings to large audiences through RTMP, including endpoints outside your organization.
SharePoint: Migration Manager content discovery82000July CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
Before you move any file or folder from on-premises into Microsoft 365, you need to discover content and plan for the migration. The Migration Manager, from within the SharePoint admin center, will provide content discovery so admins can best understand what content they have, decide what to migrate and what to remediate.
Whiteboard: Web Templates82030June CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Whiteboard
Participants in Teams and on Whiteboard for the Web can add a variety of built-in templates for meetings, workshops, decision making, planning, design thinking and more.
Whiteboard: User Experience82034August CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook
Participants in Teams and on Whiteboard for the web will see a new, refreshed user experience.
Outlook and Exchange for Business: Microsoft Outlook browser extension for Edge82036July CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook
The Microsoft Outlook browser extension brings you the power of mail, calendar, contacts, and tasks using an icon in Microsoft Edge. Quickly access your Outlook work account or your Outlook.com or Hotmail account without switching to another tab or app. The extension will be available in the Chrome Store soon as well.
Microsoft Viva: Control visibility of suggested topics82050July CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Viva
This update will empower knowledge managers to enable or prevent general visibility of AI-suggested topics.
Microsoft Compliance center: Information governance – Retention policies for Yammer82055July CY2021Added: 15 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update enables organizations to apply retention policies on Yammer messages.
Microsoft Teams: New default settings when opening Office files82662May CY2021Added: 16 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Users can set a default of browser, desktop or Teams when opening Office files (Word, Excel, and Power Point) that are shared in Teams. The desktop setting can be selected, if the user has Office version 16 or newer installed and activated.
Outlook: Rich Auto Reply Toolbar for Android83732July CY2021Added: 16 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Android
Users will now be able to format the text in their autoreplies. Options include bold/italics/underline, numbered/unnumbered lists, font style and links.
Outlook: Rich Event Description Toolbar83733July CY2021Added: 16 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook
Users will now be able to format the text in their event descriptions. Options include bold/italics/underline, numbered/unnumbered lists, font style and links.
Microsoft Teams: Pin chat messages82584June CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Pin a Teams chat message to drive awareness and provide the chat members with quick access to important content. Pinning will help your team stay in sync on what’s and relevant in a timely manner.
Microsoft Teams: Fluid components in Teams chat82779June CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Fluid components in Teams chat allow end users to send a message with a table, action items or a list that can be co-authored and edited by everyone in line.
Microsoft Teams: Paging on Video Gallery84464June CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
When you choose Large Gallery, and there are more than 49 videos or in Gallery with more than 9 videos, navigation controls and now appear below the Large Gallery and Video Gallery. You can use these controls to view more video participants.
Microsoft Teams: Live Events in GCC-High, and DoD82954June CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC High, DoD
Soon, you will be able to use Live Events in GCCH and DoD for your needs.
Microsoft Teams: Left navigation updates in Teams Admin Center83320July CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
To make it easier to find Team’s features and navigate your Teams organization, we reorganized the left navigation based on user studies and customer feedback.
Microsoft Teams: Teams Network planner for government clouds83471August CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, Gov
Network Planner can help you determine and organize network requirements for connecting Microsoft Teams users across your organization. When you provide your network details and Teams usage, the Network Planner calculates your network requirements for deploying Teams and cloud voice across your organization’s physical locations.
Microsoft Teams: EDU tailored deployment plan in Teams Advisor83509July CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, EDU
EDU IT Administrators can use a tailored plan to deploy Teams to their organization.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Investigation updates for improved email threats and actions82056June CY2021Added: 18 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
We have new updates and improvements to the Automated Investigation and Response (AIR) playbooks to better capture the state of the emails and entities that are being investigated. This results in more accurate threat data and actions – which are better for security operations workflows.

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 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.

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 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.

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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

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.

When: Wednesday, June 23, 2021 from 9:00am – 10:00am PT | Join this Microsoft Viva ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 9:00-10:00 AM PT! Microsoft Viva – the first Employee Experience Platform (EXP) built for the digital era – brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources and insights into an integrated employee experience that empowers people and teams to be their best, from anywhere. Post questions and feedback about Microsoft Viva, and the four Viva Modules (Viva Learning, Viva Connections, Viva Topics and Viva Insights) during this AMA. Members of the Viva team will be on hand to respond. An AMA is a one-hour online forum similar to “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. There is not an audio or video component included. To post a question or comment, click on ‘Start a New Discussion’ in the Microsoft Viva AMA Space. Be sure to add this event to your calendar – we hope to see you there!

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.

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.

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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 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 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.

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.

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.

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.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

At Microsoft, we believe that hybrid work is the future of work and that to empower their people to succeed in hybrid work, business leaders will need to reimagine their organizations with a new operating model for people, places, and processes. We’re also committed to building experiences that put everyone on equal footing—whether they’re together in a conference room in Atlanta, presenting remotely from a home office, or catching up with a meeting recording once the workday begins in Sydney. Microsoft Teams is mission-critical to this vision for a more flexible world of work. Teams is unique in that it brings together meetings, chat, calls, collaboration, and business process automation in a single app. Since COVID-19 spurred office workers around the world to work from home, we’ve been innovating in Teams to do things like create more natural and engaging meeting experiences—enable people to connect seamlessly with those inside and outside of their organizations and provide ways to make remote presentations richer and more impactful. And as we emerge into this new hybrid reality, we are focused on building experiences in Teams that are designed to ensure all voices are heard including the people not in the room—empowering everyone to connect and engage, from anywhere and at any time. And to make it easier to collaborate synchronously and asynchronously, we’re also announcing new Microsoft Fluid canvas innovations—in Teams and beyond. But COVID-19 also taught us that meeting fatigue and digital overload is real, and remote work has challenged our wellbeing. To help, Microsoft has built Microsoft Viva—our integrated employee experience platform—into Teams, so that employees can find ways to protect time and preserve their wellbeing right in the flow of their work. We are announcing new innovations—in Microsoft Teams Rooms, Fluid, and Microsoft Viva—all designed to empower your people for hybrid work. Let’s have a look.

Related:

Here are the latest functionalities that rolled out to production in the month of May 2021 – (1) Updated file picking experience for Yammer, (2) Immersive reader in OneDrive and SharePoint, (3) Link settings to Quick Permissions, (4) Expiring access for external users, (5) Exclude specific files from sync on macOS, (6) PDF viewing updates on iOS and Android, and (7) Request files for GCC High and DoD. | Resource: OneDrive release notes

Tasks happen everywhere. They can pop up in an email thread, working file, or team chat—really, wherever you work most often. But ad hoc tasks like this are disruptive and often forgotten. We’ve all been there: you promise yourself (maybe even out loud) that you’ll definitely remember so-and-so’s request only to forget it a minute later. That’s why one of our goals at Microsoft is to help you quickly capture those kinds of informal tasks the moment they happen. We’ve done this for emails in Outlook and comments in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint docs—and starting today, you can create tasks from Microsoft Teams messages on desktop and web. This update also addresses one of the most requested asks from customers. Before, lots of people were using third-party apps or creating Power Automate flows to convert Teams asks to tasks; now, that conversion is natively built into the Teams experience. This new way to capture tasks is perfect for tracking requests that come out of informal Teams messages and gives your team additional control and confidence over ad hoc requests. Tasks from Teams messages automatically appear alongside your other tasks in the Tasks app and To Do or Planner, so you can nix the sticky notes and instead manage all your tasks together. Plus, creating tasks out of ad hoc requests relieves the stress of trying to remember (or find) what was asked of you—all those requests are in one place. Bonus coverage! Creating tasks from Teams messaging isn’t the only Tasks app news this month. You can now delete and rename any task from Planner and To Do directly in Tasks. Before, you had to do this from each standalone app.

It’s been a few months since our last update on Basic Authentication in Exchange Online, but we’ve been busy getting ready for the next phase of the process: turning off Basic Authentication for tenants that don’t use it, and therefore, don’t need it enabled. We have millions of customers who have Basic Auth enabled in their tenant, but only use Modern Auth. Many of them don’t know Basic is enabled, and the risks that it presents – so we are going to do our bit to help secure their data by turning it off for them. Over the last few months, we have been building the supporting process and tools we need to do that at scale, and now we’re ready to start rolling it out. As we’ve said before, we’re only currently planning to turn off Basic Auth for those customers who are not using it. For customers that use still Basic for some or all the affected protocols, we are not touching authentication settings for those protocols (for the time being). We have been busy analyzing Basic Auth usage data for our customers and now have a solid understanding of who uses it and who does not. And we’re going to start turning it off for those who are not using it. The process is: We’ll randomly select customers with no usage in any, or all affected protocols, send them a Message Center post informing them that in 30 days we’re going to turn off Basic Auth. 30 days later, we’ll turn it off and send another Message Center post to confirm it was done. Just to reiterate – the program for disabling Basic Authentication for active in-use protocols has been paused for the time being, but will be coming back.


NOTEWORTHY

Delivering rich, delightful experiences to our customers continues to be a top priority for our Excel team. A few weeks ago, we shared how to easily format your data with color and style, and more. Now we bring you a set of new features and improvements to help you better analyze your data, specifically: (1) Text to columns, (2) PivotTable improvements, (3) Sort improvements, (4) Interactive charts, and (5) Additional keyboard shortcuts. These are just some of the latest improvements, many more are coming soon!

Go further with Microsoft Lists. You know you want to. And now you can – on-demand. We recently delivered five live workshops across multiple time zones – and we learned a lot. We’ve refined the content based on feedback and tightened up a few additional things – mindful of your time and ease of consumption. The result: We’ve got a great two-part, on-demand workshop – two videos wrapped in a single page with additional resources. Dig in and learn how you and your team can best utilize Microsoft Lists. We teach you how to use and create views, configure conditional formatting, adjust forms, use rules, and more. Plus, we highlight no-code and low-code solutions leveraging integrated tools from the Power Platform. You’ll also find materials to deliver the Lists workshop to your organization (PowerPoint, speaker notes, demo materials).

Seeing that this is a relatively new development, I wanted to share information about automated diagnostics that customers can run inside of the Microsoft 365 admin center. The goal of these is to help you to solve various support-related issues that you might encounter, without having to open a support ticket. Currently, the way to interact with available diagnostics is via the Need help? button in the Microsoft 365 admin center. Seeing that this is the Exchange blog, here is the article that lists currently available related diagnostics. But wait, there is more! Various other teams (including SharePoint, OneDrive and Teams) have also created diagnostics and documents listing what is available.

Keeping your employees informed and engaged is critical in today’s rapidly changing workscape. Over the past 18 months, we’ve continued to build capabilities in Yammer to help corporate communicators and leaders share their message at scale. Some announcements are crucial to keeping employees up to date – whether it’s regarding safety, protocols, policies, or other priority news. In these instances, corporate communicators and leaders need ways to guarantee that messages are delivered to every employee. This feature allows Yammer community admins to set an announcement as ‘essential’ to ensure that it’s delivered via email to every member of that community, even if it is outside of their preferred notification settings. By sending an announcement in Yammer, it will appear as an interactive conversation in Outlook. This helps accelerate the time to consumption and drive engagement, so members can see, react, and comment on the post right from their Outlook inbox. This works for desktop, web, and mobile experiences. And for those that have the Yammer Communities app for Teams installed, announcements and @mentions made in Yammer will also appear in your Microsoft Teams activity feed.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-22

Welcome to the May 31 – June 6, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twelve features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, Outlook and Microsoft Defender for Office 365.

Several existing meeting series have added more sessions for June. The spotlight event of the week is the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training for “Secure and Protect Your Organization”, which takes place on Wednesday, June 9th and Thursday, June 10th, starting at 10:00am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include multiple posts related to collaborative work management in Microsoft 365, the monthly SharePoint Roadmap Pitstop, details on a more intuitive sharing experience across Microsoft 365, and the latest updates for migrating content from Box, Dropbox, and Google Workspace into Microsoft 365.

Noteworthy item highlights include the May 2021 updates for Project, information on automating and managing Azure Active Directory tasks at scale with the Microsoft Graph PowerShell SDK, a Microsoft Inside Track video on best practices for implementing the Zero Trust security model, and details on major updates for Microsoft Bookings.


