Find what you want, discover what you need with personalized intelligent search across Microsoft 365

Published 09-25-2017 06:00 AM 124K Views

New intelligent search capabilities and experiences powered by the Microsoft Graph help you find content and people faster and discover relevant knowledge from across your organization. At Microsoft, our vision of search in the enterprise centers on bringing personalized search results to wherever you may be working, from across your intranet, and even the internet. By infusing artificial intelligence (AI) into our familiar experiences in Office, search and discovery become part of your everyday work, rather than a separate destination.


Routine tasks such as finding the right version of a document, getting back to a presentation you were editing, or learning about a topic you are not familiar with by locating experts and content, are now simpler and faster. Harness your organization's collective knowledge by fully leveraging who you know and what they know to improve decision making and unlock creativity.



Putting you at the center of search in SharePoint

In May at the SharePoint Virtual Summit, we announced that personalized search was coming to the SharePoint home in Office 365. Today we're delighted to announce that search in SharePoint is becoming smarter and faster to use, and will surface more relevant results from across Office 365. Search results will be personalized for you by the Microsoft Graph. 


Microsoft Graph gleans insight from the people, sites and documents you work with, and ranks search results relevant to your needs. You'll still be able to see all the results that satisfy your query, but personalized search will prioritize the results that are most likely to achieve your objective.

The search experience has been redesigned and streamlined to make it easier for you to find and filter results, and results will now include list items everywhere, not just the results in the enterprise search center, so all content in a SharePoint site is now included.



Find what you need, faster, with personalized search results and a streamlined search results page in SharePoint.



You'll also find that search is, itself, faster than ever in SharePoint. Recent performance improvements and a smoother, faster interface, frees up your time by re-using what has been created before.

Personalized search results in SharePoint home will be available later this year, across all geographies, and the new search interface will roll out at the same time.



Within the search experience, you can live preview files to quickly ascertain if this is the content you are looking for.


Search your organization, PC, and Office 365 right from your taskbar

Whether it's apps, documents, email messages, company resources, or people - across local devices and Office 365 - that same personalized search experience is now in Windows. Gives your employees a place to search for and quickly surface what they're seeking, right from the taskbar. Find documents locally and in Office 365, even you can even query content inside the document. If you don't remember where you put a document from folders on your PC or OneDrive or a group in SharePoint, searching via Windows is the fastest way to find it. In addition, demonstrating intelligent discovery when searching for people - based on who you work with most, you'll see their contact options to connect instantly.



Finding colleagues straight from Windows, even search by just first name to quickly find the people you work with most


Bing for business - a new Microsoft Graph powered search experience in your browser 


 Search is built into so many of our activities during the work day and to support you further, we are announcing the Private Preview of a new modern workplace capability.

Bing for business is a new intelligent search experience for Microsoft 365, which uses AI and the Microsoft Graph to deliver more relevant search results based on your organizational context. This new experience from Bing for your enterprise, school, or organization helps users save time by intelligently and securely retrieving information from enterprise resources such as company data, people, documents, sites and locations as well as public web results, displaying them in a single experience. Bing for business can be used with a browser on any device, transforming the way employees search for information at work, ultimately making them more productive.
Using your browser or Windows search, you can securely surface work related results in addition to web results as part of one simple interface.

Bing serves as a great entry point when you don’t know where to start your search – easily discovering content from your intranet and the internet. Activities such as a quick look up of a colleague you haven’t met before, surfaces their profile info right at the top of the browser search results, linking to their Delve profile and a helpful map to their office location. And as you work through your day, you might take a couple of minutes during your lunchbreak to look up ‘how to pay my healthcare provider’ where Bing for business will surface a best bet directly to the relevant intranet page.

Shielding queries to the internet is also important for employees. Bing for business offers enhanced protection for your Bing web searches and treats your enterprise data in a compliant way.  Searching with Bing for business requires Azure Active Directory authentication to access results, and the results that are returned are ones the authenticated user has access to, coming directly from the trusted cloud.  Search queries are anonymized, aggregated across all companies and separated from public Bing search traffic.  Additionally, these queries are not used for displaying targeted ad based on your work or company identity, and company-specific queries are not viewable by advertisers.  This provides a level of protection unavailable anywhere else in the industry.  


