Office 365 Weekly Digest | March 25 – 31, 2018


Welcome to the March 25 - 31, 2018 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Last week there were ten updates to the Office 365 Roadmap, including several for Outlook and SharePoint, as well as a new Office 365 Assistant chatbot that will be available for FastTrack customers.

A reminder that the Azure Active Directory webinars for April are now open for registration. The online customer immersion experiences continue to fill up quickly, due to limited capacity for each session.

Highlights from last week's blogs include the much-awaited rollout of retention policies in Microsoft Teams, additional details on the new SharePoint Admin Center, and a review of new Office 365 updates and features in March. Information on new SharePoint Online web parts, specifically the Yammer web part, is also provided.

Noteworthy item highlights include the Q & A summary document from the recent SharePoint hub sites AMA, March 2018 updates for Outlook for Windows and iOS, and on-demand viewing of the recent Business Applications Virtual Spring Launch event.

 

OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

 

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week:

 

Feature ID Title Description

Status

Added

Estimated Release

More Info
27205 Single Sign-On for iOS Yammer will enable single sign-on for iOS apps.

Launched

03/27/2018

March CY2018

n / a
27215 Outlook on the web - bill payment events on calendar Outlook will now automatically create events in your calendar for statements with payment due dates and send you an email reminder two days before the due date. This complements our work with flights, hotels, cars, and packages. Automatically adding the due date to your calendar will be set to "off by default".

In development

03/27/2018

Q3 CY2018

n / a
27203 ATP SIEM Integration ATP threat feeds can be integrated to most of the commonly used SIEM solutions via the Office 365 management activity API.

In development

03/27/2018

Q3 CY2018

n / a
26327 Outlook for Windows: Options for calendar reminders Set reminders to pop up over windows you're working in. Otherwise, Outlook will blink in the taskbar to get your attention.

In development

03/27/2018

Q1 CY2018

n / a
27252 SharePoint Online: site themes for classic sites Microsoft will start enabling the modern site theming experience for all sites, classic and modern (group-connected) sites. It will now be possible for customers to apply the modern site themes on classic sites. A new site theming panel will be available, empowering site owners to easily apply one of the new themes to all pages of the site by selecting the theme of their choice.

In development

03/27/2018

April CY2018

New site theming options for SharePoint sites in Office 365
27251 SharePoint pages and news: custom metadata columns Allow customers to add custom metadata to modern SharePoint pages and news articles. This gives you the ability to create prescriptive information architecture and solutions that use the pages/news' metadata for dynamic grouping and organization.

In development

03/27/2018

April CY2018

n / a
27024 Introducing new Office Start Pages Newly redesigned Office Start Pages for Word, PowerPoint and Excel will help you get started more easily with new documents, pick up where you left off with recently used documents and find shared documents to work together with others.

In development

03/27/2018

April CY2018

n / a
26330 Outlook for Windows: Provide an option to show up to 3 time zones Add a second and third time zone to your Calendar to show up to 3 time zones at once

In development

03/29/2018

March CY2018

n / a
20974 Outlook for Windows: Get suggestions for Calendar meeting and appointment locations Start typing a meeting room or venue for your appointment or meeting. Outlook will look for matching locations.

In development

03/30/2018

Q3 CY2018

n / a
27300 Office 365 Assistant for FastTrack customers Office 365 Assistant is a new chatbot in the Office 365 Admin center where users can ask questions across Office 365 workloads in a natural and conversational way, 24x7. Users will be able to quickly find relevant solutions and information, based on their initial query. This feature will be available for FastTrack customers, and will be rolled out in phases.

In development

03/30/2018

April CY2018

n / a

 

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

 

Azure Active Directory Webinars for April

When: Multiple sessions currently scheduled from April 3 - 25, 2018 | Are you looking to deploy Azure Active Directory quickly and easily? We are offering free webinars on key Azure Active Directory deployment topics to help you get up and running. Sessions include Getting Ready for Azure AD, Managing Partner and Vendor Access Using Azure B2B Collaboration, Introduction to Azure AD B2C, Choosing the Right Authentication Method for Azure AD, and more. Each 1-hour webinar is designed to support IT Pros in quickly rolling out Azure Active Directory features to their organization. All webinars are free of cost and will include an anonymous Q&A session with our Engineering Team. So, come with your questions! Capacity is limited. Sign up for one or all of the sessions today!  Note: There are also some sessions available on-demand.

