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 | 2021-23

Welcome to the June 7 – 13, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were forty-six additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Microsoft 365 Compliance, Exchange, Planner, OneDrive, Stream, Lists, and Viva.

No new events have been listed, but there are additional sessions for most of the existing event series. There are some event series that only have on-demand sessions available, and these are all listed at the top of the section. This week’s spotlight event of the week is the “Empower your Frontline workforce to do more with Teams” session on Tuesday, June 15th at 11am Pacific.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include an inside look at how Microsoft is reimagining meetings for a hybrid work world, information and resources to get started on Microsoft Viva Learning, the announcement on bringing Visio to Microsoft 365, and details on how Microsoft is working to ensure a great OneDrive experience on Apple products.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items such as the June 2021 feature updates for Workplace Analytics, the announcement of the ability to import Project desktop files into Project for the web, a look at three new voice features for Outlook mobile on iOS, details on Scheduler, a new Microsoft 365 service, and the public preview of Azure AD access reviews for service principals.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

There were forty-six additions to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Microsoft 365 Compliance, Exchange, Planner, OneDrive, Stream, Lists, and Viva.

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 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 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.

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.

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 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 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.

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.

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.

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.

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

Join us to learn how to 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.

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.

Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA): Microsoft Viva

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.

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

When 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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

One of the most challenging aspects of leading the Employee Experience team at Microsoft is the deployment, maintenance, and support of thousands of conference rooms around the globe. Since employees often encounter different conference room technology—even within the same building—it can lead to frustration, delay, and even support calls. As a result, employees have consistently identified that experience as an area for improvement. With the advent of Microsoft Teams and the amazing innovation being driven by the product team, we saw an opportunity to transform Microsoft employee and customer meetings from a weakness to a strength. By investing in the meeting experience with Microsoft Teams and by reimagining the physical and virtual spaces where meetings take place, we’re laying a foundation of innovation that will help Microsoft employees and our customers thrive in the emerging hybrid world of work. We’ve already seen satisfaction with meetings increase, while also making the migration to hybrid work more seamless for Microsoft and for our customers. How are we doing it? Read on to find out!

In May, we launched a new Microsoft Mechanics series on Microsoft Viva with an introduction to the employee experience platform (EXP), followed by deep dive videos on Viva Topics and Viva Connections. On the latest episode of Microsoft Mechanics, Jeremy Chapman, our Microsoft Mechanics host, and Swati Jhawar, Senior Product Manager, are excited to dive into Viva Learning to cover the personal and social learning experiences, as well as the IT admin experience for set up and configuration. Viva Learning is currently in preview, with general availability coming later this year. | Resource: Microsoft Mechanics – Microsoft Viva Learning | Personalized learning experience through Microsoft 365

Visio has long been available only as a standalone app for purchase for people with specialized diagramming needs. But this is changing. We are recognizing an increasing need for a diagramming solution for everyone to convey information more effectively, which is why we’re excited to announce that we’ll be bringing core Visio capabilities to Microsoft 365 for all commercial license subscribers. In July, we’ll start rolling out a lightweight version of the Visio web app in Microsoft 365 to bring visual diagramming and collaboration to all teams—both of which are especially important in this hybrid work environment. But the best part? It’ll be available, at no additional cost, for all commercial license subscribers. This lightweight version of the web app will offer core Visio functionalities and allow business users to create, edit, and share professional diagrams. While users with more specialized diagramming needs will continue to derive value from the standalone plans—Visio Plan 1 and Visio Plan 2—the web app in Microsoft 365 subscription is intended to be a powerful tool for essential needs. It will soon be available in your Microsoft 365 suite, but if you can’t wait to get started, then we invite you to sign up for Visio in Microsoft 365 early access. Let’s take a closer look at how this Visio web app in Microsoft 365 can help teams everywhere create professional diagrams effortlessly, collaborate with others and share diagrams seamlessly, and create diagrams from data to make decisions quickly.

As hybrid and remote work continue, many organizations are giving employees flexibility to choose not only where they work but also the devices they use to get work done. We have been working closely with Apple to ensure we’re providing a great user experience in OneDrive on Apple products, whether people are using OneDrive to keep their work files synced and protected or to store and share their personal files and photos in the cloud. We’re excited to share some of the updates and improvements we’re in the process of making to OneDrive running on Apple products to help people be more productive no matter where they are. These updates and improvements include: (1) OneDrive support for M1-powered Macs, (2) Known Folder Move (KFM) support for macOS, (3) Updates to Files On-Demand and Finder on macOS, (4) Sync Admin Reports support for macOS, (5) Exclude syncing of specific file types, and more.


NOTEWORTHY

The Workplace Analytics team is excited to announce our feature updates for June 2021. This month’s update describes the following features: (1) Expanded support for plans, (2) Updated wpa R package, (3) Organizational Network Analysis (ONA) updates, (4) Organization data uploads for licensed employees, and (5) Expanded support for mailboxes in datacenters globally.

The Project team is excited to announce that you can now import your Project Desktop files to Project for the web. Once imported, your .mpp files will act as normal Project for the web projects. Project for the web does not have all the same features as Project Desktop. However, we try to import all your relevant information so you can still effectively work on your projects. Any .mpp files from Project Desktop 2016 or later should be importable into Project for the web. Keep in mind that Project for the web has lower limits than Project Desktop. To learn more about Project for the web limits, you can check out our documentation. Any .mpp files that violate a limit will not be importable.

