The shift to remote work has been disruptive to industries and businesses around the planet. Hybrid work is reshaping the digital and physical workplace of the future and success in this hybrid world will require a new set of tools designed to help us adapt and thrive. Earlier today, Microsoft announced new capabilities for Microsoft Viva and Microsoft Teams that equip people and organization for these changes, including Viva Connections, which will enter public preview in the upcoming weeks.
Viva Connections Public Preview
This preview release includes the Viva Connections mobile app and an updated version of the Viva Connections desktop experience that enables organizations to customize, brand, and deploy their own employee app for their workforce. Viva Connections is the gateway to your organization's employee experience. It is built directly into Microsoft Teams and designed to create connection and drive alignment to empower employees – from information workers to frontline and deskless employees. Now, admins can enable, configure, and deploy the Viva Connections app directly from the Teams App Store, just like any other app in Teams. See a detailed overview of this new employee app and how to get started. This release is an update and expansion to the Viva Connections app launched in March with several new major capabilities being announced.
What’s included in this release
Viva Connections mobile app experience – This is the first look at the mobile experience for Viva Connections. It introduces the dashboard, feed, and resources tabs and brings these experiences together into a personalized and actionable employee home base. Once enabled, the Viva Connections app is available for your employees right from within the Teams app, both on mobile and desktop.
Viva Connections mobile showing the dashboard, feed, and resources screens
Viva Connections desktop – This updated version of the desktop experience streamlines installation and deployment for admins in the Microsoft Teams admin center. The new dashboard and feed web parts enable customers to have consistency across the mobile and desktop experiences. For organizations using the existing version of Viva Connections desktop, learn about the differences and how to upgrade to this version. Prior to enabling Viva Connections for your users, learn how to customize the app with your own organization’s logo and name.
The Viva Connections desktop experience
Dashboard web part – In the dashboard, employees can find useful resources and actionable tasks, like submitting expense reports, accessing benefits, requesting time off work, or verifying health checks to return to the office. Powered by adaptive cards and the SharePoint Framework, cards on the dashboard can be targeted to specific users so employees can stay connected and engaged virtually wherever they are and however they work. With this release, you can bring the power of the dashboard to your home site as a web part. Simply add a new web part and select the Dashboard for Viva Connections. To help you integrate with third-party apps, services or line-of-business applications, many Microsoft Partners have created cards that will be available soon, and enterprises can build their own custom cards. Take a look at some of the solutions you’ll be able to use right away.
The Dashboard web part in Viva Connections desktop
Feed web part – The feed provides a single, personalized view where employees can explore news and join conversations from across the organization, keeping people connected. It aggregates relevant news and discussions across Microsoft 365 services to keep people informed and make it easy for people to participate, add value, and share their unique perspective and expertise. For communicators, it simplifies sharing into a unified channel to ensure essential information doesn’t get lost while providing options to boost and target content to specific audiences and improve visibility. Now, the feed can be added as a web part to your home site or any SharePoint site.
The Feed web part in Viva Connections
We encourage you to try out the new public preview of Viva Connections as well as explore the other Microsoft Viva modules in the coming weeks. We’re continuing to build, iterate, and integrate to deliver the best employee experience solution in the world. Learn more at http://www.microsoft.com/Viva and join our Microsoft Viva community to stay up-to-date with the latest information or share your feedback about Viva Connections!
- Andy Haon is a Group Program Manager (GPM) working on Microsoft Viva and SharePoint