Microsoft Teams featured on Good Morning America—watch now

Good Morning America’s “Boosting Your Business” segment, sponsored by Microsoft, provides entrepreneurs and small businesses with simple advice and tools to help them grow.

On March 15, Good Morning America brought in Maxie McCoy, a career expert, to give tips and tricks to help businesses across the country be more productive and collaborative. To demonstrate some of these tips, Maxie visited WeWork, the hugely successful shared–office space startup, and talked about how the WeWork Creator Awards team can work together in a new way using Microsoft Teams, a new chat-based workspace in Office 365.

Maxie gave the Creator Awards team advice on aligning their vision, delegating responsibility and communicating clearly within team workspaces. She showed them how Microsoft Teams creates a secure hub for teamwork, helping them communicate and collaborate more effectively.

Unique vision and unquestionable talent has made the WeWork team into what it is today. Microsoft Teams gives them a new way to work together and continue to grow.

Watch the segment now:

Check out Microsoft Teams to see how your team can be more productive and collaborative as well.
Download and read “The Ultimate Guide to Chat-Based Tools.”

Find and tell a compelling story in your data

Today, businesses are collecting more data than ever before. But data without insight is meaningless, and insight without action is pointless. The biggest question organizations face is how to make sense of it all—how to sift through everything to find meaningful information that helps to tell a story about customers, product insights or industry trends that can help drive a business forward.

On the latest episode of Modern Workplace, Susan Etlinger, industry analyst at the Altimeter Group, and Gabi Steele, data visualization scientist at The Washington Post, discuss the challenges businesses face in turning data into actionable insights and the best course of action for getting started. They talk about key issues, including:

  • Building the right teams and asking the right questions.
  • Defining a vision and hypothesis but being ready to pivot based on emerging data patterns.
  • Choosing the right vehicle for the right communication (interactive visualizations versus static infographics).
  • Making data accessible to more audiences through powerful storytelling.
  • Using tools that most organizations already own to do more with existing data.

You’ll also see a demonstration of Power BI, Excel and Word features that help improve data visualization to gain insights. The new Office Tap feature shows how those visualizations can be easily inserted into reports.

Register and watch the latest Modern Workplace episode, “Visualize: The power of data storytelling,” to learn more.

How do you tell the story behind your data? Find out on the next Modern Workplace

According to a recent study conducted by Glassdoor, data scientists are the most in-demand job of 2016. But gathering the information is only half of your organization’s challenge—it’s what you do with it that counts. How can you be sure your data isn’t just telling you the story you want to hear, but showing you what you urgently need to know?

Join us for the next episode of Modern Workplace,” Visualize: The power of data storytelling,” airing January 10, 2017, at 8 a.m. PST / 4 p.m. GMT, and learn how to unlock the hidden potential within your data through visualization. Plus, get an exclusive demonstration of how Microsoft intelligent tools like Power BI and Excel can help you shape, analyze and visually explore your data.

  • Industry analyst at Altimeter Group, Susan Etlinger, shares how to strategize your data into actionable tips you can use today and provides insights into creating your organization’s most insightful data yet.
  • Data visualization specialist for The Washington Post, Gabi Steele, explains how to communicate insights through design and data storytelling.

Register now!

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Learn more about the insights in Microsoft MyAnalytics

On today’s Microsoft Mechanics, we take a tour of the latest updates to Microsoft MyAnalytics. Catherine Pidgeon shares how to use MyAnalytics to improve work impact and success. From understanding where her time goes, to identifying areas of opportunity and gaining insight into collaboration with her most important groups, Catherine provides a comprehensive tour of current and roadmap features.

Also, today we are announcing the availability of external contacts within your MyAnalytics experience. Now you will be able to stay up to date on how you interact with important contacts outside of your organization. Whether they are customers, partners or external staff—sometimes those you work with across organizations are the most important to your success. Now you can quickly add important external contacts to your MyAnalytics dashboard to stay updated with collaboration insights like total collaboration time, time in meetings, read percent and response time.


