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What’s new in Microsoft Teams – November round up

Microsoft Teams, the hub for teamwork in Office 365, continues to bring new capabilities to empower teams and organizations to achieve more. With new features like Quiet Hours, users can enjoy enhanced experiences while engaging in non-work-related activities. Additionally, new functionality for admins such as creating teams based on dynamic group membership, reduces the overhead of manually updated team membership.

 

Customize your team with 3rd party integrations

 

Monthly Spotlight - Apps in Teams: Confluence Cloud, Meekan, and more!

We are constantly adding new and improved apps to our Teams experience and plan on highlighting a few of our apps that have been making major waves to further enable collaboration. 

 

Confluence Cloud Messaging Extension empowers your dev team to get the information they need by searching through your Confluence instance and attach a page, blog post etc. to an informative card. Learn more here.

 

confl-messaging-extension-updated-optimized-v2-10-11-18.gifUse the Confluence Cloud Messaging Extension to get the information you need.

 

Meekan is an AI assistant that simplifies tasks such as finding the best time to connect with your team and scheduling a meeting. Learn more here.

 

Meekan.jpgThe Meekan app cares about your privacy.

Jira Cloud app now supports Jira Service Desk projects, allowing you to configure by selecting the project, choosing which service desk queue you would like to monitor and pin that as a Microsoft Teams tab. Learn more here.

 

 jsd-tab-updated-optimized-11-10-18.gifConfigure Jira Service Desk queue in Microsoft Teams.

 

Polly App now offers more options to customize your instant polls with additional questions types, letting users add comments to your poll, etc. Learn more here.

 

Polly App.pngCustomize your instant polls with the Polly app.

Communicate more effectively

 

Check if someone is available with improved presence for Coexistence Mode

Many organizations are in the process of migrating from Skype for Business to Teams. For some, this means using Skype for Business and Teams at the same time (Islands mode). During this time, it’s important to understand what presence is being shown and from where it originates. We are introducing a new presence experience that allows users to more accurately display their status to others in the organization during coexistence. For users in TeamsOnly mode, others will see presence based on the activity in Teams. For SfbOnly, SfbWithTeamsCollab, and SfbWithTeamsCollabAndMeeting modes, presence is based on Skype for Business activity. 

 

Work with confidence: new features for IT admin

 

Teams based on dynamic group membership

Many admins need to create teams for groups or departments where membership changes frequently. Now, it is getting easier for you to manage membership of these teams.

 

You can now create teams backed by Office 365 groups with a dynamic membership rule for which membership is managed dynamically based on user or device properties in Azure Active Directory. If a user or device satisfies a rule for a group, they are added as a member, and when they no longer satisfy the rule, they are removed.

 

This helps with scenarios like:

 

  • A hospital can create different teams for nurses and doctors that automatically reflect current staffing.
  • A university can create a team for all faculty within a college, including an adjunct faculty that changes frequently.

To create a team with a dynamic membership rule, the tenant admin has to first create an Office 365 groups with a dynamic membership rule in Azure Active Directory, the team owner can then convert the group to a team via the Teams client.

 

Dynamic membership rules in Azure Active Directory require an Azure AD Premium P1 license for each unique user that is a member of one or more dynamic groups.

 

Dynamic Membership.pngCreating a dynamic membership rule in Azure Active Directory.

For more details on dynamic team membership, see overview of dynamic membership for teams.

 

Org-wide team
Org-wide teams provides an automatic way for everyone in an organization with no more than 1,000 users to be a part of a single team for collaboration. Global administrators can now easily create a public team that adds every user in the organization and automatically keeps the membership up to date with Active Directory as users join and leave the organization.


Only global admins can create org-wide teams and currently an org-wide team is limited to organizations with no more than 1,000 users.

 

Org-wide Teams.pngCreate Org-wide teams with no more than 1,000 users.

When the org-wide team is created, all global admins are added as team owners and all active users are added as team members. Accounts which are disabled, blocked from sign-in, guests, conf rooms and resource accounts won’t be added to the team. As your organization's directory is updated to include new active users or when users leave, changes are automatically reflected in the org-wide team membership. Team members can't leave an org-wide team. As a team owner, you can manually add or remove users if needed.

 

For more details including best practices, head over to create an org-wide team in Microsoft Teams.

 

Scoped directory search
You can now leverage Exchange address book policies to create virtual boundaries within your organization and control how users find and communicate with each other in Teams. This is useful if you manage an organization that has multiple entities within a single tenant, or if you manage a school and want to limit chat between faculty and students within the same class or grade.


Note that address book policies create only a virtual separation of users from a directory perspective, not a legal separation.


To use scoped directory search for your organization in Teams, first create address book policies via the Exchange Admin Center (EAC) and then enable scoped directory search in Teams via the Microsoft Teams & Skype for Business Admin Center (Org-wide settings > Teams settings).

 

Scoped Directory.pngEnabling scoped directory search in Teams admin center.

Once enabled, the results returned by searches for other users (for example, to initiate a chat or to add members to a team) will be scoped according to the configured policies. Users will not be able to search or discover teams when scoped search is in effect.

