Whether you are considering Microsoft Teams adoption for your next cloud communications platform, or if you have already deployed Teams in your enterprise, you will need to invest in Microsoft Teams management tools. In this guide to Microsoft Teams Services, we walk through the top challenges with managing Teams, things to think about before deploying, the deployment roadmap, critical security & governance considerations, new features, and finally, troubleshooting and managing Microsoft Teams.
You should take a look at how your organization operates, how the use of Teams will fit in, and if there is a true business need for adopting Teams. Here are the top questions to ask before adopting Teams:
In the short-term, accelerating migration to Teams for conferencing often also includes migrating voice from on-prem to the cloud. As part of the Microsoft Teams adoption process, enterprises need to consider their future needs for phone.
With the presence of other collaboration apps, you may need to settle for having multiple workstream collaboration app islands in the short term. Plan now for a medium to long term migration strategy that moves all users over time.
Before the COVID-19 crisis, Microsoft Teams adoption and corresponding Microsoft Teams Services looked very similar to many applications moving from a traditional on-prem server environment to the cloud. Depending on the organization’s size and geographical locations, this five-step process could last anywhere from a few months to over a year.
This migration process consisted of several thoughtful steps, including:
COVID-19 has, without a doubt, changed the move from a “cloud-first” to a “cloud now” strategy for most organizations. Many companies using Skype for Business before the worldwide shutdown accelerated their Teams adoption. It seemed like a simple process on the surface. However, you will find that you have opened pandora’s box and created massive blind spots for your IT and security teams. These blind spots will start to manifest themselves when the “new normal” sets in and especially when folks slowly begin to return to their offices.
In the move to Microsoft Teams Services, you will notice a significant change in traffic flows. You will no longer have internally managed traffic, but instead, traffic is unmanaged via the Internet. This move will impact proxy servers, PSTN Gateways, and your firewalls.
Since March 2020, we have seen video modality traffic increase by over 500%. As users become more and more comfortable using video, these numbers are going to grow further. As users drift back into their offices, this increased bandwidth will run havoc on your office network. Have you engineered to anticipate it all?
Unlike Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams services provide users with a full collaboration platform. This is a vast improvement for users’ ability to collaborate while everyone is working from home. However, with no centralized management of the teams and channels, massive blind spots are created for your IT and security teams. These blind spots will make it essential for IT teams to invest in Microsoft Teams management tools at some stage in the deployment process.
What are the key steps to pilot, roll-out, and operate Microsoft Teams at scale? Our second Teams eBook guides you on how to successfully deploy Teams and then discusses the on-going maintenance required.
To get more details and see additional resources to help you plan, deploy, and manage Microsoft Teams, check out our other free assets.
Data security is a growing concern for IT teams, as a user survey of popular cloud-based apps like Dropbox, Google, and iCloud reported that 40% list security of their information as the chief concern about using a cloud environment. Collaboration Security & Governance is all about managing risk across your organization’s workstream collaboration ecosystem. It covers security-related areas including: access and usage policies, user and channel management, and workflow automation.
Microsoft Teams provides easy access to vast amounts of information that can be easily discovered, which poses a huge data security concern for organizations. By proactively implementing Microsoft Teams management tools and collaboration security strategies, IT Teams can ensure consistent control of access to information, and proper handling of content in both single and multi-vendor environments.
To address Microsoft Teams security concerns, the platform offers customization options that allow end users to set their own security protocols to manage Microsoft Teams as well as a variety of ways to ensure that data stays safe. These features include:
“New-age” governance topics that are top of mind for many major enterprises using collab apps include:
Although Teams offers some capabilities, IT teams should be prepared to have a proactive approach. It’s important to anticipate governance needs and choose appropriate solutions to manage Microsoft Teams.
To learn more about how to manage Microsoft Teams security and governance, check out this webinar.
Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, with millions of employees working from home, Microsoft has been working hard to enable better remote work features for users. These features aim to make users feel more connected and include:
At Microsoft Ignite 2020, Microsoft announced a number of new features that will soon be added to Teams to create a more inclusive and connected workplace. These are ten of the biggest feature announcements:
Get a quick overview of meetings with an auto-generated meeting summary that will be available in the Details tab for every meeting.
Instead of being stored directly in Microsoft Stream, meeting recordings will now be stored and shared with SharePoint and OneDrive.
Features a new view that shows contacts, voicemail, calling history, and current device information.
Presenters can now customize how content shows up during a meeting.
Event registration, automated emails, and a detailed reporting dashboard will now be available for webinar users.
Receive personalized insights with recommendations to improve productivity and wellbeing.
