Office 365: Utilize Delve for Your Business

This last weekend marked the fourth annual SharePoint Saturday Silicon Valley. I was most excited to learn about Office 365’s Delve. Naomi Moneypenny, Office Server’s and Services MVP, offered invaluable insight on Delve and Delve Analytics that will open up new channels for how companies and big corporations collaborate within their organization.
What is Delve? 
Delve, powered by the Office Graph, generates a variety of selected documents and content that are most relevant to you. It’s a dashboard full of unique content based off of you and your colleagues. The Office Graph stores and analyzes a variety of signals collected from OneDrive for Business, SharePoint in Office 365, shared documents in email, and even Webpages posted to Yammer.
While you can opt-out of Delve in the user settings, I would think again. In Delve, you can only see what you have access to, despite the reputation that it invades personal space and privacy. In fact, the promotion of workplace transparency can enhance company communication and collaboration.
Designed for a Better User Experience
1. LinkedIn-Style Interface
Within your Delve profile, you can add a picture or make additional edits as you see fit. On the left-hand side, your company title and contact information are readily displayed. You can further customize your profile by changing who can view your account information and what they can view. There is also an “Ask Me About” section that displays your responsibilities and expertise, as well as an area for you to specify past projects you have worked on, what skills you have, schools you’ve attended, your birthday, and personal interests.
2. Image Preview
Customized to maximize each individual’s user experience, Delve makes it easier to identify documents, as it processes all files and grabs out preview images to differentiate between similar file types. You can also have a continuous Yammer conversation within various files; this is ideal for mentioning document updates and comments.
3. Boards, Bookmarks, Email, and People
Underneath each item, there are a variety of option icons. You can email a document and see who has access to it in order to figure out who and what department you may need to collaborate with on projects. You can also use the Bookmark and Board pinning feature. These options enhance discoverability and limit the use of Search (something we can all be happy about).
4. Blog Experience
Want an easier way to blog within your intranet? In Delve, you can create a variety of blogs that can be shared within your organization. You can save blog posts directly in Delve and then publish each article when you are ready. Also, you can easily share and edit your posts, as well as add images, headers, and quote boxes.
The Future of Delve
Today, Microsoft announced that they officially purchased LinkedIn for 26.2 billion. Now that Microsoft may be integrating the LinkedIn Graph with the Office Graph, there is even more to be excited about. I am sure we will see new and innovative ways in which we can use Delve and other Microsoft applications powered by Office Graph. Microsoft couldn’t have said it more perfectly, “By connecting the world’s leading professional cloud and the professional network, we can create more connected, intelligent and productive experiences.”
Like any tool for productivity, Delve works if you utilize it correctly based off of your business culture and structure. As Naomi pointed out, it is too often that most businesses worry more about tools that can aid in collaboration, rather than an actual methodology for accomplishing it.  So, if you haven’t already, I would take the chance to check out Delve and see how it can fit into your day-to-day productivity, as well as your company atmosphere and mission.

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