The Business Impact of Microsoft Teams

The Business Impact of Microsoft Teams 

  Microsoft Teams has received a lot of attention lately, and for good reason.  Organizations and businesses of all sizes are embracing the tool to see very impactful improvements in communications and productivity.  It doesn’t take long before these organizations look to take Teams to the next level.  For 3rd Element Consulting, we fully embraced Teams when we chose to implement a Work from Home policy during the pandemic.  Almost instantly we realized this one app would solve the communication issue created by the separation of staff members.  At a glance, we could see the status of everyone, know if they were in a meeting, on the phone, or available to work on an issue.  With the click of a button, we could spin up a video conference, adding in other staff as needed.  Once everyone could see the impact of utilizing Teams, suddenly Channels, file repositories, links, and so forth started appearing.  Every meeting was  scheduled as a Teams meeting, including those with clients.  Within seconds, a Service Desk engineer could share his screen with me to get input on an issue.  This was the same as being in the office together – maybe even better!  Naturally, once our whole organization was fully invested, the next level was to start forming Teams with clients.  Suddenly, we were sharing files and having real-time conversations without the need to send emails back and forth.  Old habits die hard, so this one is still a work in progress for some, but the benefits are quickly winning them over.  One of the key advantages Teams brings is the information storage of all the communication happening in the Team.  During the pandemic, we hired several new staff members.  Bringing them up to speed on various projects and topics was sometimes as simple as adding them to a Team.  Along with that came all of the history of everything that had been discussed and the current status of these discussions.    Even as we came back to the office, we still use Teams throughout the day for all our inter-office communication.  In the last week, we have added two new channels to t rack specific topics involving inventory management and sales requests.  Where I used to get messages in email, via text, notes on my desk, or the famous brief conversation in the hallway, now I get all of this via Teams.  This has drastically increased not only my productivity level by removing wasted time hunting for messages, it has improved the visibility of the information.  When I get a request from a team member to adjust a system or order a license, for instance, there is a written record in a specific channel.  This allows me to review all these messages daily and be sure I am handling everything.  In the last fifteen years, we have used a great many business productivity tools.  Very few of them have had such an immediate impact and improvement to our organization.  Microsoft Teams will remain an integral part of our IT infrastructure for the foreseeable future.