Get email digests to have insights delivered right to your inbox

Starting in January, the MyAnalytics email digest will deliver time and network insights right into your inbox. The digest will provide insight into your time and progress against goals to help you identify key trends that might require your action. With the quick insights delivered each week, you will now be better informed to plan ahead and ensure you’re spending your time in ways that are aligned with your goals.


Already have MyAnalytics? Send us your feedback in the comments, on Twitter @_MyAnalytics­ or via the MyAnalytics UserVoice. Would you like to see your own MyAnalytics view? Start up a free E5 trial today at

Frequently asked questions

Q. How do I add an external contact?

A. Use the “search to add” field of the network section in your MyAnalytics dashboard to add external contacts by their full, valid email address.

Q. When will the groups feature be available?

A. The “My important groups” feature is currently in development and will be available for customers in the first several months of 2017.

Q. When will the digest email be available?

A. The digest email will start to roll out to customers in early January 2017.

Q. How is privacy handled within MyAnalytics?

A. Most of the information provided within MyAnalytics is already available to you, such as your time in meetings or your response time to others. In the case that this information is not already available to you, such as the company average time in meetings, the insights are aggregated and de-identified to preserve end-user privacy.

Additionally, organizations have significant controls to ensure that MyAnalytics meets the privacy requirements of their organization. See MyAnalytics for Office 365 admins for more information.

Q. I am an end user in an organization that has MyAnalytics and I want to learn more about it. Are there any reference materials available?

A. To learn more, please visit MyAnalytics tips and stay connected via our UserVoice, Twitter @_MyAnalytics­ and the MyAnalytics group on the Microsoft Tech Community.

Merging intelligence with productivity—a demo tour of recent Office app updates

On today’s Microsoft Mechanics, we look at the latest in intelligent Office app experiences spanning PowerPoint, Excel, Word, Outlook and the browser. Ben Walters presents how Office can bring in intelligence via the Microsoft Graph, Azure Machine Learning and Delve to save you time.

Ben kicks off his demonstration with PowerPoint Designer, a new way to automatically design slide layouts when importing pictures or other visual elements. Designer now also works with text-based lists to apply visual formats. Going beyond slide design and formatting, Ben also highlights PowerPoint QuickStarter, which uses the Microsoft Graph to pull in content ideas and photos, creating a great starting point for your presentations.

In Word, we take a look at Word Tap, a new feature that also uses intelligence with Delve to bring in recent content like charts and graphs. Within Word, Ben also shows how machine learning can also help improve writing by looking for word redundancies, jargon, gender-specific language and more.

In Excel, we explore the new Azure Machine Learning add-in to run text sentiment analysis, then use map charts to give a visual representation of data inserted via the Azure Machine Learning add-in.

In Outlook, we’re using intelligence and machine learning to help assess the importance of incoming email via the new Focused Inbox. The MyAnalytics add-in also helps track information about how your email is being read, reply rates and the timing of these activities. For Outlook Mobile, we’re applying intelligence to find important events like flight information using Action Cards; also scheduling calendar events is much easier on the phone using integrated free/busy information with meeting attendees.

In the browser, Office 365 not only uses the intelligence from Delve to surface important content you’ve been working on, but you can also customize the App Launcher to highlight the important apps to you and be directly linked to Office 365 capabilities using the intelligent Tell Me engine from Office 365 Help.

While this is a glimpse of some the capabilities rolling out to Office via First Release and the Office Insider program, there is much more coming. Of course, to see all of this in action, you’ll want to check out today’s show.

—Jeremy Chapman

A lightning tour of the new Microsoft Tech Community

On today’s Microsoft Mechanics, community manager Anna Chu gives a lightning tour of the Microsoft Tech Community. If you haven’t seen or joined the community, it’s the single place where experts in the community can share, collaborate and learn about products and services across Microsoft.

In this demonstration, Anna shows how to sign up to become a member of the community, search for answers to questions, personalize your experience to just the products and services that you want to follow, post new conversations and reply to conversations, view member status and build your community status, and access popular event content within the community.

As you’ll see in this hands-on demonstration, the Microsoft Tech Community is the place to connect with peers, experts and Microsoft staff to follow and contribute to conversations across your favorite Microsoft products, services and events. We’ve recently added communities and spaces for Microsoft Teams and Surface Devices with more on the way.

