Many businesses may have recently transitioned into remote, digital workplaces due to COVID-19. Others may not have the knowledge or ability to move online. The future is unclear, but the present state of business is highly volatile at the moment for many companies. 

One thing, in particular, is apparent:

"This pandemic highlights the need for businesses to strengthen their digital capabilities so they are less dependent on a vulnerable, centralized workforce." 

- Geoff Ables

Empowering employees to work remotely allows businesses to stay functional in times of uncertainty. In this article, we’ll discuss one of the digital tools we use at C5 Insight to work together better.

Digital Workplace Collaboration for Remote Teams

We all know that change is not always welcome. Yet, its necessity becomes more and more apparent over time. In some cases, change happens without any intentional strategy or change management process in place. 

For instance, COVID-19 interrupted the entire economy in a matter of weeks.

As a manager, business owner, team lead, etc. the weight of a crisis tends to land on you the most. If a digital workplace strategy was not already in place before, you are frantically trying to put one together now. But don’t worry, we provide you with a solution at the end of this blog.

First thing’s first, how are you currently communicating with your team or employees? Good management starts with good communication—Listen, Understand, Connect, Know (LUCK).

Keeping employees informed and engaged in the office is no small task. Moving to a fully virtual team presents a whole new set of unique challenges.

Thankfully, Microsoft has you covered. 

Microsoft Teams: Work Remotely Without Feeling Remote

Transform your organization’s communication and team collaboration to be more efficient, productive, and engaging with Microsoft Teams (Teams). 

Teams is a powerful, digital tool that takes teamwork to the next level.

  • Host or attend meetings wherever you are - no conference room needed. 

    • Invite people inside or outside of your organization to 1:1 or group video conferences, audio-only calls, brainstorming sessions, etc.

  • Store files.

  • Share documents.

  • Instant message.

The list of features goes on. The best part? You don’t have to be a digital expert to use Teams. This platform is used by individuals, educational institutions, and businesses of all sizes.

Freemium Version of Microsoft Teams for Everyone

The even better part: Microsoft is committed to customers during COVID-19 and is offering a “freemium version” of Teams. Now, this incredible collaboration tool is available to everyone who needs it during this rapid transition to remote work.

Check out this Microsoft Teams article to watch three short videos on how to:

  1. Create a private team.

  2. Create an organization-wide team.

  3. Create a team you can share with others.

Best Practices for Using Microsoft Teams

Before hosting a Teams meeting, consider implementing these best practices.

  • Email attendees early. Schedule your meeting and send an invite through Teams well ahead of time. Early invites give external guests time to download the app or join in their web browser. If guests have any issues with the software, you have time to help them troubleshoot.

  • Share your agenda ahead of time. Write out an agenda to provide attendees with an expectation for the length of the meeting and what will be covered as it progresses. Do your absolute best to stay on schedule. Table questions that require long explanations or research and follow up after the meeting ends.

  • Identify a note taker. If you are the only one on the call, be sure to have OneNote or another note-taking tool open to write down questions and action items. If your team is on the call too, identify one team member who is responsible for taking notes, especially for client calls.

  • Use video. In a time where people are not physically working in the office together, it’s important to see faces, expressions, body language, etc. Turn on video during meetings to help engage attendees more as it imitates a face-to-face conversation.

    • Insight: Always assume every meeting will use video and you will never be caught off guard.

  • Share files and documents. Teams is integrated with Office 365, allowing you and your team to easily share relevant content during the meeting.

  • Record the meeting (Optional). Recording meetings can prove to be very helpful in hindsight. This allows you to reference back to important slides, directives, or answers to questions attendees asked during the call. Teams automatically creates an audio transcript making the search for “that one thing he or she said” quick and easy to find.

    • Insight: If you choose to record a Teams meeting, always make sure you have consent from all attendees first before you begin.

  • Share the meeting recording/notes. Whether you record the meeting, present a slide deck, or take notes on action items, share the necessary documentation to team members and attendees afterward.

Collaboration doesn’t stop just because employees might be working from home. If anything, when a company is fully remote, collaboration is even more vital to the employee experience. 

Use Teams to work together better, wherever your team members are.

[Free Download] Microsoft Teams Deployment and Governance Guide

Increase the efficiency and productivity of your team meetings with Teams today. As a fully remote company right now, C5 Insight uses Teams across the board for internal collaboration and external communication with clients. 

Are you interested in using Microsoft Teams to support collaboration in your organization? Do you have Teams, but need to establish better governance over its current set up?

>> Download C5 Insight's Complete Microsoft Teams Deployment and Governance Guide <<

Complimentary Digital Assessment by C5 Insight

Here’s the solution I promised for companies who need a digital workplace strategy, STAT.

Do you need to implement a digital workplace strategy, but don’t know where to start? Is the concept of a digital transformation overwhelming to you? Maybe you started the research process but can’t figure out the next steps to take. Our team at C5 Insight would be happy to assist!

Call us today to set up your complimentary digital assessment: 704-895-2500.