July 5, 2021

Microsoft Teams Features - Explained

Is Microsoft Teams Bad? Why Does Everyone LOVE Zoom?

Let’s just say it’s not because Microsoft Teams is bad – its because we as users don’t know how to use the service to its full potential.

We just have a slightly different view of what Microsoft Teams can do. I’d like to introduce myself. My Name is Sebastian, I am a newer member to the Skycomp Team, I come from a broadcasting and technology background. Specifically, a live streaming and event background. Working with different live event platforms is what I do best. Mainly in my career I have worked with Zoom, Google Meet, Webex, and Teams. But I worked with teams a long time ago when the technology hadn’t been updated to where it is now – matching up with Zoom.

Now you might be thinking – "Sebastian, that is a bold statement… that Teams is on par with Zoom? Are you crazy?"

Listen, I’m not, I’ve just have had the opportunity to trail and error both platforms so much that I would go as far as to say they are very evenly matched – some have a little more strengths then the other – and that goes both ways. But in this article, I will uncover the secrets of making Microsoft Teams work for you and your organization.

One of the major points I want to add is that teams can integrate with Office 365 – and if you have a company with 10 – 100 employees – getting an Office 365 license starts to make sense for cost and efficiency reasons. This is something Teams can do that Zoom just doesn’t. Chat, Group chats, integrations with outlook, SharePoint file share integrations, Splitting your organization into specific teams. You’re on your way to something great.

We understand that Microsoft and Office 365 might not be right for everyone. If you don’t fit, no worries Zoom might be the right way for you to go!

Let’s talk specs now, shall we? Teams has three key options to create a virtual call.

1 – Meet Now or Schedule a Meeting

This is in your calendar section – and this is a regular virtual call that we have all been used to for so long. You click join, you can turn on your audio and video and be in a Teams call – you can share the link, anyone can join, and share their screen and be heard and seen on camera.

2 – Webinar

A webinar in teams is found by hitting the drop down arrow by (+ New Meeting \/  )and selecting “Webinar” This is a fairly new feature to Microsoft Teams. The difference between it and the regular meeting is you can create a registration process and form within the setup of the webinar. You can choose who specifically can turn on the camera, chat and unmute, by making them a speaker or presenter. Lots of control in this type of meeting, last minute additions can happen here. You’ll understand why I said that shortly…

3 – Live Event Feature

This is a different option, allowing for 10 speakers/presenters, a Q/A feature, and your attendees cannot be promoted – or speak/turn video on. This is for a one-sided presentation with Q/A feature that is moderated. With Teams Live Events – you will also need someone who understands video switching and can run the show from behind the scenes – this requires someone who needs to understand the content as well as the technical details of Teams. This can be trained in a person and would only take a few short Skycomp videos to learn how to do.

The other features of teams go even deeper – like we mentioned it all connects with Office 365. So, if you have companywide documentation for let’s say a certain best practice. And you have James, a newer employee who is looking for that document. Well, you can quickly find it in SharePoint, either copy the link or share directly through teams with a few clicks.

James lost that file. You can refer to it again in your conversation under files and reshare the link instead of scrolling endlessly through messages.

Need to share something with your entire Team? Quickly? So, it will notify them out in the field as well as in the office?

Create a Team with all over your employees in it. – Then Simple go to the Team menu in the App – start a “new conversation” and tag @Team and everyone will see it. We find it’s helpful to remind people to fill out a COVID-19 self-assessment before coming into the office or going on site. Or letting people know of an update on our systems or severs.

You’re probably thinking that you could just send an email about this – yes, but a Teams notification will be sure to make it to every team member – whereas not every person is staring at Outlook 24/7. You can also react with a little thumbs up or send out a team survey. It gets helpful.

Zoom doesn’t have these features.

So, there you have it – before you jump to using Zoom or another virtual meeting software. First take the time to research and know which part or section of the platform will work for you.

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