New Features Help You do More in Microsoft 365
Over the next several weeks, Microsoft is making some changes to Microsoft 365, which include changes to Viva Briefings and Office Mobile and feature enhancements and retirements in Microsoft Teams.
Find Time Integrated into Outlook as Scheduling Poll
The Find Time meeting scheduling add-in has been available for nearly a decade and has gained so much popularity that developers are making it a native feature of Outlook. Find Time will be re-named Scheduling Poll. Scheduling Poll will serve the same purpose that Find Time did – it enables meeting attendees to choose which meeting times work for them using a poll sent by the meeting organizer, which minimizes numerous back-and-forth emails. For more information read about Scheduling Poll on Microsoft’s website.
Scheduling Poll is already available in Outlook on the Web and Outlook for Mac clients. Outlook on Windows will be transitioning in the next few months; details will be announced at a later date. The Find Time add-in for Outlook on Windows will continue to be available until Scheduling Poll is added.
Retirements in Office Mobile
The Share Nearby and Transfer Files features have been retired from Office Mobile by Microsoft. They report that these features did not deliver enough value to users and were sunset to focus on more popular features.
Viva Briefing Emails Will Stop While Microsoft Makes Enhancements
Many Outlook users have opted-in to Viva briefing emails and rely on these messages to remind them of upcoming meetings and task commitments. Viva briefing emails use Exchange Online email and calendar data to process and store any insights or actions inside users’ Exchange Online mailbox.
By February 2023, Outlook will stop sending the daily Viva briefing emails to people who have opted in. Microsoft is taking some time to improve the content of Viva Briefing emails to provide more personalized content to each recipient. Microsoft has not given a timeframe for when the new daily Viva briefing emails would resume.
For people who rely on the daily briefing email functionality for meeting prep and outstanding task reminders, booking focus time, and recommendations to improve work patterns can instead use the Viva Insights Outlook add-in or the Viva Insights app in Teams and web.
Enhancements in Teams
An overwhelming number of users have found Microsoft Teams valuable, so developers are offering many new features to make Teams even more useful. In addition, two lesser-used features will be retired. Enhancements include:
Improved Teams Chat Search Function
When clicking on a search message result in Teams Search you will now be able to view the entire chat conversation history in the search window.
New Live Cameo feature in Teams and PowerPoint
Using a new feature called “Cameo,” you can insert your live camera feed directly on a PowerPoint slide during your presentation. You can then apply the same effects to your camera feed as you can to a picture or other object, including formatting, transitions, and styles. For more information, read Microsoft’s explanation of the cameo feature.
Scheduling of Messages in Teams Chat
Teams has introduced a “schedule send” feature that allows users to schedule chat messages to be delivered in the future. This is similar to the “delay send” feature that you may have used in Outlook. Build better work-life balance with this feature and support flexible schedules by scheduling chat messages to be delivered during recipients’ work hours. For more information see Microsoft’s instructions about scheduling messages in Teams Chat.
Option to begin a Teams Chat using Distribution Groups
You are now able to start a Teams Chat with Distribution Groups used for email. Add the group name in “To” field of a new chat message to begin chatting with all members of the distribution group.
Availability of More Pop Out Windows in Teams
The ability to pop-out separate windows for different areas of Teams has been expanded beyond chat, tabs, and meetings. Now you can also open a separate window for the calendar meeting schedule for new and existing meetings.
Automatically Include Up to 49 Participants in Teams Meetings
The Teams Meetings screen has an expanded view that will now automatically enlarge to display up to 49 participants video feeds on the screen by default, without requiring users to manually choose Large Gallery view. This feature support is based on device hardware capabilities; for example, mobile devices may not allow for the display of 49 participants.
More Co-Organizer Roles Can Be Added to Teams Meetings
Add up to 10 co-organizers to help manage your meeting. Co-organizers are displayed as additional organizers in the meeting participant list and have most of the same capabilities as the meeting organizer. This eliminates the need to designate new organizers during meetings with multiple presenters, so they can more easily share their screens and lead presentations. This enhancement applies to Teams Meetings and Teams Meeting Breakout rooms. Visit Microsoft’s site to learn more about designating multiple co-organizers.
Collaborative Annotations Available with Screenshare in Teams Meetings
Collaborative Annotation helps you collaborate with others while screen sharing in Teams meetings. With Collaborative Annotation turned on during a screenshare, meeting attendees will see the Annotation button in meeting controls at the top-center of their screen. To turn on Collaborative Annotation while you are sharing your screen in a meeting, select the pen icon to start annotation in meeting controls at the top-center of your screen. Visit Microsoft’s website for more information about Collaborative Annotations.
New Teams Meeting Speaker Coach Feature
Speaker Coach provides private, personalized feedback on your speaking and presentation skills in both real-time as well as post-meeting in a summary. You can choose to turn on Speaker Coach if you want to use it. Any insights it provides are sent only to you and are not included in the meeting transcript. Visit Microsoft’s site to learn more about Speaker Coach.
In addition, Teams is retiring two features:
- Changes to My Activity in Teams: The Teams Activity view in both desktop and web clients will no longer show activities initiated by you; that feature is being retired. Going forward, when you click the Activity icon on the left-side taskbar, you will only see activities directed to you by others. This change will be complete by March 2023.
- Teams Wiki Retires: The Wiki app/tab in Teams will be retired in February 2023. A banner will be displayed on your Wiki tab where you will have an option to export the wiki content to a OneNote notebook in Teams. After exporting you can go to the Notes tab to collaborate using OneNote in channels. You will no longer be able to view and edit existing Wiki’s after February. We suggest that anyone using a Wiki in Teams export the data to OneNote. Not sure if you are using Wiki? If you do not see “Wiki” on the Taskbar on the top of the screen in Teams, you are likely not using the wiki feature. The Staff Notebook feature is NOT affected by this change, as that function is powered by One Note.