Inspire 2020 – Book of News Abstract

After some exciting days with the people of Microsoft at the Inspire online event, I wanted to share my favorite announcements from the Book of news. It’s definitely worth some of your time to go through the Book of News in more detail, but here is my small conclusion!

As you probably knew from following me around, I am focusing on the Microsoft 365 part, especially our beloved #microsoftteams.

Microsoft Teams – Next Level Meetings

Just a couple of days after we reimagined our meetings (😉), Microsoft is again improving the impact of meetings, which is so important right now.

Starting in late July, developers will be available not only to bring apps to life within Teams but also to impact the user’s meeting experience. Developers will be available to provide solutions to be integrated into a meeting as a new tab and as a side panel. I see some really cool ways app integrations like these can positively impact our meetings or even longer online workshops.

As if that wasn’t enough, there is also a way to bring real-time information up in a meeting based on what the current topic is.

If you want to see some pictures of the new experience jump to my LinkedIn post on that, and feel free to join the discussion! Here you go!

Microsoft Teams – Bringing Data to the Hub.

Without additional costs, Microsoft will include a new service called Dataflex into Teams. It is somewhat like the Common Data Service we originally know from the Power Platform. 

This will make you able to create simple low code solutions directly in Microsoft Teams relying on services like Power Apps and Power Virtual Agents. 

From my point of view, this will have a huge impact because once you made the shift towards Microsoft Teams, you should really try to get those loose processes every organization has into a platform where your users are – just like Teams! This way, you can expand your “chat solution,” as many organizations refer to it as a tool for business processes to get even more value from your investment.

Microsoft Teams – Getting better insights.

With the updated Power BI app, we are getting a more streamlined information flow from our Power BI dashboards to our hub for teamwork, Microsoft Teams. 

Through the app, it will be easier to access your dashboards, work within them, and even collaborate with your colleagues. You can also find some training resources there!

The app will be available in August, according to Microsoft.

Microsoft Teams – Gone to one’s head.

I think this is not something adding value to every organization right now, but I think of it as a really cool solution. Bringing Teams to head-mounted devices for first-line workers.

Imagine someone in the field having a problem with repairing a machine or stuff like that, not being able to figure out what is wrong. With a few gestures or voice commands, an expert from a whole different continent can join him and help him out. This could be cool for many organizations shortly, not only because of the ongoing pandemic with its restrictions regarding traveling.

The app for RealWear HMT-1 head-mounted devices can be downloaded now.

Yammer – Spruced up!

Probably something everyone was expecting; nevertheless, it feels like a really good “remake” of the Yammer we used to know. Based on the fluent design, it has a much more modern look and feel, in my opinion.

In addition to the design, there are a few new features as well. “Featured conversations” seem to be something like trending conversations that can be shown to more people giving them the opportunity to take part in a discussion or just to be informed. A deepened Azure B2B integration is providing more capabilities for external Yammer communities and compliance benefits. Also, the sharing capabilities have been improved across the whole Microsoft 365 platform.

You can configure the access to the new design by opt-in through the Yammer admin center.

Microsoft Lists – Making lists more appealing.

We all like lists, don’t we? I really love SharePoint Lists and their capabilities – but they are not that intuitive to find, use, and maintain. That’s why I am really excited about Microsoft Lists. 

Rolling out in August, Microsoft Lists will bring those capabilities to a separate app reducing clutter and distraction for end users. Coming with 8 templates, you will be ready to fill those lists! 

A separate app for iOs is expected later in 2020. The integration into Teams is planned for the next month.

Communication Compliance – Protecting Employees

Unfortunately, issues such as threats and harassment in the workplace are still far too often an issue with which employees are confronted—Communication Compliance ist here to help to find those issues and to help those affected. It helps organizations identify violations of the code of conduct and protect their employees in Microsoft Teams and 3rd party solutions.

Summary

As we can see, Microsoft keeps pushing on releasing new features for all of its products and even new ones like Lists. Teams is becoming more than just the hub for collaboration, and more business processes can be included with every release.

The Power Platform gets a really strong integration with Dataflex, and Teams gets more tied to the Power Platform with this feature. It is a better together situation, and you can make some great stuff combining both of them!

Meetings are incredibly important in the current situation, and we can see some really cool stuff coming there too. I am looking forward to seeing those integrations coming to life with apps and extensions for even better and more productive meetings!

Overall there are some really exciting things coming up in the next days to months. If you are curious about how meetings in Microsoft Teams will change, make sure to check out my blog post on that!

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