This Week in Teams, Craig and Jay jump into the April 2021 Microsoft Teams Team product blog where ALL the goodies that were announced for commercial and US Government tenants can be found: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-teams-blog/what-s-new-in-microsoft-teams-april-2021/ba-p/2305291
We also have a quick discussion on Disney’s “Star Wars: The Bad Batch”. In case you were curious, Craig and Jay are both big Star Wars fans AND Disney nerds.
- (02:02) – Break Out Rooms send you back to main meeting function
- (4:07) – Teams User Voice moving to the Tech Community
- (5:53) – New meeting feature and functionality
- (7:38) – Craig side-trips into ALM for Power Apps and Automate
- (10:12) – Jay talks about his sessions at the M365 Virtual Marathon
- (14:32) – Craig tells a customer story, Jay talks about the importance of engaging end users
- (18:18) – Teams and Window 10 Notifications
- (20:57) – Jay talks about the GCC for Teams
- (24:42) – May the 4th and the new Star Wars cartoon series the Bad Batch, Jay is a big fan…
- Jay Leask 0:15
Good morning it is may 5 cinco demayo. Revenge of the fifth The day after May the fourth be with you. And interestingly enough, I just read on Facebook this morning 19. This day in in 1970, the state police or National Guard fired upon the student population at Kent State University. And yeah, lots of things happen. And it’s funny how we kind of forget right? What happens?
- Craig Jahnke 0:42
- Jay Leask 0:44
I know. I went on a tangent. I’m sorry. I
- Craig Jahnke 0:47
I’m sorry. Yes, obviously not a good day in history for the United States. But hopefully, hopefully, it’ll be picks a new turn in a new, I have nothing. I got nothing for you. Hopefully we’ve improved a lot since 1970s.
- Jay Leask 1:02
I think we have a lot of ways lots of lots of improvements ago still, but but I think we have so let’s let’s talk about what we’re actually here to talk about, because this has gone off the rails like three times now. So today, may 5, yesterday, I think or a couple days ago, Microsoft Teams team released the What’s New in Microsoft Teams in April 24, April 2021, I thought it’d be a good episode to record while I’ve been struggling to do all the post production on the ones we’ve recorded, which to our guests who’ve been waiting. I’m really truly sorry for keeping you waiting. But in the meantime, a quick episode on what was released in April. So Craig, as you looked through the the blog, was there anything that really stood out of particular interest to you? No,
- Craig Jahnke 1:55
I think I’m good.
- Unknown Speaker 1:57
Yeah. All right. Well,
- Jay Leask 1:59
short episode, have a wonderful day.
- Craig Jahnke 2:02
Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Yes. So one of the things that I saw that I actually participated in, not us, but I’d like the team meeting rooms has an automatically end and bring you back to the main meeting function.
- Unknown Speaker 2:15
- Craig Jahnke 2:16
Was really that was that was nice that, you know, all of a sudden, you got a countdown, hey, 10 seconds left. And you’re going to be going back into to the main room, because I know as a presenter and an organizer that sometimes it’s felt like herding cats, right? When I’ve got to get people out, they get in there in conversations, and they’re like, yeah, yeah, we’ll be there in a minute. And then,
- Unknown Speaker 2:35
and then who knows?
- Jay Leask 2:37
I know, that was actually one of the big competition points with like, zoom, for example. We did a big 300 person training with a third party company, and they use zoom. And one of the features they used is, they tell you, you know, be back with your premier breakout room in 15 minutes. But if you don’t come back, we’re gonna make you come back anyway. And zoom had that so that the ability,
- Craig Jahnke 2:58
I have no idea what the zoom is that you’re talking about. So I’ll just let you roll with that.
- Unknown Speaker 3:04
Back in my day before teams, we had something called zoom.
- Jay Leask 3:11
Anyway, so yes, I think that’s a great feature. I’m glad to see that coming in. Also, I didn’t realize you couldn’t do this either. But the ability to reassign participants between breakout rooms. I didn’t know you could do that either. I’ve never tried though. So right. So we got the breakout room retention, and then participant reassignment. So some interesting stuff coming on there. I also thought on the on the meeting space, continuing down that path, the ability to make meetings invitation only, so that if your meeting gets forwarded to somebody who wasn’t on the original invitation, it actually treats them differently. And they get put into the lobby, instead of being able to join directly. I
- Craig Jahnke 3:50
thought that was really great. It should mark them as pariah. That’s what I should say.