Bing for business is available for private preview starting today and will be available as part of existing subscriptions to Office 365 Enterprise E1, E3, E5, F1, Business Essentials, Business Premium, and Education E5 subscriptions. Get more information about Bing for business and if you are interested in receiving an invitation to participate in the private preview, visit




Surfacing answers and actions

Over the next year as Bing increases its connectivity scope within organizations, you will see more than simple search results and a move to actionable insights. Bing for business uses Machine Reading Comprehension and Deep Learning to understand the intent of the question across all documents in your enterprise. And since it knows who you are based on your authentication session, it can synthesize the best answer for your specific query across all the documents you can access - from the public internet to your private intranet. Using both the AI of Bing and the intelligence of the Microsoft Graph, a search will extract and surface up tasks and approvals directly in the browser for action. For example, expense reporting sourced from ERP system data will be available for approval. Asking natural language questions with answers that have been automatically extracted from existing intranet resources will also be possible. Combining the best of your intranet and internet experiences in a careful, considered way helps you find what you need to know fast, powered by a consistent set of results from the Microsoft Graph from across Office 365, of course including SharePoint.

Over the next year, you'll see this same question and answer capability with the ease of natural language conversation available across other Microsoft 365 experiences, including SharePoint.




Within Office 365, quickly discover relevant documents, sites and apps

The new personalized intelligent search and discovery features are extending to wherever you get work done. We're also pleased to have recently announced the evolution of your starting point to all Office 365 services, When you log into to, you'll see a beautiful new experience, optimized to help you discover relevant documents in your intranet, surface most recently used content, sites and folders and learn about the other capabilities of Office to help you unlock your creativity. Offering personalized search across Office 365, your web apps and content, people and SharePoint sites, right from and recommended section surfaces recent activity that's most relevant to you.




Transform images into findable content automatically

Visual content is a rich source of information and the SharePoint and OneDrive teams have been working hard to tap that source to make them an even better experience for you.


This summer, we announced the ability to search for photos using the objects that are in them. When you upload an image into OneDrive or SharePoint, whether a snap of a whiteboard, a business card, a receipt, a screen shot, a vector graphic, line drawing or even x-ray film, we'll automatically detect it, and make it available in search, without you having to do anything other than upload the image.

Augmenting that, we're pleased to announce our ability to extract text out of images, whether they were originally printed on paper or digital. We're using intelligent services behind the scenes, so your search experience doesn't change in OneDrive or SharePoint. Connect to people, events, projects and meetings using both detected objects and image metadata, such as date and location


Upload your images through your iOS or Android phone or PC, and they'll become searchable soon after. This feature will be made available within a couple of weeks after Ignite.


Extract text and objects for easy recall. Use them as triggers to classify in SharePoint and OneDrive and we'll have more to share early next year on integrating even deeper into your workflow. 


Unified search for global clients with multi-geo capabilities for M365

Our commitment to your privacy and control over your own data has never been stronger. Today we are announcing support for Multi-Geo Search whether your data is stored in many data regions around the world or just a couple. The index of the data will be stored locally in region with the data, and the search results will span and unify those indices based on your search and location.

Multi-geo search capabilities for M365 will surface in the enterprise search center, OneDrive, SharePoint home and Delve and as customer you will be able to add a query parameter to enable multi-geo search anywhere.



We're excited to share these new capabilities to help you harness collective knowledge and unlock creativity in your organization. Happy finding, less searching!


Senior Member

This is lookin really good and I like the fact that the Graph is starting to play a big role. A couple of questions which I'm sure many others will share:


  • What about metadata. Lets say we want to build a search experience that makes use of metadata and build refiners. Will the new experience support it?
  • Will we be able to rank results? And also, what about promoted results?
  • Are Display templates still going to be supported in some way or another? Would there be a way to customise the results. Are these different sections just web parts?
  • Would we be able to create custom result sources and use them per results page as per previous versions of SharePoint?
  • Will we have a search dropdown on a modern team page which could then take the user to a custom results page?
  • Most importantly. When will this be available?

Great news! Thank you.
Considering text extraction from images (OCR?), do you plan to make it work for PDF file format?

Occasional Visitor

I have the exact same questions as Wicus. Can we get an answer?

I have the same questions as Wicus.

What About Metadata and when will this be available?

Can we get an answer?

