What is Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Team is a central communication and collaboration platform available on Microsoft Office 365. You can collaborate as a team by creating group chats, sending private messages, sharing content and hosting online meetings (audio and video). The goal is to connect staff and enhance collaboration, thereby increasing productivity.

MS Teams provides the following benefits:

  • Effective communication using group chats and/or holding online meetings
  • Collaborate on documents using built-in Office 365 apps
  • Customize your workspace by adding third party services, such as project management tools
  • Keeps your team secure by providing end-to-end security, administrative control and compliance
  • Clear and reliable calls
  • Host audio, video and web conferences with anyone inside or outside your organization

MS Teams in the corporate environment

This platform facilitates teamwork and includes multiple collaboration features, such as: instant messaging, video and audio conferencing, screen sharing and document collaboration. Teams and/or individuals can easily jump from chats to a video call, promoting communication and increasing efficiency as well as productivity. Video calls can be recorded and audio calls transcribed and saved to the cloud for future reference.

Microsoft has announced two new features to be released in early 2019, namely:

MS Teams in education

The learning environment is changing and technology, such as iPads and laptops, is being incorporated into the classroom. Teams provides personalized learning in a diverse range of learning styles and abilities.

Teams allows the teacher to engage with learners individually or in a group, encouraging collaboration and participation. Assignments can be personalized, distributed, evaluated and commented on, on an individual, group or class basis. Video and interactive content can also be incorporated into the lesson, to increase learner engagement.

Staff can use it to manage their workflow during a lesson as well as for staff communication on school wide initiatives.

Is Microsoft teams replacing Skype or competing?

Skype for Business is being phased out and Microsoft Teams will be replacing it as the new primary communication platform for businesses. Companies currently using Skype for Business for group chats and online meetings will be able to easily transition to Teams.