Office 365 Weekly Digest | 2020-35

Welcome to the August 23 – 29, 2020 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

There were fifteen features added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, including items for Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Yammer, and Visio.

A few events for existing meeting series were added, all in early September. This week’s spotlight event is the “Go Deeper with Microsoft Teams: Leverage pro tips and tricks for Microsoft Teams” webinar. There are two sessions, both on Thursday, September 3rd at 5am and 8am Pacific.

Blog posts in last week’s roundup include a look at what’s new to Microsoft 365 in August 2020, tips for network optimization for on-premises Office installs and updates, information on the tools and services available from Microsoft to help migrate content to Microsoft 365, and details on the new transcription and voice commands available in Microsoft Word.

Noteworthy item highlights include information on the public preview of Application Guard in Microsoft 365 Apps, new features that provide agile management of SharePoint intranet sites, a look at Project Moca in Outlook on the web, and suggested steps for implementing a Zero Trust security model for your remote workforce.


OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

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

Note: The Estimated Release dates listed below are subject to change. The direct link provided for each item can be used to determine if the estimated release date has been updated since the time of publication.

DescriptionFeature IDEstimated ReleaseDetails
Microsoft Teams: New File Viewer released for GCC-High67087August CY2020Added: 24 August 2020
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Teams, GCC-High
GCC-High will have a new file viewer – OneUp.
Office 365: Application Guard for Office67101December CY2020Added: 24 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Office
Files from the internet and other potentially unsafe locations can contain viruses, worms, or other kinds of malware that can harm your users’ computer and data. To help protect your users, Office can open files from potentially unsafe locations in Application Guard, a secure container that’s isolated from the device through hardware-based virtualization. When Office opens files in Application Guard, users can securely read, edit, print, and save those files without having to re-open files outside the container. This functionality is available as a Preview to organizations with Microsoft 365 E5 or Microsoft 365 E5 Security license or Users (in the above enterprise) who use Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise on Beta Channel.
Microsoft Teams: File Viewer Upgrades in Gov Clouds66200September CY2020Added: 24 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams, Gov
Teams file viewer is being upgraded for Gov clouds from legacy to OneUp for non-Office file types and to unified app for Office file types (Word, PowerPoint and Excel).
SharePoint Spaces: Touch device support67107December CY2020Added: 25 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: SharePoint
SharePoint spaces will enable users to interact with a space using touch interactions in addition to the mouse and keyboard based interactions currently supported.
OneDrive: Selective sync in KFM66186August CY2020Added: 25 August 2020
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: OneDrive
Known Folder Move (KFM) is now possible even if the Desktop, Documents, or Pictures folder were previously selected not to sync down to the device. Instead of blocking KFM, we will support syncing those folders at time of KFM.
OneDrive: OneDrive Home in mobile66190September CY2020Added: 25 August 2020
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: OneDrive
New landing tab in the app to make it easier to find your important files (featuring Recent, Offline, and shared libraries).
OneDrive: Updates to comment notifications66192September CY2020Added: 25 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive
Users who create or upload Word, Excel, PowerPoint or any other type of file to OneDrive or SharePoint will now get email notifications whenever someone else leaves a comment on their file.
Yammer: New reactions for posts64931August CY2020Added: 27 August 2020
Status: Rolling out
App / Service: Yammer
Users will be able to react to posts in Yammer. New reactions include Like, Love, Laugh, Sad, Celebrate, and Thanks.
OneDrive: Expiring access for external users for the Government Clouds68542September CY2020Added: 27 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: OneDrive, Gov
Admins and end users can expire shares to external users.
Yammer: Edit attachments in a post67239September CY2020Added: 27 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Yammer
When editing a posting in Yammer, a user can now also edit the attachments in the post.
Microsoft Teams: Incoming video support on Safari67109September CY2020Added: 27 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Teams meetings in Safari 13 and later will support incoming video. A participant can see the video of an active speaker. No configuration is needed.
Microsoft 365 compliance center: Communication compliance availability for government clouds67112September CY2020Added: 27 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Microsoft 365, Gov
Communication compliance is an insider risk solution in Microsoft 365 that helps minimize communication risks by helping you detect, capture, and act on inappropriate messages in your organization.
Microsoft Teams: Custom Meeting Images67113September CY2020Added: 28 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Teams
Admins will now be able to add a customer logo to the Teams experience, for display in the lobby and meeting pre-join experience. The logo will be displayed for meetings where the organizer has the Advanced Comms SKU.
Microsoft To Do: Support for push notifications for shared list activities for work and school accounts67114October CY2020Added: 28 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: To Do
This update adds the ability to create Microsoft To Do push notifications in Work and School accounts just as you can in your Personal account.
Microsoft Visio: Azure icons in Visio for the Web56627August CY2020Added: 28 August 2020
Status: In development
App / Service: Visio – Web
The latest Azure icons are available in Visio for the web. These icons can be used to accurately create diagrams to represent Azure services and networks.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Whether you are switching from Skype for Business or brand new, join us to learn the basics of how to use Teams to chat with your colleagues and collaborate on projects. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Set up your profile and notifications in Microsoft Teams, (2) Use chat and calling for 1:1 and group conversations, sharing and collaboration in Microsoft Teams, (3) Schedule and conduct meetings in Microsoft Teams, and (4) Align your team and teamwork in Microsoft Teams.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Explore ways to determine the best approach for creating workspaces for projects and workgroups. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Determine the best approach for your collaboration needs (chat versus teams & channels), (2) Create workspaces for your team to provide the best teamwork experience​, and (3) Determine best practices in Microsoft Teams​ to enhance productivity.

