Office 365 Weekly Digest | January 6 – 12, 2019


Welcome to the January 6 - 12, 2019 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Seven features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, with important updates for Microsoft Teams, Advanced Threat Protection, and Office 365. One Office 365 feature of note is the update for the Office app tile icons on the Office 365 app launcher and Office.com.

The "Getting Started with Microsoft Teams" sessions have multiple events scheduled this week, and there is one event focused on end user guidance for making the switch from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams. The customer immersion experience sessions still have open slots for the two options on Wednesday, January 23, 2019.

There were a couple of big announcements last week - new features in Microsoft Teams for Firstline Workers and a new cloud-based policy management service for Office 365 ProPlus. Other blog posts from last week include new improvements to the SharePoint Migration Tool, availability of the CIS Microsoft 365 Foundations Benchmark, and the answer to the question "Why are some Office 365 network endpoints provided as URLs only with no IP addresses?".

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items on recent updates to Microsoft Forms, learning tools, Yammer adoption resources and self-service password reset in Microsoft 365 Business. Also announced was the availability of Microsoft Planner for US government customers.

 

OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

 

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

 

Feature ID

App / Service

Title Description

Status

Added

Estimated Release

More Info
45268

Office 365

Auto-Investigation with threat playbooks Auto-investigation capabilities for threats will be available in Office 365 E5. Also, there will be key threat playbooks available at this time also. Ability to trigger automated investigations using the playbooks from Threat Explorer also will go live.

In development

01/08/2019

Q2 CY2019

n / a
45441

Office 365

Office app tile icons update on the Office 365 app launcher and Office.com Existing functionality with the app launcher and Office.com will remain the same. The only difference will be the icons for Outlook, OneDrive, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, SharePoint, Teams, Yammer and Skype.

Rolling out

01/09/2019

January CY2019

n / a
45426

Word

PowerPoint

To improve performance, cached files will open before syncing changes Word and PowerPoint will open non-synced cloud files directly from the Office Document Cache instead of waiting for any changes to be downloaded. This will allow users to start working on documents and presentations faster and match the behavior when opening files within a user's sync folders. If the user has a cloud-based presentation available in the Office Document Cache, the user will see the last version stored on their machine while the changes are downloaded.

Rolling out

01/11/2019

February CY2019

n / a
45522

Advanced

Threat

Protection

Additional ATP Plan 1 capabilities for existing Office Threat Intelligence (ATP Plan 2) customers We're consolidating the capabilities in current Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection(ATP) and Office 365 Threat Intelligence products to help customers with detection, protection, investigation and remediation of threats. We're offering this through two SKUs: 1. Current Office 365 ATP SKU becomes Office 365 ATP Plan 1 2. Current Office 365 Threat Intelligence SKU becomes Office 365 ATP Plan 2 Office 365 ATP Plan 2 includes Office 365 ATP Plan 1. So, we'll be backfilling Office 365 ATP P1 capabilities to existing Office 365 Threat Intelligence customers.

In development

01/11/2019

February CY2019

n / a
43333

Teams

Microsoft Teams for Firstline Workers Microsoft Teams is continuing to expand to meet the needs of Firstline Workers with 4 capabilities: the new customizable mobile experience, Shifts, Praise, and Graph APIs for Shifts.

Rolling out

01/11/2019

January CY2019

n / a
45511

Teams

Microsoft Teams Availability for Office 365 Government DoD Microsoft Teams, the hub for teamwork in Office 365, brings together everything a team needs: chats, meetings, calls, files, and tools. Microsoft Teams will be made available to Office 365 US Government DoD customers.

In development

01/12/2019

February CY2019

n / a
45516

Office 365

Azure AD

New option on the Office 365/Azure AD login screen When you sign in with your Microsoft account you will now be able to click for More sign-in options. This will show you alternative sign-in methods and help for getting in to accounts. Signing in with additional options will only enable personal account access and will not change how users sign-in to their work or school resources.

Rolling out

01/12/2019

February CY2019

n / a

 

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

 

Getting Started with Microsoft Teams

When: Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at 10am PT | This 60-minute session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with Microsoft Teams today. From setting your profile, to running a meeting, users will leave this session with the foundation needed to use Teams with confidence. Check here for sessions in different time zones and other dates.

