The world of work is more distributed than ever, with increasing numbers of people working remotely. Even with some people returning to brick-and-mortar office spaces as COVID-19 infection rates begin to subside, business leaders are continuing to apply the lessons learned about collaboration at a distance to ensure that employees are connected and communicating in ways that support productivity.
Robust digital technologies that make communication, collaboration and document sharing a breeze are revolutionizing how people work across the world. The result is employees who are more empowered to share ideas and information, and work collaboratively to innovate, ultimately boosting their companies’ bottom lines.
Among those that companies increasingly turn to are two Microsoft products: Yammer and Teams.
What is Yammer?
Yammer is an enterprise social networking platform that allows employees within organizations to communicate effortlessly. Because it feels more like a social network than an enterprise solution, adoption tends to be an easy task. Yammer is great for sending off quick questions and comments, eliminating the need to open an email platform, enter a user’s email address and subject line, and compose a more traditional message. Among Yammer’s features are
- A home feed that is specific to the user, with only messages of communities the user is following
- The ability to join communities, such as for specific projects or departments
- Search functionality to make locating people, files and conversations fast and easy
- The ability to react to posts, as well as respond to and share others’ posts
- People tagging to ensure the right person sees the information intended for them
- The ability to attach files, including photos and videos, to posts
- Live virtual event hosting and recording
- The ability to create and disseminate polls to request feedback
With an easy-to-use, streamlined interface, Yammer serves as a gathering place for people across an organization, helping them feel more connected and engaged as well as facilitating efficient communication.
What is Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams is a digital workplace that makes being part of a work team easy, regardless of where individual team members are physically located. Teams’ functionality is two-fold: It facilitates both communication and collaboration.
In terms of communication, Teams offers employees the ability to
- Chat with individuals and teams
- Make and receive calls with or without a video component
- Conduct video conferencing group calls with screen-sharing capabilities
In this way, Teams extends many of the features of other enterprise social media platforms to any employee who already has Microsoft Office 365 installed.
Teams also lets you perform keyword searches of past chats, so that finding the information you need is quick and easy, and does not necessitate taking up others’ time if you can’t recall something important they said about a project or task.
Plus, tagging helps to ensure that the right people are seeing the information meant for them. Tagging someone not only notifies them within Teams that a coworker needs their attention, but it also triggers email notifications to ensure that messages are being read.
As far as collaboration goes, Teams allows users to
- Upload and link to files stored in a company intranet application
- Open and edit files created with Microsoft Office products within Teams, eliminating the need for version control
- Work on the same file with other users at the same time
- Create project-specific or department-specific work groups, mimicking the brick-and-mortar practice of putting employees who work most closely together in physical proximity to each other
How does Yammer work with Teams?
While there is some overlap in functionality between Yammer and Teams, Microsoft actually created Teams to work in complete synergy with Yammer. While Yammer is a bit like standing around the water cooler and casually exchanging information with colleagues, Teams is like walking into the conference room next to that water cooler ready to get serious about the work ahead, ensuring that everyone understands their role and has the information they need to do their jobs well.
What’s more, Yammer communities are viewable within Teams using the Communities app. Communities let you communicate with colleagues across the organization and cultivate those professional relationships with ease. Simply pin the Communities app to Teams, and it appears on the left-hand side of the page, allowing users to watch live events, send off questions to be answered immediately, stay abreast of important announcements and more — all within Teams. Yammer in Teams is the water cooler and the conference room, all in one!
Metrics should be considered an essential component of any distributed workflow. Understanding how employees are using the communication and collaboration tools at their disposal ensures that you know how to help them get the most out of those tools.
That’s where Tryane analytics comes in, giving companies the ability to see
- Which news are the most read and which ones trigger the most engagement
- How employees are communicating in Yammer and Teams, and which employee groups are making better use of the platforms
- Which mediums — text, video or something else — are most effective for creating engagement
- Which Teams are active or inactive, and where guest permissions may need to be revoked to ensure data security
- How groups across the organization communicate about the organization to ensure that everyone who works at the company is also a goodwill ambassador of the brand
Tryane lets you peek under the hood to gain a deep sense of how communication and collaboration happen or don’t happen in Yammer and Teams, so you can step in as needed to facilitate these important functions. How Microsoft Yammer works with Teams can help you foster greater synergy among employees, but knowing the inner workings of how those synergies occur allows you to make the most of them. Contact Tryane today to learn how we can help you boost productivity across your organization.