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.

Do you want to get more done in Teams? Receive targeted and timely updates? Access services directly through Teams? Apps let you complete tasks, receive updates and communicate. This session introduces you to the key activities needed to get started with adding applications, bots and connectors in Microsoft Teams today. Through a series of live demonstrations and best practices, you’ll leave this session with everything you need to start using apps in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) See how applications, bots and connectors can help you be more efficient while working in Teams, (2) Select an application, bot or connector for your workspace, (3) Install an application, bot or connector, and (4) Use an application, bot or connector in your workspace.

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).

Join Microsoft Teams experts as we review how you can deploy commonly-used applications directly within Teams, enabling your users to work more efficiently and effectively by accessing everything they need in a single interface. This foundational workshop covers basic capabilities across app management and security. With over 400 out-of-the-box applications available (and growing), you’re sure to find an app, or two, that your team can begin using today in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Identify suitable apps to meet the needs for your organization, (2) Recognize common attributes of successful app deployment, (3) Navigate security and compliance considerations for Teams’ apps, and (4) Determine the next steps to deploy an app to your environment.

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.

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.

Working from home offers the opportunity to maintain your workflow while allowing flexibility in how and where you get your work done. Shifting to a remote worker status can be an adjustment as you look for ways to balance home and work life, maintain focus and be fully productive. Microsoft Teams can help you stay connected to your team while providing access to all of the tools and resources you need to get your work done. Join us to learn tips that can help set you up for success as you transition into a ‘work from home’ scenario. During this session, we’ll share: (1) Guidance for setting up your home environment for work, (2) Best practices for maintaining your workflow while working at home, (3) Tips for staying connected to your team while remote, and (4) Insights for effectively supporting a remote team.

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.

Designed for those who are already familiar with Microsoft Teams, our ‘Go Deeper’ sessions offer insights and best practices. Learn how Teams can help organize your workday and make it easier to stay connected with colleagues. Learn tips and tricks for managing and organizing work and communications in Teams. After this session, you will be able to: (1) Leverage formatting best practices to help get your messages noticed (and responded to), (2) Easily find files, chats and projects, (3) Implement strategies to manage and organize your work, and (4) Simplify your workday.

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 session is IT Admins.

When: Tuesday, September 8, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. Let’s talk security in Episode 3. The top challenge IT pros are facing right now is securing data. Join our product expert for a deep dive discussion on identity and authentication. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

Are you still sending an e-mail with an attachment to your teammates when you want to collaborate on a file? How fast do they respond? How do you know if they are working on the file? How do you manage version control? With Microsoft 365 tools for teamwork, you can seamlessly collaborate on files with your team members. Using Microsoft Teams, you can invite your teammates into an environment where they can effectively collaborate and engage in a persistent conversation. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid productivity sinkholes and increase productivity. This interactive 2-hour session will give you the opportunity to 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.

When: Wednesday, September 9, 2020 at 9:00am PT | Join us for an opportunity to “Ask Microsoft Anything” (AMA) about upcoming changes to support for Office 2016 for Mac, Office 2010 and Office 2013 connectivity to Office 365 services. To join, simply visit the Office End of Support AMA space at 9:00am Pacific and submit a question. An AMA is a live, online, text-based question-and-answer event similar to a “YamJam” on Yammer or an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit. Note: While we’ll only be answering questions in real-time from 9am – 10am Pacific, you can post your questions for the AMA to the Office End of Support AMA space up to 24 hours in advance. We look forward to seeing you there!

