Microsoft has announced plans to replace Skype for Business with Microsoft Teams as its key workplace collaboration platform.
As the name suggests, Microsoft Teams is a single hub that promotes efficient teamwork via empowering users with better conversations, meetings, files, apps and third-party integrations.
The announcement was made at the recent Microsoft Ignite event. Although this change will not go into effect immediately, Microsoft Teams will evolve over time to be in an ideal position to compete against its rivals in collaborative software, including Slack and Facebook’s Workplace. For now, Microsoft will continue to provide support to Skype for Business customers.
Some of Skype’s top features will be integrated into Microsoft Teams, which will be the main communication tool in Office 365. New meeting features and inbound/outbound calls to PSTN numbers are among the additional features in a new Microsoft Teams software update. The use of voicemail, along with the holding and transferring calls, will soon be available. A very useful feature – audio conferencing – will also be rolled out soon, and a new guest access function will also allow users to work with people outside their organisation via Microsoft Teams.
Microsoft Teams will lead to easier managing of the daily communications overload by taking communications beyond traditional unified communications, with increased efficiency and minimal context switching. This also leads to more productive meetings as it provides the necessary tools to comprehensively cover the entire meeting lifecycle, while offering data and insights from Microsoft Graph.
Harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, Microsoft will continue to improve meeting tools for Microsoft Teams users. Machine learning, cognitive services and speech recognition are among the integrated features in the software to achieve this goal. Overall, Microsoft is set to provide a better version of its workplace communication infrastructure along with enterprise-grade meeting experiences.
Prior to meetings, Microsoft Teams will provide relevant files and information regarding all participants to allow efficient preparation. During meetings, all discussions can be captured within the cloud, transcribed, and time-stamped with voice recognition and closed captioning. This allows meeting remarks to be tied to specific participants. Following the meeting, discussions, files, notes, and action items are automatically added within the relevant locations. All participants can then easily review, index, and search for related information within the channels.
In April 2015, Lync was replaced by Skype for Business. Since being launched in March 2017, Microsoft Teams has attracted over 125,000 business organisations globally, due to its many benefits towards businesses that rely heavily on teamwork.
Microsoft is constantly striving to improve its business communication platforms, transforming the way people make calls and arrange meetings; integral activities of the day-to-day running of businesses. The software giant is dedicated to creating a future with intelligent communication via the development of new tools and improvement of existing software.
For some advice on ways to improve your business using Microsoft software, why not contact WM Reply for some useful tips from our experienced team members?