- Jay Leask 3:57
I didn’t make the wear of Scarlet T.
- Craig Jahnke 4:00
Yes, it should give them a little icon. That’s what I want emoticons next to them now, I’m gonna submit a user voice.
- Jay Leask 4:07
Team is the team’s team still using user voice? That’s another thing that’s happened in the last few months is Microsoft is moving away from user voice.
- Craig Jahnke 4:15
Yeah, they’re moving right into the Microsoft community. thing that they have the tech community. I believe that’s where it’s moving. That’s where the feedback is. But I just looked at user voice coincidentally on something that some one of my co workers had gotten asked him wasn’t sure, but so teams has the ability to share with Outlook, so that you’re working on and they wanted to, they wanted to turn that off, because they felt that it was a little bit too easy to share them, right. So now, that whole thing works, but we you’re either rolling that out, or it’s in just hit general availability. So there’s user voice to turn that off and that let them know that that capability Go. So you can have the option to do that. But it’s not out there yet. So
- Jay Leask 5:03
interesting. So So teams is still using user voice, which is nice. If you if you haven’t been to user voice, we’ll try to post the link here in the in the meeting notes. But user voice, I love user voice. And I’m really sad. They’re moving away from it, I hope the functionality they put into the tech community is similar. The idea that you can submit an idea that people can vote on it voted up and down, and that the Microsoft product teams actually respond and give you feedback as to if this is going into the roadmap, when it does when it’ll be available. It’s it’s a really good interaction that I hope they they find ways to keep going with.
- Craig Jahnke 5:43
Yeah, so they’re trying to do the same thing in communities and just make it a little bit easier for them to manage and see, I think so a little more visibility into it.
- Jay Leask 5:53
So coming back to teams features for April. Nice little segue. Nice little sidebar there. I thought this was also interesting. So improvements to audio permissions settings for attendees. So this, the ability for people to the ability for presenters to lock down who can speak is huge. And and that’s been around for a little while, but now they’re making it easier for presenters to allow people to unmute. So I think the way it used to work is you had a request to unmute, and then the presenter could give you permission and then you are muted. So as an extra weird step. So last week at the M 365. Virtual marathon, which we both spoke at a different separately, but we both spoke at it. They use teams meetings this year. Last year, they use teams live events for every session. This year, they use teams meetings, which is nice, because it gives you a lot more interactivity. But as a moderator for a half dozen or so sec sessions, it was very easy for me, you know, what we did was we said Raise your hand if you want to talk, I’ll give you permission, and you can unmute, and that that allowed us to have a nice cue and things like that. But just the fact that I was able to go and tell someone, hey, click on their button and give them permission to unmute. I thought that was really great. From it kept interruptions down and it led us moderate when we wanted people to interrupt.
- Craig Jahnke 7:25
Yes, because there’s occasionally that person that just wants to ask 1000 questions and comment on everything. So it’s it’s nice to do that and still allow other people to ask questions.
- Jay Leask 7:36
Correct. What did you just briefly what did you talk about?