We designed Microsoft Teams to be a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. Work seamlessly and transparently with your remote team and discover greater collaboration and productivity. Join us for this session and explore how to avoid communication sinkholes and do more together, no matter where you are. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at 8:00am PT | Bring conversations, content, assignments, and apps together in one place with Microsoft Teams. Build collaborative classrooms, connect in professional learning communities, and connect with colleagues — all from a single Office 365 Education experience. Learn how IT can enable these capabilities for users while maintaining the necessary configurations to align with required organizational business and security requirements. Join us for this webinar to learn: (1) Administration capabilities to enable and govern Microsoft Teams, (2) Allow for frictionless user Teams creation while enforcing business rules and addressing IT concerns, (3) Understand the Teams lifecycle and recommended practices for long term management of the environment, and (4) Security and compliance capabilities for Teams integrated in the Office 365 tools you are already using today. Note: You can also find this session, and more, on-demand here.

When: Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. In this special episode, you’ll get a preview of what’s coming up at Microsoft Ignite. Hear about upcoming sessions you don’t want to miss, as well as new resources that will help you make the most of your experience. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

When: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. Join us for a wrap-up of day 1 at Microsoft Ignite. You’ll hear all the highlights and we’ll talk about what’s coming up on day 2. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

Your business needs to control how sensitive data is managed. Join us and explore how to assess your compliance risk, protect sensitive and business critical data, and respond efficiently to data discovery requests. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Simplify assessment of compliance risk, (2) Integrate protection and governance of data, and (3) Intelligently respond to data discovery requests. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Friday, September 25, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. Join us for a complete wrap-up of day 1 and 2 at Microsoft Ignite. You’ll hear all the highlights and talk with product experts. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

Identity is at the center of security: don’t compromise when it comes to your company’s valuable information. Join us to explore how to use secure authentication, govern access, get comprehensive protection and set the right identity foundation. During this 2-hour interactive session, you will explore how to: (1) Enable password protection, (2) Bring multi-factor authentication to your Windows 10 users, (3) Protect your users and data through Office 365 multi-factor authentication, and (4) Use conditional access to protect across devices, locations and apps. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

When: Thursday, October 8, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. The events industry transformed overnight, and Microsoft Teams played a big part in this transition. In Episode 7, we’ll sit down with members of the Microsoft Teams product group and learn how they are building the future of high-scale communication with Microsoft Teams. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

When: Thursday, October 22, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. In Episode 8, learn about new Teams deep dive help videos for administrators as well as other resources to get your support teams and help desk up to speed. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!

When: Thursday, November 5, 2020 at 9:00am PT | The recent shift to remote, hybrid and on-premise work has IT professionals across every industry looking for more solutions and support for deploying Microsoft Teams. That’s why we’re excited to launch this new live webcast series. In Episode 9, which is one of the most requested episodes, we’ll feature tips, tricks and gotchas on managing guest access in Microsoft Teams. Be sure to add this event to your calendar!


BLOG ROUNDUP

As we work to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, we’re learning to embrace a heterogeneous future. Our mission is to enable people, teams, and organizations to thrive in this new world of remote and hybrid work and learning. Last month at Inspire, we shared how we’re working together with our partners to build new experiences for our customers designed to connect people, inspire creativity, and foster innovation. We’re committed as ever to develop technology that helps you keep moving forward, no matter if you’re fully remote or in a hybrid work environment. This month, we’re releasing new features in Microsoft Teams to help users automate more of their workflow, ideate on digital whiteboards more easily, help improve readability while browsing the web, and more. Let’s take a deeper look at these updates and what else is new in August.

There are a variety of scenarios including but not limited to, installations of Office using Content Delivery Network (CDN), lean 2nd installs (removing the Office source files from the install packages), right-sized first install (only include most used language packs), and default behavior where Office stays up to date using CDN. Microsoft recommends optimizing these network operations because a device can get portions of the content from other devices on its local network instead of having to download the update completely from Microsoft CDN. The goal of this article is to provide solutions for challenges collected from customers in the field.