Frequent Contributor

It looks very nice and I am looking forward for it. So it will be finally one central place from where you can find anything. O365 now provides a lot of applications (yammer, Teams, SharePoint) with own search. In these applications is also content (conversations, documents etc.). Will this new search discover content through all of these tools? I know that for example document from Teams are stored in SharePoint but conversations are in another place and same for yammer. Is there any specification which tools will search look into or it will be applied really for whole O365?


I'm loving the idea of 'Search your organization, PC, and Office 365 right from your taskbar'

How would we go about instating this?



Nice look - are you able to confirm that items like query rules are still going to be respected? and are there any toggles on the placeholder setting item / like a traditional 'best bet' answer? cheers!

Not applicable

Is this search experience going to be available on the Communication Site template?

Super Contributor

@Naomi Moneypenny what is the progress of rolling this out, has it started? How can we find out if our tenant has this feature or not?


Occasional Contributor

Definitely an improvement on the current, risible SPO search experience. However there is no evidence of metadata-driven filtering of search results. Without the ability to expose this type of enterprise search functionality then all we have is a better 'Google' search; the power of SharePoint search has always been that it can know about the metadata and information architecture context and expose that. Until this (a left hand filters /refinement panel) is available in this new search experience it is unlikely that enterprises will find much of practical benefit in the new UI This is a shame as, otherwise, there is a lot to like.


What are the plans for getting this out of shorts and into long trousers?

Senior Member

 @Simon Hudson.Good luck in finding an answer. I asked those same questions 4 months ago (See very first comment) and no one from Microsoft answered. It seems they enjoy keeping their paying customers in the dark.

The product team has been heads down in preparing to ship the new personalized search experience. This is not just a new pretty interface shipping, it's personalized ranking for millions and millions of people across a wide range of conditions and integration into multiple products. We've listened very, very carefully to many customers and MVPs about needs around customization and continue to do so and we'll have more to talk about in May around this at SharePoint Conference North America. In the meantime, the Enterprise search center has always been available for organizations who have the means to invest in customization and that work will continue to be useful as the experiences evolve.
Senior Member

@Naomi Moneypenny. The enterprise search center was built on previous versions of SharePoint and looks old and dated. When building a modern experience using Modern SharePoint pages, team sites, groups etc. and we then have to provide users with a old Search Center, that search center becomes the ugly duckling. Now I'm aware that you are working on the beautiful swan, but what are we do to in the meantime? 



Occasional Contributor

@Naomi Moneypenny

@Wicus van den Berg and I stand by our comments. Without the ability to apply carefully constructed information architecture (content types, metadata, storage location/site, etc.) into the search then it remains little more than a clever Google or Bing search. You can make those as smart as you like and they are still only adequate at providing findability (there is even some mathematics that defines this); it is the context that brings the power of enterprise search and without that then most large organisations with sophisticated implementations of O365 will have to use teh search centre, with the impact that has on both the SharePoint Online infrastructure and the user experience.

I love what is being done for simple search, but this seems to be another case of dumbing down at the expense of power users. My observation is that every time this has been done with SharePoint to date there has had to be a U turn (metadata, dropping of the SharePoint name, etc. etc.).


We need, on behalf of the large clients we support, some clarity on the intentions, since the published roadmap has nothing to say on the subject.

Respected Contributor
I don't see any mention of any ability to search for Streams videos or conversations in Yammer and Teams. When will we be able to do this?
Senior Member

 Agree with @Simon Hudson.


We, as the consultants delivering Office 365/SharePoint solutions know/hear from customers on a daily basis what they need. I'm afraid the above probably looks good at a TechEd, Virtual, Inspire conference, but does not solve the customers needs, which is to see customized Search based on Metadata. Refiners, etc. All the things which current Search provides. @Naomi Moneypenny, the other problem here is that some of us don't have the time to invest in the MVP Program and that keeps us out of the loop. That is why communications like this one above is extremely important to us to be able to keep on top of what's happening. The blog post however does not show a history of what was changed which means you could've updated things and I wouldn't know. Can you ask the team to look into that?