- Craig Jahnke 7:38
I talked about nothing to do with teams, but kind of but likewise, applique lm for the power platform. So our apps and our automate application lifecycle management, which are so this is the next generation of what I think is coming sidebar here. But there’s a big need. And a big lot of people are thirsty for this information, because now we’re giving the power of users to, to create apps and workflows, right. And then we got to marry that with what the enterprise is doing. So we’re adding a whole lot more users, developers, of course, so to speak, into our environment, right now we got to make sure that our governance is better. And a lot of customers are struggling with how to manage that. And I say why I think that’s the best. Next thing coming is we’ve already seen them fold teen Power Apps, Power BI power, automate apps, right into teams, so you can use their data verse for teams, is making a big push with the database. bringing that into teams so that I can use data verse Now a free version with only two gigabytes worth of data, but I don’t need a whole lot of data when I’m in a team what for free, right? So before anything I want to use the database for I gotta pay now it’s free. So that’s powerful in and of itself. But the council, let’s go back into history, take a step back one of the conversations we were having five years ago, right? Yes, move to the cloud. It’s safe, its secure. Then three to four years ago, it was okay. We’re got a foot in SharePoint Online. How are we on Skype for Business is up there teams is kind of coming out. Right. So what is this team’s thing? And what are we playing with there? And then bam, the pandemic hit. And everybody said, we got to work from home. So right now it’s teams, right? So it was teams, how do we get there? How do we get there fast? How do we govern it? And I’m seeing a lot more conversations. Starting now starting this year is we’re there. So one, how do we leverage teams fully? So what are the things that we’re doing? What are the features that we still want to see? So that’s still being developed out but I am talking to law firms, pharmaceutical companies, I’m talking to a large manufacturing company, and they want to know how do they automate These processes now, like, Hey, we’re up here, how do we take advantage of everything else? That’s in Microsoft 365? So? Yeah, so that’s what I talked about. Jay, what did you talk about?
- Jay Leask 10:12
So I did two sessions. Actually, I did it three sessions, I did three sessions. Two of them were introductory to Microsoft 365. So believe it or not, there are still people who are just getting into the space. They might be technologists, they might be business users, they might be decision makers. And actually, the two presentations we did were geared in the separate directions. The first one was for technologists who are just starting to get into em 365, how to set up a test tenant, what do you need know about connecting to Active Directory, and at what is Azure Active Directory and all the basics. on the technology side, the other one was geared towards business users and decision makers. And what it really was, it was geared towards the technologists who are supporting those people. So it was what do you the technologist, tell the business user and the decision maker about this platform, what’s important to them that they are just getting introduced to. So that was two of our sessions, very beginner level. But, but just there are topics that still have to happen for for a lot of organizations. The other presentation was, it was a panel with myself, and joy, Apple and Sharon Weaver. And we talked about information architecture, modern information architecture for office 365 is a lot of fun. We started off with a death, you know, a quick conversation about what is information architecture, to kind of set the table. And then we opened it up. And we just took questions from the audience, which was made difficult when the chat got turned off for a little while. They had a they had a small hiccup at the beginning of the conference, and they had to turn chat off across the board. But But yeah, it was good. It allowed us to take questions and answer and help people understand how to consider information architecture in Microsoft 365. Because it’s very different than what we used to do five to 10 years ago. in SharePoint on premises. I’m
- Craig Jahnke 12:14
still building the pyramid.
- Jay Leask 12:15
Yeah, stay away from the pyramid, the architecture, my friends, it’s flat. So anyway, boy, did we go off on a tangent there. That’s twice. What else did what else came out in April, Craig?
- Craig Jahnke 12:29
You had talked about? So I don’t want to start it because you had talked about it and how much you like this, but adding the ability to add a tab to teams in the provisioning process.
- Unknown Speaker 12:40
- Craig Jahnke 12:40
so I got a story with that. That’s a tangent. So
- Jay Leask 12:42
yeah, so So listen, if you’re into templates or not, if you’re not into templates and teams, but you have a provisioning process, then come talk to me offline. And I’ll talk I’ll help you understand the value of templates in that provisioning process. But that aside, I
- Craig Jahnke 12:59
want to talk to Jay offline cell phone number is started.
- Jay Leask 13:03
But I can edit that out. So the the, the idea here is, if you’re going to push a template out, one of the problems that’s been around for a while is the tabs, you could preset your tabs, but you couldn’t preset what happened in them. So the prime example is the website tab. The website tab is hugely powerful in bringing things from outside of teams into your team’s interface. I use it all the time, but in a templating process, you had to you could put the website tab into your template, but you couldn’t pre configure the URL that loaded in it. So you were just putting a blank website tab, and then the team owner had to fill it out. So this is it’s it’s silly that it wasn’t there to begin with. But I’m very glad to see that now the website tab, you can pre configure it in your template. So if you have, for example, a project management team template, then when the new project management team stands up, you can pre configure it so that the let’s say you’re you do task management instead of in planner, you do task management and something like JIRA, which is often used for support tasks or for product development. So you can pre configure it to load JIRA, in that website tab, instead of just being a blank website tab. Really good stuff. JIRA might not have been a great example because JIRA has a team’s app. But that’s a different story altogether. Thanks for bringing that up, Craig.
