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 | 2021-21

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 | 2021-20

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

EXCEL:

PDF:


UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-19

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

Related:

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-18

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

EXCEL:

PDF:


UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Office Hours: Managing Windows 10 Devices & Updates

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-17

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

Related:

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

Related:

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-14

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-13

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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

UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

Related:

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-12

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

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

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

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

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


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

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

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


UPCOMING EVENTS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


BLOG ROUNDUP

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

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

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

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


NOTEWORTHY

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

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

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

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

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

Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2021-10

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.