New Contributor

I'm in full agreement with @Wicus van den Berg and @Simon Hudson on this. We see a lot of song and dance around these wonderful new features and functions being added to Office 365 but when you get into trying to use them and implement business solutions you start to realise, to miss quote Simon, that these are the short pants versions and the adult versions are a long way away (sometimes so far away there is no one able to tell us when the key features will be in the new versions). So far I am getting frustrated with having to spend days to weeks discovering the number of short fallings from the new products and features that get released. And at the moment I am seeing this as another, hey it doesn't really work but if we put a shinny coat of paint on it the executives will push the implementers to use it.

Please make sure that when this gets to general release it has as a minimum the functions and features we are use to, with an additional shinny coat and some fancy bells and whistles that make it so much better than the old version.

Occasional Contributor

@Naomi Moneypenny I don't normally comment on these things, usually it is pointless unless you are already connected to the product group in question. @Wicus van den Berg@Simon Hudson and @Mark Walters are bang on the money here, without information on how this search experience will practically support business scenarios - or at the very least an indication of time-scale for business tooling - it is irrelevant showing "shiny" pictures.

The Office Message center announcement (22/2 MC129617) makes painfully naïve statements and the blog looks like lipstick. I've been MS front-line, it is really easy to spot "built for demo" vs. "built for production" - any indication that there is some serious thought going into "built for production" would be appreciated. 

Senior Member

"Search your Organisation". Will it be able to search file shares in the organisation?

Not applicable

Looking good! Regarding the improvements to SharePoint search from SharePoint Home, what would your advice be for organisations who have designed their own SharePoint results page layout (i.e. classic search)? Should we be starting to think about moving users to the modern search interface from SharePoint Home, or will the improvements to search results/accuracy apply to the classic view too?

Super Contributor

Is this in the Roadmap, if so, could someone provide a link?



Occasional Contributor

We have recently begun experiencing issues with the search at top left of modern list view when in IE11.  From Chrome/Edge it works fine.  In IE11, when you start typing, and the auto-suggest starts, it gets to the "Searching...  ......." and sticks there.  We are wondering if this is related to MC129617, which I see references this article.  Is anyone else experiencing this issue and/or have information if the updates related to MC129617 may be causing this issue?

Occasional Contributor

And now this is rolling out. However, all the questions raised here have remained mostly unanswered. While it seems all too good for user experience, the effects of it seems can only be ascertained when it hits your tenant. Why is it always that there is always this uncertainty for customers (specially enterprise customers), who setup way of working and standards but MS seems to always find it in their interests to roll out changes that could possibly affect years of setup at an organization. 

Respected Contributor

@Chad Miller i would recommend reposting your question on its own so that it will have a better chance of being seen

Regular Contributor

Anyone got any updates on when this is coming?  End of this month?  Thanks!


In my first release tenant, i see modern search experience. But what about Refiners? Is there any eta?

Senior Member

Looks Great but.

It would be great if MS would make the OOTB Search webpart work for enterprise search again and not just able to search for simpel content files files



@Naomi Moneypenny In January, @Dean Gross asked about making Teams and Yammer conversations availble in Search. Do you have an idea of when it will be possible?  Users really don't like having to search in 4 places to find information (Delve, Stream,Yammer and Teams).  It would be great to be able to Find what you want, discover what you need with personalized intelligent search across Microsoft 365.  Thanks

New Contributor

Now I am starting to see these features become available, one thing I am really interested in is an equivalent to the windows feature "Open file location" on search results. 


Often I will search for a file, returning a set of results which show the paths for various sites where matching files reside. There's no easy way to open the containing folder despite seeing the full path. Thanks!





Why can not I add documents to my Delve Favorites and Boards in SharePoint Search? 

Occasional Contributor

When is Bing for business coming? Users calling help desk more about 'privacy' form requests from Google, we need something more to offer than just the absence of forms on Bing.


Microsoft Search in Bing (previously Bing for business) is now available in Public Preview and please visit for more details. 

Super Contributor
I tried this out... I was looking forward to it, I like the idea of comprehensive search. But now as I try it, I am not sure I see the Use Case. If I am looking for internal documents, i have multiple tabs in my browser on our intranet to fire off a search. I'm not sure when it will be valuable to have internal and external search results on same page. I'd be interested to hear others thoughts on the potential of this -- I realize it is early days for this new feature.


@Rob O'Keefe

Please read the help documentation (Admin Portal and ? on the top right) and setup the product to derive the full potential. 