At Microsoft, we’re investing in voice capabilities that transcend the challenges of small screens and tiny keyboards to help people communicate and manage tasks when they’re working on the go. We’re powering these capabilities with Microsoft Graph, which aggregates and organizes billions of signals across your organization as people work in Microsoft 365 all day. And the true magic happens when we layer AI on top of the Graph to get really valuable insights, so that when you use your voice to do things like request “the 2022 budget report” or “email Kim’s boss” the correct document or name appears in a snap. We are announcing new enhanced voice capabilities in Outlook mobile for iOS (and coming soon to Android) that make using voice to schedule meetings and compose emails simpler for everyone. These new AI-enhanced voice capabilities quickly contextualize your voice requests and provide a rapid response, making it more easy and natural to work on the go. Let’s take a look. | Related: Introducing Microsoft Dictation for iOS

It’s not just you: weekly meetings have increased by 148% and the time that employees spend trying to schedule meetings both inside and outside of their organization is climbing.  With the average time to schedule a meeting taking 6 to 29 minutes, Scheduler aims to give you back time to focus on the important things by making it easier, faster, and being available 24/7 to schedule meetings for you, and it’s available now. Let’s dig into what makes Scheduler work. Scheduler understands what you write, so you can word your requests to Cortana just as you would when asking any person for assistance scheduling a meeting in an email. As simple as “Cortana, please find a time to meet next week,” to something more detailed like “Cortana, please find us 45 minutes in the last week of the month in the morning for Pacific time and make it a Teams meeting.” As Scheduler learns, you may receive responses from Cortana asking you to clarify certain asks or to provide more details in order to complete your request.

With the growing trend of more applications and services moving to the cloud, there’s an increasing need to improve the governance of identities used by these workloads. We’re announcing the public preview of access reviews for service principals in Azure AD. Many of you are already using Azure AD access reviews for governing the access of your user accounts and have expressed the desire for extending this capability to your service principals and applications. With this public preview, you can require a review of service principals and applications that are assigned to privileged directory roles in Azure AD. In addition, you can also create reviews of roles in your Azure subscriptions to which a service principal is assigned. This ensures a periodic check to make sure that service principals are only assigned to roles they need and helps you improve the security posture of your environment.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-21

Welcome to the May 24 – 30, 2021 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

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

There is one new event – an Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) session for Microsoft Viva on Wednesday, June 23rd. A few new sessions for existing event series have also been added. This week’s spotlight event of the week is the Microsoft Virtual Security and Compliance Summit on Thursday, June 3rd from 9am – 12pm Pacific.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a look at what’s new in Microsoft Teams for May 2021, information on what’s new in Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise in April/May 2021, a video walkthrough on how to implement Microsoft Viva Connections, details on improvements to shared calendars in Outlook for Windows, and lots of resources for accelerating your Zero Trust journey.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items such as the general availability of Office Scripts, information on how Microsoft enables multi-cloud compliance, new Conversation Insights in Yammer, the public preview of Conditional Access authentication context, and details on Data Consistency Score (DCS) for Office 365 migrations.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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 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.

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.

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.

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.

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

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

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.

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.

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.

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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Welcome to What’s new in Teams for May! We are excited to share all the features and innovation that we have made available in Microsoft Teams in the last month. Before we get to the updates, this week at Microsoft Build 2021, we announced several new capabilities and tools for developers. These are designed to help you build the next generation of collaborative apps for hybrid work using Microsoft Teams. Now, let’s check out all the new features such as: (1) Dynamic View, (2) Presenter mode, (3) Large meeting support, (4) Custom attendee registration, (5) New Calling experiences, (6) Group chat with external users, (7) Microsoft Viva Insights, and many more!

Related:

In this month’s edition of the What’s New blog, we’re excited to share news regarding the availability of Microsoft Office Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC), OneDrive Admin Sync Reports (ADR), and updated Configuration Manager ADRs. We also point you to the latest admin-focused Microsoft Docs articles for Microsoft 365, as well as Amesh Mansukhani’s appearance on two new videos on the Office Deployment Insider’s YouTube channel and an interview on the Practical 365 Podcast!

We’re in the midst of our Microsoft Mechanics series on Microsoft Viva, the first employee experience platform (EXP) built for the digital era. In our last video, we dove into Viva Topics, which delivers company knowledge and expertise in the context of your work. Today, we’re taking a look at Viva Connections. The Microsoft Mechanics video walks through the user experience, as well as the steps for IT admins to setup and implement the module, including options for personalizing information sharing by role. You can start using Viva Connections now on Teams desktop as we continue to work on delivering the mobile experience and Dashboard capabilities later this year. Get started by building your SharePoint home site with global navigation enabled, adding Yammer Communities and modern pages, and connect Viva Connections to your Teams environment. This is Part Three of our Microsoft Mechanics video series about Microsoft Viva. If you’d like more information on Viva in the meantime, head over to aka.ms/Viva.

It is with great excitement that we are announcing that we have graduated the shared calendar improvements in Outlook for Windows out of preview! This new shared calendar experience dramatically improves the reliability and sync latency for shared calendars & delegated calendars in all Outlook clients. The improvements have been released in Outlook on the web, the new Outlook for Mac, and mobile for a while now, and we’re excited that Outlook for Windows is now enabled as well. Right now, about 10% of Outlook for Windows users in Current Channel with version 2103 have been enabled for those improvements, and we’ll keep expanding gradually throughout the spring and summer. This is one of those improvements that should be invisible because it eliminates issues but doesn’t change the core product functionality. Calendars will sync faster, and we have eliminated any reliability issues when managing a calendar. Delegates might only notice that things are smoother but no specific, obvious changes.

For many organizations, 2020 was the year that finally saw remote work become a reality on a global scale. As many people begin transitioning back to the office, many organizations are thinking about how they can transition from a remote workforce to a more permanent hybrid workplace. We recently conducted a study with over 900 chief information security officers (CISOs) on the state of Zero Trust and found that 81 percent say their organization has started or currently has a hybrid work environment in place and that 91 percent plan for their organization to be fully transitioned to hybrid work within the next five years. The era of hybrid work is here to stay. However, as recent events have shown us, the cybersecurity landscape continues to evolve. Bad actors are getting more sophisticated and the need for a stronger security model has never been more important. Zero Trust is no longer an option, it’s now imperative for organizations that want to protect themselves while providing employees the flexibility they need to be productive.

Related:


NOTEWORTHY

We are happy to announce that Office Scripts in Excel for the web is now generally available for all eligible users! Office Scripts is an automation feature-set in Excel for the web that allows users with all levels of programming experience to automate their repetitive workflows. To get started, use the Action Recorder to record the actions you take in Excel. These actions are then translated into a script that you can run at any time. No programming experience required! Need to modify your scripts? Use the Code Editor! It’s a TypeScript-based editor directly within Excel for the web. Use it to edit your existing scripts or to create new ones using the Office Scripts API.

