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4 Tips for working from home with Microsoft Teams

Published Feb 28 2020 07:28 PM 152K Views

Lola Jacobsen is a Sr. Technical Writer at Microsoft and our guest blog author today. Thank you!


There are many reasons to work remotely and Microsoft Teams is here to help you stay connected with your teammates wherever they are. IT admins, don’t miss Support remote workers using Teams which as recently been updated.


4 best practices for working from home

  1. Make the most of meetings
    • Meetings are about the people in them, not the technology. The most effective meetings have a clear purpose. Use your meeting description to detail what the meeting is for. Learn more about driving great teamwork with our Art of Teamwork materials.
    • Use chat to share reminders or pre-read documents to your audience before the meeting.
    • Record the meeting if that’s acceptable in your organization.  recordameeting.png
    • If you have one of the new Teams Room System content-capture cameras (“magic whiteboard”), you can use it to bring your physical whiteboard into the meeting.
  2. Be inclusive and use your video
    • When you’ve got robust bandwidth, turn on your video Tip: Use background blur if you don’t want your background to be a distraction. Video really amps up collaboration in meetings (but if you’ve got limited bandwidth, turn off video to maintain high-quality audio). Make sure you know how to join a meeting in Teams before the meeting starts.
    • Practice inclusion – ask everyone for their input. If someone’s audio is too low, or if their device is causing problems, deal with it at the start of the meeting so that person won’t be excluded.
    • Don’t forget to keep track of your mute button! :smile:




  1. Track notes and action items, share frequently used documents
    • Take notes and share follow-ups in chat. It’s harder to get a casual recap in the hallway when there is no hallway. Use an app like Planner, Asana, or Trello to track tasks.
    • For something that you usually handle with one meeting and informal, hallway catch-ups, schedule a 15-minute follow-up meeting a few days later. Be sure to include prep work in the meeting invitation.
    • In channels, create tabs for important files, websites, or dashboards so the content is available to everyone on the team.
  1. Customize your virtual workspace

Whether you’re new to remote work, temporarily working from home, or on an extended leave, Teams is there to help you be productive from anywhere. Learn more in one of our quick online courses or from our help content at Share your tips below or online with the #TeamsTips hashtag. 


Super Contributor

Other than virtual bg (which can also be needed in the office) these are tips for just video meetings in general. I expected something specific for remote workers. I mean, we do video meetings in the office all the time, because we have a few offices around the world.


> Pin your favorite 1:1 or group chats


Already full, can't pin more than 15 at once for some reason so I have to use this feature to pin my most important contacts. So please consider increasing this limit (while hopefully also working on generally improving the chat tab).


I realize there is a "contacts" tab as well but it's enough of a hassle having to switch between chat and teams tab I don't also what to have to switch between subtabs. Since it's a web application switching is quite slow so you should probably try to minimize that need.

Occasional Contributor

Tip #5: If you use text chat to discuss the work you are collaborating on, buy an additional monitor.


Despite being the #1 UI request on UserVoice for nearly 3 years, progress towards a proper compact chat mode has been going backwards. The requirements are simple, it's just a layout change, and "mere users" have already developed CSS hacks to actually implement it. To implement, test, and deploy it is probably a couple of weeks' work. And yet after three years we see zero progress on this issue from the actual Teams developers.


Worse, we have had three years of the team saying that they are progressing, followed by later messages saying that they were never working on it in the first place. This undermines the reputation of the developers and damages trust in Microsoft's communication with customers.

Occasional Visitor

Tip 2.3 - track the mute button, would be easier in Teams if it worked like Skype, so when the window is minimised there remains a small floating window with the mute toggle clearly visible. With Teams I have to scrabble back toggling through windows to mute or unmute, if I'm looking at other materials on the monitor.


Also, Teams defaults people arriving into calls with their mic open, but Skype defaults to mic closed - I prefer the latter to stop unwanted noise on joining.

Frequent Contributor

May as well add the multiple persona issue - switching back and forth between identities or running several browser app versions just isn't working. As above, the feedback has been there for months/years but no progress.  See this post for further ideas and help if afflicted!

Occasional Visitor

Good article! Will take this tips to improve meetings at our office.  Thanks @Karuana Gatimu 

Respected Contributor

Please provide a similar article that is focused on the security settings that the admins need to consider changing from a default value.

Occasional Contributor

1) Make sure to add a Subject Line to your posts in Teams.  This visual anchor will help your team quickly locate past posts more quickly.  

2) Follow channels that are important so you don't miss things when people don't @mention anyone.  @Team will also mention the entire team.

Occasional Visitor

Its an useful article.


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‎Mar 06 2020 05:38 PM
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