 

Productivity Hacks to Save Time & Simplify Workflows

When: Wednesday, April 4, 2018 and Wednesday, April 11, 2018 at 1pm ET | This 90-minute hands-on experience will give you the opportunity to test drive Windows 10, Office 365 and Dynamics 365. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and see how they work for you. During this interactive session, you will: (1) Discover how you can keep your information more secure without inhibiting your workflow, (2) Learn how to visualize and analyze complex data, quickly zeroing in on the insights you need, (3) See how multiple team members can access, edit and review documents simultaneously, and (4) Gain skills that will save you time and simplify your workflow immediately. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

 

Transforming your business to meet the changing market and needs of your customers

When: Thursday, April 5, 2018 at 12pm and 3pm ET | This 2-hour hands-on experience will give you the opportunity to test drive Windows 10, Office 365 and Dynamics 365. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and see how they work for you. During this interactive session, you will: (1) Use digital intelligence to build personalized experiences across all customer touchpoints, (2) Improve customer service through a single, unified experience that delivers end-to-end service across every channel, (3) Increase customer satisfaction with intelligent scheduling, native mobile support, and remote asset monitoring to help you get the job done right the first time, and (4) Run your project-based business more productively by bringing people, processes, and automation technology together through a unified experience. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

 

Connecting, Organizing & Collaborating with Your Team

When: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 at 12pm ET | During this session, you will have the opportunity to experience Windows 10, Office 365 and Microsoft's newest collaboration tool: Microsoft Teams. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and see how they work for you. During this interactive session, you will explore how to use Microsoft Teams and Office 365 to: (1) Create a hub for team work that works together with your other Office 365 apps, (2) Build customized options for each team, (3) Keep everyone on your team engaged, (4) Coauthor and share content quickly, and (5) Gain skills that will save you time and simplify your workflow immediately. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

 

Hands-on with security in a cloud-first, mobile-first world

When: Thursday, April 26, 2018 at 3pm ET | This 2-hour hands-on session will give you the opportunity to try Microsoft technology that secures your digital transformation with a comprehensive platform, unique intelligence, and partnerships. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and see how they work for you. During this interactive session, you will: (1) Detect and protect against external threats by monitoring, reporting and analyzing activity to react promptly to provide organization security, (2) Protect your information and reduce the risk of data loss, (3) Provide peace of mind with controls and visibility for industry-verified conformity with global standards in compliance, (4) Protect your users and their accounts, and (5) Support your organization with enhanced privacy and compliance to meet the General Data Protection Regulation. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

 

BLOG ROUNDUP

 

Retention policies for Microsoft Teams

We're proud to announce that we are starting the roll out of retention policies for Microsoft Teams. The roll out is expected to complete within the next few weeks. With this launch, Teams admins can use the Office 365 security and compliance center to set retention policies for Teams and decide proactively whether to retain content or delete content – for the entire organization, specific locations or user or specific teams. This is a key milestone in our efforts to provide IT admins with even more security and compliance functionality in Teams and part of our roadmap to bring the Skype for Business Online capabilities into Teams. We are currently working on releasing eDiscovery for calls and meetings in Teams soon. The next big ticket item on the roadmap would be Data Loss Prevention (DLP) for conversations and files. At the same time, we are also focused on addressing customer feedback on existing key features like eDiscovery of Teams data, Teams audit logs, etc. | Related: New apps in Microsoft Teams - March 2018 Update

 

New in March–rich data types, intelligent search, and expanded datacenters

This month, we rolled out updates to Office 365 that include the following: (1) new data types in Excel, (2) hub sites, intelligent search and new web parts in SharePoint, (3) the expansion of the Microsoft Cloud with datacenters in new geographies, and (4) general availability of Microsoft 365 for U.S. Government.

 

Coming soon to the new SharePoint Admin Center

In May 2017 we unveiled our plans to simplify SharePoint administration through delivering an administrative experience that's intuitive, intelligent, and simple. Since then we've made available the new admin experience as Preview for customers who have enabled Targeted Release at the Tenant level. In the next several weeks in our preview we'll be introducing new updates on our journey to deliver an administrative console designed to help IT achieve more, so their users can achieve more. Some of these updates include improvements to site management, custom views, search improvements, and improved email layout. These updates will begin rolling out to Targeted Release in 4 – 8 weeks.