We know that the vast majority of enterprise customers have multi-cloud strategies. Our customers want and need to integrate Microsoft compliance solutions – including Information Protection and Governance, Insider Risk Management, eDiscovery as well as Compliance Management – with their other existing security, compliance, and identity-related investments. That is why we are building our Compliance platform to be extensible and address our customers’ multi-cloud reality. To that end, we see extensibility as a horizontal capability and developers as a key enabler of this across all compliance solutions. To enable our customers to apply Microsoft Compliance value to their entire data landscape including Microsoft and non-Microsoft systems we have an extensible data connector platform.

Analytics and data are key to understand the impact of our efforts. Over the last few months, we’ve shipped new ways to measure activity happening in Yammer across Communities, Knowledge, and Live Events. We are thrilled to announce the general availability of Conversation Insights. These insights empower authors and community managers to measure the reach and engagement of their conversations and announcements to understand what content resonates best with audiences. Conversation Insights is available on Yammer.com on the web, and through the Yammer Communities App in Microsoft Teams. These new conversation insights provide a new way for corporate communications teams to track their internal campaigns and announcements. And partnered with the Yammer Communities app for Microsoft Teams, it paves the way for communicators to reach everyone wherever they work, and track the effectiveness of their messages in a whole new way.

We’ve heard from many of you that you want to trigger a Conditional Access policy when sensitive content in your apps is accessed. This includes requiring multi-factor authentication, a compliant device or even GPS-based location. Existing app-level Conditional Access policies don’t support this level of resource granularity, so we’ve added support for authentication contexts. Now that Conditional Access authentication context is in public preview it’s great to be able to go deeper into some of the details. You can modify your line of business apps, or, thanks to integration with Microsoft Cloud App Security (MCAS), Microsoft Information Protection (MIP), and SharePoint Online, use it with all kinds of cloud apps right away!

Data Consistency Score (DCS) is a (somewhat) new feature for Office 365 migrations that scores the fidelity of migrated data, allowing admins to identify inconsistencies and integrity issues between source and target data when performing a migration to or from Office 365 (onboarding and offboarding). DCS is meant to replace the existing Bad Item Limit and Large Item Limit (BIL / LIL) model and related shortcomings. The DCS model identifies and tracks data that cannot be successfully migrated from an on-premises source environment to Office 365 (e.g., corrupt data, items larger than the service allows, or data that is found to be missing in the target but present in the source). The DCS model examines this data based on quantity (count of the items that cannot be migrated and must be skipped by the MRS service) and quality or importance (DCS differentiates between user data and metadata / system data). We then calculate a score based on the total amount of data that might be skipped during migration and how significant it is for the user. This means that the admin is no longer required to guess the number to use for Bad Item Limit (BIL) or Large Item Limit (LIL) in advance, as the DCS mechanism takes care of this automatically. The admin is therefore better informed of the possibility of data loss during migration and can take necessary actions when appropriate. DCS allows admins to only have to deal with approvals at the end of the migration, when they have all of the information that they need to make an informed decision.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-13

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

Related:

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-10

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-07

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

Related:

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

Office 365 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 | 2020-50

Welcome to the December 7 – 13, 2020 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twelve features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Planner, Forms, Yammer, Outlook (Android, web), and Microsoft Information Protection.

Several new events have been added, as the January 2021 dates for the customer immersion experience sessions are now available. The spotlight event of the week is the “Learn Together: Developing Apps for Microsoft Teams” training on Wednesday, December 16th from 9am – 1pm Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include the general availability of breakout rooms in Microsoft Teams, information on the launch of the Microsoft Teams preview experience, details on new ways to celebrate holiday festivities with Microsoft Teams, and an update on the name changes for the Planner app in Teams.

Noteworthy item highlights include details on changing to search in SharePoint Online, a recap of what’s new in Teams phones for December 2020, information on securing remote work by embracing Zero Trust, and recommendations for delivering a productive and seamless user experiences with Azure Active Directory.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Microsoft Teams: Touch Bar Meetings Controls for Mac68906January CY2021Added: 08 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Teams Meeting controls for MacBooks with Touch Bars that allow users to mute/unmute, start/stop video, open sharing tray, open the view participants panel and raise or retract their hand.
Microsoft Teams: Sensitivity Labels for GCC, GCC-H, and DoD Clouds68907January CY2021Added: 08 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC, GCC High, DoD
Regulate who can access teams in your organization. Sensitivity labels created in the security and compliance admin center can now be used to control the privacy and guest access settings of the team. Users can select the appropriate label when creating a new team.
Yammer: Azure AD B2B guest support in Yammer (Public Preview)73902December CY2020Added: 08 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
AzureAD-B2B guest support in Yammer communities will be available in public preview. Invite guests to your Yammer community and facilitate rich conversations between members and guests of a Yammer community.
Microsoft Teams: GCC support for devices management in Teams Admin Centre70660December CY2020Added: 09 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Teams Admin Centre enables effective management of Teams. Now, our customers who have tenants in the GCC environment can also manage their Teams devices from the Teams Admin Center. Admins can now control the entire lifecycle of their Teams devices which include an increasing variety of supported device types – IP Phones, Collaboration bars, Teams displays, Teams Meeting Room devices.
Microsoft Teams: Education Policy Wizard70661December CY2020Added: 09 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
A dedicated Education policy package that easily apply policies for a safe learning environment.
Outlook for Android: Sync contact sub folders as category labels71507January CY2021Added: 09 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Android
Your Outlook contacts and subfolders in Outlook for Windows or on the web will labeled with a contact category based on the name of your contact sub folder and synced to Outlook for Android.
Microsoft Information Protection: Office 365 Advanced Message Encryption – Email revocation by end user68908January CY2021Added: 10 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: MIP
As part of Office 365 Advance Message Encryption, we are extending the email revocation capabilities to the end user. Previously, you had to be an admin to revoke an already sent message; with this update, end users will have this capability as well.
Microsoft Teams: Share System Audio on Mac70662January CY2021Added: 10 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
This will allow Mac desktop users to include audio when sharing their Desktop or Window during a Teams meeting. Once enabled, any audio that is playing on the user’s machine will be shared in the live event for participants to hear.
Microsoft Planner: Sync Message Center posts to Planner – Government Clouds77441February CY2021Added: 11 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Planner, Government Clouds
Microsoft is introducing Planner integration for the Message Center to help with workflow management. Lots of information arrives in the Message Center, and you need to decide whether to act on it or not. And if an action is needed, who performs that action, and how do you track that task to completion? Or maybe you want to make a note of something and tag it for later. You can do all of this and more when you sync your Message Center to Microsoft Planner.
Outlook: Outlook on the web – Share to Microsoft Teams68909March CY2021Added: 11 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Web
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. When sharing to Teams from Outlook on the web, a popup window will appear to confirm to which channel or person you want to share, you can also select whether you want to include attachments or not.
Microsoft Teams: Simplified Global Notification Settings for GCC-High and DoD70663March CY2021Added: 11 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC High, DoD
Government users can now configure and customize their notification settings through a newly designed notification settings section.
Forms: Default alert policies for phishing activities added to Microsoft 365 security and compliance center76911January CY2021Added: 11 December 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
We are now adding Microsoft Forms’ phishing activities alert (for blocked forms and users due to confirmed and suspicious phishing) to the default alert policies in Microsoft’s Security and Compliance Center (SCC). If there is any user restricted from sharing forms and collecting responses from Microsoft Forms because of confirmed phishing activities, or any form identified/detected as phishing form, IT admins will receive an alert in the SCC Alert center.

