Published: 15 April 2020
We're big fans of Microsoft Teams at PSU.
Having managed a number of different chat platforms prior to this year, including Skype for Business, Teams and Mitel's Phone Manager Chat, we moved to a consolidated communications strategy and chose Teams as our single system across the business.
Teams met all our requirements for a comprehensive chat platform, and this was even before the COVID-19 lockdown took effect. At that point it really came into its own, and our usage (along with many other businesses) massively increased, particularly of the video function.
Each of our departments uses Teams daily, with morning 'beverage breaks' to keep in touch (not all of us drink coffee). For larger team chats, a limitation has been the current ability to only see four people on screen at any one time – envious eyes on Zoom here. However, Microsoft have accelerated development of that feature and announced that the number of visible faces on screen will be increasing to nine in the next few weeks, with further development planned to add even more in the future.
Teams is also currently in the middle of rolling out a selection of background images to choose from (plus the ability to upload your own), providing an alternative to the Background Blur option. A new feature enabling Teams to connect to consumer Skype users is in the pipeline too.
As a vital tool in workplace communication – in normal times as well – it's great to see the continued rapid development of the platform.