- Craig Jahnke 14:32
You’re one of them. So my 10 gentle story was kind of number three. I don’t know how I did. I’m trying to figure out how I did this is exactly but I know you can do this. So I had a customer who wanted to create a team and they wanted to use it like landing page. So we created that tab. And then we surfaced a SharePoint page to that right, so we have the SharePoint side behind it, and then we customized it the way that we might want to do it which was pretty cool. But the question was our The problem was that they wanted it to be a landing page. So if you go into teams, they go to that team, I go to that channel, right, then what’s the first one that comes up the post and then the files. And then there’s other things. So what we were able to do is add that in as a separate tab, but then copy a link so that if I clicked on the link, it takes me directly into the team’s client into that tab. So okay, that is how we got around that. But so that that is something I would still like to be able to say that I can set a primary tab. Right, right teams, as a CIO identify that not always have it have to be the post tab. But yeah, so that was kind of cool that we were able to do that. And it was that was an interesting conversation, because that was a business user, who just happened to re talk to the account person who said, I want to do this. And her it, people were too busy to help her with that. So it was somebody who had not normally ever talked to us, you know, like an engineer. Right? Right.
- Unknown Speaker 16:02
Right. Right. Right.
- Craig Jahnke 16:03
It was a whole different conversation. But she was awesome. She was a lady from she actually was in Spain. So because that’s where the corporate headquarters for this company was. And she liked the next time I talked to her. She’s like, Oh, I did all this stuff. So he was like, we just taught her what to do. And then she was, and then she just had a clarifying question. So it was pretty cool. It is
- Jay Leask 16:22
pretty amazing that once you in any, I said this constantly, if you engage with the end users, and show them not just the not just what to do, but the value that comes with it. A lot of them just get it and immediately start running with it. So that’s great. That’s a great side story. Yes. Cool, as opposed to a sob story. And if you can’t tell the difference, I apologize. I am clogged from all my sinuses are a disaster, thanks to allergies. Lots of new I mean, it’s keep moving. Lots of new devices coming from Microsoft specifically, headphones with and webcams and speaker for conference speaker phones, all teams certified. So we had an episode about what teams certified meant a while back. But the long story short, it means that the device manufacturer has the ability to update the software in items so that they it can meet new features, as new features come to teams all sorts of stuff like that. What are you laughing before?
- Craig Jahnke 17:28
Well, one of the other topics that we wanted to include was was alerts from Windows 10. And how that works with Oh, yeah. And I said that I don’t like it. Because when I’m in meeting, yes, like this, it’ll just start popping. And then I don’t know if like that gets picked, like the tone gets picked up. But I just had five. I just had five things paying in my right hand corner. Oh, really. So then I looked down at it, right. So that’s taking your eye off the camera. And it was just some one was not for a couple of them weren’t from teams, but they were outlook related stuff. But sometimes I have not a big fan of that popping up in the right hand corner. And especially if I’m trying to do a full screen meeting right, and participate in the chat, because it always covers where the chat is. Yep, so where I would send a message. So.
- Jay Leask 18:18
So that’s interesting. So okay, so weird transition. But I understand since it was happening to you at that moment. For those of you’re trying to follow what we’re saying. The top which is the ring I’m in and Microsoft has had this feature for a while. But the the abuse can now go into Microsoft Teams settings. and say if you want to use the native team’s notifications, which is what it came with, or if you want to use the more recently released windows 10 notifications, which is nice. Craig’s little anecdote aside, because it not only puts the pop up notification in the same spot that all of your normal windows 10 notifications go. But it actually puts the notifications in the Notification Center. So if you push the little notification button in the bottom right corner of your screen or bottom left, if you have a screen setup like I do, then you can look at your team’s notifications, just like your work. Just like your password notifications and your email notifications and your OneDrive all of those showing up in the same location. So I think that’s really cool. I also think it’s cool because you can turn off your notifications using focus mode. Mine’s currently set to priority only. So it gives you some really cool things. But you know, Craig, I understand that
- Craig Jahnke 19:36
those of us lazy who don’t like to go into focus mode. Forget about that. So
- Jay Leask 19:42
- Craig Jahnke 19:43
We got to work on it.
