Here is a list of articles I have written so far about effective usage of Microsoft Teams.
If you would like me to cover some missing topic or a specific area of your interest, please post it as a comment. This is a live book. As I add more articles about Teams, this list will be updated.
- What is Microsoft Teams
- When to use Microsoft teams
- When NOT to use Teams
- Notice the notifications
- How to reply in Teams – Common Mistake
- One person Team – how to use Teams alone!
Microsoft Teams is a convenient way of working with colleagues without cluttering mailboxes. You post a conversation inside the Teams app and others can reply to it.
The common mistake is that instead of replying to your question, people start a new discussion. Here is how you prevent the mistake. Click on the Reply button.
Learn more about Microsoft Teams – Knowledge Pack.
If you are trying to use Microsoft Teams, you will face this practical problem. The problem is that all your team members must notice the messages that are posted in the Teams app. Nothing is visible in the Inbox. This may lead to missed messages and delayed responses. Start noticing the notification!
Continue reading Missing messages in Teams? Follow the channels.
See this article to know When to use Microsoft Teams first. This article lists scenarios where using Teams is counterproductive or plain simple wrong!
Do not use teams if one or more of the items listed below are true.
- If there are too many people involved, do not use Teams. Technically, the limit is 2500. But you decide practically. Teams is designed for extensive interaction between team members. If there are lot of people, you cannot expect extensive interaction. Think about using Yammer. It is good for predominantly push and interaction-on-demand kind of functionality.
- If the team means the whole department and you already have a departmental Team Site in SharePoint. Use that site. Do not use Teams to create another Team. Why? Because, behind-the-scenes it creates another SharePoint site. Defeats the purpose.
- This one is obvious but still makes sense to mention it: If all team members do not have access to the Teams app, do not use Teams. In this case, you will need to do double communication manually. I will not call it inefficient usage – it is misuse.
- If the communication and coordination with the team is required but not critical, do not use Teams. Non-critical, but functionally necessary stuff can continue using traditional email.
- Do NOT use Teams unless every member is aware about its actual benefits. If you try to force it on ignorant people (Ignorant about Teams, I mean!) , it will not work. Educate them first. The best way is to show a nice and compelling demo.
If only few people in the team use the Teams app and others do not, it defeats the purpose.
- If all members have not understood that they have to check the Teams app as frequently as they check for mails in the Inbox.
The benefit of Teams is that it does not send anything to your inbox. Conversations and communication happens within the Teams app. If some members forget to see the activity in the app, they are effectively not working as a team.
That is all I can think of as of now. If you know more scenarios where Microsoft Teams is contraindicated, post them as comments.
The obvious answer is – “whenever you want to work with your team”. But that is not enough. Here is a more precise answer. If all (or most) of the requirements listed below are true, you should use Microsoft Teams.
- Your organization has Office 365 Teams license available for all the people whom you intend to work with as a team.
As on Jan 2018, if you intend to work with people in another organization, they also need to have Office 365 license.
- The kind of work you do with the selected team members has to be specific to a common topic of interest. It could be a project, a new initiative, a deliverable, an outcome …
- Usually there is an end date for such things. But that is not a must.
- The work being done is not just about sending messages and informing each other. You need to keep track of who said what, need files, images, notes, collaterals and so on.
- The kind of work you do is frequent. For infrequent work, just use email.
Yes. That’s it.
You can create a new team even for just you and someone else. Remember to create multiple teams for multiple contexts, even if some members may be common. More on that later.
Finally, DO NOT create too many Teams in the app. You will need another team to manage all these Teams.. ha ha!
Good to know When NOT to use Microsoft Teams as well.