To get started, sign up at the Microsoft Tech Community. You can also follow the community on Twitter for major news and promoted posts.

—Jeremy Chapman

Take an in-depth look at Microsoft Teams—now in preview

Microsoft Teams is the chat-based workspace in Office 365 that helps teams achieve more together. On the heels of today’s preview announcement, Microsoft Mechanics catches up with Dan Stevenson, principal group program manager for Microsoft Teams, who demonstrates step by step how to get started—from user experiences for chat and collaboration to what Office 365 administrators need to do to enable and manage Microsoft Teams.

Dan explains how Microsoft Teams brings together people, conversations, content and the tools teams need with a real focus on teams, and built around chat. The Microsoft Teams chat workspace integrates with all the familiar Office apps and capabilities, such as SharePoint document libraries, OneNote, Planner, Power BI, team calendar and more.

We walk through the process to launch Microsoft Teams in Office 365 in the browser, how to download the app and everything you can do within the apps for the desktop and mobile. Microsoft Teams works in the browser and apps are available for Windows, Mac, Android and iOS platforms. Dan also demonstrates the specifics on how to get Microsoft Teams running using the Office 365 admin center and the controls available for configuring and managing the experience for your organization. Check out today’s show to learn more.

—Jeremy Chapman

The Office Small Business Academy October webcast—“How to Keep Your Business Safe from Cyber Attacks”


For any entrepreneur, cybersecurity is a necessary part of doing business these days. But with an increase in phishing attacks, data breaches and ransomware, how secure is your business?

Join us for the next episode of Office Small Business Academy, “How to Keep Your Business Safe from Cyber Attacks,” airing October 25, 2016, at 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET. In this episode, learn the cybersecurity must-haves for your small business.

Watch this preview:

  • Senior fellow at the NYU Center for Cybersecurity and founder of Germano Law LLC, Judith Germano, establishes the criteria to determine your business’s risk and vulnerabilities and discusses how to minimize the reputational damage from a cyber-attack.
  • Founder and CEO of Kalki Consulting, Vikas Bhatia, provides an easy-to-implement cybersecurity plan and shares the one mistake small business owners need to avoid when it comes to security.

Plus, see a demonstration of Office 365 security features and how they can enhance small business security, limit risk and help defend against cyber-attacks.

Sign up for free!

For more information, visit the Office Small Business Academy home page.

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The Office Small Business Academy September webcast—“Up Your Marketing Game: Social Media Secrets”

Up Your Marketing Game 1

Social media is the ultimate equalizer in marketing. There are plenty of low- and no-cost ways to promote your business online. But how do you break through the noise? Find out when you register now for “Up Your Marketing Game: Social Media Secrets,” airing September 27 at 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET.

Watch this preview:

Join our featured guests to get tips for an easy, effective social strategy you can live with—and your business can’t live without.

  • Associate director of strategy and social media at Inc., Stephanie Meyers, has five things you can do today to improve your web presence, and the keys to turning online engagement into results.
  • Co-founder and chief experience officer of Loot Crate, Matthew Arevalo, will tell us how his company mastered the art of community building and conquered social customer service. He’ll also share the one thing you need to do to increase your word-of-mouth marketing online.
  • New this season, we’ll demonstrate tips and tricks from the show you can start using for your business today. In this episode, stylist and owner of The Constant Stylist, Constance Turman, shows us how she uses Office 365 to organize her content and keep up with her growing social presence.

Sign up for free!

For more information, visit the Office Small Business Academy home page.

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For additional insights, check out our free e-books:

Visio updates—advanced design collaboration, data-linked diagrams and cross-platform coverage

In the August Office 365 update yesterday, Kirk Koenigsbauer announced the pre-release of Visio Online and Visio on iPad to enable cross-platform consumption of Visio diagrams. Today, we take a hands-on look at both, as well as updates to Visio Pro for Office 365, from one-step data linking to diagrams, to advanced design and collaboration with the enhanced AutoCAD support.

