By: Rami Azzi
In the modern workplace, collaboration is everything – but real, effective teamwork can be hard to get right. How we work, where we work and with whom we work is changing rapidly and technology needs to enable this so that we can forget about the process and focus on the progress.
At Microsoft, we’ve kept that top of mind to find ways for our Office 2016 apps to make teamwork easier than ever before. Most businesses are familiar with Office apps like Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Project, Vision and Access. However, with the goal to reinvent productivity, we’ve spent time weaving collaboration and idea sharing into the core of these apps.
What does that mean for teamwork in your business?
One of the key elements of the modern workplace is the ability to work remotely, thanks to cloud and mobile technology. With that in mind, our first step was to make the Office apps available across devices and platforms. Whether you’re using your mobile phone, tablet or laptop, and regardless of whether your platform of choice is Windows, Android or iOS, you can continue working wherever you are.
That’s all very well, but working remotely would still be rather limited if you weren’t able to continue working with your colleagues when you’re spread out across the office, the country or the globe. This is where tools like co-authoring, Skype in-app integration, Office 365 Groups, Office 365 Planner and OneDrive for Business come in.
A centralised, consistent virtual working space
Office 365 Planner is the first port of call for effective teamwork across cyberspace. You and your team can create new plans, organise and assign tasks, set due dates and update the status of your project.
Once you’ve assigned tasks and you need to keep track of how each part of the project is coming together, Office 365 Groups give you a shared workspace for email, conversations, files and calendar events.
So there’s no excuse for any team member not to know their deliverables and deadlines when everything is kept on one virtual notice board and everyone is working in the same virtual office.
Collaborating in real time
Whether you work in a real or a virtual office, the best part about teamwork is that you have more than one set of eyes to look over important pieces of work. But sending documents back and forth with edits, and having different versions crossing each other in cyberspace, is not the most efficient way of getting the job done. That’s why co-authoring is such a useful tool. It works across Word, PowerPoint and OneNote and lets you see what others are typing in real time. So you can collaborate on one document at the same time and see exactly where each team member is working and what they are writing, keystroke by keystroke.
And if you’re still confused about the changes your colleague is making, Skype in-app integration means you can send instant messages, screen share, talk or video chat right in the document you’re working on.
No limits to a team’s success
These new features born out of the Office 2016 apps remove obstacles that have previously stood in the way of successful teamwork and collaboration. Successful businesses today focus on the flow of communication between dynamic networks to encourage co-creation, and that’s exactly what we hope to drive with Office 2016.
To find out more about Office 2016 and how to get it, visit here.