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In case your group makes use of Workplace, chances are high you have come throughout Microsoft Groups, at the very least for video conferences. However it’s able to a lot extra, offering an efficient approach for teams of individuals to collaborate on work and advance enterprise objectives.
Groups is, at its core, group chat software program with video conferencing capabilities and a few cool options for working with paperwork and spreadsheets, particularly these saved in SharePoint and OneDrive for Enterprise. It is included with Microsoft 365/Workplace 365 enterprise and enterprise subscriptions, making it engaging to Microsoft clients who do not wish to pay for extra chat or assembly software program.
When you get to understand it, Groups is a extremely useful gizmo for groups in corporations utilizing Microsoft 365, bringing collectively quite a few suite parts and displaying them in a single handy place.
Microsoft presents an internet interface for Groups in addition to cellular apps for iOS and Android so you possibly can keep related on the go. However one of the best expertise is obtainable by the desktop consumer. Out there for Home windows 10 and 11, macOS (any of the three most up-to-date variations, in accordance with Apple’s help coverage), and Linux (on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, 20.04 LTS, Fedora 30 Workstation, RHEL 8 Workstation, and CentOS 8), is a wealthy and full-featured app that permits you to preserve conferences, chats and notes collectively in a single place. This story will concentrate on getting you accustomed to the desktop app.
Create or be a part of a crew
Because the title suggests, Groups is organized across the idea of groups, which might be small teams you’re employed with on particular initiatives, your complete division, or in some circumstances even your entire firm. If you begin Groups, you may be taken to the Groups view. The primary time you begin Microsoft Groups, you may doubtless be signed up for a number of groups.
To create a brand new crew, which you’ll must do when beginning a brand new mission, for instance, choose Be part of or create a crew on the backside left of the Groups window. (When you do not see this selection, ensure you’re in Groups view by clicking the Tools within the left navigation bar). On the display that seems, hover your cursor over the “Create a crew” space and click on the create crew button.
Subsequent, you have to select whether or not to create a crew from scratch or create a crew based mostly on a Microsoft 365 group (in the event you select the latter, you have to specify the group on the following display), select whether or not the crew is non-public (solely you and others crew homeowners can determine which contributors to incorporate) or public (anybody who has entry to Microsoft 365 in your group can be a part of), after which give your crew a pleasant title and outline so others can perceive its goal. .
After that, you may be prompted so as to add any related folks, distribution teams, and safety teams that will exist inside the World Deal with Listing for Microsoft 365 in your group. Right here, consider distribution teams that obtain notes in your division, any explicit worker, and even different e mail lists which may have members who would discover the content material of your discussions related. You may as well designate them as crew members or crew homeowners.
If Microsoft 365 is ready up accurately at your organization, you possibly can even invite folks from exterior your group, corresponding to distributors and contractors, by merely getting into their e mail addresses on the crew choice display. Your “visitor” standing shall be clearly denoted in all of your actions. (If you do not have permission out of your admin to do that, Groups will let you know that you just’re not licensed.)
If you create a crew, Groups mechanically units up sure parts of Microsoft 365 to help the crew. Particularly, you create a SharePoint crew website and grant entry to the crew members you have added, a Microsoft 365 group (consider it like an Alternate or Outlook distribution record on steroids) comprising crew members, a cloud-hosted shared OneNote pocket book and a Shared Plan, which is a part of the Microsoft Planner device in Microsoft 365, which is exterior the scope of this text.
To handle your crew at any time, click on the three dots icon subsequent to your title within the left navigation bar. You may see a pop-up menu the place you possibly can add or take away members, create channels for the crew (extra on that beneath), change the crew title or description, and extra.
If you wish to be a part of an current crew as a substitute of making a brand new one, choose Be part of or create a crew on the backside left of the Groups window. On the display that seems, you will note an inventory of obtainable groups. Hover over any public crew and click on its be a part of the crew button to hitch immediately. If the crew is non-public, you will want to request approval out of your administrator.
As soon as a crew is created, you may discover just a few issues within the Groups window.
On the one hand, a Basic channel has been created for the crew. Channels are the place you chat and collaborate. The Basic channel is supposed to be a common place to go to begin conversations if you first begin utilizing the Groups product; often channels associated to extra particular matters will come from there.
You possibly can create a number of channels for any given crew: the widget launch crew might wish to have gross sales, manufacturing, and advertising channels, for instance. So as to add a channel, click on on the Create extra channels button. On the display that seems, sort a reputation and outline for the channel, select a privateness possibility if you wish to restrict who can entry the channel, and click on the button. Add button. All channels for a crew seem beneath the crew title within the left panel.
Every channel has tabs that seem on the prime of the principle space of the Groups display, together with tabs for posts (corresponding to conversations) and recordsdata. When somebody does one thing new in a channel, like including a file or beginning or persevering with a dialog, the title of that channel will seem in daring within the left panel.
The Posts tab works like Fb or LinkedIn in which you could remark together with your teammates on an ongoing dialog. Composing messages is straightforward: simply click on the Begin a brand new dialog textual content field, or click on Response beneath an current dialog and begin typing.
You possibly can draw teammates’ consideration to sure elements of the dialog by tagging them with an @ signal when typing, like so: @Adele are you able to share the most recent work grid? Customers who’ve been tagged will see, in their very own copies of the Groups shoppers, the tagged elements of the dialog highlighted in vibrant purple to allow them to simply see and reply to messages. You may as well use emoticons, emojis and GIFs; that is what I imply once I consider this space as Fb.
Different actions, corresponding to name sharing or file sharing, seem as a timeline on the Posts tab. These might be accessed elsewhere, however are additionally populated and referenced within the Posts space, very like a information feed works on a social website. And anybody who’s at the moment out there in Groups can have a inexperienced circle with a white test mark on their profile photograph within the Posts space.
You are most likely beginning to get the concept Groups is, in some ways, an overlay on Microsoft 365 companies. That is very clear on the Recordsdata tab, which populates an inventory of recordsdata on the shared SharePoint crew website instantly in your window, saving you the trouble of loading it into your browser and clicking. You possibly can add, open, edit, copy, transfer, obtain and delete recordsdata, or get hyperlinks to these paperwork to share them with others.
When you click on on a file title, the net model of Phrase, Excel, and so on. will open instantly within the Groups window, permitting you to make mild edits or create easy paperwork from scratch with out leaving the Groups consumer.
Add extra tabs (and apps)
The tab space is principally the place all of the thrilling Groups integration motion occurs. Performance from different Microsoft 365 and third-party companies seems as new tabs.
For instance, you possibly can add Excel spreadsheets, Phrase paperwork, OneNote notebooks, Energy BI dashboards, Planner plans, and extra instantly as tabs within the Groups consumer. Simply click on the plus (+) button on the far proper of the tab format so as to add a brand new tab. Integrations with third-party cloud companies like GitHub, Cisco Webex, Smartsheet, and so on. are additionally out there.
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