Tech giants tend to inflate the importance of their latest product releases. However, I’ll give Microsoft its due and say their cloud based Office 365 platform generally lives up to the hype. In fact, if you have already switched or are considering the switch to Office 365, there are several powerful and easy-to-use features that will make you widely productive.
The reality is that the features in Office 365 aren’t simply Outlook and Word online. It’s truly become a collaborative experience that, with a little training, you’ll wonder how you lived without it.
Real-time Document Collaboration
Collaboration on any document can be a nightmare. It’s all too easy to spend hours on dozens of emails as team members chaotically change and rearrange words and ideas. Stop wasting your time!
Simply set up a meeting, share the document in Office 365, and have everyone click “Edit Online.” All changes will immediately be visible as they’re made. It’s an incredible time saver. In fact, one client saved 40 hours a week thanks to Office 365’s real-time document collaboration.
Previously, our client’s contracts were reviewed by seven people via email at different times, then one person managed changes, and the seven separately reviewed it for accuracy. Now, they schedule a call, everyone logs in, and they update and amend contracts quickly with real-time discussion and agreement.
No more lengthy exchanges for approval and no more hours wasted away waiting on one straggler. They collaborated in real-time and approved the result without much fuss.
Yammer: the “Private Facebook for your Firm”
Yammer is a more purposeful tool than its name might indicate. What it offers in Office 365 is the easy ability for your staff to communicate through a feature like Facebook messenger rather than sending emails.
Want an example? Let’s take your sales group, for instance. You want new ideas for building revenue, but don’t want to get pelted by an email storm once everyone clicks “Reply All.” Yammer allows you to create a group chat thread and ask for comments. It’s more conversational, there’s less pressure, and you’ll have an easy-to-find place to review all the comments.
Yammer even has a security feature where you can limit confidential conversations to certain users. But it doesn’t always have to be serious. When you’re feeling like having some fun, you can open chat threads to everybody as you share cat pictures or throw yourself a Gif party.
Delve: Document Searches Simplified
Have you ever used a tool and then wondered how you lived without it? That’s Office 365’s Delve feature. In a nutshell, it shows you personalized content from across your Office 365 account. But in application it’s a rapid, outside-the-box way for increasing productivity.
Delve allows you to quickly see all documents you have recently worked on and any documents relevant to your ongoing projects. You don’t even have to remember who wrote a given document or where it is stored. All you need to do is type in a colleague’s name and you can see their projects and the projects trending around them. As basically a “Recent Documents” feature on steroids, Delve makes it much easier to see the big picture and propel projects to the next level.
The best part about all of these features is that Microsoft allows you to enable or disable features based on what you want each employee to have. Customization is built into the different Office 365 plans. If you want further help navigating the features in Office 365 or finding what solution is best for you, contact KME Systems. We are well-versed in countless productivity tools and we’ll help you find the solutions that work best for you.