 

Content and communities: Showcase both in your social intranet

Whether your goal is organization wide engagement or an introduction to a community of interest, adding the power of conversation into your intranet site makes it easy to showcase questions, comments and discussions. We're delighted to announce that the new Yammer web part for SharePoint has moved from targeted release to being generally available, providing an interactive experience on your sites, pages and news. The new web part is a first step into tighter integration in communities, particularly in scenarios where you want broad engagement across your organization. For example, in the leadership connection scenario, where a leader in the organization wants to have a deeper connection with employees but needs to do that at scale. In this case, you have both an intranet site that has rich content assets, documents, news, articles, videos from Stream, highlighted content that is dynamic, even Power BI dashboards. Check out the latest web parts you can easily add to make your content really shine. In addition, you now add conversations from rich, vibrant community in Yammer. | Related: Video: Embed your Yammer conversations in SharePoint sites & pages

 

Schooling A Sea of Phish Part 2: Enhanced Anti-spoofing technology in Office 365

A few weeks ago, we released new enhanced Anti-impersonation capabilities for Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection (ATP). We're excited to announce Office ATP's enhanced anti-spoofing capability for protecting against spoofed emails from external domains. We believe this new capability will help lead the industry in further securing email. The new feature raises the required level of authentication checks for emails sent into Office 365, helping ensure greater protection for customers. The newest anti-spoof features help protect organizations from external domain spoof. Office 365 honors emails from external domains having proper SPF, DMARC, and DKIM authentication settings enabling them to pass authentication, and junks messages that fail this authentication. The challenge occurs when external domains do not have these settings properly configured.

 

NOTEWORTHY

 

Summary: SharePoint Hub Sites Ask Microsoft Anything - March 23, 2018

The Q & A summary document from the SharePoint Hub Sites AMA (Ask Microsoft Anything) session on March 23, 2018 is now available.

 

Watch the Business Applications spring launch event on-demand

Format: Video (94 mins) | Get a first-hand look at the Spring 2018 Business Applications update to see how modern, intelligent technologies can transform your operations, improve engagement with your customers, and help move your business forward. We provided a look at many of the new capabilities across Dynamics 365, Power BI, and the Business Application Platform and will showcase how these technologies can help drive your digital transformation.

 

Office 365 for Windows Desktop - March 2018 Release details

On March 27th, 2018, Microsoft released Office for Windows Desktop version 1803 (Build 9126.2116). Our Office International team translated this update into 44 languages. We also developed the updated Translator feature that now appears in Excel and PowerPoint. The Translator functionality has been given a complete overhaul. It now supports 61 languages. Its performance is much improved. The translation quality it produces is the best it has ever been, and it will continue to improve over time. For more information on this release please have a look at the What's New in Office 365 for Windows Desktop section.

 

Office for Android - March 2018 Release details

On March 15th, 2018, Microsoft released an updated version of Office for Android (Excel, PowerPoint & Word) build 16.0.9126.2069 in 68 languages. Some of the new features available for the first time to Office365 subscribers using Office for Android on their tablet or phone include quickly finding documents stored in frequently used sites and groups in the Open menu across Word, Excel and PowerPoint. For more information please have a look at the What's New for Office 365 Android section.

 

Your favorite email folders and groups now in Outlook for iOS

With favorite folders or Office 365 Groups, Outlook for iOS helps keep what's most important to you close at hand. Now you can add, remove and reorder favorites right from your mobile device. And whether you manage your favorites groups and folders from Outlook for iOS, Outlook for Windows on your PC -- or even tag a folder as a favorite in Outlook on the Web -- we sync your favorite items across your most used Outlook experiences. Expect to see this update was we roll it out in Outlook for iOS in the coming weeks.

 

Office 365 Attack Simulator and Mitigating Common Attacks (Part 1)

When it comes to security your best line of defense is one that is reactive versus one that is proactive; however, how do you know how you'll respond to a security incident if one hasn't yet to occur…that's where Attack Simulator in Office 365 shines, it's what sets the security solutions we provide apart from other cloud services. Attack Simulator is designed to put you ahead of curve and keep you in front of the proverbial 8 ball. With Attack Simulator you can run realistic attack scenarios in your organization. This can help you identify and find vulnerable users before a real attack impacts your bottom line. In brief, Attack Simulator as a component of Office 365 Security and Compliance is designed to help you identify issues before they become an issue. It allows you to determine how end users behave in the event of an attack, and update policies to ensure that appropriate security tools are in place to protect your organization from threats.


Comments (2)

  1. Hildy Beeson says:

    Has anyone else lost the waffle button from their Yammer home page? It was there pre-Easter.

  2. Hi Hildy – no issues with the Yammer button in the waffle for me in my personal tenant.

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