Tips and Tricks to get the most out of SharePoint and MS Teams

By Published On: May 23, 2023Categories: IT Support, Jamie Pope, News

Recently we’ve been sharing some of the hints and tricks that could help you to make the most of your Microsoft 365 subscription. In addition, we’ve shared some suggestions for helpful tools and apps and explained how you can keep your Outlook inbox organised.

We’re sharing these suggestions because, in our experience, too many businesses fail to use these software applications to their advantage. For example, you might invest in third-party project management tools when you have something already inbuilt into your systems.

As a Microsoft Gold Partner, we’re experts in Microsoft software. So we know how to use the little hints and tricks that can make your working life easier.

With this in mind, let’s focus on SharePoint and MS Teams.

These are software applications routinely used in offices throughout Suffolk and Norfolk. The accessibility of these programmes is that large or small businesses and staff members of any technical ability can use them. But did you know they might have some unique features that could help you work more productively?

Let’s find out.

What is SharePoint, and how can businesses use it?

SharePoint is a collaborative tool offered by Microsoft. You may be familiar with it as a shared drive, where different staff members can access particular files or folders, but the reality is that SharePoint can offer much more.

For instance, SharePoint could be used as an intranet.

Your intranet can be used for various purposes; perhaps your marketing team need a specific place to access files working on a particular project, or maybe your HR team are looking for a secure way to share company-wide information.

You don’t need to spend money building a separate website with SharePoint. Instead, you can use the in-built templates to create something suitable for your business. Once it’s active, you can add a wide range of files and folders and grant specific access permissions (complete with multi-factor authentication), which limits what information individual staff members can access.

A significant advantage of SharePoint is that you can send notifications to chosen recipients when a document is added or edited.

Are you using the version history tool?

When multiple people work on the same document, you can easily lose track of an edit you want to keep. Thanks to the version history feature, you can quickly revert to an older variation of your document quickly and easily.

The version history feature will allow you to preview, download or restore that particular variation of your document. You can check that it’s the correct version of the document you are looking for by searching the “date” or “modified by” columns.

We think this is a handy tool and a great way to avoid accidental deletions that can cause havoc and unnecessary stress.

Access permissions are easily granted or revoked

We often recommend that businesses review their access permissions regularly to maintain their security settings and prevent staff members from accessing files or documents they do not need. With SharePoint, this is made easy and can be managed at the click of a button.

For example, when sharing a document with a colleague or external contact, you can set an access expiration date, request a password or block any downloads. You can also keep track of who has been granted access permissions and remove any access that is no longer required.

Make the most of template menus

Suppose your collaborative work requires many similar documents (such as an invoice, or an end-of-month report). In that case, you can set up templates for your document library to aid consistency and ease of working.

You might choose this because you’re sharing an end document with an external user (perhaps a proposal document) or want to ensure brand consistency across all communications. With your template documents in place, you can have a starting template for items created in Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc.

What handy hints are available within Microsoft Teams?

Image of Microsoft Teams in UseSince the Pandemic, MS Teams has exploded in popularity due to its ease of use and effective video conferencing technology. In addition, effective messaging facilities allow staff members to communicate while working in different locations.

But what are the hidden features that perhaps you’ve missed?

Send praise to colleagues

One of the biggest challenges of remote working is the feeling of isolation, and your work isn’t recognised. However, within MS Teams, you can use the ‘praise’ function to recognise a staff member when they’ve achieved success or deserve recognition for their efforts. It may only seem like a small function, but once you’ve begun using it, you’ll notice that your employees will feel more appreciated.

Set urgencies and delivery options

If you are used to sending emails through Outlook, you’ll be well aware of the “urgency” flag that you can select to highlight something that needs immediate action. Within Teams, you can choose something similar. This feature can be accessed directly from the chat text box. You can select if you’d like your message sent as Standard, Important or Urgent. If you choose urgently, the message will be resent every two minutes for up to twenty minutes.

Conduct quick surveys and question forms

If you need to collect some rapid data research, you might be familiar with the likes of Survey Monkey or even Google Forms. But did you know that MS Teams has its very own forms function?

This would be ideal for HR teams trying to gauge company-wide feedback or marketing teams asking for opinions on a new project. The benefit of using the forms function is that you don’t need to think about third-party applications and cross-referencing your data; everything is in one place.

To find this feature, select the ellipsis on your left-hand menu and type in Forms.

Are there any other hints and tricks you like using within SharePoint or Teams? Let us know by joining in the conversation on our LinkedIn page

IT SUPPORT

Jamie Pope

Service Director

About The Author

Service Director Jamie Pope always knew he wanted to be involved in IT support services; after all, it was something that his father had always done.

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