 

Getting Started with Microsoft Teams

When: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 at 7am PT | This 60-minute session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with Microsoft Teams today. From setting your profile, to running a meeting, users will leave this session with the foundation needed to use Teams with confidence. Check here for sessions in different time zones and other dates.

 

Getting Started with Microsoft Teams

When: Thursday, January 17, 2019 at 1pm PT | This 60-minute session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with Microsoft Teams today. From setting your profile, to running a meeting, users will leave this session with the foundation needed to use Teams with confidence. Check here for sessions in different time zones and other dates.

 

Make the switch from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams: End User Guidance

When: Thursday, January 17, 2018 at 10am PT | Designed specifically for Skype for Business end users, this course offers everything you need to help make the transition to Microsoft Teams. We'll focus on the core communication capabilities you use today, chat and meetings, as well as provide an orientation to additional collaboration functionality Teams has to offer. Check here for sessions in different time zones and other dates.

 

Customer Immersion Experience: Productivity Hacks to Save Time & Simplify Workflows

When: Wednesday, January 23, 2019 at 9am PT and 12pm PT | 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) 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.

 

BLOG ROUNDUP

 

3 new ways Microsoft Teams empowers Firstline Workers to achieve more

We are announcing three new features in Microsoft Teams to help Firstline Workers do their best work. Firstline Workers are more than two billion people worldwide who work in service- or task-oriented roles across industries such as retail, hospitality, travel, and manufacturing. We're expanding Teams with new capabilities to digitally empower the Firstline Workforce. New features include: (1) a customizable mobile experience with mobile-only features such as location sharing, (2) a Graph API for the Shifts scheduling tool, which provides integration between Teams and workforce management systems, and (3) the new Praise feature that makes it easy for managers and employees to recognize their coworkers right within Teams. | Related: Empower your Firstline Workers with new capabilities in Microsoft Teams

 

Announcing the new cloud-based policy management service for Office 365 ProPlus

We are pleased to announce the preview of the Office client policy service to help administrators manage policies for all Office 365 ProPlus users in their organization, from an easy-to-use, Internet-based portal focused on Office 365 ProPlus management. Office 365 ProPlus allows users to access full Office experiences from multiple Windows devices. These may be managed or MDM-enrolled devices, but are often also personally-owned and unmanaged. Now with the Office client policy service, you can define and enforce Office client policy without the infrastructure or MDM services traditionally required. The Office client policy service allows administrators to define policies for Office 365 ProPlus and assign these policies to users via Azure Active Directory security groups. Once defined, policies are automatically enforced as users sign in and use Office 365 ProPlus. This service is now available as a preview for all organizations with Office 365 ProPlus. | Related: Microsoft Mechanics - Deploying Office apps with ConfigMgr + new MDM-less policy management

 

Kick start the new year and your cloud migration with new SharePoint Migration Tool improvements

We're excited to announce new improvements to the SharePoint Migration Tool for the month of January. Designed to be used for migrations ranging from the smallest set of files to a large scale enterprise migration, the SharePoint Migration Tool will let you bring your information to the cloud and take advantage of the latest collaboration, intelligence, and security solutions with Office 365. Improvements this month include: (1) A new, updated UI aligned with the Office 365 user experience, (2) Ability to start new migrations without having to restart the SharePoint Migration Tool, and (3) Improved interaction flow including simplified setting review experience.

 

Best practices for securely using Microsoft 365—the CIS Microsoft 365 Foundations Benchmark now available

We're excited to announce the availability of the Center for Internet Security's (CIS) Microsoft 365 Foundations Benchmark—developed by CIS in partnership with Microsoft—to provide prescriptive guidance for establishing a secure baseline configuration for Microsoft 365. CIS is a nonprofit entity focused on developing global standards and recognized best practices for securing IT systems and data against the most pervasive attacks. The CIS Microsoft 365 Foundations Benchmark is designed to assist organizations in establishing the foundation level of security for anyone adopting Microsoft 365. The benchmark should not be considered as an exhaustive list of all possible security configurations and architecture but as a starting point. Each organization must still evaluate their specific situation, workloads, and compliance requirements and tailor their environment accordingly.