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 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.

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).

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.

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.

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.

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. Note: This session was previously called ‘Learn tips for taking Microsoft Teams to the next level – Part 2’.

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. Note: This session was previously called ‘Learn tips for taking Microsoft Teams to the next level – Part 1’.

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

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

When: Wednesday, December 16, 2020 from 9:00am – 11:00am PT | Millions of new Microsoft Teams users are looking to you, the developers, to create engaging and unique application experiences on Teams. In this two-hour livestream on Learn TV, you’ll learn: (1) Why you should consider building apps for Teams, (2) How to get started building apps for Teams in VS Code, and (3) Where you can integrate your apps in the Teams user experience. Quickly get started learning how to build these apps and stick around for some fun trivia and prizes.

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.

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.

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

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

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.

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 12 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.

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 12 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.

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 12 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.

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 12 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Creating meaningful connection can be difficult in larger group settings. Breakout rooms allow organizers to divide the meeting into sub-groups to facilitate discussions and brainstorming sessions. We are excited to share that Breakout rooms are now generally available in Microsoft Teams today. The meeting organizer can create up to 50 breakout rooms and choose to automatically or manually assign participants into rooms. The organizer can start a breakout room in a Teams meeting or a Teams channel meeting, allowing greater flexibility on how you want to meet. Using the breakout room settings, the meeting organizer can choose to allow participants to come back to the main meeting at any time, then return to the assigned breakout room. This way participants can ask a clarifying question without disturbing the breakout room discussions. Also, organizers can use the setting to re-create breakout rooms in the same meeting. This allows them to assign participants into new room setups. Once the breakout rooms are open, meeting organizers can join any of the breakout sessions. And should the need arise, you can quickly switch attendees in between breakout rooms.

We are announcing a change in how customers can preview upcoming Microsoft Teams features. This includes adopting pre-release channel names like Office and Windows Insider programs, as well as a new broadly available Public Preview channel. With this change, Insiders will find similar names and expectations for similar channels across Windows, Office, and Teams programs. As mentioned in the Windows Insider blog post, our goal is to not only make it clearer for existing Insiders to choose the experience that’s right for them, but also for new Insiders to pick the right channel as they join. The Insider community is important to us due to their early actionable feedback and we are working to align how all our Insider programs work better together across Microsoft. Read on to learn more about the Public Preview channel and why we are launching it. Note: This only applies to commercial and education tenants.

Office holiday parties and team celebrations look a bit different this year. I’ve heard from customers that you’re looking for new ways to connect as a team and celebrate in the holidays, even if you can’t be together in-person. To make virtual office holiday parties and meetings more festive, we’re announcing new experiences in Microsoft Teams including new holiday-themed Together mode scenes and custom backgrounds. We’re also announcing the availability of breakout rooms, which make it easy to mix and mingle during a virtual holiday party, and sharing our tips for making virtual holiday gatherings more fun. | Related: Holiday parties & background fun with Microsoft Teams

When we first announced the public preview of Tasks in Teams, we also announced a three-stage naming sequence for how the app name would appear in Teams. The timing of that original sequence has since changed, which we noted in an Oct. 30 update to the general availability blog. We’re very pleased to announce that we’ve hit Stage 2 in the sequence. This changes the Tasks in Teams app name to Tasks by Planner and To Do from Planner, the original app name, for all non-government users. The app icon has changed to its final form, too. Both changes also apply to the Planner tab in Teams channels. When adding that tab, you can search “Planner,” “To Do,” or “Tasks” to find it. The goal of this sequence is to help all customers easily find the new hero task management app in Teams. We believe Tasks by Planner and To Do better reflects the app’s functionality—it combines team tasks from Planner and individual tasks from To Do—so that customers who don’t closely follow Microsoft news will start (or continue) using the app with confidence.


NOTEWORTHY

In November 2020, we announced improvements coming to search in SharePoint Online. As we continue to innovate across Microsoft Search to bring you a better, more precise search experience – we’re making some changes and improvements to search in SharePoint Online. No matter where people work or what kind of device they use, they need the ability to quickly and easily find the information that will help them be more productive. As part of our continued effort to bring Microsoft Search to all your favorite productivity apps and services we’re making changes and improvements to several classic search experiences in SharePoint. These changes include: (1) Updates to Fast Query Language (FQL), (2) Search Query Rules, (3) Changes to Authoritative Pages, and (4) Improvements to Personal Favorites.

The Teams devices portfolio strives to give users options based on the space they use for work, the kind of collaboration they engage in, and their personal preferences for when and how they choose to get things done. We are constantly working to provide an intuitive and familiar experience for Teams on every device type, and this means carrying over the great features we have for meetings and calling into the phone experience as well. This month we’ve got some great updates that bring together the features users love in Teams meetings into the Teams phone app and more to keep users productive and secure.

