In the past couple of years, organizations faced a drastic shift in the way they work – while the fast-paced advancement of technology had already pushed organizations towards a cloud-centric way of work, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of the cloud for many organizations. The sudden shift to remote work increased the need for productivity, communication, and collaboration tools that are easy to adopt and quick to adjust to for remote workers across the world.

In the midst of complete digital transformation for most organizations of all sizes and industries, the set of Microsoft 365 productivity tools had a perfect advantage – they are extremely familiar to most remote workers and therefore easy to use and adopt across organizations.

But, how can organizations boost productivity in the cloud with Microsoft 365? How can you extract the maximum value and drive seamless collaboration, communication across remote teams?

Elevate communications with Microsoft Teams:

In 2020, Microsoft Teams had increased usage by 50% across the world, many organizations decided to adopt it as its primary messaging platform to elevate communication across teams.

But Microsoft Teams is much more than just a messaging platform – apart from its messaging, calling and video conferencing functionality, it has a multitude of file-sharing functionalities and impeccable integration capabilities that make it a powerful tool for improving collaboration.

Microsoft Teams can be used as a shared workspace for cloud-based file storage with its integration to SharePoint and OneDrive. Not only can you easily share files, but you can also store meeting and call recordings within OneDrive.

For organizations that use a multitude of other services and tools within the Microsoft ecosystem such as Dynamics 365 CRM or ERP cloud applications, you can easily connect Teams with D365 and avoid switching apps to access key information, while at the same time accelerate effective business decision making.

For example, the integration of Teams with Dynamics 365 Sales, allows sellers to open a Teams dialer directly in D365 Sales which includes important real-time information such as transcripts, take notes in real-time or access a report right after the call with all the necessary information to ensure effective customer communication.

For us at Solutionade, to get the best use of Microsoft Teams, as software developers and consultants we have integrated Teams with Azure DevOps. This integration allows us to get a visual view of our workflow through Azure Dev Ops Boards and make updates to items on the board throughout the process directly through the Microsoft Teams interface. We track our workflow and get updates when a team member updates a User Story, fixes a bug or makes any real-time changes to the code within our development

For those that use other third-party tools and services, Microsoft Teams also integrates with Evernote, GitHub, Asana, Salesforce, Adobe Creative Cloud, and more!

Microsoft Outlook: Email management is easy.

With Microsoft Outlook and its familiar user interface, you can easily manage your inbox with useful features such as the ability to set up multiple user accounts, calendar sharing, and ease of organizing your cluttered inbox.

With Microsoft Outlook, you can manage several accounts that can be stored into one folder or separate folders, based on each account. Outlook offers you the ability to choose, based on the nature of Outlook users within your company.

Another handy feature of Outlook is the ability to share your calendar with anyone – there is no restriction in who you choose to share your calendar with. You can create and manage calendars for your clients as well and allow them to access it whenever they need to.

If having greater control of what goes in and out of your inbox is your priority, Outlook makes it easy to choose whether to automatically send emails to clutter or manually label them as you go. If you choose to have your emails sent to clutter automatically, then Outlook will sort them out based on the user’s behavior and habits.

And if you often end up with annoying irrelevant emails sent to your address, Outlook has the perfect solution for you – you can choose to simply ignore them by using the “Ignore Conversation” feature that will remove unwanted emails from your inbox, so you can focus on valuable business conversations that truly matter and are of higher importance to your unique business needs.

Boost Creativity: Word, PowerPoint, Excel

Organizations can keep using familiar content creation tools such as Word, PowerPoint or Excel spreadsheets while enhancing productivity in the cloud. Microsoft has enhanced these productivity tools with robust features and collaboration capabilities that boost creativity and collaboration across teams.

You can now work on Word, PowerPoint, or Excel documents in collaboration with your colleagues, seeing real-time changes that your co-workers make, leaving comments, and adding suggestions for improvement. You can also view prior edits and changes through your version history, which helps you see in real-time how the document has improved with the changes that it has undergone.

Enhance collaboration: OneDrive & SharePoint

You can avoid getting lost in the sea of files and documents that your organization stores on a daily basis – and store it in OneDrive & SharePoint in a way that can save you time and drive easier collaboration across your organization.

OneDrive allows you to organize files and folders and store them in the cloud – you can do everything through your browser and avoid using VPN – simply access your files through a shared folder in your SharePoint library.

SharePoint, on the other hand, lets you create shared folders and subfolders to help you organize files and make it easily accessible for your co-workers to get a hold of documents in no time. You can track the updates made in each document – see the time the updates were made at, as well as who made them.

As mentioned earlier, OneDrive & SharePoint are easily integrated with other tools within the Microsoft 365 suite, so you can easily access files directly from Teams or Outlook.

Have you migrated to the cloud yet?

Are you considering migrating to the cloud with Microsoft 365? Solutionade is recognized for its Microsoft 365 expertise through the attainment of the Silver Cloud for Small and Midmarket Cloud Solutions competency – so we are more than qualified to help you with your migration & adoption of Microsoft 365 cloud productivity tools. Feel free to reach out to us if you need a helping hand!

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