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
OneDrive: Sharing experience – “Shared with” list83725November CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
At the bottom of the Share dialog, the “Shared with” list will give you an at-a glance view of everyone you’ve given access to the file.
OneDrive: Sharing experience – Manage Access settings83726November CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
We will be updating the “Manage Access” experience which will offer you additional controls for how recipients access files you’ve shared. “Shared with” list would be an entry point to Manage Access settings.
OneDrive: Sharing experience – Share menu dropdown83727November CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
We’re updating the Share menu to provide easy access to additional sharing options like Email, Copy link, Teams chat as well as Manage access settings.
OneDrive: Sharing experience – Copy link83728November CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
Instead of a Copy link button, you’ll see a footer where you can set permissions for the link and then copy it to share it with recipients.
Outlook and Exchange for Business: Project Moca moving to Outlook board82013July CY2021Added: 01 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook
With the recent launch of Outlook calendar board, we are moving all spaces created in Project Moca to the new calendar board. With this move, all Project Moca data will be moved into the board view in Outlook on the web.
Microsoft Teams: Windows 10 Native Notifications64138June CY2021Added: 03 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams – Windows 10
Choose the style of your notifications: built-in Teams or Windows native notifications. The latter brings a suite of benefits, like respecting focus assist mode which enables you to avoid distracting notifications when you need to focus, and integrating with Windows 10 action center to helps you review your notifications in one place.
Microsoft Teams: Missed Activity Email in DOD83061June CY2021Added: 03 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, DoD
Missed activity email enables the user to stay on top of their Microsoft Teams notifications. A missed activity email is generated in case a user is away from Microsoft teams and has not reviewed their notifications. A user can choose to receive Missed activity emails by going to settings – notifications – choosing the frequency.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Admin review and feedback82025July CY2021Added: 03 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
Responding to reports about phishing or junk emails from end users can be very time consuming. With the new admin review feature, your security team will be able to quickly review reported messages and choose appropriate responses, automatically sending predefined but customizable emails to your end users. Coupled with automated investigation & response (AIR), you’ll be able to free up time for more critical work.
Microsoft Teams: Host Intrusion Detection (HDI) for VDI on Windows Virtual Desktop83024September CY2021Added: 04 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
This feature will support use of Host Intrusion Detection (HID) on Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD).
Microsoft Teams: Microsoft Teams classes LTI application for educational learning managements systems (LMS)83071July CY2021Added: 04 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Microsoft Teams classes LTI app helps educators and students easily navigate between their Learning Management Systems and Teams. Users can access their class teams associated with their course directly from within their LMS.
Microsoft Teams: Reporter and Side-by-Side Presenter Mode in desktop or window sharing83371July CY2021Added: 04 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Two new presenter modes are now coming available. Reporter places content as a visual aid above your shoulder like a news story. Side-by-side displays your video feed next to your content. You can now select a mode that fits your needs and promotes a more engaging presentation and consumption experience.
Microsoft Teams: Live Transcription with speaker attribution (for additional SKUs)82029July CY2021Added: 04 June 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Live transcripts provide another way to follow along with what has been said and who said it. After a meeting, the transcript file is automatically saved in the chat tab for that meeting. We are now expanding this feature to Office 365 E1, Office 365 A1, Office 365/Microsoft 365 A3, Office 365/Microsoft 365 A5, Microsoft 365 F1, Office 365/Microsoft 365 F3, Microsoft 365 Business Basic SKUs.

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 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.

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.

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).

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 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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

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.

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 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.

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

When: Wednesday, June 23, 2021 from 9:00am – 10:00am PT | Join this Microsoft Viva ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 9:00-10:00 AM PT! Microsoft Viva – the first Employee Experience Platform (EXP) built for the digital era – brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources and insights into an integrated employee experience that empowers people and teams to be their best, from anywhere. Post questions and feedback about Microsoft Viva, and the four Viva Modules (Viva Learning, Viva Connections, Viva Topics and Viva Insights) during this AMA. Members of the Viva team will be on hand to respond. An AMA is a one-hour online forum similar to “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. There is not an audio or video component included. To post a question or comment, click on ‘Start a New Discussion’ in the Microsoft Viva AMA Space. Be sure to add this event to your calendar – we hope to see you there!

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.

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.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

People today aren’t working so much as they are managing work. If that sounds familiar, it’s probably because you’re experiencing it firsthand. “Burnout” often describes what’s happening. Countless studies over the past year have found employee burnout became “rampant, seemingly overnight” in 2020. With work shifted to a remote or hybrid model, there is more information to process than ever, and digital overload is real. Despite burnout, or the reason for it, 69% of respondents in a recent study said they’re not using a formal work management tool. Let’s face it: work management happens wherever and whenever it’s most convenient. We sock away emails in a “Follow-Up” folder, save shared files on our desktop, and manage tasks on sticky notes, spreadsheets, across multiple mobile apps—all for the same project! When it comes time to make sense of it all, it sometimes doesn’t make sense. So, we’re stuck managing work instead of working. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In the face of a tectonic shift in information, collaborative work management (CWM) with Microsoft 365 helps you save time and maximize results. CWM is a concentrated effort to streamline work management through a set of purpose-built apps. These apps add structure to all the unseen parts of business productivity: tasks, status updates, files, and the like. With a more efficient approach to the process of work, your team gets more time to collaborate on the work itself. The apps that comprise the Microsoft CWM offering are Microsoft Planner, Microsoft To Do, Tasks in Teams, and Microsoft Lists, which are for managing work; and, OneDrive, SharePoint, and Office, which are for collaborating on that work—all of which are brought together by Microsoft Teams, the central hub for CWM.

Related:

This post includes all the SharePoint and related tech updates that rolled out in May 2021. This is the all-inclusive roadmap release recap for all things SharePoint and related technology. May 2021 brought some great new offerings: Yammer conversation highlights, Immersive Reader for SharePoint documents, content migration from Dropbox and Google Workspace into Microsoft 635, OneDrive sync admin reports, Microsoft Lists: Export to CSV, Microsoft Lists: Updated sharing experience, Microsoft Lists: Turn comments on/off, and more. All the features listed began rolling out to Targeted Release customers in Office 365 as of May 2021 (possibly early June 2021).

Collaboration is a critical part of virtual work. At Microsoft, we’ve seen firsthand that the way people work together has fundamentally changed over the past year. More people are using Microsoft 365 applications like Teams, OneDrive, and SharePoint to connect with internal team members across their organizations and with external colleagues than ever before. The Share dialog appears in more than 40 areas of Microsoft 365 and is accessed about 400 million times a month. That’s why we’ve been gathering feedback and capturing data to understand how you collaborate—and more specifically, how you share and work together with teammates on files—so we can make the right investments to make sharing options more intuitive across Microsoft 365 apps and make collaborating easier for you. Over the next year, we’re using an incremental, data-driven approach for rolling out updates to improve the sharing experience across all Microsoft 365 and Office applications for all platforms (desktop, web, and mobile). We’ll be making those incremental changes gradually, so we can continue to collect feedback and learn from you, improving the experience as we go to ensure we’re making it easier for you to collaborate with your colleagues in ways that work best for you.

Microsoft focuses on providing a seamless move to Microsoft 365 with as much expertise and tooling we and our ecosystem can offer – across the globe. Our goal is to help move to the cloud with confidence. At times, you need to move content cloud-to-cloud. We’re pleased to highlight Mover integration progress, to bring more of their technology directly inside the SharePoint admin center in Microsoft 365. Now, the Migration Manager admin tab is the home to manage all content migrations into Microsoft 365 (primarily into OneDrive, SharePoint, and Microsoft Teams) – without leaving the service. Microsoft offers numerous content migration tools and services to assist your migration into Microsoft 365 – from assessment, to planning and onboarding. And we work closely with our 3rd-party migration partners to optimize their offerings as well. As we continue to invest across the migration offerings, we are excited to expand our cloud-to-cloud capabilities to allow moving content from Egnyte into Microsoft 365. And before you move any file or folder from on-premises into Microsoft 365, you need to discover content and plan for the migration. Soon, Migration Manager will provide content discovery so admins can best understand what content they have, decide what to migrate and what to remediate. If you are interested, you can complete this form for the Migration discovery preview. Regardless of your organization’s size, data scale or information complexity, you can migrate documents and sites into OneDrive, SharePoint, and Teams in Microsoft 365 successfully. And we are here to help.


NOTEWORTHY

This post has a look at what’s new and upcoming for Project, including features such as: (1) Import Project desktop to Project for the web, (2) Collaboration Corner Presence, (3) Filtering on the Board & Timeline views, (4) Scheduling modes, and more. Upcoming features include: (1) Dropdown types in Custom Fields, and (2) Rollup Custom Fields.

We’ve heard from customers that having a great PowerShell experience is critical in helping manage your identity needs at scale from automating tasks through scripts to managing users in bulk. We want to share the investments we’re making with PowerShell that will help you save time with administrative tasks. These will be focused on, but not limited to, high-use scenarios such as user, group, and application management and role-based access controls (RBAC). If you’re using the Azure AD PowerShell or MSOnline PowerShell modules to manage Azure AD, we encourage you to try the Microsoft Graph PowerShell SDK. The Microsoft Graph PowerShell SDK is where all our current and future investments are being made.

Format: Video (5 mins) | Carmichael Patton, a security architect at Microsoft, shares the work that his team, Digital Security and Resiliency, has been doing to support a Zero Trust security model. “In Microsoft’s approach to Zero Trust, we don’t assume any identity or device on our corporate network is secure. We continuously verify it,” Patton says. “This allows us to reduce the risk in our environment by verifying those identities and validating device compliance before granting the access. Patton knows that Microsoft wasn’t born in the cloud either, and he’s here to provide guidance and discuss topics like value of network segmentation, the balance between security and productivity, and strategies for supporting identity and device health. The most critical piece of advice is to start simple. “First and foremost, understand what your environment and the telemetry to make sure you understand the risks and what it is you’re trying to mitigate,” Patton says. “If you haven’t already done it, start migrating identities to Azure Active Directory or some other connection point to get to the point of modern identity.

Last March, at Ignite, we gave you a preview of the new powerful and customizable Bookings experience and starting now, we are rolling it out to everyone! Once you’re in the new Bookings view, you’ll see the new experience which introduces many new capabilities in Microsoft Bookings. We understand that each organization is different and has varied needs for managing appointments. Bookings now has stricter administrative controls, and each user within Bookings has varied levels of control over how calendars are created, edited, and shared as well as how appointments can be booked. Bookings allows organizations to customize their Bookings page with their own logo. A color theme that best suits the organization can be chosen as well. Confirmations, cancellations, and reminders can be customized using a rich text editor. We’ve strived to make appointment scheduling as simple as possible. Admins can add multiple staff members and get a unified view across all their calendars and availability. Switching between multiple calendars is made easier with an option to filter by staff members and services. There is also an option to pin a specific calendar for easier tracking.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-20

Welcome to the May 17 – 23, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-seven features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Outlook, Forms, Microsoft 365 admin center, Microsoft Information Protection, and Microsoft Defender for Office 365.

There are two new events – the first is an Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) session for Microsoft Defender for Office 365 on Thursday, May 27th, and the second is the Microsoft Virtual Security and Compliance Summit on Thursday, June 3rd. New sessions for existing event series have also been added. The spotlight event of the week is the Microsoft Defender for Office 365 AMA on Thursday, May 27th at 9am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include information on how Microsoft approaches hybrid work (with two resources), the announcement of the Topics management dashboard in Microsoft Viva, details on App customization in Microsoft Teams, and a list of nine modern work sessions at Microsoft Build that you shouldn’t miss.

Noteworthy item highlights include the April Project updates, the release of Dark Mode in Microsoft Office for Android, an inside look at decommissioning Skype for Business within Microsoft, information on best practices for using global navigation in the SharePoint app bar, and a new enhancement for Configuration Manager ADRs for Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Twenty-seven features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Outlook, Forms, Microsoft 365 admin center, Microsoft Information Protection, and Microsoft Defender for Office 365.

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:

EXCEL:

PDF:


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 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.

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.

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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

When: Thursday, May 27, 2021 from 9:00am – 10:00am PT | The Microsoft Defender for Office 365 team wants to hear from you! We’re excited to invite you to join us for a Tech Community Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA). Learn more about how Microsoft Defender for Office 365 can help safeguard your organization against malicious threats posed by email messages, links (URLs), and collaboration tools. Our team will be on hand to answer any of your questions about Microsoft Defender for Office 365, Exchange Online Protection, and email and collaboration security in general, so come prepared! An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. The AMA will take place in the Security, Compliance, and Identity AMA space. We hope to see you there!

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.

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.

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.

When: Thursday, June 3, 2021 from 9:00am – 12:00pm PT | The realities of widespread remote and hybrid work scenarios pose new challenges for organizations. Security, compliance, and identity are more complex—and more critical—than ever. Join us on Thursday, June 3rd 2021, for the Microsoft Virtual Security and Compliance Summit to hear some of the industry’s leading voices speak on mitigating risks and strengthening your security posture. At this event, you’ll gain fresh insights on: (1) Perspectives on what’s top of mind for CISOs – cloud-first security, training, resiliency, (2) Get an inside look at how we secure Microsoft today, (3) Securing the remote and hybrid workplace, (4) Trends and best practices from Microsoft defenders, detection & response teams, (5) Strategies for protecting against insider risk, and (6) Tactics to protect and govern data across your digital estate. | Resource: Detailed Agenda

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

There’s no doubt that the shift to a more flexible approach to work will be an enormous undertaking for every leader and every organization. That is certainly true for Microsoft as we create a plan to implement a hybrid work model for our more than 160,000 employees across the globe. We know that no one person or organization will have all the answers, but we believe that, as part of a growth mindset, each of us will be better off if we share what we’re learning with each other. That’s why we recently released two resources that detail what we’re learning as we adopt a hybrid work model at Microsoft, in hopes that we can help you create the hybrid work plan that best fits your organization. At their core, these resources reflect our belief that leaders will need to come together to create a new, flexible operating model—spanning people, places, and processes—to fundamentally rewire their organization for hybrid work. The first resource I want to point you to is our Hybrid Workplace Flexibility Guide—which we originally created for Microsoft employees. In it, you’ll find sample team agreements, templates, and tools for hybrid work. There are also detailed plans that encompass everything from strategies to keep your people healthy, to exact roadmaps for how to help divide your people’s time between a physical or remote workplace. And there’s much more to come soon. The second is called Hybrid Work: A Guide for Business Leaders, and it wraps up much of what we’ve learned about how to reimagine people, places, and processes for a hybrid world.

