Microsoft is launching a bunch of new modern workplace features for Office 365 and Microsoft 365 this week. The company is launching a free version of Teams today, as well as a number of upgrades to Office 365 and Microsoft 365.
Office 365’s Workplace Analytics feature is getting upgraded to include some new intelligent features that help teams and organizations be more productive. The service now includes a couple of “solutions” that help team leaders identify issues with things like productivity and collaboration, apply solutions and track the effectiveness of the solution. Workplace Analytics Solutions connects with MyAnalytics to help individuals in teams track their progress and see how they are performing with the solution that has been suggested by their team leader. All of this uses data from meetings in Office 365, and other data from Microsoft Graph to intelligently help teams be more productive.
Microsoft is also releasing a new feature, dubbed Nudges, for MyAnalytics in Office 365 that will help individuals be more productive, manage their time better, and maintain a healthy work/life balance. Nudges in Outlook will essentially surface tips for users right in Outlook that will help them make better use of time. For example, it could suggest you to reserve some time for focused work during a week full of meetings when you are about to confirm a meeting, or when you have some tasks left to do with a co-worker, etc. It’s a pretty clever use of the existing usage data in Office 365, rolling out to MyAnalytics users over this summer.
And lastly, Microsoft’s launching a brand new service for Microsoft 365 users that will allow them to broadcast live events within their organization. The new feature, available through Microsoft Teams, Yammer, and Stream, will let anyone within an organization create a live event. The events can be viewed in real-time, or on-demand. It also includes a couple of intelligent features like a speaker timeline that uses facial detection to identify who is talking during the different parts of the event, a speech-to-text transcription feature that automatically generates a transcription and also allows for transcription search, as well as closed captions.
That’s not all — organizations wanting to take things a step further can use an external encoder for their broadcasts, and other features that allow for studio-quality production. or While all of this seems pretty useful, it won’t be necessary for most small-sized businesses using Microsoft 365. Live events within larger organizations make a lot more sense, so larger businesses will definitely find this useful.
Microsoft’s new modern workplace features are part of a much larger push from the software giant. Productivity has not only been the focus of Office 365 and Microsoft 365 this year, as Microsoft is pushing productivity in other products like Windows 10. That’s not all — features like Solutions in Workplace analytics are built to tackle productivity and motivation head-on, in more of a human-level that’s undoubtedly going to be way more effective than a software feature that simply blocks out distraction.