Technology is continually changing the way we work, with software that allows us to collaborate, even if we are not in the same physical space. How are tech giants like Microsoft contributing in this space?

As our team at CUE learned when attending a Microsoft product launch, the company has been creating and updated features that enable you to share, organize and work simultaneously in the same document. Staying on top of all these new elements can be time-consuming and so we’ve compiled our three favorites below. Even with the initial learning curve, mastering these updates can make your work more efficient.

  1. Microsoft Teams: A Better Chatting Software

The recently introduced Microsoft Teams is a browser-based chat feature for Office 365 that also integrates with all other Office 365 features. It has the functionality of other project management or chat software, products like Slack and Google Allo. However, Microsoft Teams keeps your data within the Microsoft world. All the documents you share within Teams are organized and stored within Sharepoint. With other collaborative chats, sharing and then editing the document outside of Microsoft means you have to re-save a new version. Other useful features include things like:

-Threaded, persistent chat

-Open group or private direct chats

-Unique teams to keep project documents and conversations separate

Plus, Teams integrations like CRM, GitHub, brings in feeds from social media, Trello, and has a chatbot to answer your questions. Get exploring!

2. Collaboration Without Sacrificing Privacy

Document storage on Sharepoint is very secure, and an easy way for the whole team to work on one document without worry about version control. Changes are saved in real time as you edit in the cloud, and you can see exactly who is changing your work along with where they are making edits. Sharepoint makes sharing documents very easy, both inside and outside of your company. You can email a link to the document to anyone outside the company for editing, while the document still lives right where it was originally saved.

The best feature is the permissions. We’ve all sent the wrong email to the wrong person: if you haven’t, unfortunately, your time will come because autocomplete makes this error inevitable. But, by editing document permissions in several ways, you can customize who can open the link for internal and external collaborators, even after you’ve sent it! To learn how to manage external sharing, you can click here

3. Use @mentions to get somebody’s attention

Microsoft has been updating their 365 inbox to streamline efficiency by added features like tied threads and a “Focused” inbox to organize your emails. But @mentions is a very handy email feature, especially to get somebody’s attention.

Say you want to write a reply to an email chain with your colleague — but, at this point in the conversation, you want to involve a new colleague. The question relevant for this new person is halfway down in the email and they are never going to reply to it if they don’t see it!

Problem solved with the @mentions feature. Simply type “@theirname” and the targeted person’s name will appear highlighted by the question you need them to answer — this lets your colleague know that they were mentioned specifically.

For detailed step-by-step instructions regarding @mentions, you can read more here

CUE guides small businesses to find the right software and streamline their workflow so they can focus on growing their business. If you have questions about any software solutions, visit our website here.