Build 2021 is soon upon us (May 25–27). The prudent attendee will take the time to plan their virtual session schedule. To help with your plan, we are highlighting nine key sessions across the platform that you won’t want to miss. These sessions share all the great new features and announcements that demonstrate how we’re empowering developers to build the next generation of collaborative apps. Build is a great way to see the art of the possible – so if you haven’t already registered, do so today and create your session schedule online. And remember – almost all sessions can be seen on demand so you can enjoy them even after Build is over. Let’s walk through these important sessions.

Microsoft Viva Topics is our newest addition to Microsoft Knowledge and Content Services – helping you automatically organize and discover knowledge and expertise across your organization. At Microsoft Ignite in March, we spotlighted a handful of our continuing enhancements to Viva Topics, including our vision for topic management. We’re announcing our next feature to help you manage topics. Viva Topics was built to scale. Many of our early customers have discovered tens of thousands of topics in their content. Managing thousands of suggested and published topics over time is crucial to their success with Viva Topics. With the topic management dashboard, knowledge managers can track topics discovered by Viva AI, as well as how topics are progressing through the topic lifestyle stages: Suggested, Confirmed, Published, and Removed. This feature will begin rolling to Targeted Release in May 2021, and is being tracked under Roadmap ID 81977. | Related: Get started on Microsoft Viva Topics with Microsoft Mechanics

Microsoft Teams provides the a customized experience for customers, not only enabling them to pick and choose the apps they can allow in their tenant but also providing the capability to rebrand apps in order to integrate them completely in their ecosystem. When an app publisher publishes an app to the global app store, they do so generically – the app that they’ve built looks and feels the same for all customers who use it. But customers often take these publicly available apps and integrate them into internal business processes so completely that they want their users to see the apps as an extension of other internal tools – they want any seams between internal processes and tools and external tools to be invisible to their employees. This introduces a need for app branding configuration, where customers can take apps that are published to the global store and re-brand them as internal tooling. Doing so reduces roadblocks in users’ cognitive understanding and adoption of the app, and reduces enterprises’ reticence to adopt 3P apps. Today, some customers build custom apps in order to re-brand the available third-party apps which is not an optimal experience. With app customization, admins will be able to simply customize the available third-party and Microsoft apps through Teams admin center and publish it to their users in a few friendly experience steps. The app customization feature allows developers to specify which properties of the app can be customized by the tenant. Admins can then rebrand or customize these properties in their Teams Admin Center as per their tenant’s requirements.


NOTEWORTHY

You asked, we listened! Dark Mode is now rolling out in the Office app for Android phones. It’s been a highly requested feature by many of our customers, and we’re proud to begin releasing it today. Many people prefer using Dark Mode as they find it provides a more comfortable visual experience for reading and working on mobile devices. The Office app helps you get work done on a mobile device by combining Word, Excel, and PowerPoint into a single app and adding many rich capabilities for creating and working with PDFs, images, scanning, capturing notes, and much more. Now you can do all this using a theme of your choice — based on the time of day, your surroundings, or your device settings. Dark Mode ensures that you can adjust the Office app to low-light environments, while providing you with better viewing options and keeping battery consumption low.

It’s been a long journey, but decommissioning Skype for Business on premises across Microsoft is complete. Almost. Just a few more special lines of business to go, and then all of Microsoft will be able to benefit from the better performance and collaboration capabilities found in Microsoft Teams. A subset of employees relies on the specific functions within Skype for Business to complete their work. Some of these features are necessary for interacting with external partners, so prematurely moving these users to Microsoft Teams could disrupt operations. Phasing out the communication platform has taken a fair amount of time and effort. Fortunately, Microsoft Digital, the organization that powers, transforms, and protects Microsoft, has developed specific communication and migration strategies for decommissioning Skype for Business.

The SharePoint app bar is a fixed navigation experience across all modern SharePoint sites that provides quick access to the most important sites, news, and files as well as the organization’s global navigation. Your tenant just got the new SharePoint app bar, and you are probably wondering how it should fit in with the rest of your intranet architecture. You may be asking yourself, what should be in the global navigation and what should be home site navigation? What if my home site is also a hub site? In this blog, we’ll share best practices on how to think about global navigation, how to align with existing home site and hub navigation, and how to prepare for the app bar.

Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise offers three production update channels for you to choose from: Current Channel, Monthly Enterprise Channel and Semi-Annual Enterprise Channel. The channel(s) you choose to support in your environment will determine the update frequency, features, and support duration between versions. There are a number of ways for you to manage these updates, including our latest addition: Servicing Profiles. We are pleased to announce an update for Microsoft 365 Apps that will improve update manageability in Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager. Up until now the use of Automatic Deployment Rules (ADR) with Microsoft 365 Apps has been a challenge to manage, depending on the update channel(s) you support. Starting in late June, all future updates for Microsoft 365 Apps, including 2019 and 2021 volume license products, will receive an updated naming convention via the Title property. With this change you will be able to utilize the Title property within the search criteria of your ADR definition to easily target the necessary updates for your environment. This improvement should eliminate the need for IT admins to continually update their search criteria with each new release.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-19

Welcome to the May 10 – 16, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-two features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, SharePoint, Lists, Viva, Outlook, Microsoft 365 Compliance, Microsoft Information Protection, Project, and Search.

There are no new events, but some of the existing meeting series have added a few more sessions for May and early June. This week’s spotlight event is the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training for “Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk”, which takes place on Wednesday, May 19th and Thursday, May 20th, starting at 10:00am Pacific.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include information and resources for securing a new world of hybrid work, a look at what’s new in April 2021 for OneDrive, the availability of Webinars in Microsoft Teams, and the general availability of network connectivity tools in the Microsoft 365 admin center.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items with information on how hybrid customers can prepare for the retirement of Skype for Business Online, an inside look at how Microsoft drives inclusive and effective meetings with Microsoft Teams, a behind the scenes look at Microsoft Viva, and the general availability of Customer Key support for Microsoft Teams.


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 365 Compliance center: New Permissions management page72239May CY2021Added: 10 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
We’re adding a new Permissions page within the Microsoft 365 compliance center. Admins will be able to use this new page to view and assign user roles and create and modify custom role groups – activities currently managed within the legacy Office 365 Security & Compliance Center.
Microsoft Teams: Network planner tool updates82737May CY2021Added: 10 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Network planner tool will be updated to reflect the latest bandwidth requirements of Teams client. This will help IT administrators better estimate and plan their office bandwidth needs.
Microsoft Teams: Multi-language meeting invite control81521September CY2021Added: 10 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
IT administrators can apply a new policy to set multiple languages in Teams meeting invites.
Outlook: [iOS] Send Button move in full compose83145May CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – iOS
We are positioning the “send” button in a more convenient place when using your thumbs to type. This will match the experience in quick reply, and we hope will also be easier to reach for users.
Microsoft Teams: Together Mode Extensibility81123May CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Build your own scenes that elevate your meeting experience. We believe that by making Together Mode extensible, creators can create immersive scenes and users can go beyond simple video conferencing. Started building your scenes by going to the Developer Portal for Microsoft Teams.
Microsoft Information Protection: Microsoft 365 Endpoint data loss prevention (DLP) for GCC81973June CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP, GCC
Endpoint DLP extends the activity monitoring and protection capabilities of DLP to sensitive items that are on Windows 10 devices. Once devices are onboarded into device management, the information about what users are doing with sensitive items is made visible in activity explorer and you can enforce protective actions on those items via DLP policies.
Microsoft Information Protection: Microsoft 365 Endpoint data loss prevention (DLP) for GCC-H and DoD81974May CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP, GCC-H, DoD
Endpoint DLP extends the activity monitoring and protection capabilities of DLP to sensitive items that are on Windows 10 devices. Once devices are onboarded into device management, the information about what users are doing with sensitive items is made visible in activity explorer and you can enforce protective actions on those items via DLP policies.
Microsoft Viva: Topic management dashboard81977Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Viva
You can track the stats over time for topics through the lifecycle of suggested, confirmed, published, and removed with the new visual topic management dashboard.
Microsoft Project: Book resources to manage resource availability81978August CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Project
Avoid over-scheduling resources by using bookings to ensure a resource’s time is effectively allocated within their availability.
Office app: Improvements to help configure Automatic Deployment Rules for Microsoft 365 Apps updates published to the Microsoft Update Catalog81979June CY2021Added: 11 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office
With this change, IT admins that use Automatic Deployment Rules in Configuration Manager to deploy updates for Microsoft 365 Apps, including 2019 and 2021 volume license products, will be able to use the Title property within the search criteria of the ADR definition to easily find the desired update and not have to continually update the search criteria with each update release.
Microsoft Compliance center: New DLP alert management dashboard for gov clouds81980June CY2021Added: 11 May 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.
Microsoft Teams: Immersive reader support for Mobile82937June CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Immersive Reader, which uses proven customization techniques to support reading across ages and abilities, is coming to Teams iOS and Android apps. You can now hear posts and chat messages read aloud using Immersive Reader on the Teams mobile apps. This functionality was previously available only on the web and desktop apps.
Microsoft Teams: Live reactions in Teams Meetings for DoD83251October CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
React during a meeting using emojis that will appear to all participants.
Microsoft Teams: Day view in calendar on iOS and Android80106June CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams – Android, iOS
View all meetings and events for the day to easily see when you’re available or busy.
Azure Active Directory, OneDrive, and SharePoint for Business: Azure B2B integration with OneDrive and SharePoint is now generally available81955May CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Azure AD, OneDrive, SharePoint
The Azure B2B Integration with OneDrive and SharePoint is now generally available. This integration is currently disabled by default but can be enabled using the SharePoint Online Management Shell.
Microsoft Information Protection: Exact Data Match to support Auto-labeling81968June CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Organizations will be able to configure new or existing Auto-labeling policies using Exact Data Match (EDM) Sensitive Information Types (SITs), enabling more fine-grained control over which sensitive content gets labeled.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Expanded limits for protected users within anti-phishing policies81981June CY2021Added: 12 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Defender for Office 365
We’re expanding the limits for protected users in the anti-phishing policy to allow 350 users.
Microsoft Teams: Restart Live Event82953July CY2021Added: 14 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Previously when a producer or presenter ran a live event, they were not able to restart it even if you accidently ended it or if the event ran into an error. With this new feature, you will be able to restart your live event after you have ended it or if you have encountered a problem during it.
SharePoint: Admin center – Migration Manager: Dropbox migrations for Government Clouds83456December CY2021Added: 14 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint, Gov
With our recent Mover acquisition, we are excited to expand our capabilities to allow moving content from Dropbox into Microsoft 365. When you’re ready to move your content, click on the Migrate tab in the SharePoint admin center to start scan discovery, assessment, and migrate. You’ll get detailed reports and the rest in a seamless transition of files and folders to Microsoft 365 (OneDrive, SharePoint, and/or Teams).
Yammer: Updated community discovery experience in the new Yammer79325June CY2021Added: 14 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
Re-invigorated experience to browse, discover, and join communities around your Yammer network.
SharePoint: Microsoft Lists – Updated sharing experience81965May CY2021Added: 14 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Lists
Create unique sharing links for lists based on who and how you wish to share them, while adhering to any sharing settings per established IT and governance planning and policies.
Microsoft Search: Search box changes for guest users in OneDrive, SharePoint, and Lists81983June CY2021Added: 14 May 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Search
The search box for guest users will move to the top of the screen across OneDrive, SharePoint, and Lists apps, similar to how it appears for regular users.

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.

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 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.

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 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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

Hackers launch an average of 50 million password attacks every day—579 per second. Phishing attacks have increased. Firmware attacks are on the rise, and ransomware has become incredibly problematic. And while Microsoft intercepted and thwarted a record-breaking 30 billion email threats last year, our work is never done. Security continues to be a number one priority for our customers, especially as many companies around the world are looking to transition from remote work to hybrid. To truly meet this challenge, defenders across the industry must come together for an end-to-end, Zero Trust security approach that covers the entire technology ecosystem. Because today, digital transformation cannot happen without security transformation.

Related:

Here are the latest functionalities that rolled out to production in the month of April 2021 – (1) Bookmarks for PDF viewing on Android, (2) Page rotation for PDF viewing on Android, (3) Public Preview of 64-bit OneDrive sync client, and (4) Dialog on first-time deletion of file(s). Note: the 64-bit sync client is available for early access, and requires a OneDrive work, school, or home account.

Over the last year, we have found new ways to create engaging virtual experiences at work. We’ve transformed spaces in our homes to offices, developed new skillsets for remote collaboration, and in some cases, adopted new technology to get work done. We often hear from our customers about the burden of using different tools to accomplish similar tasks at work. This is one of the reasons we’re excited to announce new innovations in Microsoft Teams that give you more ways to use the tool you rely on every day for internal collaboration and meetings, now for webinars and external events. Beginning the week of May 10, 2021, Webinars and PowerPoint Live are beginning to rollout in Microsoft Teams. Additionally, Presenter mode will begin to roll out later in May. With these capabilities, you have new ways to deliver polished, professional presentations in meetings of all sizes, from small internal meetings to large customer-facing webinars and events—all from a single application. What’s even better? You don’t need to purchase a new license or product. These new capabilities are included in many of the Office and Microsoft 365 plans your organization uses today. There are no hidden costs or charges for overage fees with plans that include these capabilities—period.