Enabling secure remote work has never been as vital as it is today. This past year, the Microsoft Teams Engineering team, helped customers with a record number of net new deployments in the Microsoft Cloud. With the inevitable need to have end-users collaborate with agencies, partners, and customers remotely, security became paramount. Moving beyond reliance on simple allow/deny access controls towards continuous monitoring of activities and contextual risk is a proven Zero Trust methodology that has been quintessential to Microsoft commitment towards the right security strategy, needed to enable and empower new ways to work. View this on-demand round table of Security and Teams experts as they converse on how Microsoft Teams is enabling the future of work, remotely and securely for private and public sectors. | Related: Building a Zero Trust business plan

In our interconnected world, relying on the old paradigm of corporate firewalls and VPNs isn’t an effective approach to enabling and securing remote work. That’s why many organizations accelerated their digital transformation plans once COVID-19 hit. For organizations like these, Zero Trust—with identity as the foundation—represents a stronger security strategy, as well as a worldview more in line with current times. It replaces the assumption that everything behind the corporate firewall is safe and trustworthy with three simple principles: verify explicitly, use least-privileged access, and assume breach. A Zero Trust approach validates all touchpoints in a system—identities, devices, and services—before considering them trustworthy. A good first step away from traditional perimeter-based defenses and toward an identity-based security framework is connecting all your apps to a single cloud identity solution like Azure Active Directory (Azure AD). This allows your employees to sign in to all their work apps with one set of credentials using single sign-on (SSO). Through centralized experiences like the My Apps portal, they can easily discover and access all the applications they need, including Office 365 apps; SaaS apps, including Adobe, Service Now, Workday; on-premises apps; and even custom-built lines of business apps.

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2020-48

Welcome to the November 23 – 29, 2020 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twelve features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Microsoft 365 Compliance, To Do, and Azure Advanced Threat Protection.

There are no new events for this week, and it seems that all of the December sessions for existing event series have now been listed. The spotlight event of the week is the “Protecting Assets and Empowering Your Defenders” customer immersion experience sessions on Thursday, December 3rd at 9am and 12pm Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include Gartner’s recognition of Teams as a leader in the Unified Communications as a Service and Meetings Solutions Magic Quadrant, new features for Azure Active Directory B2C user flows, and information on how to customize and configure shared devices for Firstline Workers at scale.

Noteworthy item highlights include a reminder about the timeline when the Teams app will no longer support Internet Explorer 11, some tips to make the most of Microsoft To Do on Android devices, and a sampling of the latest videos from the Microsoft 365 YouTube channel.


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: Live Event Presenters can now present from their iPad to the audience68867February CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Live Event Presenters can now present from their iPad to the audience.
Microsoft Compliance Center: Compliance capabilities for card content generated through apps in Teams messages68875January CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: M365 Compliance, Teams
We are extending Microsoft 365 compliance capabilities to content generated through Teams apps.
Azure Advanced Threat Protection: Microsoft Defender for Identity – Administrative functions in Microsoft 365 security center68886March CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: AATP
Defender for Identity’s administrative functions will be available to view and edit within the Microsoft 365 security center. This will include the ability to create your initial Defender for Identity instance. This rollout sees all settings made available except for tagging and exclusions. Administrators will also be able to monitor sensor health from within this view.
Azure Advanced Threat Protection: Microsoft Defender for Identity – Full alert experience in Microsoft 365 security center68887March CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: AATP
Defender for Identity will offer its full alert and investigation experiences natively within the Microsoft 365 security center.
Azure Advanced Threat Detection: Microsoft Defender for Identity – New Detection – Golden ticket using AES encryption68888March CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: AATP
An alert already exists to detect instances where an attacker downgrades the encryption level of the ticket-granting ticket (TGT) field, but this new alert introduces detection capabilities for when an attacker uses the KRBTGT AES hash to generate the ticket. This alert will find cases where the AES TGT is used for Kerberos TGT, where we don’t see a Kerberos authentication request with the previous service request.
Azure Advanced Threat Protection: Microsoft Defender for Identity – Detection improvement – Netlogon68890March CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: AATP
An elevation of privilege vulnerability exists when an attacker establishes a vulnerable Netlogon secure channel connection to a domain controller using the Netlogon Remote Protocol, also known as Netlogon Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability. Defender for Identity already has a detection for this, but this improvement adds capabilities to determine potential encryption and null source account logic detection to the alert, improving accuracy and potential for false positives.
Azure Advanced Threat Detection: Microsoft Defender for Identity – Detection improvement – Suspicious additions to sensitive groups68891March CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: AATP
New logs are being added to the detection logic for what is “normal” in a particular environment. This will remove an initial dependency on establishing a baseline so that detection is available to use immediately for known sensitive groups. In other words, this eliminates the need for a learning period to conclude before you can take advantage of this alert that may indicate signs of an attack, or potential insider threat.
Microsoft Teams: Multi-Window Meetings and Calling experiences for GCC-High and DoD68892December CY2020Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC High, DoD
Multi-window experiences are coming to Teams meetings and calling. Users will have the ability to pop out meetings and calling into separate windows to help them optimize their workflow in the GCC-High and DoD Clouds. These experiences can be turned on directly within Teams for PC and Mac clients.
Microsoft Teams: Meeting recordings saved to OneDrive and SharePoint for GCC76074December CY2020Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Ability to save Microsoft Teams meeting recordings to OneDrive and SharePoint for improved sharing capabilities, basic governance, automatic retention labels, go local, bring your own keys and, more that comes from recording video files and storing them in SharePoint and OneDrive.
Microsoft To Do: New sharing experience – Invite-Less Sharing68893February CY2021Added: 24 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: To Do
We are revamping the list sharing in To Do to facilitate an in-app mechanism to add users to shared lists using their names/email-ids.
Forms: Text Formatting (Bold, Italicize, and Underline) in Forms and Quizzes68894December CY2020Added: 25 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Forms
Bold, Italics, and Underline (text formatting) in Forms are now available to help survey/quiz designers emphasize and differentiate content with hierarchy. Consistent with Office 365 products, users can select the text format in a floating tool bar or use shortcuts (e.g. control/command).
Azure Active Directory: Application Proxy – Header-based authentication apps68895March CY2021Added: 25 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Azure AD App Proxy
Application Proxy now natively supports applications that use header-based authentication. Customers can use their existing Application Proxy connectors and no changes to their apps are needed. All header values available are based on standard claims that are issued by Azure AD. All attributes and transformations available for configuring claims for SAML or OIDC applications are also available to be used as header values.