 

Why are some Office 365 network endpoints provided as URLs only with no IP Addresses?

IP Addresses for network endpoints that are categorized as Optimize and Allow are provided, but for the worldwide commercial instance no IP Addresses are provided for network endpoints that are categorized as Default. Instead we recommend customers direct Office 365 network traffic that goes to Default categorized endpoints to their default Internet egress location. There is usually some kind of proxy server which will review and send the request to the Internet over the organizations firewall and the firewall is configured to allow network traffic from the proxy server. Network traffic bound for Office 365 which is categorized as Default is proxy aware and is okay to manage in this way. It's the same as if a user enters a new URL into a web browser. The user doesn't have to provide the IP Address for that URL. Instead the request is sent to a proxy server. | Related: Office 365 URLs and IP address ranges – Updated January 7, 2019

 

NOTEWORTHY

 

Email confirmation receipt is available in Microsoft Forms

We are thrilled to announce our new feature, email confirmation receipt, which we're rolling out and will soon be available for all commercial customers. Respondents will receive a confirmation email, which includes a thank you message and link to view their responses. Note: Email receipt is only available when your respondents belong to your organization and you've checked "Record Name" in Settings.

 

Updated: Yammer Adoption Resource Center

Yammer Adoption Resources has a new look and updated content! This site, first launched at Microsoft Ignite 2017, has become a customer favorite becoming a one stop shop for over 30+ adoption materials. These adoption resources are centered around six steps focused on engagement and results with Yammer. You can use these resources to help take your Yammer community to the next level without having to reinvent the wheel, since many of the resources come with the ability to customize to fit the organization branding, culture and goals.

 

10 Learning Tools updates for the new year, including Translate and inclusive math improvements

With the kickoff of 2019 and school back in session again, we want to help you reinvigorate your teaching and reach all your students! Our product updates include ways to help you communicate with every student through translation capabilities, improve reading and writing skills, and even support math development. With all these updates, we're sure you'll find at least one feature to help you kick off the new year right – read on for more information! | Related: OneNote and Class Notebook updates for the new year

 

Catch ALL The Microsoft Flow Conference Sessions ON-DEMAND!

The Microsoft Flow Conference was an amazing event, full of useful demos, great humor and MOUNTAINS of valuable information! We had 16 sessions ranging from beginner to intermediate all the way to into advanced techniques. We also had sessions that focused on the community, on real world scenarios and even about non-connected connectors. Now that the event is over, be sure to go back and check out the sessions you might have missed or the ones you need to re-watch! Without further adieu, here is the list of sessions as they happened through the day. **For added value, be sure and pay attention to the chat box on the right. That was the questions and comments as the live event was happening! Enjoy! | Related: Filter resources in the Flow portal, SharePoint page approvals, and two new connectors

 

Microsoft Planner is now available in Microsoft's cloud offerings for US government customers

Since Planner first launched, we've heard a ton of interest and excitement from US government customers for a tool like Planner. End users in government agencies, from state and local to federal organizations, wanted a simple, intuitive, and collaborative task management tool to help them visually organize their team's work. IT admins wanted to provide their users with a simple work management solution while still meeting the strict security and compliance requirements of the US government. We've been hard at work to make sure Planner would do both. We're happy to announce Planner is available within Microsoft cloud offerings for US government customers. End users can now access Planner within Microsoft 365 Government GCC and Microsoft 365 Government GCC High, with Microsoft 365 Government DoD coming soon. Note: The following features in Planner will not be available in US government cloud during the initial release - (1) Microsoft Teams integration, (2) Email notifications, and (3) SharePoint integration.

 

Self Service Password Reset with on-premises writeback in Microsoft 365 Business

In August 2018 we announced support for on premises Active Directory in Microsoft 365 Business. To facilitate identities mastered on Active Directory, we are excited to announce Self-Service Password Reset with on-premises writeback capability in Microsoft 365 Business. Self Service Password Reset (SSPR) is a feature already included in Microsoft 365 Business, that allows users to change their password in the cloud. Password writeback is a complimentary feature that enables those password changes to be written back to an existing on-premises directory in real time. This simplifies password operations and helps ensure consistent application of password policies.

 

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