We frequently hear from customers that they are concerned whether their users are getting the best possible performance and experience with Microsoft 365, which is often determined by the quality of connectivity that their users have and how Microsoft 365 connections are handled by the networks and network solutions between the client and Microsoft.  Customers ask how they can measure and see the quality of network connectivity for their Microsoft 365 users and get insights how to optimize it further. That’s why we are excited to announce the General Availability of Microsoft 365 Admin Center Connectivity and the Microsoft 365 network connectivity test tool! Using existing network connectivity tests in Microsoft 365 can provide network assessments and insights. They are aggregated to represent the network connectivity of a work location in use by an Microsoft 365 customer. This can be very valuable in identifying potential network connectivity improvements that would improve performance and provide a better user experience for Microsoft 365 users.


NOTEWORTHY

A lot has changed in Yammer over the past year and we continue to see new growth, new communities, and new users getting started with Yammer. With this in mind, we are excited to share training videos that you can use to share within your own organization. Use these training videos to build momentum in your Yammer communities. The videos include: (1) Microsoft Yammer conversations and discovery, (2) Microsoft Yammer notifications and announcements, (3) Microsoft Yammer communities overview, and (4) Microsoft Yammer network admin highlights.

As the retirement of Skype for Business Online approaches, we want to help customers with hybrid deployments of Skype for Business (Server + Online) successfully plan for the changes ahead. This post provides guidance for upgrade readiness, post-retirement experiences for hybrid deployments, and transitioning on-premises users to Teams after Skype for Business Online retires.

As Microsoft transitions to a hybrid work model where employees can choose to return to campus or work from home, Sara Bush, a senior program manager on the Seamless Teamwork team in Microsoft Digital, saw an opportunity to create research-driven guidance for running inclusive meetings. But what makes a meeting inclusive and effective? “Inclusion is defined by the ability to feel comfortable contributing their ideas and perspectives,” Bush says. “In an inclusive and effective meeting, I can participate fully because I have access to all the relevant documents, content, and people before, during, and after. This allows me to engage and contribute from anywhere.”

As work evolves rapidly into hybrid work, we need to do more to empower people to feel connected and bring their best self to work. Microsoft Viva, which we announced in February, brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights into an integrated employee experience through the Microsoft 365 apps you use every day. Your response to Viva, the first employee experience platform (EXP) built for the digital era, has been overwhelmingly positive. We’re just getting started on this journey and excited to help you learn more about Viva through a new Microsoft Mechanics series. Watch our Microsoft Mechanics host, Jeremy Chapman (@JeremyChapmanMechanics), introduce Microsoft Viva and explain the underlying technology and core options for enabling and configuring the platform. In upcoming videos from this series, Jeremy will be joined by our Viva engineering leaders to take deep dives into each of the Viva modules as well as how to set up and manage the experiences for your organization.

Microsoft 365 provides baseline, volume-level encryption enabled through BitLocker and Distributed Key Manager (DKM) which ensures customer data is always encrypted at rest in the Microsoft 365 service with BitLocker and DKM. Microsoft 365 offers an added layer of encryption at the application layer for content, including data from Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive, and Teams, called service encryption. Microsoft 365 Customer Key is built on service encryption, providing a layer of encryption at the application layer for data-at-rest and allows the organization to provide and control the encryption keys used to encrypt customer data in Microsoft’s datacenters. Customer Key provides an additional protection against viewing of data by unauthorized systems or personnel, complimenting BitLocker disk encrypted in Microsoft datacenters. Customer Key enhances the ability of organizations to meet the demands of compliance requirements that specify key arrangements with the cloud service provider, assisting customers in meeting regulatory or compliance obligations for controlling root keys.

This post provides information about creating OneDrive for Business profiles with Microsoft Endpoint Manager Configuration Manager (MEMCM). Let us start with the why. Since more businesses are allowing remote work these days what better way to allow your workforce to access their files from any device when their files are synchronized with OneDrive for Business. This can also lower the dependency on the company provided devices and provide less data loss in the case of faulty hard drives or if a machine needs a refreshed image. By using OneDrive for Business Profiles, we also automatically synchronize the content of the known folders unlike when we use folder redirection. Why should we do this with MEMCM when we can just set it with Group Policy? Two reasons number one: If you are like most organizations your On-Premises Active Directory environment already has plenty GPO (Group Policy Objects) settings being applied which can cause things like long logon times and waiting for all the Group Policies to process and refresh. Number two: The path to fully Azure Active Directory joined environment is to move away from group policy and apply these settings with Microsoft Endpoint Manager being that is one dependency a lot of environments have on staying hybrid joined is that Azure Active Directory does not have group policy like On-Premises Active Directory. So let us begin!!

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-18

Welcome to the May 3 – 9, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-nine features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Lists, Exchange Online, Outlook, Microsoft 365 Compliance, and Yammer.

There are no new events, but several new sessions have been added for existing event series. This week’s spotlight event is the “Protecting Assets and Empowering Your Defenders” Customer Immersion Experience on Thursday, May 13th from 12pm – 2pm Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include the public preview of OneDrive sync admin reports, new site templates for SharePoint, the ability to customize the reply all storm protection settings, a look at news from the Microsoft Business Applications Summit, and the latest accessibility, security and customization features for Microsoft Stream.

Noteworthy item highlights include the April Project updates, the May 2021 feature updates for Workplace Analytics, an updated landing page for Visio.com, the availability of new storytelling resources to assist with adoption and change management programs.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Twenty-nine features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Lists, Exchange Online, Outlook, 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:

EXCEL:

PDF:


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 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.

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.

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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Office Hours: Managing Windows 10 Devices & Updates

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

We’re excited to announce public preview of OneDrive Sync Admin Reports in Microsoft 365 Apps admin center. These reports give you more visibility into who in your organization is running the OneDrive Sync client and any errors they might be experiencing. OneDrive Sync is a lot like electricity or internet—people tend to take it for granted until they have a problem and they’re in the middle of an important project. This is even more the case now with so many people working from home and relying on cloud capabilities like OneDrive and SharePoint Online to help them be productive. Having insights into what’s happening with OneDrive Sync across your organization can help you proactively reach out to educate people to resolve common issues and improve user experience to help increase OneDrive adoption.

Imagine you’re working on a project that needs a new SharePoint site to track deadlines, record progress, and serve as a central place to collaborate with your team. Perhaps you’ve been tasked with creating an onboarding portal for your organization complete with new hire checklists and key information to help them get started. Maybe you’re leading a training series where you need to store course files and post class announcements. Where do you begin when it comes to designing sites for these scenarios? Now you have a starting point! We’ve made it even easier to begin on the right foot with site templates that are available to you in SharePoint. SharePoint site templates are flexible enough to address a variety of needs, make it easy to create and populate site content, and show you what’s possible. These complement those found in the SharePoint lookbook, which has been and continues to be an amazing source of inspiration for modern experiences you can build with out-of-the-box SharePoint components.

Last year we released the Reply-all Storm Protection feature to help protect your organization from unwanted reply-all storms. This feature uses global settings applicable to all Microsoft 365 customers for reply-all storm detection and for how long the feature will block subsequent reply-alls once a storm has been detected. We’re pleased to announce you’ll now have the ability to make these settings specific to your Microsoft 365 organization; email admins will have the flexibility to enable/disable the feature, and set customized detection thresholds and block duration time. This not only makes it more flexible to tailor for your organization, but it also  allows more Microsoft 365 customers to take advantage of the Reply-all Storm Protection feature since the minimum number of reply-all recipients for detection can now be as low as 1000 when previously it was hard-coded at 5000. | Related: Loop Prevention in Exchange Online Demystified

While we connect with our customers, our community, and our partners every day, at the Microsoft Business Applications Summit, we share some of our most important announcements on our strategy and roadmap. We prepare and deliver some really exciting demos and our product managers and engineers look forward to answering all of your questions. We had so much to announce that we had to break up our keynote into two parts, and then we had a special session just for goals in Microsoft Power BI…that’s 3 x 30 minutes of pure Power BI fun! In addition, we had tons of product sessions, and many real-world customer stories from Walmart, T-Mobile, Cerner, Bayer, and so many more. | Related: Microsoft Business Application Summit Recap

Microsoft Stream (built on SharePoint) is bringing to production long-awaited features that unlock new value for you in the areas of accessibility, security, and customized content consumption. We’re complementing recent Teams meeting accessibility enhancements with improvements to transcripts and captions in Stream on SharePoint. We’re also making Teams meeting recordings read-only be default and we will also add “block download” functionality to Teams meeting recordings that are automatically saves to OneDrive and SharePoint. The Stream web app will soon be part of office.com – consolidating videos into a seamless, individualized experience for all stakeholders. We’ll also release a new player for video files in OneDrive and SharePoint, including several upgrades for playback such as higher quality video, a transcript pane on the right, speaker identification in the transcript (if enabled), and support for switching between transcripts in multiple languages.


NOTEWORTHY

This post has a look at what’s new and upcoming for Project, including features such as: (1) Email assignment notifications, (2) Actions on Project Home, and (3) Open task from Project Power BI report. Upcoming features include: (1) Import from Project Desktop, and (2) Filtering on Board & Timeline views.

The Workplace Analytics team is excited to announce our feature updates for May 2021. This month’s update describes the following new features: (1) Collaboration metrics with Teams IM and call signals, (2) Metric refinements, (3) Analyze business processes, (4) New business-outcome playbooks, (5) More focused set of query templates, and (6) Workplace Analytics now supports mailboxes in datacenters in Germany.

We are pleased to announce the launch of the new Visio start page on Office.com, providing Visio users with a familiar start experience that is similar to other Office 365 apps and powerful Office features, like improved file discovery, improved collaboration features, and better template categorization. From the new landing page, you will experience the benefits of the Office.com ecosystem combined with unique features of the existing Visio landing page. This post includes additional details on the latest enhancements.

We are pleased to share a set of new resources on storytelling for Champions! Our overall goal for delivering these new resources is to enable you and your organization to achieve greater results from your adoption and change management programs. Stories are an amazing way to connect with people through shared experiences, inspire others to act, and are an influential way to communicate. Storytelling can play a key role in any change journey as a powerful way to showcase examples of the new behavior change in action. The resources include: (1) A new storytelling guide, and (2) a storytelling course on LinkedIn Learning.

Today, organizations face an evolving threat landscape and an exponentially increasing attack surface. Email represents the primary attack vector for cybercrime, and security teams are in search of efficient and cost-effective means to minimize the risk of these threats and the impact they have on organizational productivity and innovation. We are proud to announce today that Microsoft is positioned as a leader in The Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Email Security, Q2 2021, receiving among the highest scores in the strategy category. The Forrester Wave report evaluates enterprise email security solutions and provides a detailed overview of the current offering, strategy, and market presence of these vendors. Microsoft Defender for Office 365 received the highest possible score in the incident response, threat intelligence, and endpoint and endpoint detection and response (EDR) solutions integration criteria, as well as in the product strategy, customer success, and performance and operations criteria. | Resource: Complimentary full report

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-17

Welcome to the April 26 – May 2, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were ten additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, SharePoint, Microsoft 365 admin center, Microsoft Defender for Office 365, and Search.

There is one new event – “Go further with Microsoft Lists”, which has five options based on region, taking place between May 10 – 14. The spotlight event of the week is the “Empower your Frontline workforce to do more with Teams”, with sessions on Tuesday, May 4th and Wednesday, May 5th.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a look at what’s new in April 2021 for Microsoft 365, Teams and SharePoint, as well as the general availability of the new Exchange admin center.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items with details on updates to organizational theming in the Microsoft 365 admin center, the first two parts of a blog series on mastering configuration in Microsoft Defender for Office 365, information on how to connect your hybrid workforce with Yammer and OneDrive, and the April 2021 updates for Identity.


