Implementing Microsoft Teams at QiC Systems

Behind Teams on it’s first birthday

Published by Rob Chambers on March 15, 2018

So in the last year, Microsoft release a number of new apps into the Office 365 Cloud model. These ongoing changes to 365 are aimed at better helping users to consume the organisations data more efficiently, but more importantly, making communication the core focus. As part of this, a new app, called Teams aims to bring both of these worlds together and give organisations the ability to access data and communications in one central location.

Chat based workspace in Office 365

Teams uses the Office 365 Groups system and when you create a new team, it creates an Office 365 Group and a SharePoint site in the background. You can then access these areas right from the app!

Communication in Teams is excellent, allowing you to instant message your colleagues, access and consume company files, create meetings and audio / video call.

Teams has just turned 1 and to celebrate, I am going to share our experience with it…​

Our Experience

We at QIC systems have been using teams now for quite a while and our impression is that the app is well worth the attention of our clients. If you have been using Office 365 and or SharePoint online, Teams will add a great deal of value to your system and process.

When we were looking to adopt this technology, the first thing we asked ourselves was, what is Teams for?

At first we didn’t have an answer…

It took a little while to figure it out too, we were already using Office 365 groups, Email and Skype for business quite effectively. So what could Teams add in order for us to change the status quo?

Simply put, it allowed us to use all these things, but from one app.

We decided at the start to keep it simple, we created a technical team. Included was a conversation, a plan, a SharePoint site, notebook and Wiki.

We soon found ways of adding links, our technical library and a few other consumables to the Team’s General Channel.

Then we started adding more channels, one for GDPR, External, Internal, a space for our old file shares and a direct channel for our old sharepoint site.

The team became quite populated quite quickly and we soon found that communication was much more flexible, we could Instant Message colleagues with questions and put important updates into it without cluttering up email.

We than asked ourselves, how could Teams be used to better service our clients. At first we started creating teams based on the projects we were working on. This worked great, we could create channels based on different aspects of a project, for example, we recently were commissioned to Replace an on premise server and a number of Client PCs, and also migrate the old email server into Office 365, which was also licensed for Office 2016 software.

Project Channels

So we created a new Team for the project and as well as the General Channel we added a channel for the Office 365 Migration and one for the Server Migration

Each part had a plan with tasks added for each part of the migration, Each had a folder for documents used and the conversation parts used for adding notes and updates.

This clients migration was very smooth, in part due to the way that Teams allowed us to keep in touch and plan our work.

Client Teams

It became apparent after a while that create Teams for large projects was great, but for the smaller stuff, things could get saturated quite quickly. So we adopted another way of using the Teams app.

We created some of our bigger clients as teams, then used the channels for projects, communications and anything else that came up. For the small stuff, this works really well.

Now we’re talking, so at this point we were using Teams to manage our projects and keep tabs on the technical team, but what’s next?

Adding the mobile app was a big deal as now our site engineers can get involved and use this system; adding Client notes, site pictures, up to date information is right there at their finger tips

Whats Next?

We are starting to use the audio and video calling to help us communicate even more effectively with our site engineers and even some of our clients.

With Teams, you can now add:

  • AI Bots
  • automation
  • flows
  • powerapps

and you can also now connect it to 150 3rd party apps like Adobe Creative cloud, Facebook, Mailchimp, twitter and many more.

We feel strongly that most businesses could benefit from using Teams, it is an excelllent foot hold into the world of Cloud technology and if you want to know more, get in touch today!

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