January 10, 2021

MS Teams ups its game with new remote working features


Virtual collaboration has become an idealistic scenario of workplaces today. On a positive note, a huge rise in employee performance and productivity indicates an improvement in digital dexterity across organizations all over the world.

We all know that Microsoft Teams played a critical role in reinventing the digital workspace, and making businesses resilient against the unprecedented crisis. With an appealing set of new-age features in Teams, teleworkers could smoothly adjust to the virtual workspace and become more agile.

According to recent research, there is a new daily record of 2.7 billion Microsoft meeting minutes per day. As the future of remote work looks promising, Microsoft has taken a step ahead to empower people by leveraging virtual reality and AI in Microsoft Teams. Hence, it is all set to bring in new and more realistic experiences for Microsoft Teams users by expanding Teams’ capabilities for better and more natural interaction.

Let us explore some fantastic latest and upcoming features in Microsoft Teams to let teams share workspaces like never –

1. Together mode

Together mode places participants of a meeting in a shared background making them feel that they are sitting in the same room. Together mode uses AI segmentation technology and easily detects the non-verbal cues to understand people’s body language and facial gestures. It is most appropriate for meetings where multiple people speak, discuss solutions, or brainstorm to let them know who is talking.

2. Dynamic view

The dynamic view is an enhanced version of standard video meetings which gives you more control over other participants and how a shared content is displayed. With new controls, you will have the ability to show shared content and specific participants side-by-side and personalize the view according to your preferences. Dynamic View will also automatically adjust your view so that video participants are prioritized on the main section of the screen, and audio participants are on the right-hand side.

3. Video filters

You can use video filters to customize your appearance by adjusting the lighting levels and softening the camera focus.

4. Reflect messaging extension

By using the upcoming reflect messaging extension, you can gain insights into your employee’s well-being or emotional health to keep them happy and engaging in the workplace. Reflect messaging extension provides suggested questionnaire and the ability to create custom questions and generate a poll for employees to respond.

5. Live reactions

The upcoming Live reactions feature will allow the participants to share their emotions or feelings in a meeting through emojis which will be visible to all. As non-verbal cues like smiles and nods are hard to catch, live reactions will help employees to share instant feedback with the presenter without interrupting the meeting.

6. Chat bubbles

Chat bubbles will soon give a lively space for the conversation during meetings and allow participants to actively participate in the discussion. Using chat bubbles, you will not need to open a chat window manually. Chats sent during a Teams meeting will appear on the screens of all participants and make the chat more central to the conversation. 

7. Tasks app

The tasks app offers a unified view of the tasks of users across different apps from Planner, Microsoft To-Do, and Outlook. Additionally, the tasks app can create smart views such as ‘assigned to me’ and ‘important’ to curate a more structured view of action items.

8. Suggested replies

Using suggested replies, you can respond to a user’s message on chat in just a tap. Suggested replies use assistive AI to generate short responses based on the text sent by a user. This makes it faster to answer general queries without using our keyboard.

9. Interactive meetings for a larger group of people

Teams meetings will start supporting up to 1,000 participants to enable more people to interact and collaborate in real-time.

10. Cortana in Teams

Microsoft Teams will soon incorporate Cortana for Teams mobile app, Cortana for providing AI voice assistance to users. Using Cortana, you can give voice commands to Teams app to join meetings, send messages, make calls, share files, and more.

11. Microsoft Whiteboard updates

To enhance visual collaboration, a whiteboard in Teams will be upgraded with new features including faster load times, sticky notes, text, and drag and drop capabilities. These features will help those team members who don’t have access to a touchscreen or Surface Hub to participate in whiteboarding sessions during meetings.

12. Approvals app

Using the approvals app in Microsoft Teams, you can easily create, manage, and share approvals directly from your hub for teamwork. You can quickly start an approval flow in a chat, channel conversation, or from the approvals app itself. After submission, approvers can review and act on the requests.

Improving Microsoft Teams with automation

Affirmatively, the features so far discussed are useful and appealing enough to pull a massive user base to Microsoft Teams yet again. Concurrently, Microsoft Teams governance can’t be overlooked when hundreds of thousands of users collaborate on the same platform. To let digital collaboration flourish in business, it is paramount to strengthen Microsoft Teams administration with better controls.

With this regard, TeamsHub by Cyclotron automates Microsoft Teams governance to let users enjoy collaboration in a controlled environment. Using TeamsHub by Cyclotron, you can automate Teams creation so that users can explore and utilize Microsoft Teams freely to better coordinate, brainstorm, and innovate in a secured environment.

To know more on how TeamsHub by Cyclotron helps in business workflows, please visit https://teamshub.io or contact sales@cyclotrongroup.com to request a demo

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