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Share with the click of a button in Office 2016

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Welcome to the Collaboration in Office blog!

With the recent release of Office 2016 and a renewed focus on making it easier for our users to collaborate within Office, we’ve created a new blog series focusing on and highlighting new and existing collaboration features within Office. In the coming months, we’ll cover a wide variety of topics related to collaboration and how to get tasks related to collaboration done in Office. We’ll also talk about Office collaboration in different contexts—like in the office, the classroom and at home. So we hope you find these topics interesting and worth sharing. We’ll start the series off with a post about Sharing from Jade Kessler, program manager for the Office Core team.

—The Collaboration Experiences team

Last week, we introduced Office 2016 for Windows, which takes the work out of working together. Using Word, PowerPoint and Excel 2016, you can now easily share your documents with friends and colleagues and work with others on the same document simultaneously while using the rich formatting options you know and love. Collaborating in Office has never been easier!

Tired of sending attachments back and forth and ensuring that everyone stays up-to-date? Tired of manually merging everyone’s edits into the final copy? Using Office 2016, your content stays in one place and no one has to miss out on other people’s edits ever again. Collaborate without the hassle of passing around different versions of your documents. Seamless collaboration is at your fingertips.

Here are four ways the new Share feature in Office 2016 will change the way you work with others:

Ready to collaborate? Invite your friends and colleagues!

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If you’ve already saved your document to OneDrive, OneDrive for Business or SharePoint, all you need to do to invite others is to click the Share button in the upper right of the screen and type in their names or email addresses in the Invite people text box. Next, you can give your collaborators different levels of permission, allowing them to make edits or restrict their access to View-only. If you choose View-only, then only you will be able to make changes to the document. Before you’re done, don’t forget to include a personal message with your invite. Click the Share button and you’re all set! It’s as easy as that, and now you can see who the document is shared with in the pane. You will get a notification in the upper right-hand corner as soon as others join the document. In Word 2016, you will be able to co-author with others simultaneously and see their changes as they type. Otherwise, press Save to refresh the document and see other people’s contributions.

If you’ve just created a new document or have saved it to your local drive, you need to save it to your OneDrive, OneDrive for Business or SharePoint first before you can share. To do this, click the Share button in the upper right corner and then click Save to Cloud. In the Save As dialog, select a cloud folder and save your document. Once the save completes, you are automatically returned to Share so you can invite others.

Share a link with a group

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If you want to share your document with a wider audience and don’t feel like typing a long list of email addresses, you can get a sharing link from the Share pane. Simply, click the Share button and then click Get a sharing link at the bottom of the pane. Note, this option is not available if your IT admin has disabled anonymous link sharing. You can choose to create an Edit or View-only link. If you choose View-only, then you are the only one who can make edits to the document. Once you’ve created a sharing link, you can copy it and paste it in OneNote, Facebook, Slack, Skype, email—anywhere you want! No need to sign in, and everyone works on the same version of the document. You will see a notification in the upper right-hand corner when people open the link you sent and join the document.

Keep track of who is working with you

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You can keep track of the number of co-authors present in the document at any time by checking the number on the Share button. If you want to find out who’s there, take a look at the co-author list in the Share pane. In Word 2016, you’ll see who’s using the real-time co-authoring feature and whose edits you’ll see as they type (marked as Editing in real time) and who is not using the feature (marked as Editing). You’ll also see who has the document opened multiple times (e.g. Editing from three devices).

Lastly, with in-app Skype for Business integration, you can start a chat, call or video with people you’ve shared your document with by simply hovering over their name in the people list.

Change permissions on the fly

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To manage the permissions to your document, go to the Share pane and right-click on someone in the list of collaborators. You can remove them from the document completely or change their level of access (i.e. give them View-only or Edit permissions). If you’ve created a sharing link, right-clicking on it in the collaborators list will give you the option to remove it. After you do that, people with the link to the document will no longer have access to it.

Now you know how to start collaborating in Office 2016. To work better together, start sharing today! Your colleagues and friends are only a few clicks away.

We have more exciting updates in store for you and will keep rolling out features to help you be more productive together. Stay tuned and send us your feedback!

—Jade Kessler, program manager for the Office Core team

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