A changing landscape…
There is no doubt that remote working has changed dramatically over the last 12 months and we have learned a lot about adapting and transforming the ways we communicate and collaborate while working away from the office.
According to research conducted for Microsoft’s Work Trend Index, over 80 percent of managers say they expect more flexible work-from-home policies post-pandemic and more than 70 percent of employees say they expect to take advantage of them.
Microsoft has developed new functionality to allow people to work smarter and achieve more when in Teams meetings or webinars.
Some of the new features include:
Available now in Meetings:
Take control with confidence and deliver a more interactive and inclusive experience for your audience. Host meetings with a single view of your notes, slides, meeting chat and participants. Attendees can personalise their experience by navigating the content at their own pace or using the screen reader to digest content. This helps people with vision disabilities to follow along with the presentation more easily.
New functionality with a little fun – all attendees can now use emojis to react during a meeting. This helps promote inclusivity in meetings and allows everyone to participate when they cannot talk on the call. It keeps things upbeat and interactive.
Coming soon in Meetings:
Presenter mode really steps-up the production level of your presentations as it customises how your video feed and content appear to your audience. There are three modes to choose from:
- Standout – shows your video feed as a silhouette in front of the shared content
- Reporter – places content above your shoulder as a visual aid like they do on the news
- Side-by-side – displays your video feed video feed next to your content
These allow you to choose the style that most suits your presentation and gives your audience the best experience.
Coming soon, Dynamic View intelligently arranges the elements of your meeting giving optimal viewing for everyone. No more views of tiny screens and people you can’t see and no more wondering who is speaking! As people join, speak or start a presentation, Teams auto-adjusts and personalises your layout making everything visible and clear.
Staying on the theme of viewing and also coming soon, View Switcher allows you to control how you see meeting content. Together Mode lets you interact naturally with your colleagues and Gallery at Top places all video feeds at the top of your meeting window, making it easier to have more natural eye contact with others. The Focus feature hides all video feeds and puts the attention on the shared content and finally, using Full Screen helps remove other desktop distractions. Your audience is fully engaged and concentrating on the presentation content.
New functionality in Webinars delivers an even more comprehensive service, especially for those organising big meetings. Currently in Teams, with over 250 attendees you need to use a live meeting option – now we have Webinars! Real-time, no time lags, your audience can be more interactive and they are as easy to set up as meetings are in Teams. The webinar function allows you to arrange webinars for up to 20,000 people!
Available now - not only can you set-up your own webinars and meetings – you can do it for 1,000 person events. This includes rich presentation options, live reactions and moderation controls to disable chat, audio and videos for attendees.
20,000-person view-only broadcasts
If your webinar grows to over 1,000 attendees, Teams will seamlessly scale to manage a 10,000-person view-only broadcast. It includes moderation controls for the host to automatically disable attendees’ audio and video so there are no accidental presentation interruptions. In current times of remote working, you can take advantage of even larger, 20,000-person broadcasts until the end of 2021.
Coming soon in Webinars
For webinar organisers, there’s some great new features to help you manage events - including event registration. You can quickly and easily create an event registration page and customise it to your webinar needs by adding customised questions for attendees. Additionally, a live meeting URL can be emailed to internal and external guests.
When your webinar has finished, as the organiser, you can use reporting to understand attendee participation – review who attended, who didn’t, how long people stayed etc. Downloading an attendee report gives you data to use in custom event reports. This means you can follow-up with people who didn’t attend and ensure they get any necessary information from the event.
Working from home has become part of our working routine and we’re challenging the ways that let us work the way we want to. Enhancing how we work remotely with new Meetings and Webinar functionality in Microsoft Teams gives us flexibility and control to work in a way that suits us.