Office 365 Weekly Digest | August 11 – 17, 2019

Welcome to the August 11 – 17, 2019 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Twenty four features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, with half of those for two updates to Excel on each of the various platforms (online, desktop, Android, iOS, Mac, etc.). There are also updates for Teams, Planner, Forms, OneDrive, SharePoint, and MyAnalytics.

There are (again) lots of additions to existing event series, along with a couple of new OneDrive-related events on Tuesday, August 27, 2019. It’s tough to choose just one spotlight event this week, so it’s a tie between the “Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA) on Skype for Business Online to Teams Upgrade” and the “Back to School with Microsoft Teams!” sessions, all on Thursday, August 22, 2019 starting at 8am Pacific.

Highlights from last week’s blogs include a look at SharePoint updates for August 2019, the top 5 advantages of sharing with OneDrive, info on how to dynamically convert MSI versions of Project and Visio to Click-to-Run, and the announcement of FastTrack guidance for Windows 10 deployment.

Wrapping up the post are noteworthy items for list groups in Microsoft To-Do, ways to personalize your navigation header in Yammer, Teams Rooms updates, and details on how to allow Microsoft Teams external chat while securing guest access.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week…

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Audio Conferencing via Direct Routing for GCC High and GCC DoD54236August CY2019Added: 12 August 2019
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Audio Conferencing via Direct Routing for GCC High and GCC DoD enables participants to join your organization’s meetings using a standard phone number. Participants choose to use a phone to join meetings for scenarios where Internet connectivity is limited, are in transit, or don’t have access to a Teams application. Participants can join the meeting either by using the dial-in access numbers of your organization or by having the meeting dial out to a phone number. Configuring this feature requires your organization to use its own numbers for dial-in access and all meeting dial-outs to phones are via Direct Routing. To enable the service, organizations need to set up Direct Routing and configure phone numbers that can be used for dial-in access. GCC High and DoD customers should note that the requirement to use direct routing is different from the Audio Conferencing service that is offered to commercial organizations where the dial-in access numbers are provided by Microsoft. Please be sure to review the correct documentation for this offering. We expect the documentation to be available at the same time as General Availability for the feature.
Microsoft Teams – Phone System Launching for GCC High and DoD54207August CY2019Added: 12 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Phone System enables call control and PBX capabilities in the Office 365 cloud for Microsoft Teams. Microsoft is now enabling this environment for Microsoft 365 GCC High and DoD.
Office ATP AIR – Exposing Investigation data through Management Activity API53624August CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365 ATP
In response to customer feedback and suggestions, and to ensure that our customers have access to critical information to investigate security incidents in their tenancy, we have made some enhancements to the Automated Investigation and Response (AIR) feature in Office 365 ATP. We have been working to meet the extensibility requirements of our customers, who want to leverage the intelligence of our investigations within their custom tools. As part of this work, we will be exposing information about AIR investigations through the Office 365 Management Activity API. This data will include Investigation metadata like ID, Name, Originating Alert ID along with link to the investigation for further analysis. In addition to this, we will also be providing high level information about the investigation actions and entities associated with that investigation. The investigation data will be sent as an event to the Management Activity API on the change of the status of an investigation. As an example, when the status of an investigation changes from Running to Pending Action, it will be captured as an event with the latest investigation data for that state made available through the Management Activity API. The enhancement will begin to rollout by end of July and is targeted to be saturated by 2nd week of August.
Six powerful new functions46525Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Online We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Six powerful new functions46554Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Windows Desktop
We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Six powerful new functions46555Q3 CY2019Added: 07 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Windows Universal
We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Six powerful new functions46556Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Android We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Six powerful new functions46557Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – iOS
We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Six powerful new functions46558Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Mac We’ve added six new functions to use with Dynamic Arrays to supercharge your spreadsheets: FILTER, SORT, SORTBY, UNIQUE, SEQUENCE and RANDARRAY.
Dynamic arrays: use one formula that can return multiple values12172Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Mac Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