 

See use Microsoft Teams scoped directory search for more details.

 

New features available on Teams iOS & Android apps

 

Keep your work-life balance with quiet hours

Push Notifications help you stay productive at work, but there are times where you may also want to focus on other activities. Quiet Hours empowers you to control Team’s notifications on your mobile device. You can mute push notifications at specific times during any day of the week, including weekends.

 

Screenshot (52).pngManage your mobile notifications with quiet hours.

See organizational information from anywhere
Microsoft Teams makes it easy for you to understand in which team or department people are. You can now also leverage the Teams mobile app to search for a colleague in the organizational chart or find it directly from their contact card.

 

chat from phone.pngAccess the organizational chart from your phone.

Schedule meeting on the go
You can now schedule Teams meetings from your mobile device and invite people who are part of the organization (including guests) via the Microsoft Teams app for iOS and Android. Additionally, you will also be able to schedule channel meetings soon.

 

meeting on the go.pngSchedule Microsoft Teams meetings from your mobile device.

Know who is calling you via Microsoft Teams
If you have a Teams phone number saved in your device contacts, you will now see their name appear when they call you via Teams. This requires a Phone System license and permission to access your device contacts.

 

call via teams.pngSee who is calling you via Microsoft Teams.

Discover how organizations are transforming teamwork

 

Expanding sales team relies on Teams to integrate new team members from company acquisition
Telstra, Australia's leading telecommunications and technology company, acquires companies that complement their own offerings to help them gain traction in new markets. Before Teams, they onboarded new teammates using email and various third-party tools. With Teams, channels are created for newly formed groups to work together as one integrated team. Teams provides a single place to manage the complexity of joining two companies together. Read more about Telstra’s story here.

 

Teams enables leading airline to deliver 1st class service to all travelers
Qantas Airways, one of the world’s most recognized brands is leveraging Teams to drive faster decision making and greater customer service innovation. Airport, flight operations, and cabin crew teams all use Teams to collaborate in dynamic, virtual meetings. Thanks to archived chats in Teams, everyone can readily access and build on existing knowledge faster. Read more about Qantas’ story and watch their video here.

 

Pharmaceutical giant envisions collaboration that drives innovation and faster time-to-market
Eli Lilly and Company is a global pharmaceutical company driven by life changing discoveries. To accelerate a process known for its complex regulations, requirements, and costs, Lilly is turning to Microsoft Teams to drive collaboration. Enhanced interoperation between Teams and devices like Surface Hub and HoloLens enables Lilly to capture all types of ideas and foster innovation at scale. Read the Lilly story and watch their video here.

 

Let us know what you think!

 

Try the new features and provide feedback using the feedback link in the lower left corner of Microsoft Teams. If you have suggestions on how to make Teams better, please submit your idea via User Voice or vote for existing ideas to help us prioritize the requests. We read every piece of feedback that we receive to make sure that Microsoft Teams meets your needs.

 

Editor’s note 11/19/2018:

This post was updated to reflect the most up-to-date information regarding Teams features coming this month.

22 Comments
Super Contributor

As i read all the blog posts in Teams blog, most of this is a repeat, so a bit of waste of my time. Anyway, dynamic groups is fine, but not useful for on-premises AD with its own security mail based groups. Also it needs Azure AD Premium - additional cost.

 

Oh, and i hate when administrators have to be assigned user licenses to do administrative tasks. Or can a global admin create an org-wide team from and Admin Center without a license? Signing in with an administrator into a user app like Teams just feels wrong. Admins are isolated accounts to sign in into admin panels and that's it. Also don't like wasting a costly license for an admin.

Fantastic updates this month in Teams, I cant wait to try Drive Mode as US morning calls always seem to be while I'm heading home un the UK.

Frequent Visitor

@Christopher Bryan - Thanks for this update.  While some of it was definitely a repeat to @Oleg K's point, I did learn some things, and it's in a great format I can simply copy/paste to share with my employees.

 

However... I've been confused this past month about why my Admin portal still doesn't have the ability to Manage Teams and other features I'm seeing in Microsoft videos (Example: https://twitter.com/MSFTMechanics/status/1059837044300496896 ).  I was hoping a major announcement was coming soon to reassure me that I should or should not have these Admin features yet.  Furthermore, Teams is evidently supposed to have the ability to share only your Desktop without having to go into Call mode, but I don't have this feature yet, either.  It's okay if these features are still under development; however, they've been presented as "existing" for over a month now and I cannot find them.

 

So it's disappointing to read a "November Update" and still see no reference to these features.  Will you please shed light on when the next version of the Admin Console and Desktop app is coming and what features they will have?

 

2018-11-09_4-05-17.jpg

Established Member

Nice set of new features, but let's review the status of the Top 5 requested features on UserVoice:

 

  • Private channels - Working on it since 9 Feb 2017 - partial workarounds implemented
  • Guest access - completed
  • Include O365 calendar - Working on it since 6 Jul 2018 - no reported progress
  • Compact layout - Working on it since 9 Feb 2017 - no reported progress
  • Linux client - Working on it since 8 Mar 2017, shelved, cancelled, now on backlog

For the "working on it" items, can you share some - any - progress? Screenshots, protoypes, design sketches?

