Klarinet Solutions virtually hosts monthly TechTalks for our clients and partners, covering various topics around Microsoft 365, SharePoint, and the modern digital workplace. Although minor in scale, there are many cool features on Microsoft platforms that everyone should know about. In our February 2021 Tech Talk, Aarslan Rafique, Business Development Specialist, led a quick overview of all the Microsoft 365 Updates announced in the past month. Here are some of the most important updates that were released, updated, or made public:
Ability to Share with Teams from Outlook: With this, users can now share an email conversation from Outlook, including attachments, to any chat or channel in Teams. When a user is sharing an email from the Outlook desktop client or Outlook on the web, Share to Teams in Outlook will launch a window in the Teams desktop client if it is installed or open a window within Outlook. Therefore, a recipient who opens up their Teams app will see a preview of the email message, which they can open to view the full contents by clicking on the expand option. This update is a great way to share email conversations without manually copying and pasting conversations into Teams or continuously CC people on emails.
Microsoft Office App that is now fully optimized for iPads: With this release, you can practically take your work wherever you need to go and get stuff done through any device. So now that the Microsoft Office App is combined with iPad tablets, you can use your daily apps, write notes, download files, and leverage other additional tools without needing to only rely on just your laptop or phone.
Microsoft has recently published the 2021 release wave one plan for Dynamics 365 and the Microsoft Power Platform: This release wave plan is essential for M365 administrators because we will begin to see a list of new app upgrades, templates, and workflow capabilities that will be released between April 2021 through September 2021. Specifically, the new planned features for Power Apps, Power Automate, and Power BI will provide you with significant capabilities to transform your business using process automation and modern applications. A lot is coming with the Microsoft Power Platform & Dynamics 365, so be sure to stay tuned.
Send SharePoint Pages to Yammer: Microsoft has launched a new feature that will allow you to Send SharePoint pages to Yammer. Users will easily share SharePoint sites and pages in Yammer communities by using the Send to menu. Microsoft 365 is finding new ways to create Yammer posts, questions, polls, and praises directly from a SharePoint page. This is a very simple yet powerful feature for those looking to leverage more of Yammer in 2021.
Ability to Manage how long guests can access SharePoint Online and OneDrive documents: This update will not be available until April 2021 but will finally give admin the ability to Manage how long guests can access SharePoint Online and OneDrive documents. This is a new “manage sharing” feature that tenant administrators have been pushing Microsoft to deliver, and it is almost here. Admins will soon be able to create a policy that automatically revokes access for external guests to SharePoint Online sites and individual OneDrive’s after a defined period of time. With this policy, you can limit guest user access; therefore, guests who are no longer active partners or clients cannot retain indefinite access to documents and files.
Align the experience for creating a team from different team interfaces: This new Teams update is significant because it can change how organizations leverage Teams across different Microsoft apps and how groups will be created moving forward. It will also bring consistency in user experience for teams made via the Teams admin center. Some of the ways this will affect your organization are:
- Teams can now send Welcome emails to new members rather than Group welcome emails.
- Members of a new team will not receive updates for events scheduled in their group calendar.
- Unlike current teams created in the Teams admin center, new teams will be hidden in Outlook experiences after this change. In other words, creating a Team will also create a Microsoft 365 group but not necessarily a group that you can browse with on Outlook.
Introduction of a 1-on-1 Call recording policy: Currently, 1-to-1 Call recording is controlled by the –CsTeamsMeetingPolicy / AllowCloudRecording attribute. After this change, it will be controlled by the –CsTeamsCallingPolicy / allowCloudRecordingForCalls attribute. By default, this new policy attribute will be set to false, so 1:1 call recording will not work unless you change this attribute to true. So how will this affect your organization? If you do not want to have 1:1 Call recording enabled, you do not need to do anything.
Revised In-meeting Share Experience: Microsoft Teams desktop users on Windows and Mac will soon have a new share experience while in meetings. When presenters take control, they will see a new design for displaying their screen, window, Whiteboard, or PowerPoint during meetings. This amazing feature will make the screen-sharing experience more efficient and straightforward for presenters who struggle to share the right screen or set-up their presentation option.
New meeting options for managing large Team meetings in Outlook for Windows: Teams’ users will soon see a prompt to set meeting options when they organize meetings with 40 or more participants or 10 or more distribution lists. So, if a meeting organizer, who is a Teams user, selects the Set Options button, the Teams Meeting Options dialog offers the user options, such as who can bypass the lobby, who can present, and chat within a meeting. However, If the organizer selects the Not Now button, the meeting invitation takes on the default Teams meeting options for the tenant. Keep in mind that Teams meeting options can be set any time before or during the meeting; therefore, you have that flexibility.
SharePoint web part toolbox updates: SharePoint is updating the web part toolbox to make it easier for page authors to find and use web parts on their pages and news posts. They have added categories, a toggle to switch between a grid view and list view, web part descriptions in list view, and a section for users to see their most frequently used web parts. This toolbox update will definitely make administrators’ and authors’ lives a lot easier when they go into their toolbox and decide to do work on any site.
SharePoint Spaces: For those of you who are not familiar, SharePoint spaces is a web-based, immersive platform that allows you to create and share browser-based mixed reality environments using assets such as 3D models, 360° images and videos, and any other 2-dimensional content that you have. In October of 2020, SharePoint spaces became generally available. However, Microsoft SharePoint with this update allows you to open Spaces in all SharePoint sites easily. The moment you click on the Create New button within SharePoint, you will see a drop-down menu pop-up on your screen that automatically allows you to open Spaces. This will be a feature that administrators will want to introduce to their authors as well as put in place appropriate permissions.
Want to deploy these Microsoft 365 changes throughout your organization?
If you would like to learn more about Microsoft 365 or schedule a demo, talk to one of our experts now: contact us. We can help you optimize your digital workplace and leverage these Microsoft 365 updates into your system in real-time. Klarinet Solutions is a digital workplace consultancy with experts in SharePoint, Microsoft 365, and Power Apps. Our goal is to empower organizations to make the most of their Microsoft 365 investment by utilizing all the best tools, staying up to date with new features, and navigating any roadblocks or hurdles.