The latest productivity experiences await you and your content. Once in Microsoft 365 – you will see improved collaboration, increased security, and compliance. Our goal is to help all customers to easily migrate their content to Microsoft 365. The infographic and information in this post will help you learn about the numerous content migration tools and services from Microsoft and our 3rd-party migration partners. This is collectively the broadest set of offerings to assist your migration into Microsoft 365 – from assessment, to planning and onboarding. Migration Manager simplifies file share migrations, Mover provides capabilities to migrate from 3rd-party cloud providers, the SharePoint Migration Tool accelerates on-premises migrations of SharePoint, and Microsoft 365 FastTrack helps organizations plan, migrate and adopt these services.

Whether you’re a reporter conducting interviews, a researcher recording focus group sessions, or an online entrepreneur recording informal discussions, you want to be able to focus on the people you’re talking to without worrying about taking notes and without having to spend hours transcribing your conversations after-the-fact. If that sounds like you, Transcribe in Word is here to help. Now you can record your conversations directly in Word for the web and transcribe them automatically. Transcribe detects different speakers so after you finish recording, you can easily follow the flow of the transcript. After your conversation, you can revisit parts of the recording by playing back the time-stamped audio and you can even edit the transcript if you see something amiss. Your transcript will appear alongside the Word document, along with the recording, which enables you to leverage your transcript to create great content in the way that is best for you. | Related: Save teachers and students time and effort with new transcription capabilities in Word


NOTEWORTHY

Format: Video (25 mins) | In this series, we will highlight how organizations are solving common problems with Microsoft Teams and how those solutions evolve over time. This first video features a simple solution for harnessing knowledge management, low code/no-code options for finding the right info at the right time and wrangling multiple apps, all the way to creating a self-service support model that comes to you. Timestamps for each scenario highlighted in the video are available in the description.

Application Guard for Office is now available in public preview! Files from the internet and other potentially unsafe locations can contain viruses, worms, or other kinds of malware that can harm your users’ computer and data. To help protect your users, Office opens files from potentially unsafe locations in Application Guard, a secure container that is isolated from the device through hardware-based virtualization. When Office opens files in Application Guard, users can securely read, edit, print, and save those files without having to re-open files outside the container. Note: This feature will be off by default. | Resource: Application Guard for Office (public preview) for admins

Business changes at a faster pace today more than ever before. The agility of IT to be both proactive and reactive in the face of change is a must. Adapt, or fade out.  This affects everything and must be reflected in your intranet. The more change you can absorb and respond to, the more value you can provide without compromise or arduous task – for both change and growth expansion. Microsoft has released numerous admin capabilities to both modernize your intranet, manage change, and keep it dynamic. The SharePoint admin center offers the flexibility and control you need to manage everything your intelligent intranet requires. SharePoint admins create and manage sites, establish or adjust the primary intranet entry point, optimize for spanning geographies – location and languages, and more. Features highlighted in this post include: (1) the ability to adjust a SharePoint site address, (2) power to invoke a SharePoint root site swap, (3) multi-geo capabilities in OneDrive and SharePoint, and (4) multi-lingual publishing features for SharePoint communication sites.

The way you work is complex and the streams of information keep increasing, constantly demanding your attention. Your projects, your team’s projects, and the information you need to do your work are stored across multiple applications, forcing you to constantly switch between them and then re-focus and regain context. That constant switching and the inevitable distractions add up quickly – and your productivity plummets. Keeping things organized is one step to being productive. Having everything in one place will save you time and being able to quickly find what you need will make you more effective. Imagine a dresser, with unlimited drawers, and each drawer with unlimited organizers in them. To help you achieve that, we are introducing Project Moca in Outlook on the Web. With Project Moca, you can simplify your workflow so you can focus on what matters. Add tasks, goals, notes, files from OneDrive and other cloud storage providers, links, contacts, and even emails and events, all into one dynamic space. Each space has a flexible canvas so you can customize and view your content your way.

Zero Trust has always been key to maintaining business continuity. And now, it’s become even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic to helping enable the largest remote workforce in history. While organizations are empowering people to work securely when, where, and how they want, we have found the most successful are the ones who are also empathetic to the end-user experience. At Microsoft, we refer to this approach as digital empathy. As you take steps to protect a mobile workforce, a Zero Trust strategy grounded in digital empathy will help enhance cybersecurity, along with productivity and collaboration too. Some of the key steps that you can take to begin applying digital empathy and Zero Trust in your organization include: (1) Protect your identities with Azure Active Directory, (2) Secure employee devices, and (3) Discover and manage cloud apps. | Related: Microsoft Zero Trust deployment guide for your applications

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