- Jay Leask 19:45
All right, what else has come up? You know, silly things. Not I mean, silly or not, we use custom backgrounds, so I can’t really call them silly but custom backgrounds and emojis and gifts are now in Android and iOS. So I guess that’s actually pretty cool stuff there. See, I
- Craig Jahnke 20:04
don’t know if it’s on the list, but they are adding I know, I saw that it’s on the roadmap, from our emojis.
- Jay Leask 20:10
I have seen that more emojis are coming. Yes. Which I honestly, like, I understand that people roll their eyes. In fact, you, dear listener might be rolling your eyes now. But I really do think that the more we engage the gifts and the emojis and the means into a tool like this, and I’ve been saying it forever, because I’ve been doing social enterprise stuff for a decade. I think that uh, yeah, I see you shaking, rolling your eyes at me with your emoji in the chat there, Craig. But I do think it’s, it’s
- Craig Jahnke 20:44
that one elsewhere that one, they can’t find it someplace else I was trying to do. I can’t remember. But I wanted that emoji and I can’t find it. So the emoji I just sent to Jay is the guy who was slapping his head and chicken is the
- Jay Leask 20:57
Yep. Although, interestingly, the emoji that appear in the chat and I wish I had screenshot this. And the emoji that appeared in the windows 10 notification pop up because you’re a priority. You’re where you’re in my priority list, apparently, which should change. They were different. One was the person holding their hand up. And the other one is the yellow circle emoji holding anyway, I thought that. All right, I digress. There’s a few other things, some things for frontline workers like enhancements to task publishing enhancements to shift, Microsoft shifts and permissions. I thought this one was good. The time clock API’s. The time clock in shifts now has API’s that you can connect to your corporate time tracking application. So some really cool stuff to further enhance and ingrain the technology into your already existing policies. And with that silence, I’ll transition to kind of our wrap. There’s a handful of things that have come out on the government side. Again, I’m in the government space. So this is hugely important to me. But if you look, if you look at these blog articles and scroll all the way down, there’s often content specific to various verticals, in this case in the government vertical for people in the GCC, GCC high or do D tenants, a handful of interesting features that have been in the commercial space for some of them for a while. The you have new meeting options. I thought this was really cool. The invite only meeting options that came out in commercial in April, also came out in GCC, the enhanced meeting creation and expiration policies that came out in commercial also available in GCC. The audio permissions that we talked about also available in GCC you can see what I’m getting at is how available GP I am not also available GCC. But you can see how much Microsoft has improved the pace at which the GCC gets new features alongside commercial. So really important stuff.
- Craig Jahnke 23:02
Yeah, I was gonna say that. I know you hear it a lot more than I do. But it’s always when I’m talking to a GCC client. Why are you tell us about this stuff that we can’t have?
- Jay Leask 23:12
Yeah, I, I can’t say this enough. If you’re going to support the GCC GCC hire do D. You have to understand this isn’t scolding for you. I’d say the same thing to my engineers who support public sector, you have to understand the differences. You have to be able to speak to what is available today. Is it on the roadmap and when will it be released? Or you have to be very clear that hey, I’m telling you about something that may or may not come to you. Because there’s nothing more frustrating than getting super excited about Craig’s sneezes and then the sneezes not being available in the GCC. And with that very weird,
- Craig Jahnke 23:49
David before sneezed.
- Jay Leask 23:51
Mostly, I really hope somebody is listening to this in podcast mode and not video mode. So they have no idea that Craig muted and then sneezed. And, and I was just being silly. That’s it. That’s the month. There’s a couple of
- Craig Jahnke 24:04
things in there. Silly that was just anticlimactic. I was thinking goose I was gonna argue as being a silly news because we’re like, No,
- Jay Leask 24:15
I’m talking to Craig ibj. So with that, my friends. That was the month of April. We do have two episodes in the hopper that I plan to push out every other week, starting with this one. And Craig, I think we talked about this. I’m going to aim every other Tuesday to have a new episode live. So it’ll be this semi weekly. This Sunday weekend teams isn’t going to be the podcast. Yeah,
- Craig Jahnke 24:42
we’re not going to. Um, so really, what’s the most important thing that we did never really discussed this yesterday was Mark may 4, and I know that you’re Big Star Wars geek. Yes. And I was too busy and too tired to care. So I hear there was A new series released on Disney plat batch. Yeah. Did you watch it?