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
OneDrive and SharePoint: Adjusting version retention for PST files72237August CY2021Added: 26 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive, SharePoint
This update will help customers manage PST file versions from consuming storage capacity for OneDrive & SharePoint Online. PST files are a type of Outlook Data File which can consume a lot of storage – especially when versions are considered. The service will now limit the number of PST versions retained, often resulting in less storage consumption.
SharePoint: Updates for Microsoft Teams connected team sites81945May CY2021Added: 26 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint, Teams
Every Microsoft Teams team is connected to a SharePoint team site. If you create a private channel, it gets a unique team site. You will see specific updates, including updates to site features, site permissions alignment, site classifications and sensitivity labels, and improvements to the user interface.
Microsoft 365 admin center: New guide with scripts and tools for Microsoft Edge IE mode and site discovery72236May CY2021Added: 27 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Admin
Enterprise Site Discovery provides a way for you to detect which of your users’ frequently visited sites need to use Internet Explorer mode (IE mode) in Microsoft Edge. In this step-by-step guide, you’ll get scripts to automate configuration of Enterprise Site Discovery, get IE mode recommendations from a cloud-based tool, and create an Enterprise Mode Site List that you’ll deploy to your users.
Microsoft Teams: Public Preview: Teams follow Office preview81704May CY2021Added: 27 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Public Preview has provided IT admins with the ability to allow their users to receive preview features before they are released to the public. Coming up in June 2021, not only can users be opted-in to use Teams Public Preview, but IT admins can even configure Teams users preview state to follow Office preview state. All of this functionality will be accessible from the Teams Admin Center.
Microsoft Teams: Pairing the channel and the corresponding SharePoint folder name72211May CY2021Added: 28 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
When renaming a Teams’ channel, the corresponding SharePoint folder will be renamed and reflect the new name. This will help create consistency across Microsoft 365 endpoints, making it easier on users to find their files from anywhere. This new feature will be available for all Standard and Private channels. For Standard channels – The corresponding folder in SharePoint will be renamed. For Private channels – The corresponding site name and the folder in SharePoint will be renamed. For legacy Teams channels that were renamed prior to this rollout, there will be no change in experience. When a legacy channel is renamed after this release, it will simultaneously rename the corresponding SharePoint folder.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Advanced Delivery for SecOps Mailboxes and Third-Party Phishing Simulations72207June CY2021Added: 29 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
Advanced delivery gives admins the ability to configure advanced message delivery for special scenarios, including third-party phishing simulation campaigns and SecOps mailboxes. Advanced delivery will deliver unfiltered messages in these cases and clearly mark messages as part of each scenario across all admin surfaces.
Microsoft Compliance center and Microsoft Teams for Business: Compliance capabilities for card content generated through apps in Teams messages82992May CY2021Added: 29 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
We are extending Microsoft 365 compliance capabilities to content generated through Teams apps.
PowerPoint: PowerPoint modern comments for enterprise82731June CY2021 Added: 29 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: PowerPoint
The new modern comments experience for PowerPoint is now available through your enterprise account. Modern comments greatly improves your comments experience with features such as resolving comments, anchoring comments to objects and text, improved @mentions, and more.
Microsoft Search: Query variable support on Keyword Query Language (KQL)81953October CY2021 Added: 29 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Search
Profile attributes and Query String values from the URL can be used as Query variables on KQL. This will be resolved for both SharePoint and Graph connector verticals.
Outlook: Dictate emails on iPhone and iPad81951May CY2021Added: 30 April 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – iOS
Use speech-to-text to dictate email messages, available starting in EN-US.

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.

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 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.

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 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.

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.

Do you need to rapidly onboard a large number of Frontline users to Microsoft Teams and configure a streamlined experience for them? Are you struggling with where and how to start? If yes, this is the clinic for you! Join Microsoft Teams customer engineering experts as we review how Microsoft Teams can accelerate your Frontline worker deployment. Featuring examples from manufacturing, retail, hospitality, and transportation industries, we’ll explore how Microsoft Teams provides a single experience for productive conversations, smooth flow of information, simplified schedule management in a compliant and secure environment for your Frontline workers. You’ll leave this highly interactive session with tangible next steps to accelerate your planning. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify scenarios that matter to your Frontline workers and the best approach to implementing Teams from pilot to scale across your entire organization, (2) Map scenarios to Microsoft Teams use cases, and (3) Craft the right experience for your Frontline workers in Teams by configuring 1P apps and policies.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Learn all you can do with Microsoft Lists – your smart information tracking app in Microsoft 365. See how Lists evolve from SharePoint lists to empower individuals and teams to create, share and track information – including innovation in Microsoft Teams, information side-by-side your team conversations. We will teach you how to use and create views, configure conditional formatting, adjust forms and more. Plus, we will highlight extending lists with the integrated Power Platform and answer all frequently, or infrequently, asked questions. Get ready to become a Microsoft Lists pro, for free!

This 1-hour session will provide an opportunity to learn practical guidance about conducting engaging and energizing large, online virtual events using Microsoft Teams. This session is designed for anyone wishing to organize, produce or speak at a large, virtual event and is open to anyone. During this session, you will: (1) Understand best practices to ensure your large, online virtual event is successful using Microsoft Teams or Teams Live Events, (2) Gain practical, technical production knowledge to ensure your event is engaging, (3) Understand the Attendee experience, (4) Learn before-during-after tactics to build & continue your large, online event momentum with Webinar features, and (5) Leverage and understand step by step virtual event resources as found at aka.ms/virtualeventplaybook.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

As our customers around the world look for new ways to empower people for hybrid work, we’re committed to offering them experiences that enable everyone to connect and collaborate from home, at the office, and everywhere in between. From viewing live transcriptions during Microsoft Teams Meetings and tracking changes in Microsoft Excel documents to discovering and securing unmanaged devices, this month we’re announcing new features across Microsoft 365 designed to enable the flexibility that hybrid work requires. Other highlights include the ability to transform Microsoft Word documents into beautiful PowerPoint presentations using AI, expanded polling capabilities in Teams, and an updated Remote Desktop for Mac app. Let’s dive in.

Related:

Welcome to the April edition of What’s new in Teams – the monthly post where we’re keeping you updated on all the new features and innovation that we have made available in Microsoft Teams. This month we’re also excited to announce we’ve launched our new Microsoft Teams Instagram account. Go check it out for fun updates and new ways to engage with the product. Let’s check out all the new features we have delivered this month: (1) Meetings and webinars, (2) Devices, (3) Chat and Collaboration, (4) Management, (5) Frontline worker, and (6) Government.

Related:

This post includes all the SharePoint and related tech updates that rolled out in April 2021. This is the all-inclusive roadmap release recap for all things SharePoint and related technology. April 2021 brought some great new offerings: Immersive Reader: SharePoint pages and news posts, Events Web Part: Audience Targeting, SharePoint site templates, Microsoft Lists for iOS: iPad support, Manage Microsoft Lists for iOS using Intune APP, Microsoft Lists: Visualize date with Power BI, OneDrive sync 64-bit for Windows, and more. All the features listed began rolling out to Targeted Release customers in Office 365 as of April 2021 (possibly early May 2021).

The new Exchange admin center (EAC) is a modern, accessible, web-based management portal for managing Exchange Online that is based on the Microsoft 365 admin center experience. The new EAC is simple and accessible, and it enables you perform tasks like restoring mailboxes, migrating data, and much more. Since entering Public Preview in June 2020, over half a million admins around the world have used it. We thrived on the feedback of our early adopters and we have steadily improved the new EAC with the help from a great community of early users. We are now excited to announce that the new EAC is now generally available for customers (including GCC customers) in 10 languages. With this announcement, we are also releasing a new dashboard, new usability features, and several intelligent reports to help admins be more productive in their work. The new EAC is expected to be available to customers in GCC High at the end of May 2021, and to customers in DoD at the end of June 2021.


NOTEWORTHY

A lot has changed in Yammer over the past year and we continue to see new growth, new communities, and new users getting started with Yammer. With this in mind, we are excited to share training videos that you can use to share within your own organization. Use these training videos to build momentum in your Yammer communities. The videos include: (1) Microsoft Yammer conversations and discovery, (2) Microsoft Yammer notifications and announcements, (3) Microsoft Yammer communities overview, and (4) Microsoft Yammer network admin highlights.

We are so excited to announce an enhanced theming experience for tenants. We have started rolling out the improvements and will be generally available by late May 2021. Through the Microsoft 365 admin center, start playing around with colors and logos and assign custom themes to different Microsoft 365 groups in your organization! The organizational theme is what appears in the top navigation bar for people in your organization. | Resource: Customize the Microsoft 365 theme for your organization

This blog is part one of a three-part series detailing the journey we’re on to simplify configuration of threat protection capabilities in Office 365 to enable best-in class protection for our customers. Effective security is a never-ending battle to achieve balance between security and productivity. If we apply too many security controls to an environment, we limit the ability of its users to function efficiently. And if we err on the side of restraint, we do not hinder users in any way, but we leave the door open to threats. Email security is complex and ever-changing. With over 90 percent of threats surfacing through email, it’s critical that organizations are empowered to configure security tools in a way that works for their environment. We’re committed to offering Office 365 customers the best email protection by continually focusing on improving the effectiveness of our solutions both within Exchange Online Protection (EOP) as well as Defender for Office 365. EOP has a rich legacy of policy granularity and customizations that help customers meet their unique needs. As we’ve built and innovated on Microsoft Defender for Office 365, we have applied those same principles to the new advanced protection capabilities we offered as part of Defender for Office 365, while still respecting many of the EOP settings. | Related: Mastering Configuration in Defender for Office 365 – Part Two

Yammer is a best-in-class, secure, and private enterprise social network that empowers employees to be more productive and successful by enabling them to collaborate easily, make decisions faster, and self-organize to take on any business challenge. Where Microsoft Teams is the perfect option for groups working together to deliver specific projects or services, Yammer works best for broader groups of people and open discussion. Organizational or department leaders often use Yammer to share company news, but Yammer can also be valuable for bringing people together to form communities with a common objective or interest—say, a global marketing team at a professional services firm sharing messaging best practices, or two public sector agencies (like a city council and social services) building community outreach programs. Yammer is also great for bringing together inclusive, diverse communities to help improve employee engagement and connectedness. And files are a core component to the success of this community experience because files and rich media help drive participation in Yammer. The synergy Yammer shares with both OneDrive and SharePoint enables your employees to have more focused discussions and boost engagement. With the new file picker experience, employees working in Yammer will soon be able to easily upload files stored in their OneDrive or SharePoint through a familiar interface, for sharing and collaborating with colleagues all across the organization.

Critical infrastructure operators face a hostile cyber threat environment and a complex compliance landscape. Every operator of an industrial control system also operates an IT network to service its productivity needs. A supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system operator of a power grid or chemical plant needs email, databases, and business applications to support it, much like any enterprise. As the cyber threat landscape to ICS has grown more hostile and publicized, the compliance responsibilities of critical infrastructure operators have increased as well. Microsoft Compliance Manager is a feature in Microsoft 365 compliance center. It uses signals from the customer’s Microsoft 365 tenant, Microsoft’s compliance program, and workflows completed by the customer to manage and report compliance against regulatory and industry-standard templates. These templates include NERC CIP, NIST Cybersecurity Framework (CSF), NIST 800-53, and the US Protecting and Securing Chemical Facilities from Terrorist Attacks Act (H.R. 4007), as well as more than 330 standards-based assessments globally. You can also create custom templates based on other standards or mapped to your own policies and control set. | Related: What’s New from Ignite regarding Compliance Manager

We’re excited to share the latest Active Azure Directory news, including feature updates, support depreciation, and the general availability of new features that will streamline administrator, developer, and end user experiences. These new features and feature updates show our commitment to simplifying identity and access management, while also enhancing the kinds of customization and controls our customers need. New features for April 2021 include: (1) Additional service and client support for Continuous Access Evaluation (CAE) – MS Graph service & OneDrive clients on all platforms (Windows, Web, Mac, iOS, and Android) start to support CAE at the beginning of April. Now OneDrive client access can be terminated immediately right after security events, like session revocation or password reset, if you have CAE enabled in your tenant; (2) Embed Azure AD B2C sign-in interface in an iframe (Preview): Customers have told us how jarring it is to do a full-page redirect when users authenticate. Using a custom policy, you can now embed the Azure AD B2C experience within an iframe so that it appears seamlessly within your web application; and (3) Custom email verification for Azure AD B2C (GA): You can send customized email to users that sign up to use your customer applications, with a third-party email provider such as Mailjet or SendGrid. Using a Azure AD B2C custom policy, you can set up an email template, From: address, and subject, as well as support localization and custom one-time password (OTP) settings.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-05

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

There were twenty-five additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Microsoft 365 Compliance Center, Outlook (Web, iOS), Word and Microsoft Defender for Office 365.

The customer immersion experience sessions for Microsoft 365 and for Teams are back with new dates. Registration for the Microsoft Ignite (digital) experience is now open – the conference is scheduled for March 2 – 4, 2021. This week’s spotlight event is the “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) for Microsoft Lists on Thursday, February 11th at 9am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include lots of information on Microsoft Viva, details on an upcoming change to the default setting for Guest access in Microsoft Teams, a look at what rolled out for SharePoint in January 2021, and the announcement of Windows 10 in cloud configuration.

Noteworthy item highlights include information on Microsoft Edge Legacy and the April 2021 Windows Update release, an update on the timeline for disabling Basic Authentication in Exchange Online, a reminder that Skype for Business Online retires on July 31, 2021 with available assistance/resources, and details on the ability to edit Microsoft Lists in grid view.


