March was a busy month for Office 365. There were 33 new additions to the Office 365 roadmap with a heavy focus on Outlook. The March 2018 Office 365 updates also included additions related to SharePoint, Yammer, Teams, Word and OneDrive for Business as well. Here is the breakdown of additions:
OneDrive for Business
Here are the highlights that we feel will have the biggest impact:
Microsoft Bookings will allow online payments from customers. Bookings is an application that allows you to book appointments with your customers. There are numerous payment collection options, but having the ability to directly integrate this with Bookings, Dynamics CRM, Planner and SharePoint has just about endless uses. We hope this feature really takes off and evolves in 2018.
Outside Email to Groups
Most organizations have Exchange groups. Microsoft is now making it easier to allow outside people to email those groups. Some of the groups within Office 365 have this capability already and we are hoping Microsoft takes it a step further in exposing this feature and adding it to other groups.
Overall Office 365 Branding
We love when new branding features are added or even changed. It keeps things fresh and modern. No one like staring at the same thing day in and day out and this will continue to give companies flexibility in making Office 365 their own.
Click here to read about adding branding to Office 365.
Teams & Skype Admin Centers
Teams especially is the “new kid on the block” in terms of Office 365 and the impact it may have. Microsoft is investing heavily in Teams and many companies are biting at the bit to adopt a broader Teams strategy. The Teams Admin Center will be interesting to see what options are truly available for this service. The Skype Admin Center is a welcome feature as well especially from an audit and compliance perspective. Conversations need to have policies around them, just like emails for many companies and this will be the place to handle that.
Bill Payment Reminders in Outlook
Many mobile email clients have this feature and Outlook is catching up, but it is a welcome addition to get more people using Outlook in the future.
Modern Theme to Classic SharePoint Site
This is a love/hate feature for us. We were wrapping up doing this as an internal project ourselves, but we are happy to see Microsoft is taking steps to address this. The modern theme is lacking feature compared to the classic theme and vice versa. To get the best of both worlds, users must switch between the two and it is well documented how different the two themes look. This feature sounds like it will make the classic theme look like the modern theme at least on the surface to give a unified user experience.
Want to read about SharePoint updates from February? Click Here.
Why this hasn’t been around for the last 25+ years, who knows. Have you ever been BCCed on an email and then responded to it when you really shouldn’t have? There will now be a warning to let you know you are about to do just that.
Real Aloud Emails
Take your productivity to the next level. Yes, this is a huge win for visually impaired people, but think Cortana + Outlook and the ability to skip, read emails out loud and delete emails while just talking to your device.
LinkedIn within Word
Many people have a ton of their job information in LinkedIn. This information is now going to get fed into Microsoft Word to build your resume for you. Better synchronization of information and less double entry is always a big win!
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