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.

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.

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.

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 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.

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.

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.

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 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

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

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.

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. Note: This session was previously called ‘Learn tips for taking Microsoft Teams to the next level – Part 2’.

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.

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 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Wednesday, December 16, 2020 from 9:00am – 11:00am PT | Millions of new Microsoft Teams users are looking to you, the developers, to create engaging and unique application experiences on Teams. In this two-hour livestream on Learn TV, you’ll learn: (1) Why you should consider building apps for Teams, (2) How to get started building apps for Teams in VS Code, and (3) Where you can integrate your apps in the Teams user experience. Quickly get started learning how to build these apps and stick around for some fun trivia and prizes.

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.

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 12 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.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Microsoft Teams has become the new way to work for over 115 million daily users who come together every day to meet, call, chat, and collaborate. We are honored to be recognized by Gartner as a Leader for both Meeting Solutions and Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) in their latest Magic Quadrants. Microsoft was positioned highest among all vendors for ability to execute in both reports. This is Microsoft’s second consecutive year as a Leader for Unified Communications as a Service and the 14th time in which Microsoft has been recognized as a Leader for Meetings Solutions.

In this unusual year, organizations have doubled down on digital engagement with their customers and are prioritizing the security and customization of their user experiences. We’ve kept this top of mind as we evolve our vision for Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) External Identities, making customization of identity experiences easier than ever. At Ignite, we announced a step forward in our Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) External Identities journey with the addition of Conditional Access and Identity Protection to Azure AD B2C, extending Microsoft’s world-class security to help you protect customer and citizen identities. We are excited to announce two more features that make it easier to design secure and seamless customer-facing experiences in Azure AD B2C: API connectors, and phone sign up and sign in for user flows.

Firstline Workers have been at the forefront of our economy over the past several months as they perform critical jobs like maintaining critical supply chains, serving as first responders, and caring for the most vulnerable. It is more important than ever to empower these workers with tools and technology designed to support their unique scenarios. One example of a specific Firstline scenario is the need be able to share tablets or mobile devices between shifts while maintaining security and compliance. In April, we announced the preview of shared device sign-out for Android and iOS. Once a device is provisioned into a shared device mode, Firstline Workers can sign out of all web browser sessions and applications that have been configured to support this feature, such as Microsoft Teams, with a single click. We are now excited to announce three new preview capabilities that make it easier to set up and customize how Firstline Workers use shared devices – (1) Provisioning shared devices at scale with Microsoft Endpoint Manager, (2) Device-based Conditional Access for shift workers, and (3) Customized sign-in experience with Microsoft Managed Home Screen.


NOTEWORTHY

Beginning November 30, 2020, the Microsoft Teams web app will no longer support IE 11. This means that after this date, customers will have a degraded experience or will be unable to connect to Microsoft 365 apps and services on IE 11. For degraded experiences, new Microsoft 365 features will not be available or certain features may cease to work when accessing the app or service via IE 11. While we know this change will be difficult for some customers, we believe that customers will get the most out of Microsoft 365 when using the new Microsoft Edge. We are committed to helping make this transition as smooth as possible. Customers have been using IE 11 since 2013 when the online environment was much less sophisticated than the landscape today. Since then, open web standards and newer browsers—like the new Microsoft Edge—have enabled better, more innovative online experiences. We believe that Microsoft 365 subscribers, in both consumer and commercial contexts, will be well served with this change through faster and more responsive web access to greater sets of features in everyday toolsets like Outlook, Teams, SharePoint, and more.

With a diminishing boundary between work and life, it becomes more important to keep a track of things to do! Microsoft To Do helps you in managing all your work and personal tasks in one place, while ensuring proper syncing across all devices in an intelligent way. As a part of our “six tips on To Do” series, in this article, we will focus on the exclusive To Do features available on Android. These features include: (1) Reminders to plan your day, (2) Drag and drop between apps on Android, (3) Home screen shortcut, (4) To Do widget on Android, (5) Swipe actions for tasks – delete or add to My Day, and (6) Quick Add.

Last week, as well as the week prior, lots of videos have been uploaded to the Microsoft 365 YouTube channel. The topics covered range from Teams, Planner, Security/Compliance, Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Intune, Outlook, Microsoft 365 Groups, SharePoint, Search, and Microsoft 365 Apps. Some sample videos are linked below, but be sure to check out the full page for all uploaded videos.

Related:

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2020-46

Welcome to the November 8 – 15, 2020 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Ten features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including updates for Teams, Planner, Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection, Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection, and Microsoft Graph.

A few new dates for existing meeting series have been added, along with several new events – AMA sessions for Planner and Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, and the December dates for Customer Immersion Experiences. The spotlight event of the week is the “Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA): Productivity Score” session on Tuesday, November 17th at 8am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include the October 2020 updates for OneDrive, general availability of Microsoft Endpoint Data Loss Prevention, updates to Topics and Hashtags in Yammer, and information on what Microsoft learned in an internet-first model with Zero Trust security approach.

Noteworthy item highlights include a reminder about the timeline when the Teams app will no longer support Internet Explorer 11, information on moving away from SMS and voice MFA mechanisms, the public preview of Attack Simulation training is now open to all E3 customers, and several Microsoft compliance webinar recordings and resources.


