Microsoft Teams has seen a meteoric rise. From a pandemic-driven 70 percent jump to 75 million daily active users in May 2021, Teams adoption continued to grow to 115 million users in October 2021. Its sustained growth has debunked it being a Covid-time wonder.
Instead, it has well and truly asserted itself as the “new way to work and learn for a new digital age”. Teams seamlessly integrated communication, collaboration, and connection in one hub. A video meeting app where you can also exchange ideas over channels, share documents, spin up presentations, live-edit planners, and much more. Teams is a whole new way of enabling the agile, digital, and distributed workplace of today.
Optimizing its rich feature set can enrich its adoption and increase its ROI. Here we detail five pointers to maximize your Microsoft Teams adoption.
5 Pointers to Maximize Teams Adoption
#1 Get Buy-in, Train, Champion
As with any platform, for optimal adoption, stakeholder buy-in, training, and cultivating department-wise champions are essential. Ensure you have stakeholder buy-in to drive an org-wide adoption. Create and disseminate Teams training videos, snackable how-tos, and tutorials. House training material in an accessible and dedicated intranet site.
Recruit department-wise Teams enthusiasts to evaluate business requirements, evangelize features, and provide practical guidance. Hone a Teams-driven style of communication and collaboration. For example, encourage employees to work directly on Excel/Word/PowerPoint files from within Teams tabs, post meeting invites/agendas on Channels, use Teams for Townhalls and Quarterly Update meetings.
Learn why Microsoft, and analysts such as Gartner, Forrester recommend backup!
#2 Understand Business Drivers, Establish Teams Governance, and Track Progress
Develop a phased change management plan. Start with an initial pilot with a few Teams and channels. Before you begin to scale it out, understand and prioritize the business requirements from Teams. Make a master list of business workflows that will be translated in Teams and the apps/integrations required for them to take effect.
Spend the effort to establish Teams governance. Determine channels/teams structuring, information lifecycles, access management, and tool/app access. Use Teams functionality to guide adoption and setup guidelines to create teams/channels to avoid a deluge of ad-hoc teams and channels.
Track the progress of your Teams adoption with usage metrics. Utilize Power BI dashboards to provide insight into the training progress and effectiveness of the adoption.
#3 Harness Teams as a Microsoft App-Hub
Microsoft Teams shines when it is maximized as a platform. It’s not a standalone app, but rather a deeply and seamlessly integrated Microsoft app-hub. Being a part of the Microsoft Group, all your data and communications across the Microsoft platform is available through Microsoft Graph and Microsoft 365’s unified governance console.
Video conference based on Skype, chat using Yammer, email via Outlook, collaborate and store documents with OneDrive, manage timelines and projects with Roadmap, Project, and Tasks, schedule meetings on-the-go with Calendar, group-edit files with Word, PowerPoint, OneNote, and Excel, use power apps such as SharePoint, Delve, and Power BI. Harness the integrations of Teams with productivity apps, project management apps, industry-specific / department-based apps, or customize your own app with developer tools and Microsoft Graph API.
#4 Explore Powerful Third-Party Teams Integration
Apart from Microsoft integrations, Microsoft Teams has over 600 apps in its App Store. From Zoom to Trello to Polly to Jira to Translator – the wide swathe of third-party apps that Teams integrates with makes it a powerful toolkit for your team. Teams demonstrates further extensibility with the Microsoft Bot Framework that increases productivity with Bots such as the Polly Bot to poll your colleagues, Growbot to exchange feedback, and Statsbot to deliver your Analytics reports. Using Microsoft Exchange’s Connector model, Teams can provide third-party updates and notifications from apps such as GitHub and Twitter.
Using Teams merely as a real-time messaging/video conferencing app is missing out on the tremendous potential of Teams and minimizing its ROI. As per a Forrester report, Microsoft Teams can reduce app switching significantly, saving each worker an estimated 1 to 8 hours per week.
#5 Protect Your Teams Data From Loss
With Teams being your company’s central collaboration hub, it is home to business-critical data. Protecting it from loss due to malware, phishing scams, accidental/malicious deletion, and/or sync errors has to be an essential part of your disaster recovery and business continuity plan. Mitigate the risk of data loss with Teams backup and recovery.
Better still, ensure that your Microsoft 365 backup includes Group/Teams backup too. With the security vulnerabilities of the remote workforce, securing and protecting all your Microsoft 365 data is all the more critical. Tedious, time-bound, manual workarounds to recover Teams data is not a viable option for the modern workplace. Particularly as SaaS data is increasingly vulnerable to data loss (read our free ebook on Why Microsoft 365 Needs Backup). Data backup and recovery is a failsafe way to facilitate quick disaster recovery and smooth business continuity.
CloudAlly pioneered SaaS backup almost a decade ago. Our robust automated cloud-to-cloud Microsoft 365 backup solutions are comprehensive, stringently secure, and top-rated. Secure your Microsoft 365 and Groups/Teams business-critical data with one intuitive solution.