Viva | Microsoft offers new ways to humanize the digital

Unless you’ve been living under a rock—or without a smartphone, it’s no secret that digital work is on the rise. A global pandemic certainly accelerated this shift, yet this trend was already top of mind for many. Here at PixelMill, we have been working remotely for several years now. Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365 as a whole have been vital to achieving our digital teamwork success. We’ve found unique ways to foster that in-office vibe with the digital toolsets available.  

Many organizations were forced into a remote environment with little to no time to plan or prepare for this drastic culture shift. Microsoft has been researching the impact of this change on the well-being of the workforce, and we’re pleased to see how well they are taking action to address the very clear opportunities for improvement.   

Introducing Microsoft Viva 

Microsoft announced on February 4th a new employee experience platform (EXP), Microsoft Viva, driven by Microsoft 365 and presented mostly via Microsoft Teams to empower employees, managers, and leaders to build a more humanized digital workspace. With four modules focused on bringing together communications, knowledge, resources, and insights into a unified and integrated experience, Microsoft Viva is designed with the end-user in mind.  

4 Modules to Employee Experience Excellence: 

  • Viva Insights: Balance productivity and wellbeing  
  • Viva Topics: Harness knowledge and expertise  
  • Viva Learning: Accelerate skilling and growth  
  • Viva Connections: Amplify culture and communications  

Viva Topics 

The first of the 4 modules to hit general release is  Viva Topics. We talk a lot about how much time people waste searching for things, and Microsoft confirms this with their research stating, “people spend the equivalent of seven weeks per year searching for or re-creating information.” Viva topics aim to eliminate the waste by harnessing your organization’s knowledge utilizing AI to organize company-wide content and knowledge. Topic cards will display when you hover over a topic that you would like more information on. Another perk we see with Viva topics is its ability to surface data from third-party tools like Service now and Salesforce, furthering the vision of a genuinely holistic and unified digital workspace.  

Viva Connections 

Viva Connections aims to bring more connectivity to teams struggling in a remote environment. Connections will provide your team with a single-pane view into a Microsoft 365-driven digital workspace, empowering teams with more engagement and better access to internal communications. Powered by SharePoint branded and personalized spaces for things like town halls, new policies, and fun conversations can be surfaced where people are spending most of their day (Microsoft Teams).  

Viva Insights 

The pandemic has certainly brought hardships to many of us and a drastic shift to remote work has more than 30 percent of workers reporting that they have an increased sense of burnout according to Microsoft. Accessed in Microsoft Teams, Viva Insights help your team feel connected and find time for breaks, focused work, and learning. Viva Insights also provides managers and company leaders with important data-driven insights and recommendations to help detect and prevent employee burnout.  

Viva Learning 

And last but certainly not least, Viva Learning helps bring learning into the daily routine, from training courses to microlearning content. Viva Learning brings a centralized hub for your organization all within Teams, and utilizing AI will personalize the content to the right user at the right time.   

We’re extremely excited to see Microsoft’s continued dedication to enhancing and humanizing the digital  employee experience. And can’t wait to see what the future brings.  

How do you get started? 

As of today, Viva Topics is generally available. Microsoft will be announcing the public preview of Viva Insights and a private preview of Viva Learning, and we can expect more innovations throughout 2021. To learn more and get started, check out the Microsoft Viva website, or chat with a PixelMill Microsoft 365 expert today!

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