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
Outlook for iOS: Conversational AI with Cortana79865February CY2021Added: 01 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – iOS
Ask Cortana to provide assistant to schedule meetings, compose short email messages, and find files, emails, and people that are relevant to you, all using your voice and natural language.
Outlook for iOS: Expandable new message and event buttons79866February CY2021Added: 01 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – iOS
The button for new event and message buttons on your Calendar and Inbox hat will expand to provide quick actions that are available in Outlook. By long pressing these new buttons, you’ll have easy access to commonly needed email and calendaring capabilities.
Office 365: Office is now available on iPad60685February CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365
With this release, we are bringing the Microsoft Office app to the iPad, combining the Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps you know, plus additional tools to keep you more productive than ever. Optimized for iPadOS, use your keyboard, mouse, and trackpad to create and collaborate on Office documents, or create using your camera, sign PDFs, jot down notes, and more.
Office 365: Intelligent Suggestions70597March CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365
Intelligent Suggestions will help you quickly find, work on, and collaborate on the files that matter most to you.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Hunting for Impersonated domains and users70613February CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
We are adding new filters called Impersonated user and Impersonated domain to enable Security Operations teams to explicitly hunt for specific users or domains within their organization that are targets of impersonation attacks. This additional information related to Impersonated domain(s) and Impersonated user(s) will surface in existing Impersonation insight pages and our new Email Entity page.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Updates to post-delivery detections and investigations70614February CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
We are rolling out updates to alerts and investigations including new alert policies and post-delivery detections related to Zero-hour auto purge (ZAP). There will also be updates and improvements to the AIR playbooks for the post-delivery detections to capture the state of the emails and entities that are being investigated.
Outlook: on the web – React to an email message70615March CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Web
Compliance Manager is the next generation of the existing Compliance Manager and Compliance Score solutions, which have been in commercial public preview since November 2019.
Microsoft Project: API Support for extensibility70618June CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Project
API support to create, update and delete Projects, Tasks, Task Dependencies, Resource Assignments, Team Members and Project Buckets.
OneDrive: Updates to the sync app on Mac available in .pkg format70693March CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive – Mac
Updates to the sync app on Mac will be available in the .pkg format which allows for faster updates and better security.
Word: Better collaboration with modern comments for Mac76166May CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Mac
Share your comments with co-authors only once they’re complete, enjoy improved @mention notifications, and be more productive with a consistent commenting experience between Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
Word: Better collaboration with modern comments76186March CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word
Share your comments with co-authors only once they’re complete, enjoy improved @mention notifications, and be more productive with a consistent commenting experience between Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
Microsoft Teams: Branded Lobby79957March CY2021Added: 03 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Admins will now be able to add a custom logo to the Teams experience, for display in the lobby and meeting pre-join experience. The logo will be displayed for meetings where the organizer has the Advanced Comms SKU.
Microsoft Search: reports in modern sites70616June CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Search
Microsoft Search reports in modern sites will allow for site administrators to view usage analytics related to Microsoft Search in modern sites in SharePoint Online.
Microsoft 365 Compliance Center: Communication Compliance can now leverage optical character recognition to extract and evaluate messages70622March CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Introducing the ability to extract printed or handwritten text from images using Azure’s Computer Vision Optical Character Recognition (OCR). Text extracted will then be evaluated against Communication Compliance policies conditions.
Microsoft 365 Compliance Center: Communication Compliance now support 7 languages for the Threat, Targeted Harassment and Profanities classifiers70623March CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Communication Compliance can now detect threat, targeted harassment, and profanities in the following languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Italian, Japanese, and Chinese.
Microsoft Teams: Together mode for DoD70625March CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, DoD
Together mode uses AI segmentation technology in meetings to digitally place participants in a shared background, making it feel like you’re sitting in the same room with everyone else.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Audit retention dashboard for government clouds70627March CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Create and manage audit log retention policies within the new Audit retention dashboard in the Microsoft 365 compliance center.
Forms: New Forms Start Page in GCC, GCC-High and DoD80044March CY2021Added: 04 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms, Gov
This update replaces the existing Forms Portal page with a new Forms Start page on Office.com (Office.com – Forms). Users who access forms via Office.com will get this experience first, then users accessing forms via the Forms website will get the experience soon after.
Azure Active Directory: Authenticator Code Match for MFA70617March CY2021Added: 05 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Azure Active Directory
Admins will be able to turn on code match for MFA notifications in Authenticator and apply the behavior by user/group.
Microsoft Teams: New file sharing experience70629February CY2021Added: 05 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Streamline sharing with Microsoft Teams. You can now create a shareable link for any file stored in Teams and directly set the appropriate permissions. Additionally, you can also set permissions for files stored in SharePoint or OneDrive while composing a private chat or starting a channel conversation.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: “Watch-the-watchers” audit trail for Insider Risk Management68921March CY2021Added: 06 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
Audit and review activities of IRM Analyst, IRM Investigator, and IRM Admin roles within the Microsoft 365 Insider Risk Management solution. The audit trail will be available for a new role (IRM Auditor) to maintain integrity of an independent audit control.
Microsoft Teams: Integrated CART Captioning in Meetings70588July CY2021Added: 06 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Users will now be able to view captions coming from a CART provider (real-time captioning) within the Microsoft Teams meeting window. Meeting organizers and participants will be able to ask their captioning providers to stream captions to Microsoft Teams.
SharePoint: Company-Branded Auto News Digest70606March CY2021Added: 06 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
For SharePoint news users, we are launching an update to the Auto-News Digest feature. Now users will receive a company branded Auto-News Digest.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Potential Nation State Activity Alerts70624February CY2021Added: 06 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
Nation state threats are defined as cyber threat activity that originates in a particular country with the apparent intent of furthering national interests. These attacks represent some of the most advanced and persistent threat activity Microsoft tracks. The Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center follows these threats, builds comprehensive profiles of the activity, and works closely with all Microsoft security teams to implement detections and mitigations to protect our customers. We’re adding an alert to the security portal to alert customers when suspected nation-state activity is detected in the tenant.
Outlook: on the web – New location for Outlook modules70628March CY2021Added: 06 February 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Web
We are changing the way you access Mail, Calendar, People, To Do, and other Outlook experiences. We are adding a way to easily access additional Microsoft 365 applications that are available to you.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

In this training, you will learn how to protect your organization’s identities, data, applications, and devices across on-premises, cloud, and mobile – end to-end using the latest tools and guidance. This event covers intermediate to advanced content (level 200-300) and includes the following technologies: Threat Protection, Information Protection, Identify and Access Management, Security Management. In this workshop you will: (1) Increase level of understanding on how Microsoft delivers security across Microsoft 365, (2) Increase knowledge of security features and solutions, and (3) Connect with local technical experts and FastTrack resources.

When: Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 9:00am PT | Please join us for an ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA) on Microsoft Lists – Your smart information tracking app in Microsoft 365 – has several new updates and resources to help you track information, organize work and get things done. An AMA is a one-hour online forum similar to “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. Post any questions or feedback you have about Microsoft Lists for this event in the Microsoft 365 AMA space. The Microsoft Lists experts will be available during the hour to respond. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

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: Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We’re so excited to announce our first-ever Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) for Office Scripts! The AMA will take place on Tuesday, February 16, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Excel AMA space. Add the event to your calendar and view it in your time zone here. During this AMA, you will have the opportunity to share your questions and feedback about Office Scripts and receive responses directly from our product team. Facing trouble with automating on Excel for web? Have an idea that would make our feature better? Let us know- we’re eager to hear and learn from you! Looking forward to seeing you at the AMA.

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.

Leverage the intelligent and integrated Microsoft solutions to help your organization achieve its compliance goals by joining the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Meeting Organizational Compliance Requirements free one day online training session. Level 200-300 (Intermediate to Advanced) content. Technology covered: Data classification, labeling, governance, policy violation remediation, eDiscovery, audit, risk assessment. In this session you will: (1) Learn to use intelligence to identify, protect and govern your important data, (2) Learn to intelligently identify and remediate critical insider threats and risks, (3) Learn how to use the latest eDiscovery and audit capabilities to find relevant data and respond efficiently, and (4) Learn how to simplify and automate IT risk assessment.

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.

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.

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.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Today, organizations spend over $300 billion a year on employee experience. That number includes employee development and training, benefits and wellbeing, and a whole host of employee experience technologies. But too often, these technologies are fragmented, hard to find, and disruptive to the flow of work. As digital tools become more crucial to a great employee experience, business leaders across every industry are embracing the opportunity to learn, and they’re re-evaluating both their spending and their approach. We believe what’s needed is a new approach and a new category of technology solutions called employee experience platforms (EXP). We’re introducing Microsoft Viva, the first EXP built for the digital era. Microsoft Viva brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights into an integrated experience that empowers people and teams to be their best, from anywhere. Powered by the full breadth and depth of Microsoft 365, it is experienced through Microsoft Teams and other Microsoft 365 apps that people use every day.

Related:

We want to make everyone aware of an upcoming change to the default setting for Guests in Microsoft Teams. With the large increase in organizations looking to use Teams to expand collaboration beyond the boundaries of their tenant, we want to make it easier for customers to get started. This has also been announced in Message Center post MC234252. As a result, starting on February 8th we are turning on Guest access in Microsoft Teams by default for any customers who have not already configured this setting. This will bring the control for Teams Guest capability into alignment with the rest of the suite, where the setting is already on by default. When this change is implemented, if you have not already configured Guest access capability in Microsoft Teams, that capability will be enabled in your tenant. With guest access enabled, you can provide access to teams and other resources to people outside your organization while maintaining control over your corporate data. Prior to this change taking effect beginning on February 8th, if you want Guest access to remain disabled for your organization, you will need to confirm that the Guest access setting is set to “Off” instead of “Service default”. Instructions for how to configure the Teams guest access settings can be found here: Teams guest access settings.

Related:

This post includes all the SharePoint and related tech updates that rolled out in January 2021. This is the all-inclusive roadmap release recap for all things SharePoint and related technology. To start the year, January 2021 brought many new offerings: Yammer notifications in Teams, inclusive Yammer reactions, OneDrive settings in SharePoint admin center, 250GB file uploads, Microsoft Lists app for iOS, Lists rules, Lists forms customization, task publishing, and more. All the features listed began rolling out to Targeted Release customers in Office 365 as of January 2021 (possibly early February 2021). | Related: Designing SharePoint sites with beautiful headers

Every day, Windows helps millions of people around the world get their work done. Now, more than ever, Windows is critical to keeping business moving, as organizations look to empower their people by enabling them to work from anywhere. It’s clear that customers need to equip people with devices that enable everyone, across every role in the organization, to do their best work. To do that, we need to empower them to deploy and update from a single dashboard, deliver essential apps to every user, provide secure access to corporate networks and resources, and get the necessary data storage to make it easy for users to access their data from any device. And given their many competing demands, customers need this solution to be cost-effective, secure, and simple to deploy. They need it to work seamlessly with Windows and other tools and experiences—including Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Edge, and OneDrive for Business—that people know and want. And they need it today. That’s why we developed Windows 10 in cloud configuration. Cloud config is a set of recommended configurations that uses the technology infrastructure you already have—Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Windows 10, and apps—to save you time and money while getting your people the right device to get their work done. With cloud config, your users get a familiar Windows interface and productivity apps while your admins get a familiar management experience. All it takes is a Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise PC, Endpoint Manager, and to apply the cloud configuration apps and settings. And in addition to Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Edge, and OneDrive for Business, cloud config gives you the flexibility to securely deploy Win32 and critical line-of-business (LOB) apps either directly to the device or via virtualization.


NOTEWORTHY

In August 2020, we announced that support for the Microsoft Edge Legacy desktop application ends on March 9, 2021. After this date, Microsoft Edge Legacy will no longer receive security updates. To replace this out of support application, we are announcing that the new Microsoft Edge will be available as part of the Windows 10 cumulative monthly security update–otherwise referred to as the Update Tuesday (or “B”) release–on April 13, 2021. When you apply this update to your devices, the out of support Microsoft Edge Legacy desktop application will be removed and the new Microsoft Edge will be installed.

We previously announced we would begin to disable Basic Auth for five Exchange Online protocols in the second half of 2021. Due to the pandemic and the effect it has on priorities and work patterns, we are announcing some important changes to our plan to disable Basic Auth in Exchange Online. Please read this post carefully, as there’s a lot of detail. The first change is that until further notice, we will not be disabling Basic Auth for any protocols that your tenant is using. When we resume this program, we will provide a minimum of twelve months notice before we block the use of Basic Auth on any protocol being used in your tenant. We will continue with our plan to disable Basic Auth for protocols that your tenant is not using. The next change to the previously announced plan is that we are adding MAPI, RPC, and Offline Address Book (OAB) to the protocols included in this effort to further enhance data protection. | Related: Application Access Policy Support in EWS

Eighteen months ago, we announced the July 31, 2021 retirement of Skype for Business Online. With six months until the service ends, we’re focused on helping each of our customers upgrade to Microsoft Teams and enabling more ways to come together and get things done. Skype for Business Online has been a critical communications tool for millions of organizations across the globe. Once customers experience the way Teams brings together chat, calling, meetings and more, they realize the amazing potential to collaborate seamlessly and simplify work in a secure and compliant way. Regardless of where you are on the journey from Skype for Business to Teams, this is an important checkpoint to make sure your organization is on track to upgrade to Teams before Skype for Business Online retires and access to the service ends.

The new Microsoft Lists grid view is now available worldwide, including SharePoint lists and libraries that share the same technology platform in Microsoft 365. With simple, inline experiences, you can quickly update your information or add new items easily. Features like drag to fill, undo/redo, new field editors (text, date, people, yes/no, choice), and copy/paste make grid view the best place to get your information, quickly and organized. We’ll cover all new features and capabilities in this post – including screenshots and links to learn more, starting with an in-depth demo video to showcase all the goodness our Lists engineers have been working on and refining.

What’s the one essential you’d go back home for if forgotten? Maybe it’s your mask. But also, your mobile phone, right? Your personal organizer, your digital wallet, your instant camera—your mobile device has become the most essential tool you use to stay connected to the people and things that are important at home, at the office, and everywhere in between. It has evolved from being a companion to your desktop computer to being your personal, daily companion. We’ve explored the evolving needs of people’s mobility and connectivity and we are announcing a number of new Microsoft 365 mobile-first capabilities that help people bring balance to their day. This includes organizing and transforming their physical world such as documents, photos, and live-action video into digital assets, and offer secure ways to help protect sensitive information. | Related: Start a conversation with your personal productivity assistant in Outlook with Cortana

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-04

Welcome to the January 25 – 31, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty-three features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Exchange, Microsoft 365 Compliance Center, Microsoft Defender for Office 365, and Microsoft Information Protection.

