Office 365 news roundup

Microsoft makes some of the world’s most popular productivity tools, but we know from experience that true productivity is sometimes an elusive goal.

Would it surprise you to learn that the average knowledge worker today spends “an estimated 28 percent of the workweek managing email and nearly 20 percent looking for internal information or tracking down colleagues who can help with specific tasks?” Those are the facts, according to the McKinsey Global Institute. That means many highly skilled professionals are devoting almost half their working hours to routine tasks rather than focusing on creative, innovative work. That’s one reason why we spend so much of our time improving Office 365 and our other productivity tools to make them even more useful and efficient.

During the past couple of weeks, we have highlighted a number of new features, updates and improvements to Office 365, all designed to help you get more done in less time. We recently made Clutter, the feature built to help de-clutter your email inbox for Office 365, even better by giving administrators additional management capabilities.  We also started rolling out Office Delve to all eligible Office 365 business customers worldwide. Delve helps you discover exactly what you need, when you need it, by surfacing relevant content and insights from the connections that occur between people, content and interactions across Office 365—all tailored personally to you. In addition, Delve now surfaces content from email and social feeds within Office 365.

This week we also announced the Skype for Business technical preview. You can try out the new Skype for Business client today.  Starting later this year, Office 365 customers will be able to use Azure ExpressRoute to establish a private, managed connection to Office 365. ExpressRoute will offer Office 365 customers more predictable network performance, the ability to better manage network availability, and the reliability that comes with dedicated connectivity. Finally, we also updated the Office 365 admin app so you can administer Office 365 when you are away from your computer, and we added the Message Center—a central location for Office 365 service communications—to help you stay in closer touch with us and to keep you better informed.

Below is a roundup of some key news items from the last couple of weeks. Enjoy!

From build it and go, to ready to go with SharePoint—Discover what’s ahead for SharePoint and Office 365.

Laundry innovator wrings insights and productivity from Office 365 and the Microsoft Cloud—Learn how WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems is using Office 365 and other Microsoft technology to manage growth and operate more efficiently.

Universitas Gadjah Mada—enhancing learning and distance education with Office 365—Find out how a major university in India is putting Office 365 to work for students and faculty.

Balancing privacy and innovation: protecting students in our digital world—Discover how Microsoft protects student privacy while delivering technology that provides transformative educational experiences.

Microsoft offering free Office software to four million Canadian students—Learn how Microsoft is making Office, and critical job skills, available to four million Canadian students at no charge.

Bringing classrooms into the digital age—Discover how Office 365, OneNote and other Microsoft products and services are transforming education.

A new foundation for connected business processes at a German pharmaceutical and chemical company—German pharmaceutical and chemical company uses Office 365 and Lync to simplify communications around the world and facilitate collaboration among employees, partners and customers.

Technology delivers better experiences for patients, brings parents and newborns closer together—Find out how a leading hospital uses Lync to help parents and newborns bond, and provide better patient care.