Dynamic arrays: use one formula to return multiple values12173Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – iOS Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
Dynamic arrays: use one formula that can return multiple values6697Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Online Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
Dynamic arrays: use a formula that returns multiple values6698Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Windows Universal
Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
Dynamic arrays: use one formula that returns multiple values6699Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Android Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
Dynamic arrays: use a formula that returns multiple values6700Q3 CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Excel – Windows Desktop
Now you can quickly type a formula that returns multiple values, and they’ll automatically spill into the neighboring cells.
SharePoint Migration Tool (SPMT) support for SharePoint Server 2010 Site Migrations54344September CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive, SharePoint
Let us know how we are doing. From time-to-time, users will receive a survey asking them to rate their experience in Teams. Admins can control the feedback experience for users by creating and assigning policies via PowerShell.
Microsoft Forms available for Department of Defense54345September CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Forms Microsoft Forms, a simple, lightweight application that lets you create surveys, quizzes, and polls with ease, will be available for your organization.
Advanced eDiscovery single item error remediation54398September CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Office 365
Now eDiscovery managers can remediate or ignore errors within a review set one by one. This will improve the review experience and help reviewers see more detailed information about documents before making a decision to take any further action or to simply ignore the error.
Microsoft Teams – Cloud Voicemail enhancements54235September CY2019Added: 15 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Cloud Voicemail (CVM) is being enhanced with multiple items. Users will be able to directly transfer a call to Cloud Voicemail. Additionally, we are enabling end users to directly configure features in the Teams settings option. These settings include configuring call answer rules, choosing the greeting language, customize the TTS for the standard greeting and the out of office (OOF) greeting, and choosing when you want your OOF greeting to be played.
Outlook for Android: Location, meeting time and the ability to RSVP in notifications54391Q1 CY2020Added: 16 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Outlook – Android
Expand your Outlook calendar notification to RSVP, see the location and meeting time.
Microsoft Planner for Microsoft 365 Government DoD54165Q1 CY2020Added: 16 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Planner Planner is a simple, intuitive, and collaborative work management tool that helps teams visually organize their work and reach shared goals. Planner will be available in Microsoft 365 Government DoD.
MyAnalytics Dashboard is coming to more Microsoft 365 Government and Office 365 Government suites54285Q1 CY2020Added: 16 August 2019
Status: In development
App / Service: MyAnalytics The MyAnalytics Dashboard will be made available to everyone using Office 365 and Microsoft 365 Government suites that include Exchange Online, specifically Microsoft 365 E3, Office 365 E3 and E1.
MyAnalytics Email Digest is coming to more Microsoft 365 Government and Office 365 Government suites54286Q1 CY2020Added: 16 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: MyAnalytics MyAnalytics Email Digest will be made available to everyone using Office 365 Government and Microsoft 365 Government suites that include Exchange Online, specifically Microsoft 365 Government E3, Office 365 Government E3 and E1.
Automatic phishing detection for enterprise in-org forms54433September CY2019Added: 16 August 2019 Status: In development
App / Service: Forms Microsoft Forms is a simple, lightweight app that lets you easily create surveys, quizzes, and polls. In order to make Forms a more secure service, we have enabled automatic phishing detection on all public forms in July. Now we’d like to provide this feature to enterprise in-org forms as well for better protection.

UPCOMING EVENTS

This 60-minute session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with Microsoft Teams today. From setting your profile, to running a meeting, users will leave this session with the foundation needed to use Teams with confidence. The session is also available on demand at https://aka.ms/teamsgettingstartedondemand.

Designed specifically for Skype for Business end users, this course offers everything you need to help make the transition to Microsoft Teams. We’ll focus on the core communication capabilities you use today, chat and meetings, as well as provide an orientation to additional collaboration functionality Teams has to offer. The session is also available on demand at https://aka.ms/fromskypetoteamsondemand.

Determine the most suitable approach based on your current Skype for Business implementation and upgrade goals. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand common scenarios and upgrade approaches, (2) Visualize the user experience for each approach, and (3) Determine the optimal upgrade approach for your organization. IT Admins are the primary audience for this session.