- Jay Leask 25:05
I of course I did. 75 minutes with my kids, we kept the kids up late so they could watch it after dinner. The bad batch follows a series of clones they are defect clones. So air quotes, they are any starts literally at the end of the Clone Wars. So it’s really interesting. You get to watch the order the execution of order 66. Which was surprising to me. And I didn’t know if my eight year old was ready for that. But you get to watch the execution of orders 66 you get to watch this group of
- Craig Jahnke 25:45
two. Isn’t that like where they killed all the Jetta kids?
- Jay Leask 25:48
I was trying not to go there. You get like watch
- Craig Jahnke 25:51
watching your kind of little psychopath there. So
- Jay Leask 25:54
anyway, you get to watch this group of clothes not received the order and and you get to see their experience in seeing the Empire go bad. I’m sorry, seeing the republic go bad and turn into the Empire. And in that 75 minutes, you know, not to give anything away because it only came out 24 hours ago. In that 75 minutes, you experienced this emotional turn of the Republic to the Empire. And what is this group do and who are they? And it was really it was really good. It’s cartoon. I gotta say this, there are people who don’t watch the Star Wars cartoons because it’s for kids. That’s a load of hooey. The Star Wars cartoons Well, sometimes depending on where graphically, you know, unimpressive. The stories that come with that if you are a Star Wars nerd, like I am, the stories that come with them are actually really good stories. And they compliment the movies and they compliment the shows. Anyway, really good stuff. Also yesterday, if you’re a Disney World person. The
- Craig Jahnke 27:05
never talked about Disney World on a podcast. So this is new territory for
- Jay Leask 27:09
the new Star Wars hotel. handful of announcements yesterday. And it is now officially on the Disney World experience app as launching in 2022. Really cool stuff there. I can’t wait. It’s
- Craig Jahnke 27:29
not gonna be booked or anything for the next five years. What? That’s not going to be booked for that.
- Jay Leask 27:34
Oh, yeah. No, I mean, I’m not gonna be able to get to it forever. But the fact that it’s going to be there is really cool.
- Craig Jahnke 27:39
Yeah, no, I know.
- Jay Leask 27:41
So that’s it. I think we’ve gone on a tangent. That’s number four, tangent a bit more
- Craig Jahnke 27:46
that could have a Vacation Club and you just buy into Vacation Club, you could be able to stay there that would. Other than that, I think
- Jay Leask 27:53
if they do that, I’m gonna be so mad. What if they, so Disney does have the Disney Vacation Club? Yes, I
- Craig Jahnke 28:01
know. I’ve stayed there.
- Jay Leask 28:02
And and well, it’s it’s a club you you can buy into just a timeshare. And so where my wife and I are Hilton Garden, vacation, Hilton vacation clubs, members, and if they if they were to turn to Disney, oh my gosh, if that became a Disney Vacation Club thing, I would be so mad. Cuz,
- Craig Jahnke 28:24
yeah. Well, they have to it’s got to be part of it.
- Jay Leask 28:28
No, doesn’t have to not be because actually it does. Three it doesn’t because it’s available through RCI. RCI allows you to kind of swap Vacation Club stuff that’s available through there. I’ll be happy.
- Craig Jahnke 28:41
So I know like, you can sit like that. You did stay at the whatever. Dotty village. Yeah, well, that’s part of the Disney Vacation Club too. So it just it’s different floors. They have different floors for that. But yes, my brother was a member still is that I’ve gone using his points a couple times. Cool.
- Jay Leask 28:59
All right. Well, this week in Vacation Club is coming to an end. I bet we can
- Craig Jahnke 29:06
get more visitors for that.
- Jay Leask 29:09
You’ve lasted this long in the episode. Thank you so much for joining us. If you are not a subscriber and you want to hear Craig and Jay rant off on tangents more than actually talk about teams please make sure you subscribe click for notifications, get those notifications in your in your subscription bar and come back every other Tuesday starting whenever this episode comes out.