Microsoft Teams Features You Need to Know About!
Microsoft Teams was already leading the way as the most popular communication and collaboration tool for business use, mainly due to its integration into Microsoft’s 365 Software-as-a-Service platform and as the successor to the formerly very popular Skype application.
But now recent events have accelerated the growth of the Teams userbase even further as businesses suddenly needed an easily accessible way for employees to work together from remote locations.
Today we look at some of the many great features of Teams that we think you should know about, whether you are already a user or whether you are considering Teams for your business.
Customisable backgrounds for videocalls
There are a few reasons why you might want to change your videocall background — maybe you want to present a more professional image or reinforce your corporate branding, maybe it’s for privacy reasons, or maybe just for fun. No matter your reason, it is a simple matter to either blur your background or to upload your own custom background for videocalls in Teams.
Simply click on the 3 dots whilst in a call, select “show background effects”, select the background you would like to use and then press “apply”. You can even upload your own backgrounds for the personal touch.
If you’re looking for something more fun you can also integrate Snap Filters into Teams and apply a range of effects that can transform you into all manner of shapes or apply effects such as bunny ears, floating hearts and so on — less “business” for sure, but certainly fun. Simply download the “Snap Camera” app’ and then click your profile picture in the Teams menu, head to Settings> Devices>Device Settings and click on the drop-down menu under the camera option to choose Snap Camera.
In these trying times, a bit of fun in your team-meetings can make a big difference to moral.
Screen sharing is a very powerful feature of Teams, whether you are giving a demo, presenting a PowerPoint, examining a Spreadsheet together, viewing a webpage or video, there are many applications of screensharing. Everything you could have done in person can now be done via sharing your screen.
When sharing your screen, you can share your entire desktop or just a specific window. We recommend that you select to share a specific window and then if you need to change to a different window you can easily stop sharing your screen and then re-share the new window as this prevents you accidentally sharing something you didn’t want to show.
Send a calendar invite
Inviting people to a meeting in Teams really could not be easier.
If you prefer to work from Outlook you can simply click “New Teams Meeting” when you are in your Outlook Calendar and then choose who to invite, the time, the time zone, any important information for the meeting including an agenda and then send!
Alternately, you can do the same thing from the Teams Calendar.
A link to the Teams call will be included automatically and anyone can join, whether they have Teams installed or not.
Recording your meeting
No-one wants to be late to a meeting, but sometimes it is unavoidable. Worse, you may have to miss a meeting entirely, maybe because you have been taken ill, or something last minute came up.
Teams has you covered though, anything you might have missed can be easily repeated thanks to the in-built call recording facility.
You can also use this function to turn meetings into video podcasts that can then be uploaded to social media.
More features and top tips
You can get Microsoft Teams within the Microsoft 365 Business Premium solution (formally known as Office 365).
You can connect Microsoft Teams with other apps, such as Microsoft Planner and Snap Camera, as we mentioned earlier.
You can hold meetings with up to 250 people.
Mute your video and audio when entering meetings and videos to avoid embarrassing moments. Both audio and video can then be easily turned on and off once in the call.
The “raise your hand” feature allows you to be heard in meetings, everybody will be aware of who wants to speak which will give you and your team better control over the meeting.
Share your files, documents, and images easily via teams, to an individual or to a team in real time whilst you are having a meeting.
You can also download the Teams app for your smartphone, so you never miss an important message again or want to participate on the move.
Coming soon, the reduce background noise feature will be really helpful in improving the audio quality for those in loud environments.
Want more advice? If you would like advice on IT for your small business or start-up, get in touch.