Microsoft Teams is a chat based workspace collaboration tool that is integrated with Office 365 apps and Windows 11. It allow users chat and make video calls like Zoom and Slack.
Key Teams Features
Let’s dive into some of the best features Microsoft Teams offers, which make is stand apart from its competitors:
First thing first. Teams offers great group chat and one to one chat interface with support for modern text formatting, priority flagging and file sharing.
Each Teams user gets a SharePoint online as default document library. It means that all the files you share will be automatically stored to your SharePoint folder. Don’t worry, it has very tightened security measures.
Audio Conferencing is yet another Teams feature lacking in its competitors. It allow users to call into meetings from their phone with support for up to 1000 attendees. This is very useful when you have limited internet connectivity, no access to computer and the meeting you want to attend is audio only.
This feature is for company wide meetings as it supports up to 10,000 users with useful features like note-taking, file uploading, in-meeting chat and scheduling aid.
Teams and Channels
Teams and channels in MS Teams allow users to organize conversation, group of people by topics, projects, subjects etc. Channels are basically where the chat happens and you can make it open for any of your team members.
How to Start Using Teams?
To get started with Teams, all you need is just to sign-up and then you can either use web based Teams or by downloading it to your computer.
- Sign up for Microsoft Teams for free. If you already have Microsoft account, you can use that to sign in.
- Once signed up, download Teams latest version for your operating system from official Microsoft website. Alternatively, you can use web version of Teams at by opening teams.microsoft.com in your browser
- Once you are signed in, you will will get link to share with anyone you want to invite to your team. That’s it.
As a part of onboarding process, you will get multiple popup messages that explains how Teams work, about its features, channels and chat.
Tips and Tricks
Now that you have signed up for Teams, you are one of the over 120 million active Teams users. So why not learn some of its tips to be pro Teams user.
Download Meeting Attendance Reports
Microsoft Teams allows organizers to download the meeting attendance report both during the meeting and after the meeting has ended.
This attendance report include details of each person like name, and the time they have joined or left the meeting.
To download the report, open the Calendar and then open the meeting whose attendance report you want to download. Click on “Details” and there, click on download (down-arrow) button next to Attendance.
Learn more: How to Get Meeting Attendance Reports in Microsoft Teams
Clear Teams Cache
If you are encountering abnormal errors and issues in Microsoft Teams such as incorrect time, unable to access files or blank pages, then it is highly recommended that you delete Teams cache.
Learn more: How to Clearing Microsoft Teams Cache
Set Status to Always Online
By default Teams automatically changes your status to “Away” when your computer is idle for about 10 minutes.
By first setting your PC settings to stop your PC from going to Sleep Mode and then installing Move Mouse app, you can achieve “Always Online” status in Microsoft Teams.
Learn more: How to Set Microsoft Teams Status to Always Online
Join Meeting without Account
No Microsoft Teams account? No worries, you can still join Teams meeting as guest even without need of Teams app installed on your computer.
However, some Teams features are not available to guests and a guest label is displayed for everyone near the guest’s name.
Learn more: How to Join Teams Meeting as Guest without Account
MS Teams is not just a collaboration software, but it has many other features such as secure file sharing across your organization which make it stands apart from its competitors.
Overall, it is great software and the best thing: it is totally FREE. Having said that, if you plan to use the mobile application, it is important to be aware of Teams data consumption (especially if you are on a capped mobile data plan).