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
Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection: Updates to Automated Investigations68949November CY2020Added: 11 November 2020
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Office 365 ATP
A number of improvements are being delivered to improve the clarity and value of automated investigations: Alerts for manually triggered investigations, User compromise investigations show email clusters to identify malicious, suspicious, and clean email from a potentially compromised account, A new mailbox configuration entity category will be listed for investigation findings associated with suspicious mailbox configuration findings, Removal of block URL action from existing investigations, due to it being a unnecessary action.
Microsoft Teams: Tasks in Teams in GCC68950January CY2021Added: 11 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC
Tasks in Teams gives you a new unified view of your personal and team tasks, powered by Planner and To Do. It consolidates your tasks across Microsoft To Do, Planner and Outlook. Smart lists like Assigned to me bring tasks together across different task lists, whether you’re on desktop or mobile.
Microsoft Planner: Tasks for Information Workers in Teams in GCC68951January CY2021Added: 11 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Planner, GCC
Tasks in Teams gives you a new unified view of your personal and team tasks, powered by Planner and To Do. It consolidates your tasks across Microsoft To Do, Planner and Outlook. Smart lists like Assigned to me bring tasks together across different task lists, whether you’re on desktop or mobile.
Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection: Network protection for macOS68859December CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: MDATP
Microsoft is bringing Network Protection functionality to MacOS (min. macOS v10.15.4). Network protection helps reduce the attack surface of your devices from Internet-based events. It prevents employees from using any application to access dangerous domains that may host phishing scams, exploits, and other malicious content on the Internet. Network protection expands the scope of Microsoft Defender SmartScreen to block all outbound HTTP(s) traffic that attempts to connect to low-reputation sources (based on the domain or hostname).
Microsoft Teams: Improvements to the “Create a Microsoft Team from SharePoint” experience68861November CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Enhance existing Microsoft 365 Groups with Teams functionality, directly from SharePoint team sites.
Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection: Defender for Office 365 – Evaluation Mode68862December CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365 ATP
We’re introducing Evaluation Mode in Microsoft Defender for Office 365 – the most effective way to evaluate the filtering efficacy of Defender for Office 365 using real-world email in your production environment. The feature can be configured by all customers that have Microsoft Exchange Online mailboxes, and provides a report that quantifies the messages that would have been blocked by Defender for Office 365 had the policies taken action. With Evaluation Mode, messages are scanned and evaluated without requiring a change to your MX record.
Microsoft Graph: New privacy controls for Microsoft Graph-based insights68863November CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Graph
For administrators who wish to enable granular control over where intelligent insights are available to their employees, we’re introducing new controls that provide you the ability to configure the visibility of Graph-derived insights, between users and other items in the Graph (such as documents or sites) across apps and services in Microsoft 365.
Microsoft Search: Bookmark recommendations in Microsoft Search68864November CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft Search
Microsoft Search now simplifies the process of creating and curating Bookmarks with Recommended Bookmarks. These recommendations are generated by reasoning across SharePoint sites in Microsoft 365 to suggest Bookmarks to the Microsoft Search administrator, reducing the need to manually look across sites and information to determine the most valuable resources to curate and promote to users of Microsoft Search.
Microsoft Teams: EHR connector for virtual visits in healthcare68865December CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
The Microsoft Teams EHR connector let’s patients schedule and join the virtual visit from within their electronic health record (EHR) system’s patient portal. Providers can schedule and launch the visits from within the EHR provider portal. Integration with Epic is currently supported by the Microsoft Teams EHR connector, with other EHR systems coming soon.
Microsoft Teams: Linux Client available in GCC-High68866November CY2020Added: 13 November 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, GCC High
The Microsoft Teams Linux client will now be available in GCC-High.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

When: Tuesday, November 17, 2020 at 8:00am PT | Productivity Score has reached general availability and we are hosting an “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) to make sure you have an opportunity to get answers to any technical questions you may have about. An AMA is a live, online, text-based question-and-answer event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. Join us Tuesday, November 17th from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time to connect with the product managers and engineers behind Productivity Score. Anyone can ask a question. Simply make sure you’re a Tech Community member, then: (1) Visit the Microsoft 365 AMA space at 9:00 a.m. PT (We’ll actually open up the space 24 hours in advance for everyone not in the Pacific Time zone.), and (2) Submit a question by selecting Start a new conversation—and do this for each new question. At the end of the AMA, the Microsoft 365 AMA space will close and become a read-only resource. We will post a final recap within 72 hours. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

When: Tuesday, November 17, 2020 at 8:00am PT | We’re excited to invite you to the first Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Ask Me Anything (AMA) on the Microsoft TechCommunity! The product team has missed meeting customers at security and tech conferences and expo halls through the year and so we’d like to engage with you virtually. Our goal is to do these at least on a quarterly basis and have them focused on specific topics related to Microsoft Defender for Endpoint. Our first AMA will be on November 17, from 8:00-9:00am PT and it will be focused on Microsoft Defender for Endpoint capabilities for macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. Bring all your burning questions! Our product team will be there to answer them. An AMA is a live, online, text-based question-and-answer event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

When: Tuesday, November 17, 2020 at 9:00am PT | We want to hear from you and answer your questions around using Microsoft Planner! We will be hosting an “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) session on Tuesday, November 17th at 9 AM Pacific Time, on the Tech Community. To join, simply, visit the Planner AMA space and click “Start a New Conversation” to post your question. This event is open to all Tech Community members and we’ll have members of the Microsoft product and engineering teams standing by to provide answers. An AMA is a live, online, text-based question-and-answer event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit.

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.

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. Note: This session was previously called ‘Learn tips for taking Microsoft Teams to the next level – Part 1’.

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.

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.

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. Note: This session was previously called ‘Learn tips for taking Microsoft Teams to the next level – Part 2’.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 12 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.

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 12 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 12 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.

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 12 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

The latest updates for OneDrive that rolled out in October 2020 are: (1) File sharing in Teams, (2) Known Folder Move in FRE (First Run Experience), and (3) Teams Meeting & Call Recordings stored in OneDrive and SharePoint. Teams is your hub for teamwork where people collaborate on files, communicate, and streamline processes. Now, users will be able to set familiar sharing and access controls directly in Teams with the added option to share a link with a specific private or group chat. This means only people in that chat have access to the shared content. Shared links intelligently reconcile to file name and all sharing follows the admin settings and configured policies. Our new first run experience now allows you to select which Windows known folders you would like to sync to OneDrive. Teams meeting and call recordings can now be stored in your OneDrive for Business or in SharePoint, providing the ability to share recordings with guests or external users, access meeting recordings faster, and manage recordings with security and compliance controls available to other file types in Microsoft 365.

