Whilst we are all still settling into hybrid working models it is important to remember that the framework we adopt over the long term is only successful if it keeps our workforce connected, productive and happy.
The technology we implement is at the heart of this.
One of the leaders in this hybrid space has been Microsoft. They have a myriad of software and cloud-based tools that enable your staff productivity and connectivity through a simple subscription to Microsoft 365.
We love Microsoft because it is comprehensive and dependable when it comes to securing your business data. This is why, here at IT Soho, we recommend M365 with any one of our support packages.
1. Microsoft Teams keeps you connected wherever you are
Microsoft Teams is much more than a team messaging app. It has become the go-to business tool for organisations of any size that want to stay connected through one secure online work hub.
MS Teams includes
Siloed chat channels - making communication private
Access to your business files and systems from any device
Enhanced security - something we talk a lot about here on the blog
Integration with all of your favourite Office and M365 apps
Ability to integrate with a network of high-quality 3rd party apps
VoIP phone system (extra add-on)
The ability to host webinar registrations
The addition of a “metaverse” component called Mesh for Teams
2. RSVPs in Outlook mean you can plan important meetings more effectively
Whether you are hosting a new client meeting or running an end-of-quarter catchup with your sales team, it is important to know exactly which key players will be attending. Outlook is great for this.
Outlook’s new RSVP process (updated in 2022) also lets colleagues know whether you are working at home or the office. Meaning planning important events is easier because you know who will attend in person, or via video.
This could make all the difference in closing a deal, even if your client isn’t in the country!
3. Better framing with Surface Hub S2 Camera means more engaged meetings
Depending on what device you are using your video quality is at the mercy of your environment. Hop on a call with a potential client from a darkly lit and out-of-focus surrounding and suddenly your viewer’s eyes are all over the place, instead of looking directly at you as you present.
That could be devastating to your sales numbers!
The Surface Hub 2S Smart Camera will allow for better face framing. This will affect when people are meeting virtually in Microsoft Teams too. The video display will also automatically adjust as people join or leave a physical room, as well as adjust the virtual room view so people’s faces will be clearer.
4. A more powerful PowerPoint means more professional presentations
One of the most common things we do during a video call is share our screens. The process needs to be quick and easy to keep people engaged.
Cameo for Teams allows you to seamlessly integrate PowerPoint with MS teams. You can decide exactly how you want your video feed to appear in relation to your presentation, meaning you can appear on screen while walking people through your slide deck.
Another addition is Recording Studio. This new feature for PowerPoint allows you to record professional-looking on-demand videos - right inside the app!
5. Avoid presentation anxiety with Speaker Coach
Microsoft has been working very hard over the last few years to incorporate efficient AI automation into its software. Something that will help build confidence in every single one of your employees is Speaker Coach.
This is a private and personalised presentation coaching software that helps you switch between the differences of presenting online versus in person.
Some of the feedback it can provide includes
Use of repetitive language
Use of filler words (Ummm, er, etc)
Pausing for input
6. Easy device integration allows a true “hybrid-working” policy
Many of the problems we see in offices and hybrid working situations are device integration related. Either the software isn’t configured or compatible with the devices employees use, or the devices aren’t fit for the type of work an employee is tasked to do.
We find people struggling to view huge spreadsheets on small screens and mobiles as just one example.
Microsoft has been working to make access easier on all software, allowing you to view, edit and share files from any device, based on your M365 plan.
7. No more searching for file access makes everyone happy using SharePoint
SharePoint is a vital tool for any hybrid working environment because it allows file access to become available to any employee or partner who needs it across a multitude of software options.
Suddenly Tim in accounts has access to your sales forecasting spreadsheet for cash flow meetings and Annie in reception has access to the customer information for meeting room bookings and office passes.
It also means Karen, your agent in Hong Kong can update your Chinese production and shipping schedule in real-time, while David from your logistics supplier books your next fleet of lorries for container arrival and customs processing.
Let us improve your hybrid office efficiencies with Microsoft 365
Microsoft 365 has so many helpful features that you’ll wonder why you hadn’t made the switch before.
The one thing missing is your friendly neighbourhood tech guy to support you through your file transition and device integrations.
That’s where IT Soho comes in! Contact us today to set up a chat about how Microsoft 365 can help your business grow.