Have you spent significant time and resources to prepare for a meeting and still felt it wasn’t productive? Have you attended a meeting only to leave feeling like not much was accomplished? Join this class to learn how to make your meetings engaging, productive and effective. Microsoft Teams can help make your meetings worth showing up for. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Use Teams for your entire meeting experience, (2) Record your meeting, making it easy for those who couldn’t attend to get caught up, (3) Keep important meetings at your fingertips by pinning them for easy access, and (4) Assess which audio and video devices are best for your meeting needs. You can access the recorded version of this session on-demand at Run Effective Meetings with Microsoft Teams – On Demand.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our Tips & Tricks sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In Part 1 – Effective Workspaces, you will explore ways to determine the best approach for creating workspaces for projects and workgroups. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Decide if your team is best served by a team and channels or a group chat and meetings, (2) Create a workspace for your team to provide the best collaboration experience, (3) Use a personal team to simplify your productivity, and (4) Determine best practices for Teams. Access the consolidated on-demand version of Tips and Tricks here: https://aka.ms/teamstipsandtricksondemand.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our Tips & Tricks sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. In Part 2 – Get More from Teams, you will learn tips and tricks for managing and organizing work and communications in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work, (2) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed (and responded to), (3) Easily find files, chats and projects, and (4) Simplify your workday. Access the consolidated on-demand version of Tips and Tricks here: https://aka.ms/teamstipsandtricksondemand.

Discover everything you need to facilitate a successful upgrade to Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Understand why a formal plan is crucial for upgrade success, (2) Identify the steps to the upgrade success framework, (3) Recognize common attributes of successful customers, and (4) Create and implement their own upgrade plan. The audience for this session is All (Business Sponsors, IT Admins, User Readiness/Change Manager, Project Lead).

When: Thursday August 22, 2019 at 9:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Skype for Business Online to Teams Upgrade ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA). An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product teams who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Join in the Microsoft Teams AMA space, or add the event to your calendar. We look forward to seeing you there!

When: Thursday, August 22, 2019 from 8:00am – 11:00am Pacific | You are cordially invited to our free Microsoft Teams for Education online event. We will be sharing helpful tips to make the most of Teams in the new school year. We welcome you to attend all or as many of the events as you’d like and don’t forget to share with your friends and colleagues. Each event (listed below) is 30 minutes in duration and hosted directly by the Microsoft Teams Product Group.

Data needs to be protected wherever it’s stored and whenever it travels, and you need the tools to monitor policy violations and risky behavior. Join us to explore how to implement a comprehensive and integrated approach across devices, apps, cloud services, and on-premises. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Identify, monitor and automatically protect sensitive information across Office 365, (2) Help classify and protect documents and email, and (3) Use policies to enable BYOD scenarios by protecting data at the app level. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

Execute your defined upgrade approach as part of your formal upgrade plan. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Recognize the upgrade settings in your O365 tenant admin portal, (2) Understand technical tips and considerations for a successful upgrade, and (3) Apply the appropriate settings in the Portal to execute your upgrade. The primary audience for this sessions is IT Admins.

Design a user readiness strategy to help your users love and adopt Teams. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Recognize factors that influence user acceptance and adoption, (2) Define core value messaging for Teams in your organization, and (3) Outline your awareness, training and support activities. The audience for this session is: User Readiness/Change Manager.

When: Monday, August 26, 2019 at 9:00am PT | With the recent announcement around end of life for Microsoft’s Skype for Business Online, the transition from SfB to Microsoft Teams is top of mind for many organizations. Organizations that have not already started down the migration route are now taking a long hard look at how to prepare and execute on a migration. To help customers prepare join this interactive session that will cover: (1) What are the Teams Modes and why do they matter?, (2) A “simple” vision of transition using a phased approach that works well in the real world, and (3) Real world examples of transitions from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams. Add the event to your calendar, or alternately you can join the broadcast event.

