Blog posts

New Search in MS Teams Desktop

In November 2021, Microsoft will make the new desktop search facility live in MS Teams Desktop applications.

 

When is the Change Happening?

Microsoft expect to start rolling this out to tenants globally at the beginning of November 2021 and for the rollout to be completed by 30/11/2021.

 

What is Changing?

Currently when you use the search box in Teams the results are returned as a list in the “context” pane of Teams.  See the screenshot below for how this currently looks.

 

Screenshot of current Teams Desktop Search

 

When Microsoft complete the rollout of the new search offering the results will appear as a single central pane, as per the screenshot below.

 

Screenshot of new Teams Desktop Search results

 

Filtering the results in the new experience will be simpler and easier as you can jump straight to the category of results that you are looking for, e.g. files or messages, etc.

 

What do I need to do?

No action is required by staff and students.  The change will automatically be applied across the whole tenant and all users will in time see the change in how the results appear.

Office 365 Training – New Dates for 2021 / 22

Flipped open silhouette of a head with Office 365 app icons

 

New sessions are now bookable for the following Office 365 courses.

 

Getting Started with Office 365

This course covers the basics of Office 365 to help you get started and be confident using One Drive for Business, Office Online and to work with colleagues on shared documents.

Running at 10am on the following dates:

6 December 2021
5 January 2022
3 February 2022
1 March 2022
7 April 2022
3 May 2022
8 June 2022
4 July 2022

Click here to book.

Collaborating with Microsoft Teams

Do you want to know how to do more with Microsoft Teams, collaborating with your colleagues, working in a single multifaceted workspace?  Come and find out how to do more with Microsoft Teams.

Running on the following dates (usually at 2pm):

6 December 2021
5 January 2022
3 February 2022
3 March 2022 (10am)
7 April 2022
5 May 2022 (10am)
8 June 2022
4 July 2022

Click here to book.

OneNote

Join the OneNote training to find out how you can replace the paper notebooks, search for content and use the “swiss army knife” app that is included in your Office 365 subscription.  In addition to looking at personal Notebooks, the course touches on the use of Class and Staff notebooks for teaching and management purposes.

Spaces are available on the following dates:

9 December 2021
13 January 2022
15 February 2022

Book a place here.

Power Automate

This introductory course will help you get started with Power Automate – understanding the basics and how to build automation for personal productivity.  Automation can help with saving time and reducing errors by removing the human element from repetitive task processing.  Build it once, reuse the process time and time again in a repeatable method.

Courses are running on the following dates:

11 January 2022
11 April 2022
14 July 2022

Book a place here.

Webinars

Available on demand most Tuesdays from 2.45pm.

Learn about the new Webinar feature in Teams and attend the training so that you can then request the Webinar feature for your account.

Book a session here.

 

The New Whiteboard Experience

The New Whiteboard is available NOW in Teams, web browser and Android app.

 

Updated versions for the Windows app and for iOS devices are expected in late October.

 

You can find out about all the new features on this technical community post from Microsoft …

 

Welcome to the new Whiteboard! – Microsoft Tech Community

 

New or updated features include the new Sticky Notes and Grids, New templates for Whiteboards, Reactions, and easier “snap to” functions.

Reply to messages in Microsoft Teams

The Microsoft Teams mobile clients (iOS, iPad and Android) have, for some time, allowed users to create contextual replies by adding the original post as part of the reply.

 

This feature is now available for Desktop versions of Microsoft Teams and should roll into the web version in due course.

 

To use the feature, click on the elipsis for the comment that you wish to reply to and select reply …

Screenshot showing the reply option in Teams chat

 

When you click reply, the original message appears in a quoted format …

 

Screenshot shoing the reply to teams message once reply is clicked

 

New ways to Share Content in Microsoft Teams meetings

With continued remote and hybrid working, Microsoft have introduced new methods for sharing content into meetings in Microsoft Teams.

 

These new features are rolling out now and should be fully available by mid October 2021 at the latest.

 

You can now share content from an additional camera – so if you have a plug in USB web cam you can use it as an alternate visualiser to deliver details from a document into a meeting.  Clearly for best results you will want to find a means to ensure that the camera is held at a steady and regular position – so mounting using a clip or bulldog clip will keep a fixed position for the camera.

 

You can also use the build in webcam on a laptop to project a physical whiteboard into the meeting.

 

To enable and use these features go to the share option in your Teams meeting …

 

Share tray options in a Teams Meeting

 

Select “Content from camera” …

 

Then choose what you want to present into the meeting …

 

Content from Camera sharing dialogue

Microsoft Teams – Breakout Room Enhancements

Microsoft have released a number of Breakout Room enhancements into Public Preview in Microsoft Teams.

 

To use these features in advance of General Availability, you will need to enable the Public Preview mode (see this blog post on how to do this).

 

Pre-Meeting Breakout Room Configuration

You can now set up breakout rooms in advance of your meeting and, if you wish, pre-populate the attendees, either manually or automatically.

 

Creating Rooms

To do this, create your meeting and then double click on the meeting entry in the Teams calendar.  You’ll find a new “Breakout Rooms” tab.

Screenshot of breakout rooms tab in meeting controls

 

When you first go into this tab you will see an option to create rooms …

 

Screenshot of breakout rooms tab - create rooms

 

Clicking on the create rooms button then brings up a dialogue box which will allow you to set up an initial number of breakout rooms.  You can create between 1 and 50 rooms.

