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Is Private Channels in Teams overrated?? My take on it!

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23 Replies
A great blog Adam - and an important conversation point for all working with Teams. May be a case of being careful what you wish for.

Very interesting blog, I'd lost track of Private Channels and this was a great catch up and how this may actually hurt adoption because of the extra complexities.  The picture you paint is very familiar and common I think, throwing in private channels into the mix could be rough! 

 

I look forward to seeing how Microsoft might minimize these potential issues when this is closer to release.

Agree with complexity when splitting it down to channels. I still like thinking of Teams as Slack Channels, and Teams just have extra feature of sub channels. Permissions handled at Team level.

Anyway, I can't wait for someone to tell someone else, so and so put it in Teams.
"I didn't get it"
*Sends support ticket* - "So and so didn't get my message"
Support - "Is it a private channel?"
User - "What's that?"
Support " Is there a lock on it?"
User - "Yes"
Support "Is the person not getting the messages allowed to see that channel?"
User - "They are on the team?"

/facepalm.....
Solution
:face_with_tears_of_joy:🥴

This was a great read - so many great points you bring up - thank you!

Having to deal with file shares permissions requests for many years i can see how private channels can become a mess and then users will demand IT to fix it :) I think you have good points, but i also can see why others want to get private channels. Maybe MS shouldn't have channels and just teams to begin with..

I think the way to manage this, to ensure that IT doesn't bear responsibility, is to have a good governance framework agreed with the business, and have business buy-in to the process.  If they are invested in it, then they will help to make sure it works successfully.  The other part is quality of communications on how Microsoft Teams is managed.  Creating a knowledge article on how to resolve simple permissions issues stops tickets from being lodged by the customer with IT.  If ownership of individual Teams lives with the Team owner, then it will be the Team owner's responsibility to manage that Team.  The knowledge article will direct them to speak to the Team owner.

Yes indeed! These steps are important for a good working teams environment already today, but becomes even more critical when owners gain further responsibility

@adam deltinger Any interest in joining the online discussion this Thursday?  The next #CollabTalk TweetJam will bring the community together to discuss "Do we need Private Channels in Microsoft Teams?" at 9am Pacific via Twitter or http://tweetjam.collabtalk.com 

I would be happy too! Ill try to make it a little later though!! Ill be hosting European teams usergroup live meet at 8 pt that day

@adam deltinger - Great article, and I agree with your thoughts around the Admin challenges of maintaining proper security structure over time. I can't speak for the other folks clamoring for this, but my desire for this feature has less to do with truly needing "Private" channels, and has more to do with providing end users a clean and concise view of their world, and reducing the noise within our organization. 

 

For example, if I am a resource who is supporting many different account teams on project based work, I would only be interested in receiving communication which is occurring in the specific Project Channels I am a member of, and furthermore would have no interest in seeing or having to manage favorites throughout this sea of channels. "@channel" mentions start hitting a more relevant audience, because it is managed (rather then the annoying back and forth of "did you favorite it?" ..."I don't think so? Where do I do that?") From an account manager perspective, I would want all of the conversations containerized within that project channel to speed through any issue resolution and/or clarification efforts needed. 

 

So from my lens, allowing Unique Membership at the channel level would make communication groups far easier to manage, and while capturing persistent chat in a more logical and intuitive location than the separate "Chat" bucket. I don't care about file restrictions, as any sensitive data is captured, as you mentioned, in a separate Library with governed permissions. With the ability to link to disparate file locations, this becomes any easy thing to manage in my opinion. 

 

I help a lot of teams with best practices and user adoption with Teams (and a lot of other tools in the O365 family), therefore I am currently a member of 28 Teams, and subsequently ~180 channels.....growing every week. I would love to be able to create a "Support" Channel and drop off the rest so the UI is clean when I fire it up each morning, which allows me to quickly identify what needs attention.    

 

I am sure there are multiple angles which could solve for this, and anything that reduces email noise (especially with internal communication) and allows for quicker and more intuitive group management at the end user level has my vote. Maybe it is as simple as changing "Favorites" to "Following" and eliminating any Channels which are not followed from the user's view to reduce visual overload. 

 

Hopefully my ramblings make some level of sense. 

It makes sense a lot :) thanks for great feedback!!

Hello @adam deltinger 

Do you any idea when Microsoft will launch the Private Channel in Microsft Teams please? 

Hello @adam deltinger Do you any idea when Microsoft will launch the Private Channel in Microsft Teams please? 

Hi @Sofianeda1st

It has been marked as Q4 CY19 on the Microsoft 365 Roadmap

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/roadmap?featureid=50588

 

However, we have all had notification that it should be in August. 


Hope that helps!

Best, Chris

Thank you.
This is gonna be really important for our users to use Private Channel :)
Not a problem! It's a functionality we are all looking forward to :D

Best, Chris
Don't count on August, it seemed lofty to me, and if you notice the item now shows as Q4. I would expect closer to Ignite for release on this TBH around end of Oct. Early November.
Aaww, don’t come here and be negative...hope is all we got left!!
Lets start a sweepstake :face_with_tears_of_joy:

Will be easy to get 100 of us between now and Ignite :face_with_tears_of_joy:

Best, Chris
Just being realistic, I mean. Maybe we'll get a message center post in August so it'll actually release by ignite :).
So funny enough, you can create a chat that is private, and it has much of same functionality as a team, you can share files, add tabs etc.
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