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Using Microsoft Teams Instead of Zoom for Large 250+ Attendee Meetings

Microsoft 365, SharePoint, Teams

Powered by LUCK™

I recently had a conversation with a client who said they were using Microsoft Teams for most meetings, but were using Zoom due to the 250 attendee limit on Microsoft Teams meetings. Not only did that mean exposure to the Zoom security issues, but also added licensing costs and complexity for users.

Microsoft Teams Meetings – Beyond the 250 Attendee Limit

Did you know that you can go beyond the 250 attendee limit using a Live Event with up to 10,000 attendees?

Setting Up a Microsoft Teams Live Event

Setting up a Microsoft Teams Live Event is pretty simple, but it does work a little differently from standard Teams meetings. Here is a step-by-step guide:

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. In the left column, click on the Calendar icon.
  3. In the upper-right corner, click the drop-down next to New Meeting.
  4. In the drop-down, select New Meeting > Live Event.
  5. Complete the scheduling screen, including adding people to your event (you are adding the people who will organize, produce and present the event – you will add attendees later). For more information on these roles, click here. Then click Next.
  6. On the next screen (you can probably accept the defaults in most cases):
    1. Set permissions for who can attend your meeting.
    2. Choose to produce your meeting using Teams or an External App/Device.
    3. You can even provide a support URL if attendees are having any difficulty.
    4. Click the Schedule button when done. Note that everyone you added to the event will get a meeting invitation to join the event in Outlook.
  7. On the event page, click the “Get attendee link” link.
  8. Send an invitation to the link (don’t use Teams because this will create a separate Teams Meeting link and embed it into the invitation). You can send the invitation in whatever format makes the most sense. In most cases this will be an Outlook meeting invitation. But it can also be on a post in a Teams channel, embedded in a SharePoint news item, sent via a digital marketing tool, etc.
    1. If you want to invite attendees later, you can always come back to your event (which appears on the Teams calendar) and copy the link.

Running Your Microsoft Teams Live Event

Running a live event is a little different than a standard Teams Meeting. There are quite a few additional settings to help deliver a more professional presentation, handle questions, capture recordings, and present content and speaker video.

Remember that Live Meetings are more like webinars than a multi-directional chat. Like a webinar, you may find it helpful to have different person produce the meeting than the person who is delivering the content. Click here to learn more about running Live Events.

Setup a test meeting and experiment with the settings a bit to see how you can share video, audio and queue up other content.

Microsoft Teams Configuration and COVID-19

Microsoft Teams is always a great option for communicating and collaborating with teams of any size. During the current crisis it’s a particularly helpful way to stay connected. But it can be easy to create unnecessary complexity if Microsoft Teams is not configured well.

C5 Insight is here to help. Download our free Microsoft Teams Deployment and Governance Guide to help you in your journey to adopt Microsoft Teams. And contact us for a special rapid-setup offer to quickly plan, configure, train and adopt Microsoft Teams during the current crisis.

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