 

Screenshot of create initial rooms dialogue

Clicking on the “Add rooms” button adds the required number of rooms to the meeting.

 

Assigning Participants

Once the rooms are created you can assign participants to a room.  Click on the “Add Participants” button on the breakout room page to set automated or manual assignment of users to rooms and then as appropriate choose participants.

Assign participants button

 

automatic or manual participant assignment

 

dialogue shoing manual assignment of particpants

Edit the Room Settings

Once the rooms are created you can edit the rooms to give each room a name, and you can edit the meeting room settings for each room (so you can set presenters for a breakout room).

To edit the name of the room click on the elipsis on the room and choose Edit

Edit rooms settings and name

 

Set the name for the room

 

Screenshot of dialogue shoing room name change

 

Use the settings to set specific meeting options for a breakout room

 

Meeting Options for a breakout room

 

Adjusting General Breakout Room Settings

Click on the cog wheel on the top right of the Breakout Rooms tab

Editing General Breakout Rooms settings

 

In the settings you can assign other presenteres to manage breakout rooms – wehn you do this only one person can manage the breakout rooms at any one time so you might just want to add a single co-organiser to the manage rooms function.

 

You can also set time limits for your breakout rooms, turn on or off the automatic movement of people to rooms when you “open” the breakout rooms from your meeting and you can enable an option that allows people to manually return to the main meeting.

Setting co-orgainisers and other general breakout room settings

 

 

Microsoft Teams – Enabling Public Preview Features

A number of features are now being made available by Microsoft in “Public Preview” to ensure that the features meet the requirements and work as expected.

 

Public Preview gives Teams users the opportunity to try these new features before they reach “General Availability” for all users.

 

Imperial College staff can now enable access to Public Preview features in Microsoft Teams by clicking on the elipsis beside the user initials or profile photo, choosing the About section and clicking on Public Preview.

 

Screenshot of how to enable Public Preview mode in MS Teams

If you choose to enable Public Preview then you should be aware that some features may be removed by Microsoft if they are not functioning as expected.  Preview is an advance option and not all your colleagues will choose to use this function.

 

ICT’s Service Desk may ask you to turn off Public Preview when asked to assist with fault diagnosis to eliminate preview functions as the cause of issues.

Office 365 Champions – Join the crew!

Here at Imperial we have a group of Office 365 champions.  We encourage all who are interested in sharing their knowledge and helping others to become a champion.

 

We don’t set hard and fast qualification criteria, nor do we limit the numbers – we want you to come and join, share what you do with Office 365 and how you use the tools in your area.

 

We have champions who are gurus in Power Apps, Forms, Power Automate, Teams, SharePoint and the common Office apps.

 

What’s in it for you?

 

A chance to join a group of likeminded staff (and students) who are happy to share what they are doing and how they use the tools to make life simpler, easier or more productive.

 

A pin badge – we have some specially made Office 365 Champions pin badges which we will distribute to our champions – you can add it to your work lanyard so that your colleagues know you’re one of our champions – that might mean you get asked some questions that you don’t know the answer to, but as a group we can solve most things!

 

 

 

Meet-ups (currently virtual, but we hope to have some “in person” sessions in the future) where you can hear about what others have been doing or even have a go at telling us what you have been doing.  If nothing else it’s a great place to practise those presentation skills in a friendly environment.

 

What’s your commitment?

 

Being a champion – being the mouthpiece for collaboration tools and telling people about the new features and ways in which they can use Office 365 to collaborate.

 

Being a first contact – your colleagues may come and ask you first about Office 365 features – it’s OK you really don’t ahve to know everything.  We are a growing community of interested people who help each other out.  You might know about Teams or Word in huge detail, while others will know about forms or bookings.  We have a team where you can find others who can help if you have questions that are outside your comfort zone.

 

Join Us.

 

Complete the form to sign up and join the other Office 365 champions around College.

 

Webinars in Microsoft Teams

Microsoft have recently launched the long awaited webinar functionality.

This allows users with the appropriate access to create meetings with a registration page, record the details of those registering to attend and to then see who has attended the session after it finishes.  You can brand the webinar registration page with a suitable banner image and add speaker names and biographies.

 

ICT have set the feature to off for all users as this is a specialist function and we want to ensure that anyone using the functionality has been appropriately trained.

 

To join a 1hr training session during August or September book a space by clicking here.

 

Once you have undertaken the training you can register to have the Webinar functionality added to your account by completing this form.

 

Microsoft Teams meetings allow for up to 1,000 active participants and up to 10,000 attendees in total using the webinar functionality.

Word – Track Changes

Have you ever shared a Word document and wondered which elements people are changing or adding?

 

When you share a document via your One Drive for Business or SharePoint you enable people to work on the original document without having to co-ordinate multiple edits at a later date (no more copying and pasting), but how do you know what has changed?

 

You may have come across track changes in the full version of Word – it has been available for a very long time, but it’s also come to Mac OS versions of Word and most recently to the Web and iOS versions of Word.

 

This means you can now see all those edits (and who made each one) and choose which ones to accept and which to reject.

 

There’s more information on Track Changes in Word within this Microsoft Support Page – just pick the right version of Word to see how to use Track Changes within that version.