The Visio team is committed to empowering individuals to create anything visually, teams to collaborate throughout the processes, and organizations to effectively communicate one version of the truth. The three scenarios in today’s Microsoft Mechanics demo highlight Visio’s enhancements as a collaboration platform.

For example, with the improved AutoCAD import, architects, engineers and the operations team can now work together on advanced design originating from AutoCAD 2013 files. Teams can also use Office 365 collaboration features and tools, such as inking and Skype for Business. With one-step data linking, end users and IT professionals can quickly bring their diagrams to life. This helps make sure data-linked diagrams are always up-to-date. You can also surface operational insights on top of real-world processes and plans—enabling your organization to get insights in more intuitive ways. You will be able to leverage these capabilities through the Visio Pro for Office 365 subscription. Give us your feedback and vote for upcoming features in UserVoice.

The data-linked diagrams become even more powerful when shared via Visio Online and Visio on iPad. You can get access to the Visio Online Preview through the Office 365 First Release program; and the Insider Program of Visio on iPad was also just rolled out. You can get started here to sign up. The Insider Program is on a first-come, first-served basis. If you don’t get an invitation after sign-up, check back periodically on Office 365 Public Roadmap for the general availability of Visio on iPad in the App Store. Learn more from our frequently asked questions.

Don’t forget to see all of this in action and hear what’s coming next by checking out today’s show.

—Stella Lin, product marketing manager for the Visio team

Yammer updates—from new user experiences to new IT controls

The Yammer team is continually delivering new capabilities for users and admins as well as deeper integration with Office 365. Today, we take a detailed hands-on look at updates to Yammer for enterprise social—from enhanced security and compliance to greater team productivity. Angus Florance, from the Yammer team, joins me to demonstrate new integrated experiences, including Office 365 Video and Delve. And for admins, we’ll show you new controls for merging networks, managing users and tracking usage.

If you’ve been using Yammer, you would have noticed constantly improving integration with Office 365. It not only shares common sign-in backed by Azure Active Directory and ability to get to Yammer experiences via the Office 365 app launcher, but Yammer also meets the same compliance standards as other Office 365 services.

Along with the work to update and integrate Yammer’s underpinnings, the team has also been advancing user experiences; it’s easier now to navigate conversations and move between unread messages across groups. Real-time notifications, which help you stay on top of activities and mobile experiences are now more robust. On the show, Angus highlights these points in a comprehensive demonstration then shows how external collaboration has been developed with clear indications of internal and external members—such as integrating Office experiences like co-authoring, and sharing content in Delve or Office 365 Video with your Yammer groups.

If you are an Office 365 administrator, there are now more controls. The previous global switch to either enable or disable Yammer is now more granular. You can enforce Office 365 sign-on and control access to Yammer services by user. There are also new controls to merge Yammer networks and new reports to track usage.

To see all of this and hear what’s coming next, check out today’s show.

See you soon,

Jeremy Chapman

Microsoft Planner hands-on demonstration

Earlier this month, we launched Microsoft Planner, which offers you a simple and visual way to organize teamwork. There are different ways we all get work done and until recently Microsoft has had solutions on two ends of the spectrum. Tools like Wunderlist or Outlook help manage your personal task lists, while Project or Project Online can be used to manage projects that require scheduling, prioritization, resource management, timesheets and integration with Line of Business systems. The middle ground is where Planner fits in, and it’s designed for structured team collaboration. For example, you can use Planner to manage events, office moves, user training or other team projects.

Today, we take a deeper look at Microsoft Planner—a new experience in Office 365 to organize work, manage and assign tasks and collaborate within your teams. Sajan Parihar and I go hands-on and show you how to use Planner—including integrated experiences across Office 365.

In the show, we demonstrate where to find Planner, how to get started with creating plans, assigning tasks and the things you can do while working through a plan. We walk through the integrated experiences with Office 365 Groups, board and chart views to visualize tasks and monitor progress—and finally what the team is building in the coming months.

To learn more and see this in action, watch the video and keep giving us your feedback at our UserVoice site.

See you soon,

Jeremy Chapman