One challenge businesses face is keeping employees on the same page. Often, one department takes action that adversely impacts another, without any warning. Constantly failing internal communication systems cause delays, conflict and financial loss.
For example, the production department prepares a customer’s all-white sports jersey order, without getting the message from the sales department that there’s been a colour change to orange. The result is wasted time, money and productivity – all due to poor communication.
A 2018 report by The Economist Intelligence Unit found poor communication can result in delayed or failed projects (44% of respondents), low morale (31%), missed performance goals (25%) and lost sales (18%).
A practical IT support service makes sure your technology infrastructure supports business goals and sets up reliable communication channels.
And when it comes to fostering team communication and collaboration, Microsoft Teams has a lot to offer businesses in multiple industries, from manufacturing to construction.
What is Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams was created as a central work hub that team members can use to communicate within and outside your organization. It integrates completely with the Microsoft 365 platform, as well as hundreds of other third-party applications. The key components of Microsoft Teams are:
- Team chat channels
- File sharing
- Integration with other business applications
- Voice and video conferencing
- Real-time file collaboration and authoring
- Workspace personalization
Works Across the AEC Industry Sector
Microsoft Teams is ideal for supporting your real-work teams, those groups that already work together each day in the AEC sector (Architects, Engineers & Construction).
For example, engineers could collaborate on the selection of new construction materials. Tensile properties, load-bearing data, compression tests – all this information can be stored on the team site.
Microsoft Teams is a great way for architects and designers to keep in touch. Nothing changes more than a digital blueprint or model, because there is little cost involved and no risk. Using Microsoft Teams makes design collaboration easy.
At the coalface, Microsoft Teams is a boon to construction managers, whether they are working onsite or from the office. The ease of being able to video conference with your entire team while knowing the video will be available later for review or catch up is a bonus for busy project managers.
Taking Advantage of Microsoft Teams
Collaboration and communication have always been important in a business, but it’s even more vital in today’s technology-driven environments that include both employees working remotely and clients based around the world.
Communication needs feature in Artibus Innovation’s Australian Construction, Plumbing and Services IRC's 2018 Skills Forecast. The report outlines the five most important skills needed over the subsequent three to five years:
- Managerial and leadership skills
- Language, literacy and numeracy
- Customer service and marketing
- Design mindset, thinking critically, system thinking and solving problems
- Technology use and application
Of these five, all but one – customer service and marketing – are about collaboration and communication.
The fact is, a connected team is an efficient team, and the following are six ways to harness the power of Microsoft Teams to keep your team connected.
Easy Video Meetings
Microsoft Teams integrates with Skype for Business so you can move from chat to video meeting in the click of a button. Because the interface allows you to invite those outside your organization – like a client or vendor – you can facilitate project meetings like a pro, including all parties on their own video conference right from a project-dedicated chat channel.
Video calls are also a great way to keep remote workers engaged and feeling connected to the rest of the team.
Reduce Time Spent Sharing and Finding Files
No more do you have to hope a file is small enough to email to someone on your team. Microsoft Teams eliminates the need to email files back and forth, you can easily drag and drop them into the chat and transfer them in seconds.
Teams also integrate with SharePoint, which automatically stores all shared files for easy reference. Microsoft 365’s strong search feature is active as well in Microsoft Teams, making it easy to find files by keyword.
All Your Programs in One Place
Microsoft Teams improves productivity by allowing you to launch all your favorite programs from a single interface, which saves considerable time throughout the week. Using their Tabs feature, you can add a launch tab for Microsoft 365 programs, multiple 3rdparty applications, internal Wikis, websites, and individual files.
For example, say that you have a sales channel for your sales team. Instead of them having to launch the CRM Sales Force separately, you could add a launch tab for the application right at the top of their channel, along with any sales reports or other often accessed files or websites.
Manage Alerts and Messages
The average person has much more incoming communications today than they did 30 years ago. Microsoft Teams provides users controls that can help manage messages and alerts so they’re not overwhelming or distracting.
You can use someone’s @name to alert them directly that you need their attention, and users can choose to have those @mentions shown at the top of their Microsoft Teams interface so they know what’s important automatically.
Other features like Do Not Disturb mode are helpful when you’re in the middle of a project and need to remove interruptions.
No more needing to wait until you get to your desktop computer to send or retrieve that file or get that important email communication. Microsoft Teams works across all device platforms from desktops to tablets to smartphones. So, users get the same interface and access to everything in Teams, like messages and files, no matter which device they’re using.
Learn More about Team Collaboration
NetCare provides a “technology success” approach to a variety of IT management and support needs for a business. If you’re looking for ways to improve team communication and collaboration, we can help you with a recommendation for the best platform that fits your distinct needs.
Contact us today to learn more at (02) 9114 9920 or through our contact form. And in the meantime, you may wish to download the Microsoft Teams Quick Start Guide or begin reviewing the free Microsoft Teams video training.