Occasional Visitor

When will Shifts app be added to Teams. All I keep on reading is in November. Do you know when in November?

New Contributor

I'm also very interested in knowing when I can start using the Shifts app in Teams. I have been using StaffHub for over a year now and really want to put a plan in place to get my team into Shifts.

 

Information around specifically when shifts will be available is very poor... it's not even on the Microsoft 365 Roadmap!

Occasional Visitor

Does Microsoft ever plan on updating Teams' UI? PLEASE provide users more themes and/or create their own!

Features are great but the user experience is horrendous and painful; especially for users migrating from Slack.

Contributor

When is the chat participant limit going to increase from 20?

Contributor

@Christopher Bryan
It would be nice to get a Tech Community filter label for Monthly Round ups like this. Product Updates seems to have a broader scope rather than a periodic summary of what has been released. 

 

Fred

Visitor

One more vote for an update on the StaffHub migration to "Shifts" in Microsoft Teams! I was getting ready to recommend StaffHub to one of our users as a solution to something they were asking about, and then noticed it's set to retire. We really need some clarity around how Shifts is going to work and when it might be available.

Occasional Visitor

One more shout out for Shifts. Somebody asked me to look into Staffhub today to manage team schedule and after 15 minutes i realized it's going to be retired soon :-( .   Would like to when the new feature is going to be available.

New Contributor

Another vote for a “top five update”.

 

Private channels, team calendar and linux clients are all key for universities.

 

As for a client update ... launching additional windowswiuld be great to have chat running in one ehile being able to work in one or more teams in another.

 

It does feel like there is too much focus on adding Staffhub to teams but not enough drive to complete some of the other really high priority features.

Super Contributor

They already told they are not going to develop a Linux client.

Microsoft

For those of you who are looking for further information about Shifts in Teams, check out this webinar. (It includes a demo.)

Occasional Visitor

I would like to know when the chat conversation limit will go from 20 to a number above that? When at MS Ignite they said the November update would include this change and would allow 500 users in a conversation.

Established Member

@Oleg K- After a large outcry, they have moved the Linux client back onto the backlog. (However, even being in "working on it" state doesn't guarantee progress, see my previous posts ad nauseam.)

The problem they face is that Teams is all about... well, Teams. Even if only a small percentage of your company uses Linux, the chances of a Linux user being an essential part of a Team rapidly approaches 100% as the size and number of teams grows.

Super Contributor

Regarding StaffHub retirement i have found such information here https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/skywriter/2018/04/19/office-365-planned-service-changes-2019/

 

Details: Effective October 1, 2019, Microsoft StaffHub will be retired.

 

So it is almost a year until it is retired and i guess it could be it won't appear in Teams that fast.

Visitor

I appreciate the link Oleg, but Microsoft had already stated that the StaffHub to Shifts feature move would include new information "in November" so...it's halfway through November. :)  

 

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/microsoft-staffhub-to-be-retired-30ca17f3-5502-4bc9-bb0a-be...

 

"Will Microsoft Teams offer all of the functionality currently offered in Microsoft StaffHub?

Yes, starting in November 2018, Microsoft Teams will offer a Shifts feature, which enables managers to create, update, and manage schedules, and lets employees post their availability, swap shifts, and request time off. In addition, the Home view in the Teams mobile app will display the employee’s schedule and important company announcements."

 

New Contributor

I agree specifically the wording is "starting in November 2018, Microsoft Teams will offer a Shifts feature" which suggests we should be able to use Shifts from this month. The same article goes on to say "See the Roadmap for full details on additional features to be released in Teams.", but there is no mention of "shifts" in the roadmap...

 

All of my users are already using the StaffHub app and are unfamiliar with Teams. I'm keen to explore Shifts in Teams to calculate the amount of work involved with the transition and what I need to communicate to my users.

Contributor

Just few simple wishes..

- Log reader for the client logs, please.

- Copy chat from Teams, that could be improved.

- Possibility to run "meet now" from other places than channels only.

- Not sure if others, but I have heard that people do not find the chat on the meetings. So re-desing for the UI would be benefit.

 

Regular Visitor

The new Drive Mode is a great feature but I think a lot more could be done here.

 

First, users still need to navigate through a "non-driving" UI pattern to actually activate the drive mode. Would be great if it would activate automatically when e.g. connected to vehicle bluetooth. This would be a nice trigger to expose via a Siri Shortcut on iOS. 

 

Moreover, when I am driving, controlling functions during a call is usually not an issue as most cars have hardware controls for mute, hang-up, etc. The difficult (and dangerous) part is actually finding and joining (or re-joining) meetings. Would be great to see some effort in this direction.

Contributor

Will we ever get back the time, when the release notes clarifies what fixed has been made? You seems to point to "release notes". But that basically tells what are the new features. I believe there are still some error corrections also :D