Managing and protecting data is critical to any organization. Data is growing exponentially, and remote work is making it even harder to manage risks around data. In fact, a recent Microsoft survey of security and compliance decision-makers found that data leaks are the top concern in remote and hybrid work scenarios. To help our customers to address this challenge, we are excited to announce the general availability of Microsoft Endpoint Data Loss Prevention (DLP). Endpoint DLP builds on the labeling and classification in Microsoft Information Protection and extends the existing DLP capabilities in Microsoft 365, helping you to meet compliance requirements and protect sensitive information on endpoints. It’s built into Windows 10, the Microsoft 365 Apps, and Microsoft Edge—without the need to deploy additional software on the device, which eliminates friction and makes it far easier to have visibility into your data. For users, it ensures security, without compromising productivity. Endpoint DLP provides policy tips to help educate users when they are about to violate a policy. It’s also integrated with Microsoft Defender for Endpoint (formerly known as Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection), which can help you prioritize incident response based on additional factors. | Related: Announcing Microsoft Endpoint DLP General Availability

Yammer powers communities, knowledge, and employee engagement in Microsoft 365. At Microsoft Ignite, we shared how Yammer is investing in three areas for knowledge: capturing knowledge with questions and answers, organizing it using topics, and spreading it across the organization with Project Cortex. We are sharing the first updates to our new topics experience—which lays the foundation for future improvements and greater distinction between topics and hashtags. Topics are a useful tool to organize, curate, and reference knowledge within and across communities. Anyone can affix a topic to a conversation by using the “Add Topics” option during or after posting. If a topic exists already, it is presented as a suggestion. Topics are metadata that apply to the thread, not individual messages, whereas hashtags are part of the message itself. Clicking a topic takes you to that specific topic’s page. Hashtags are a great way to encourage and promote participation in campaigns and conversations across communities. They also provide a creative way to express yourself. You can include a hashtag in a message by simply adding the ‘#’ symbol before the text. Posting a message with a hashtag automatically adds a topic of the same name to the thread. Clicking a hashtag takes you to the topic page of the same name.

This blog outlines some recommendations on implementing an internet-first approach plus a few of the things we learned in our efforts here at Microsoft. Because every company has its own unique culture, environments, infrastructure, and threshold for change, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Please note that this blog will assume you’ve completed some of the foundational elements needed for a Zero Trust security model. These include modernizing your identity system, verifying sign-ins with multi-factor authentication (MFA), registering devices, and ensuring compliance with IT security policies, etc. Without these protections in place, moving to an internet-first posture is not possible. As previously mentioned, your apps will need to be modernized by migrating them to the cloud and implementing modern authentication services. This is the optimal path to internet accessibility. For apps that can’t be modernized or moved to the cloud (think legacy on-premises apps), you can leverage an app proxy to allow the connection over the internet and still maintain the strong authentication principles.


NOTEWORTHY

Beginning November 30, 2020, the Microsoft Teams web app will no longer support IE 11. This means that after this date, customers will have a degraded experience or will be unable to connect to Microsoft 365 apps and services on IE 11. For degraded experiences, new Microsoft 365 features will not be available or certain features may cease to work when accessing the app or service via IE 11. While we know this change will be difficult for some customers, we believe that customers will get the most out of Microsoft 365 when using the new Microsoft Edge. We are committed to helping make this transition as smooth as possible. Customers have been using IE 11 since 2013 when the online environment was much less sophisticated than the landscape today. Since then, open web standards and newer browsers—like the new Microsoft Edge—have enabled better, more innovative online experiences. We believe that Microsoft 365 subscribers, in both consumer and commercial contexts, will be well served with this change through faster and more responsive web access to greater sets of features in everyday toolsets like Outlook, Teams, SharePoint, and more.

Millions of people use Microsoft Teams to be productive across different workstreams, and the latest Sentry app in Microsoft Teams is here to keep you up to speed on emerging alerts and issues in your DevOps environment. Using rule-based configurations, the Sentry app in Microsoft Teams will automatically notify pre-defined channels of code errors, performance issues, or other events. Rule-based configurations allow customers flexibility in customizing which alerts generate notifications in Teams. Users can respond to the alert by ignoring, assigning, or resolving directly from Teams; they can also use channel messages and mentions to collaborate with others on response and next steps.

This blog will attempt to convince you that it’s time to start your move away from the SMS and voice Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) mechanisms. These mechanisms are based on publicly switched telephone networks (PSTN), and they’re the least secure of the MFA methods available today. That gap will only widen as MFA adoption increases attackers’ interest in breaking these methods and purpose-built authenticators extend their security and usability advantages. Plan your move to passwordless strong auth now – the authenticator app provides an immediate and evolving option. It bears repeating, however, that MFA is essential – we are discussing which MFA method to use, not whether to use MFA. Quoting an earlier blog, “Multi-factor Authentication (MFA) is the least you can do if you are at all serious about protecting your accounts. Use of anything beyond the password significantly increases the costs for attackers, which is why the rate of compromise of accounts using any type of MFA is less than 0.1% of the general population.”

We are opening the full public preview of Attack simulation training to all Microsoft 365 E3 and E5 customers to discover, quantify, and remediate social engineering risk across users. After Attack simulation training becomes generally available, all E3 customers will retain access to a trial version of the product which will include a smaller subset of capabilities. Attack simulation training empowers customers to accurately detect risk by phishing employees using constantly-updated real phish templates, with granular, context-specific targeting. Automated simulation creation, payload attachment, user targeting, schedule and cleanup simplify the process for Security Administrators. Rich reporting and analytics helps customers quantify social engineering risk and remediate it intelligently through strategic training programs. Metrics like coverage and completeness, training effectiveness and predicted compromise rate measure true behavior change and risk reduction.

The Microsoft 365 community is excited to announce new capabilities in Microsoft Insider Risk Management & Communication Compliance to help minimize internal risks by enabling you to detect, investigate, capture, and act on malicious and inadvertent activities in your organization. The links to the webinar recording and resources, such as the webinar FAQ, are included in this blog post.

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