When: Tuesday, August 27, 2019 at 9:00am PT | Strong teamwork is the foundation of most successful businesses, whether the team is located in a single office or working together virtually across the globe. Whether you are engaging with third-party vendors or telecommuting co-workers, having the right tools for collaboration makes all the difference. OneDrive is the files app for Microsoft 365, and it is a powerful sharing tool, too. OneDrive helps your organization embrace the transformation to a digital workplace as well as enable modern productivity without compromising on user experience or data security. In this session we will demonstrate how OneDrive makes it easy to share files securely within and outside our organization as well collaborate on them in real-time with your colleagues. Don’t forget to add the event to your calendar!

When: Tuesday, August 27, 2019 at 10:00am PT | We are very excited to announce a Simplify Collaboration in OneDrive ‘Ask Microsoft Anything’ (AMA). An AMA is a live online event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering teams who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Join in the OneDrive AMA space, or add the event to your calendar. We look forward to seeing you there!

How do you bring various stakeholders together across multiple teams to achieve your goal? Do you wish you could reduce the number of meetings or e-mails while still being able to solicit feedback, keep everyone informed, and get consensus? Join us to explore how to bring everything together in a shared workspace with Microsoft Teams. Learn how to chat, meet, share files, and work with other business applications to effectively engage others. This interactive 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to try it for yourself and test drive Microsoft Teams in a live cloud environment. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and experience how they can work for you. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

Today’s workforce can work from anywhere, on any device, and on any app. Security teams need to understand threat signals from disconnected products and optimize security with minimal complexity. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Safeguard users from malware attacks such as phishing and spoofing with Office 365, (2) Use the Windows Defender ecosystem to proactively monitor and protect your users, (3) Utilize Office 365 ATP to help protect users from bad links and attachments, and (4) Let machine learning and automation protect users from threats. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.


BLOG ROUNDUP

Document management is a core capability for SharePoint and Microsoft 365. We’re pleased to announce the following new capabilities which will start rolling out to Targeted Release by late August 2019: (1) New document management actions for SharePoint in Flow, (2) Activity Highlights in the File Hover Card, and (3) Bulk approvals.

Building informative and attractive pages is an essential step in engaging employees with news, applications, and critical information in SharePoint and Microsoft Teams. We’re pleased to announce a series of enhancements to make authoring pages faster and more intuitive. These updates include: (1) Undo/Redo for SharePoint pages, (2) Drag and drop files to the canvas, (3) New vertical sections, (4) Recommendations – pages and news can now include a web part showing related / recommended content, and (5) On page anchors. All of these are scheduled to start rolling out to Targeted Release in August 2019, with general availability following soon after.

Strong teamwork is the foundation of most successful businesses, whether the team is in a single office or working together virtually across the globe. Whether you are engaging with third-party vendors or telecommuting co-workers, having the right tools for collaboration makes all the difference. OneDrive helps your organization embrace a digital workplace transformation as well as ushering in productivity gains without compromising the user experience or data security. We have, for you, the five S’s of successful sharing with OneDrive – (1) Simple, (2) Secure, (3) Social, (4) Smart, and (5) Supervise. Let’s take a closer look..

With the latest release of the Office Deployment Tool (ODT) we have implemented a new feature based on customer feedback. It is now possible to make the installation of a C2R product dependent on the previous presence of an MSI-based product. As it works for all products, it is especially helpful when deploying Project and/or Visio to users which had it previously. The feature is known as MSI Condition. In the past customers created very complex scripting to detect and replace Office products, in some cases running the install up to three times based on the number of previous products detected. We have even seen customers simply ignore Project and Visio and remove everything, then wait for helpdesk to get a call and replace it with the version the end user requested. MSI Condition makes your migration from MSI to C2R flow smoothly with one XML for your deployment which dynamically adjusts to the task at hand. | Related: Announcing Office 365 ProPlus Device-based Subscription for Education!

