5 Office 365 Resolutions to Make Right Now

Here at PixelMill, we’re all about setting goals, and what better time to do so than at the New Year. Our team’s list of resolutions is quite an inspiring one! Here are the top 5 that we think you’d be crazy not to add to your list. 
1) Move Outlook email conversations to Teams 
At PixelMill, we’ve moved nearly all our internal emails to conversations in Teams, and now we’re adding client communications to that list as well!  

Why? Who doesn’t want to clean up a cluttered inbox? Moving from email to conversations to Teams provides a threaded discussion without a long chain of reply all’s. Users can join the conversation when needed and can easily see the thread. Conversations can quickly and clearly split into multiple threads in Teams, where with email, discussions can fragment, and essential members may accidentally get removed from the email chain. There is an enforced thread in Teams so someone cannot accidentally fork a conversation, such as what could happen with email when someone replies to an email that is not the latest in the thread. 

How? Plan out your governance, pilot with a team or small group, get leadership buy-in, then push your plan out to the organization.   

2) Set and stick to naming conventions for files and sites  

Why? When there are multiple ways to name files and sites, it can cause confusion. This often leads to people creating duplicate files, as well not finding valuable information they need to get their job done.   

How? Your governance plan should include a naming convention that can be used consistently. If possible, create something that can be used throughout the site and files to make it easier for users to remember.  Here are some suggestions around file naming conventions: https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/office/SharePoint-Naming-b6297bd8 

3) Experiment and explore with Teams and SharePoint 3rd party integrations 

Why?  Avoid unnecessary back and forth between applications with integrations of the apps you use often, all in one place in Teams and/or SharePoint. These integrations help you accomplish daily tasks faster and more efficiently. We’ve been using the Jira Cloud integration in Teams here at PixelMill. We’ve added this app to a tab in our channels so we can log time to a current task we’re working on without having to leave the Teams app.  

How?  Learn more about integrations here: https://products.office.com/en-us/microsoft-teams/apps and here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/enable-features-office-365  

4) Store documents in SharePoint/Teams
Stop storing files in personal computers or shared drives!  

Why? Storing documents in multiple places can cause confusion. Avoid questions like: Which is the right version? Who is the keeper of the document? Where is it located? 

How?  Storing your documents in SharePoint answers the questions above. By storing documents in a central location where they can be checked in/checked out and have version control eliminates confusion and requires less management over the document creation and maintenance process. 

5) Learn more and use PowerApps whenever possible 

Why? You never know when a Power App will come to your rescue to make your work day better! Recently, we started using the Meeting Capture Power App. It’s slick, and we love the fact that we can take our notes, add tasks, and have a summary out to our team and the client within minutes after the meeting has ended. There’s actually a lot you can do with this app, take pictures, sketch, and even create follow-up meetings. When the meeting is over, you can sync the meeting notes back to your One Note and post those tasks into your Planner. Everyone included in the meeting invite will receive an email that contains all your notes and tasks taken during the meeting.  

How? Learn more about and start using PowerApps today at: https://powerapps.microsoft.com/en-us/  

Want to learn more about how to best utilize Office 365 in your organization this year? A PixelMill team member would love to chat with you today!
Here’s to a more productive, collaborative, effective 2019! 

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