There are a few new events, with two “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) sessions – Lists on February 11th, and Office Scripts on February 16th. The third event is the “Reimagine the Employee Experience” event with Satya Nadella and Jared Spataro on Thursday, February 4th at 6am Pacific. Note: This is also the spotlight event of the week. It does appear that all of the standard meeting series now have the full February schedules posted.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include details on what’s new in Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams in January 2021, the centralization of OneDrive settings into the SharePoint admin center, and 5 identity priorities for 2021 to strengthen security for the hybrid work era and beyond.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items on recent visual updates for Microsoft Planner, forms and rules configuration in Microsoft Lists, information on how companies are securing devices with Zero Trust practices, and recent updates for hybrid MFA and hybrid identity.


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
Excel: Track tasks with @mentions49291March CY2021Added: 26 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Excel
Use @mentions in comments to create, assign and track tasks within your workbook.
Forms: Shorten URL when sending Forms to collect responses75243February CY2021Added: 26 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
In Microsoft Forms, you can now choose to use a shorter URL in some scenarios directly, enabling the responders easier to type and access the link for specific situations.
Office 365: Admins can choose to allow users to self-select their Office Update channel79809February CY2021Added: 26 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365
This feature will allow an admin to enable the user to self-select the Office channel within the Office client, resulting in an immediate change on the user’s device. Starting with the February 2021 update to the Office ADMX templates there is a new policy called ‘Show the option for the Office Update Channel experience’. It can be found in the ‘Computer Configuration/Administrative Templates/Microsoft Office 2016 (Machine)/Miscellaneous’ and ‘User Configuration/Administrative Templates/Microsoft Office 2016/Miscellaneous’ nodes.
SharePoint: Simplified MUI editing for multilingual communication sites79847March CY2021Added: 26 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
This new feature allows the same user, with the right permissions, to update site navigation, site title, site description and site footer in all the languages enabled in your communication site.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Enhancements to Spoof Intelligence70590March CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
Spoof intelligence experience for Security Admins will introduce enhancements so that Admins can setup spoof configurations, manage spoof allow/block lists for a tenant, review insights provided by spoof intelligence and view/export detailed spoof detections report. This feature provides a clearer, easier way for Security Admins to manage ability for a sending infrastructure to be able to spoof a particular domain or a user (email address) for both Cross-Org (External) and Intra-Org (Internal) email messages using “Spoof intelligence tenant allow/block list overrides policy.” As a Security Admin, you can view, add, update, delete spoofed domain pairs using this Policy or optionally using the PowerShell cmdlet.
Microsoft Defender for Office 365: Allowing URLs and Files with Tenant Allow/Block List70591June CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Office 365
One of the ways EOP protects customers is by blocking malicious attachments, URLs, and certain senders from reaching end users. We also understand that from time to time, customers may have special needs to block something on their own that our filters might find to be not malicious. In order to provide a way for our customers to do this at time of click and during mail flow, we’re developing a portal to help you self-serve and do it yourself. This portal will give admins the opportunity to explicitly allow or block attachments, URLs, senders and even certain recipients in your Office 365 tenant. This phase of this rollout enables explicitly allowing files and URLs.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Microsoft Compliance Manager general availability for DoD70592March CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance, DoD
Compliance Manager is the next generation of the existing Compliance Manager and Compliance Score solutions, which have been in commercial public preview since November 2019. With Compliance Manager, you will benefit from intuitive end-to-end compliance management, a vast out-of-the-box assessment template library and built-in automation to scale your compliance across global, industrial, and regional standards.
Microsoft Teams: Meetings – Live Captions in additional languages70593July CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Today, Teams meetings live captions is available for English. We will enable live captions in additional spoken languages such as German, French, Spanish, Japanese, Brazilian Portuguese, and Dutch.
Microsoft Information Protection: Granular conditional access policies via “Sensitivity Labels” for SharePoint Online sites70594June CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Admins will have the ability to use Azure AD conditional access policies to trigger multi-factor authentication (MFA), device and location policies on a specific SharePoint site collection based by simply attaching CA policies to a label. Then these labels can be applied to Sites and now users access these sites will have to go through the CA policies in order to gain access.
Exchange Online: Label for external email messages received70595February CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange Online
Exchange will make available a PowerShell cmdlet so that admins can enable the protections against spam & phishing threats from external senders. This will be achieved by presenting a new label on emails called “External” in the message list in Outlook on the web and, in some Outlook clients, a “mail tip” at the top of the reading pane with sender’s email address.
Microsoft Teams: Share to Microsoft Teams from Outlook70598March CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Send a copy of email messages or conversations, including attachments, into Teams chats and channels or start a Teams chat related to a specific email message. Share to Teams supports Outlook on the web, Outlook for Windows, and the new Outlook for Mac Preview.
Microsoft Teams: Anonymous Presenter Support for Live Events70599March CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
You may allow an anonymous user who does not have and MSA or AAD identity to be a presenter in your live event.
Microsoft Information Protection: AIP client and scanner data available in Audit and Activity explorer70600February CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Azure Information Protection (AIP) customers can now access data in Microsoft 365 compliance center Audit logs and Activity explorer, in addition to the AIP Analytics portal. This means that all data logged via AIP client and AIP scanner can be witnessed along with the rest of the Microsoft Information Protection (MIP) and Data Loss Prevention (DLP) data sets from native Office apps and other cloud resources.
Microsoft Teams: Walkie Talkie for GCC70601March CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
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 Android smartphones and tablets into a walkie-talkie, reducing the number of devices employees must carry and lowering costs for IT.
Microsoft Teams: Get a “Meet Now” Meeting link70602February CY2021Added: 28 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Users can now copy a “Meet Now” meeting link without starting the meeting from the Calendar tab which can be used later.
Office 365: Dictation improvements in Word and Outlook including voice commands70596March CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365 (Outlook , Word)
Dictation has new UI and settings to control a profanity filter and automatic punctuation. Voice commands make editing and formatting your dictated text easier than ever.
Microsoft Teams: Virtual Breakout Rooms for GCC-High70604February CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC-High
Meeting hosts can create breakout rooms to be used by meeting participants for smaller group discussion. They can assign participants to a room and call them back to the larger group when the breakout is complete.
SharePoint Syntex: Document understanding model – extractors position awareness70605February CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint Syntex
An explanation enhancement to specify document region where an entity may appear in a content understanding model.
OneDrive: 64-bit OneDrive (Public Preview)70694March CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
A preview of 64-bit OneDrive is now available for download. It will only be supported on AMD64-based devices.
OneDrive: 64-bit OneDrive70695March CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
OneDrive is now available as a 64-bit install for AMD64-based devices.
Office 365: Dictation improvements in Word for Mac including voice commands79976March CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Word – Mac
Dictation has new UI and settings to control a profanity filter and automatic punctuation. Voice commands make editing and formatting your dictated text easier than ever.
Office 365: Dictation improvements in Outlook for Mac including voice commands79977April CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Mac
Dictation has new UI and settings to control a profanity filter and automatic punctuation. Voice commands make editing and formatting your dictated text easier than ever.
Outlook for Windows: New location for key Outlook modules68205March CY2021Added: 29 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Windows
The main modules in Outlook such as email, calendar, tasks and people are moving to a new app bar on the left of the folder pane. You can customize the app bar by pinning preferred Outlook and Microsoft 365 apps. This change can be previewed with the return of the Coming Soon toggle.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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: Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 6:00am PT | Please join us, Satya Nadella and Jared Spataro to discover our commitment to empower people and teams be their best at the Reimagine the Employee Experience digital event. See new ways to bring together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights with everyday work. Visit Microsoft 365 Twitter on Thursday, February 4 at 9:00 AM Eastern Time for a link to the digital event.

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.

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.

In this training, you will learn how to protect your organization’s identities, data, applications, and devices across on-premises, cloud, and mobile – end to-end using the latest tools and guidance. This event covers intermediate to advanced content (level 200-300) and includes the following technologies: Threat Protection, Information Protection, Identify and Access Management, Security Management. In this workshop you will: (1) Increase level of understanding on how Microsoft delivers security across Microsoft 365, (2) Increase knowledge of security features and solutions, and (3) Connect with local technical experts and FastTrack resources.

When: Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 9:00am PT | Please join us for an ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA) on Microsoft Lists – Your smart information tracking app in Microsoft 365 – has several new updates and resources to help you track information, organize work and get things done. An AMA is a one-hour online forum similar to “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. Post any questions or feedback you have about Microsoft Lists for this event in the Microsoft 365 AMA space. The Microsoft Lists experts will be available during the hour to respond. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

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: Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 9:00am PT | We’re so excited to announce our first-ever Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) for Office Scripts! The AMA will take place on Tuesday, February 16, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT in the Excel AMA space. Add the event to your calendar and view it in your time zone here. During this AMA, you will have the opportunity to share your questions and feedback about Office Scripts and receive responses directly from our product team. Facing trouble with automating on Excel for web? Have an idea that would make our feature better? Let us know- we’re eager to hear and learn from you! Looking forward to seeing you at the AMA.

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.

Leverage the intelligent and integrated Microsoft solutions to help your organization achieve its compliance goals by joining the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Meeting Organizational Compliance Requirements free one day online training session. Level 200-300 (Intermediate to Advanced) content. Technology covered: Data classification, labeling, governance, policy violation remediation, eDiscovery, audit, risk assessment. In this session you will: (1) Learn to use intelligence to identify, protect and govern your important data, (2) Learn to intelligently identify and remediate critical insider threats and risks, (3) Learn how to use the latest eDiscovery and audit capabilities to find relevant data and respond efficiently, and (4) Learn how to simplify and automate IT risk assessment.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

If this year has taught business leaders anything, it’s that people make all the difference. And from experiences that make it easier for everyone to engage in large meetings to partnerships that enable frontline workers, we are committed to helping our customers use technology to unleash the power of their people. New announcements in Microsoft Teams make it easy for everyone to engage in large meetings, help connect organizations, empower frontline retail workers, and more. New capabilities help make it easier to prioritize and organize tasks, access lists on the go, and use custom functions in Microsoft Excel workbooks. Application Guard, which helps desktop users stay safer and more productive by opening Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint files in a virtualized container, is now generally available for everyone with Microsoft E5 or E5 Security subscriptions.

Related:

This blog post outlines all the great Teams features released in January 2021, including Approvals in Teams, Offline autosend, meeting chat moderation settings, add a shared calendar to a Teams channel, Microsoft Teams Secure Score recommendation, Task publishing feature in Tasks for Teams, and many, many more!

Related:

As we continue to power innovative experiences across Microsoft 365, we also realized that now, more than ever, admins need increased centralized control over content across the organization. Aligning to our coherence and modernization efforts, we are working hard to unify these experiences by bringing consistent design, naming conventions, look and feel to enable a smoother admin experience across the Microsoft 365 admin suite. And today we’re happy to announce that the OneDrive and SharePoint admin centers are converging into one, giving you holistic control and streamlining the admin experience. With the new integrated admin center, you can manage everything at an organizational level all in one place: control internal and external sharing, set user access controls, manage default storage limits, enable user device notifications, specify retention policies, and manage sync controls for OneDrive. We’ve also improved the user interface to provide a more consistent experience and support Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 compliance, enhanced reporting, and added the Global Reader admin role, which provides a read-only view of SharePoint admin center. When you assign the Global Reader role to an admin, they can view—but not edit—all administrative features and settings in all Microsoft 365 admin centers, which helps you delegate admin responsibilities more efficiently.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed how organizations run their businesses. It’s also changed the way we work, learn, and collaborate. What hasn’t changed is the critical role identity plays in helping organizations to be secure and productive. Identity has grown at an unprecedented pace—from 300 million monthly active users (MAU) in March 2020 to 425 million today. Organizations around the world have accelerated the adoption of security and collaboration apps. But behind these numbers are stories of customers like you, working tirelessly to help your organizations stay ahead. Our 2021 recommendations will help you strengthen your identity and security foundations for the long term, so you can be ready for whatever comes next. | Related: Why operational resilience will be key in 2021, and how this impacts cybersecurity


NOTEWORTHY

If you’re like us, crossing a completed task off your list gives you a boost. The simple, visual act of striking that to-do is both satisfying and energizing. You did it and you can do it again. That’s exactly why we introduced confetti animation in Planner last year: that burst of color represents pride in your completed work and offers motivation to finish the work ahead. It’s also why we’re excited to announce even more visual cues to help you do the same, all of which are now available in both the Planner web app and the Tasks app in Teams. These include: (1) A checklist progress bar, (2) Confetti animation for completed tasks, and (3) Confetti animation for a completed checklist.