Microsoft Search in Bing has been in Private Preview for more than a year with 100+ customers.  There are benefits to have a search results show both internal & external results and we would love to hear the feedback.

Regular Contributor

It would be great to not have to use the browser to find SharePoint/O365 files.

Does anyone have any more information on when this might be coming? - Search your organization, PC, and Office 365 right from your taskbar


@Andrew Silcock


This feature is now called Personal Enterprise Search and was released.   


To use this feature, the user must be on Windows 10, version 1709 build, or newer, and signed into their machine with Azure AD.


Update : I stand corrected, this feature is currently being tested and currently scheduled for early 2019 release. 

Regular Contributor

Thanks Raj, 


Do you have any links on where I can find more information about this?  A quick google does not return anything.


Occasional Contributor

Heartless use of a competitors search engine name as a verb in a Bing/Microsoft Search blog, @Andrew Silcock ;)

That said, I remember articles on how to connect the Windows search box to OpenSearch or something and connect to SharePoint server. Couldn't find anything the other day on how to do that. Probably a Windows 7 or 8 article. I was wondering if I could do the same to SPO.

Can't find any hits for "Personal Enterprise Search", top doc is the content search for admins in O365 relating to GDPR.


Regular Contributor

Haha, I realised as soon as I posted it.  Let's just say I was using "A quick Google" as an expression for searching for something on the internet, with no determined search engine used ;)


Yeah, I am not convinced Personal Enterprise Search is a thing yet, or that anything similar exists.  Would love to be proven wrong though as this would be super useful for some of our users.



@Andrew Silcock

RE: Do you have any links on where I can find more information about this?  A quick google does not return anything.

You are correct that this information is not published or available on the internet. I also updated my original comment regarding the availability of Taskbar search feature. 

Regular Contributor

Thanks Raj, I will sit back and wait for this one to be released.

Senior Member

So, here we are, more than a year later and still this has not been rolled out. Even worse, the person who posted this, @Naomi Moneypenny has not responded to any questions and customers plus consultants are still in the dark. It seems that the above was merely a sales pitch to gauge people's interest and nothing more. Has anyone on this thread actually seen this in real life? I get the below when trying to activate it:





@Wicus van den Berg


Hello Wicus, 


Bing for Business was originally announces at Ignite 2017 and was in Private Preview.  Please see the announcement at Ignite 2018.


Please refer to the Requirements for Microsoft Search in Bing. Your Office 365 tenant likely does not meet all the requirements to enable Microsoft Search in Bing.  If you feel that your Office 365 tenant is eligible, please send me a message for further investigation. 


We are actively working on expanding the product to other countries and appreciate your patience. 

Occasional Contributor

@@Raj Kolagotla@I think you have missed @Deleted point. MS Search is fine, but our frustration is about the lack of Enterprise features ( metadata search, content types, exposure of the information architecture, etc) in Modern Search. Without these is **bleep** hard to get bigger organisations to embrace Modern; they don't want another smart search, they want THEIR smart search.

@Wicus van den Berg and I have been trying to get a response or even acknowledgement from @Naomi Moneypenny ever since the original Modern Search blog; it's disappointing that no one can be bothered to reply sensibly.


Meanwhile, Microsoft Search is very interesting. I have an article on it being published in PC Pro next month. However it has the same problem, in that it works fine as a personal such, but scales poorly to sophisticated organisations, despite since of the nice signposting it supports, since it also lacks filtering and search score based on the organisational Information Architecture.


@Simon Hudson

@Wicus van den Berg


Appreciate the questions and the feedback. Give me few days to respond. 

Regular Visitor

Is there a Roadmap specifically for Microsoft Search? if so is it available to view?


What's next or roadmap was shared during the Ignite breakout session BRK2103


We don't have updates at this time, but will make every attempt to post updates as they become available.



Occasional Contributor


There is a link in this article to find more information, Bing for Business.  In this linked article it notes a key feature, Building and Floor Plans.  My search to find more information on this feature has come up empty and our company could benefit from something like this.  Could someone point me to further information on what this is referring to?

Thank you


@Thomas Sjule


Buildings feature has been announced in this blog post Introducing Locations in Microsoft Search in Bing and has been released.


Floor Plans feature is currently being built and will have more information early 2019. 





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