Use a customer-provided key to encrypt private chat and team chat data in Microsoft Teams.
View space and meeting details, reserve a space, view upcoming reservations and identify current availability status.
Android Collaboration bars and Windows-based Teams Rooms will now be called Microsoft Teams Rooms.
Allow telephony to continue working even when connections are down through a local PTSN connection to the Survivable Branch Appliance.
PowerSuite is IT’s companion tool to orchestrate and deliver effective, reliable, and secure teamwork across multiple collaboration platforms, spanning both cloud and on-premises environments. Gain a simultaneous, panoramic view of all collaboration and communications platforms, expediting responses to service interruptions and threats.
Reduce time spent troubleshooting Microsoft Teams and improve end-user satisfaction by providing actionable and prescriptive guidance regarding various quality issues.
Use the power of crowd-sourced cloud intelligence to compare anonymized WSC and UC performance KPIs across multiple sites and between different users and platforms.
Track and accelerate usage for meetings, chats and calls ---visualize the full adoption profile of your entire enterprise.
Identify and track a customized and targeted set of Execs, VIPs or even conference rooms so that IT can stay ahead of any potential issues.
AI/ML analyzes platform data to create a centralized hub to view problems and insights to help prioritize troubleshooting Microsoft Teams and identify system anomalies.
Leverage PowerSuite’s comprehensive policy framework and functionality to create policies to simultaneously cover ALL collaboration platform security and workflow needs.
A common misconception is that Microsoft has already done all the heavy lifting with their native management tools. Although Teams comes with some basic monitoring tools, it doesn’t provide the full functionality required by enterprise IT admins. Here’s what sets PowerSuite apart from the native admin experience:
Every PowerSuite subscription includes the option for monthly reviews with our technical experts to explain trends in the data, identify issues, and recommend actions to better manage Microsoft Teams.
PowerSuites’s security discovery process starts by reviewing multiple risk factors to determine high-risk teams and suggest governance insights and resolution steps. Next, PowerSuite delivers a set of collaboration security policies to minimize the Teams risk vector. Finally, PowerSuite provides automatic ‘smart-policy’ enforcement to mitigate insider threats.
Troubleshooting Microsoft Teams just got faster with these Teams management tools and services. PowerSuite centralizes information from multiple collaboration administration consoles to give IT a single & secure tool to monitor, analyze, and remediate all platforms. With PowerSuite, you can optimize costs by reducing time spent troubleshooting Microsoft Teams and accelerate the adoption process.
PowerSuite is the leading specialty tool that helps IT visualize Teams voice performance and health. The PowerSuite formula for collecting and analyzing data from multiple sources creates a unique voice quality map which can be used to proactively pinpoint and troubleshoot Microsoft Teams calls.
PowerSuite provides visibility into organizational usage & adoption of Teams. PowerSuite reports on details about workforce performance & app operations trends to help improve decision-making for IT, identify communication & training opportunities, increase organizational efficiency, facilitate culture change, and extend the value and productivity of employees.
External users are an essential part of the digital workplace, but where do you set boundaries? It is critical to ensure that only the right people are accessing your teams, channels, and data. PowerSuite allows you to monitor and control guest access, surfacing important insights into the behavior of these external users.
Our cloud consulting services will help you optimize your cloud deployments for both unified communications and workstream collaboration.
PowerSuite Cloud Managed Services provide 24x7 administration and maintenance of your Microsoft Teams environment for chat, conference calling, and voice functions.
With the introduction of collaboration to Teams, there are many additional considerations IT needs to keep in mind. The key is to reduce the risk of security exposure.
During Microsoft Teams adoption, it is important to evaluate your performance monitoring and management needs early on to maximize ROI and minimize time spent troubleshooting Microsoft Teams. Issues with Microsoft Teams adoption can lead to poor user experience, increased costs, and lower productivity. By implementing Microsoft Teams management tools, IT teams can help address these issues.
Without Microsoft Teams management tools to help with provisioning, performance monitoring, and user satisfaction tracking, IT will likely compromise overall collaboration health.
Microsoft Teams reporting offers the information necessary to achieve frictionless deployments and is essential to measuring adoption, feature usage, and end-user success. With Microsoft Teams management tools like reporting, IT can ensure positive call experiences by identifying top problem areas in Microsoft Teams call analytics. Ultimately, it can reduce time spent troubleshooting Microsoft teams, increase adoption, improve call quality, and uncover security blind spots.
The unique PowerSuite technology provides an expansive single pane view, covering application platforms from four different industry-leading software vendors.