Going beyond the out-of-box experience doesn’t always require coding or separate tools. With Microsoft Lists, you can further customize forms and notifications with a few clicks, or a copy/paste of JSON code. Both capabilities are now rolling out into Microsoft 365. Create simple if/then rules, based on changes to list information, to set reminders and send notifications. Users with edit permissions on the list can create and manage rules. Users with read-only permissions can’t create or manage rules. Once the feature is available to your users, they’ll be able to create a rule by selecting Automate and then Create a rule in the list command bar near the top of the page. | Related: New Microsoft Lists adoption center

Organizations are seeing a substantial increase in the diversity of devices accessing their networks. With employees using personal devices and accessing corporate resources from new locations in record numbers, IT leaders are seeing an increase in their attack surface area. They’re turning to Zero Trust security models to ensure they have the visibility they need, and their data is protected as its accessed from outside the corporate network using a wider variety of devices. We surveyed IT leaders around the world to determine how they’re using Zero Trust practices to protect their devices and enable access to the corporate network from unsecured devices.

It’s never been more important to enforce MFA. As part of our efforts to make hybrid MFA deployments simpler and more secure, we’ll be updating empty authentication numbers with users’ public phone numbers if those numbers are being used for MFA. Starting February 1, 2021, for synced users who are using public profile numbers for MFA, Microsoft will copy the public number to users’ corresponding authentication number. Once the authentication number is populated, the MFA service will call that authentication number, instead of the public number. Microsoft will copy subsequent changes to the public number over to the authentication number until May 1, 2021 (except deletions of the public number).

We continue to hear from you that hybrid identity is as important as ever, even as more apps move to the cloud. In Azure AD, our key hybrid identity tool is Azure AD Connect. This comes in two flavors based on your use case needs: Azure AD Connect sync which lives on-premises, and Azure AD Connect cloud sync which is powered by the cloud. We are constantly improving these capabilities based on your feedback, to make it easier to deploy and configure while also improving security, scale and throughput. We’re announcing Azure AD Connect cloud sync is generally available! This was formerly known as Azure AD Connect cloud provisioning during its preview. We have also made significant updates to our classic Azure AD Connect sync tool with improved scale and performance. Azure AD Connect cloud sync is the future of our hybrid identity sync capabilities. It moves all the heavy-lifting of the transform logic to the cloud. It also reduces the on-premises footprint with light-weight agents that can be distributed for enterprise-grade availability. Customers can deploy this either standalone, or even alongside Azure AD connect sync. When deployed together, it allows you to connect disconnected AD forests that arise from merger and acquisition or remote office location scenarios.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-03

Welcome to the January 18 – 24, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were seventeen additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Exchange, Microsoft 365 Compliance Center, Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, and Microsoft Information Protection.

The “Microsoft 365 Defender: Protect, Detect, and Respond to Solorigate using Microsoft 365 Defender” session on Thursday, January 28th at 11am Pacific, is the only brand new event. There were new sessions added for some of the existing meeting series. This week’s spotlight event is the “Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Meeting Organizational Compliance Requirements” training on Tuesday, January 26th from 10am – 2pm Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include tips for safe online meetings and collaboration with Microsoft Teams, details on automatic email forwarding in Exchange Online, information on how IT leaders are securing identities with Zero Trust, and several deployment acceleration guides for Microsoft 365 Information Protection and Compliance.

Noteworthy items highlights include the availability of the Groups feature in the new Exchange Admin Center, updates for Yammer Reactions to make them more inclusive, information on the Microsoft Lists app for iOS, and details on an internal PowerApps “Release Planner” app used internally by Microsoft product teams.


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 365 Compliance center: Information governance – Auto-labeling of cloud attachments70580June CY2021Added: 19 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update enables organizations to automatically apply retention labels to the version of files shared as cloud attachments, which are live links of SharePoint or OneDrive content that can be shared via emails or Teams messages.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Information governance – Retention policies for Microsoft Teams private channels70582March CY2021Added: 19 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update enables organizations to apply an organization-wide retention policy on Teams private channel messages.
SharePoint: Scenario-Based Site Templates70574March CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
Use scenario-based site templates that leverage existing SharePoint capabilities (e.g. pages, lists, libraries, branding) to build your own sites faster and get inspired.
OneDrive: Sync Client support for DWG file Version History70575March CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
We’re updating OneDrive Sync client to support Version History for DWG files. This change fixes a known issue where Version History is missing for DWG files backed by Sync client.
Exchange: OAuth Client Credential Flow support for POP/IMAP70577July CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Exchange
Adding support for the Client Credential OAuth flow to the POP and IMAP protocols in Exchange Online.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Information governance – Adaptive retention policies (Public Preview)70578June CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update allows admins to create retention policies scoped to geography, department, or other user or site attribute. For example, admins can create a policy specifically for users in the UK’s human resources team by leveraging the adaptive policy scope.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Information governance – Multi-stage disposition review70579June CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update allows organizations to use a multi-stage disposition process, including multiple stakeholders and reviews before deleting the content.
Microsoft 365 Compliance center: Information governance – Yammer retention70581March CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update enables organizations to apply retention policies on Yammer messages.
Microsoft 365 Compliance center: Advanced Audit – Mail attachments event70584June CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update adds a new audit event that specifies if a mail attachment was accessed by the user.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Advanced Audit – Teams reactions on messages70585June CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
See new audit activity related to Teams reactions on messages.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Advanced eDiscovery – Hold optimizations70586June CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance
This update provides various service optimizations for Advanced eDiscovery, including hold reliability and limits increase.
Microsoft Information Protection: Microsoft Teams location picker supports security groups and distribution lists (GCC)70587February CY2021Added: 21 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
Data loss prevention (DLP) for Microsoft Teams will now support security groups and distribution lists as part of the Teams location picker, enabling more granular control of DLP policy scope (i.e. to include/exclude particular departments, business units, geo-specific security groups, etc.).
SharePoint: App Bar70576March CY2021Added: 22 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
The SharePoint app bar brings a consistent navigation experience to every site on your intelligent intranet, featuring quick access to important sites across the organization with global navigation, personally relevant sites, and the news feed.
Teams: 2×2 video in Gallery view for web meetings in Edge and Chrome browsers70589February CY2021Added: 22 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Gallery view now can show up to 4 participant videos during a meeting in Edge or Chrome browser.
Microsoft Defender for Endpoint: Threat and vulnerability management for macOS70691January CY2021Added: 22 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
Software vulnerability assessment are available for macOS. The same familiar insights are available as for Windows devices in the recommendations, software inventory, weaknesses, and other dashboards.
Microsoft Teams: Align the experience creating a team from different Teams interfaces70696February CY2021Added: 22 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Align the experience for Teams creation in Teams Admin Center to the experience in creating a team in the Teams client.
Microsoft Teams: Moving all PowerShell work items under ITPro-PowerShell70697February CY2021Added: 22 January 2021
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Migrate from ADAL to MSAL – Moving all PowerShell work items under ITPro-PowerShell.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Determine the most suitable approach based on your current Skype for Business implementation and upgrade goals. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand common scenarios and upgrade approaches, (2) Visualize the user experience for each approach, and (3) Determine the optimal upgrade approach for your organization.  IT Admins are the primary audience for this session.

Design a user readiness strategy to help your users love and adopt Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Recognize factors that influence user acceptance and adoption, (2) Define core value messaging for Teams in your organization, and (3) Outline your awareness, training and support activities. The audience for this session is: User Readiness/Change Manager.

Leverage the intelligent and integrated Microsoft solutions to help your organization achieve its compliance goals by joining the Microsoft 365 Virtual Training Day: Meeting Organizational Compliance Requirements free one day online training session. Level 200-300 (Intermediate to Advanced) content. Technology covered: Data classification, labeling, governance, policy violation remediation, eDiscovery, audit, risk assessment. In this session you will: (1) Learn to use intelligence to identify, protect and govern your important data, (2) Learn to intelligently identify and remediate critical insider threats and risks, (3) Learn how to use the latest eDiscovery and audit capabilities to find relevant data and respond efficiently, and (4) Learn how to simplify and automate IT risk assessment.

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.

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.

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.

Execute your defined upgrade approach as part of your formal upgrade plan. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Recognize the upgrade settings in your O365 tenant admin portal, (2) Understand technical tips and considerations for a successful upgrade, and (3) Apply the appropriate settings in the Portal to execute your upgrade. The primary audience for this session is IT Admins.

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: Thursday, January 28, 2021 at 11:00am PT | Microsoft security researchers continue to investigate and respond to the sophisticated cyberattack known as Solorigate involving a supply chain compromise and the subsequent compromise of cloud assets. Will review how M365 Defender can detect the various stages of Solorigate and help you formulate your response plan.

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.

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.

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.

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.

In this training, you will learn how to protect your organization’s identities, data, applications, and devices across on-premises, cloud, and mobile – end to-end using the latest tools and guidance. This event covers intermediate to advanced content (level 200-300) and includes the following technologies: Threat Protection, Information Protection, Identify and Access Management, Security Management. In this workshop you will: (1) Increase level of understanding on how Microsoft delivers security across Microsoft 365, (2) Increase knowledge of security features and solutions, and (3) Connect with local technical experts and FastTrack resources.

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.

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.

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.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Remote and hybrid work has become the new norm for many employees across the globe as day-to-day collaboration continues to be accomplished virtually. With this shift to online communication, how can you ensure that you’re collaborating safely? Queue Microsoft Teams! Whether you’re hosting virtual meetings, carrying out daily group and 1:1 chat, sharing documents, or coauthoring in a document in real-time – Teams enables safe and secure collaboration! This post outlines seven tips for safe online meetings and collaboration with Microsoft Teams.

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We realize that many customers have genuine business requirements to configure automatic email forwarding. On the other hand, email forwarding may lead to data leakage. For example, if we have a compromised account, the attacker might create a forwarding rule for a particular mailbox, and the user might be unaware that their mail is being forwarded. This is a very common tactic used when accounts are compromised. It is therefore important for administrators to know all mailboxes that have forwarding enabled and where the mail is been forwarded to. We have various insights and alerts that help administrators monitor such activities, but prevention is always better than the cure. In this blog post, we thought to revisit (and update) various auto forward controls, how they work together and how they can help you achieve a requirement of allowing automatic forwarding for users who really need this feature.

The past twelve months have been a remarkable time of digital transformation as organizations, and especially digital security teams, adapt to working remotely and shifting business operations. IT leaders everywhere turned to Zero Trust approaches to alleviate the challenges of enabling and securing remote work. Using Zero Trust to secure users, data, and devices (wherever they may be) has changed from optional to a business imperative overnight. In this short report, we surveyed IT leaders around the world to determine how they’re implementing Zero Trust practices to protect their identities and ensure their employees have secure access to resources. | Related: Using Zero Trust principles to protect against sophisticated attacks like Solorigate

The guides can be used both independently, but we recommend using all the solutions together for your deployment needs. We are not recommending one solution be implemented before another but have included information in each guide to tie all the solutions together with features to consider during your implementation. The guide covers current released feature as of today and will be updated once additional features progress from beta, or private preview to general availability. In summary, the deployment guides include: (1) One Compliance Story covering how to each solution features complement each, (2) Best Practices based on the team’s experience with customer roadblocks, (3) Considerations to take and research before starting your deployment, (4) Help Resources links to additional readings and topics to gain a deeper understanding, and (5) An appendix for additional information on licensing.


NOTEWORTHY

Continuing on our path to release the new EAC, we wanted to tell you that the Groups feature is now available. The experience is modern, improved, and fast. Administrators can now create and manage all 4 types of groups (Microsoft 365 group, Distribution list, Mail-enabled Security group and Dynamic distribution list) from the new portal. We wanted to call out some improvements in Groups experience in the new EAC when compared with classic EAC.

We believe that Yammer, a tool that connects people and helps build communities, has an important role to play for a sense of belonging and inclusion. And we don’t want to simply build for inclusivity, we want to celebrate it. Recently Yammer introduced reactions, and next, we want to bring diverse skin tones to Yammer reactions. We want users to feel a deeper sense of representation when interacting with the new Yammer. Once you select your skin tone (settings available both on web and mobile!), you can react quickly without having to decide every time you reply! Yammer will be the first of the Microsoft 365 products to offer inclusive reactions. We are excited to lead the charge with other product groups at Microsoft in keeping inclusivity at the center of everything we do.

Microsoft Lists is a Microsoft 365 app that helps you track information and organize your work. They are simple, smart, and flexible, so you can stay on top of what matters most to your team. And now you can track issues, assets, routines, contacts, inventory and more to keep everyone in sync from anywhere while on the go with a personalized, mobile-first experience. The Microsoft Lists app for iOS provides access to the lists you own and that have been shared with you. You can create new lists, edit list items, and easily share with other people. While sipping coffee – create an Issue tracker list. In the passenger’s seat zipping from place to place – share a link to the session item from a conference in the Event itinerary list. Or standing in a grocery line waiting to check out – update the status of an item based on information from a team chat. Work and information management don’t have to stop when you’re on the go.

Business leaders know the importance of streamlining product releases and updates. Many organizations suffer from disorganized release cycles lacking automated reviews, approvals, notifications and standardization. What is needed is a centralized location for all update and release related actions and communications. Whether you have an internal software development team or produce software for use outside your organization, you will benefit from considering a Power Apps solution to track your updates and releases. A team at Microsoft recently built a low code app to efficiently coordinate hundreds of their own product features. They went from collecting manual input from three hundred product managers to developing one Power Apps app as a central location for release plans. This Power Apps app was so successful that the team released it as a free, open source for the benefit of you and your business. This app is now used internally in Microsoft by six hundred active users every month.