Upgrading and updating complex technology environments is no small task. To support you through every step of your Windows 10 deployment, we made investments to help you assess compatibility, make informed decisions, and reduce cost and complexity. While most of you are well on your way to upgrading to Windows 10, we know there can be unforeseen challenges. Sometimes you have a complex scenario and aren’t even sure where to start, or you’ve encountered a problem that has your migration stalled. There are times when you need to talk to an expert to get guidance on where to go next. We’re happy to announce new FastTrack for Windows 10 deployment guidance to do just that. With FastTrack, we help you to envision a technical plan, determine how to onboard and deploy new services and/or users, and work with you as you deploy to get the most value out of your technology investments. This assistance is available at no additional cost for those with 150 or more licenses of an eligible service or plan. | Related: FastTrack for Windows 10 deployment and other migration resources | Microsoft Mechanics: Fix Incompatible Apps in Windows 10 at No Cost & get Windows Upgrade help from Engineers


NOTEWORTHY

Here at To-Do we like to think that you can have lists for everything: books you want to read, restaurants you want to check out, chores your kids need to do, and that big work project that you’ve been tackling each week. In fact, you can have a list for every aspect of your life. But once you start to add a lot of lists and your holiday packing plans mingle with your work tasks, it becomes easier to lose focus. Meet list groups, one of your most requested features ever, now rolling out across all platforms (version 1.63).

Here at Yammer, we’re continuing to build integrations across Office and we’re happy to announce some additional connections that provide a seamless experience between Yammer and the Microsoft 365 suite. The updated suite header allows you to personalize the look and feel of your account in just a few clicks. Choose your theme or create a default branded theme for your organization. It also provides a coherence experience to access and edit your Office 365 account right from Yammer. We’ve recently given the Office 365 App Launcher a makeover! Also known as ‘the waffle’, the app launcher and functionality is now customizable and supported in Yammer. It makes opening and switching between your apps easier than ever. It now showcases the new icons and latest apps – including the new look for Yammer. These changes below will be rolled out to 100% of worldwide tenants by August 17, 2019.

A growing rise in regulatory requirements places more onus on organizations to control the geographic location of where data is stored so that it can be kept within specific regional boundaries. If you don’t have a solution for this, you may feel less confident in expanding your business into new markets, distributing your workforce or even moving to the Cloud. The traditional way to tackle data residency has been to manage people and resources who reside in different countries or regions within the organization as separate entities, even though you are all part of the same organization. Office 365 Multi-Geo capabilities enable a single Office 365 tenant to span across multiple Office 365 datacenter geographies (geos), and gives customers the ability to store their Exchange Online and OneDrive, SharePoint Online and Office 365 Groups data, at-rest, on a per-user basis, in their chosen geos and we’re pleased to announce to expanded Office 365 Multi-Geo capabilities to South Africa and the United Arab Emirates.

In today’s modern workplace, teams come together from around the world to get things done. Microsoft Teams Rooms helps those teams keep everyone engaged and creates an inclusive experience for people in the room and remote viewers. The latest update of the Microsoft Teams Rooms app brings a new content camera feature that enables users to intelligently include a traditional whiteboard into their Teams meeting. Powered by Artificial Intelligence in the Microsoft cloud, a dedicated content camera intelligently detects, crops and frames the in-room whiteboard and shares its content with remote meeting participants. Even when a presenter moves in front of the whiteboard remote participants will be able to see the content right through them.

As regulated industry customers roll out Microsoft Teams to their users there is oftentimes a desire to lock the whole system down in order to prevent Guest Access until such time as the organization get their head around the processes and services they can put in place to ensure compliance. However, in such instances these same orgs initially may take a sledge hammer approach that not only prevents Guest Access to content but also will block the ability to chat and converse with external individuals who they need to collaborate with. In this video, Michael Gannotti discusses the option to allow users to chat and meet with external users while locking down Guest Access temporarily during an initial roll-out. | Related: Amplify Org Event Impact with Microsoft Teams, Stream and More!

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