The Ultimate Microsoft Teams Checklist
Reading Time: 5 minutes
Table Of Contents
Are you the owner of a Team in Microsoft Teams? If so, then we’ve put together this Microsoft Teams checklist just for you. Indeed, being a Team owner in Microsoft Teams is a big responsibility. There are a lot of moving pieces involved. Working on Microsoft Teams can take some getting used to, especially if you’re already accustomed to working with a different collaboration tool, such as Slack for instance.
If you are new to Microsoft Teams, this checklist should provide you with new information. If you are considering switching to this collaboration tool, this checklist is also for you. In order to optimally use this software, you will need to be familiar with the useful features and with recommended security protocol. This Microsoft Teams Checklist will break down everything you need to know to use this application to improve your teams’ performance.
Determine A Team Structure
First of all, you will need to determine or observe how teams are put together in your organization. If the Team that you’re setting up is going to be working together on a regular basis, this is typically called an Organization-Based Team.
An example of an organization-based team is a customer service team that shares the work of responding to customer requests or feedback. This Organization-Based Team can have its own Microsoft Team in place to deal with all of its business.
On the other hand, a Function-Based Team is usually created for a specific project. For this type of Team, Microsoft Teams will be very helpful to consolidate their project workflow. For example, a web-service provider that works in Microsoft Teams could create a channel for each customer so everything involving that customer can be handled in one place. In a sense, Teams in this software are no different than “channels” on Slack.
Follow A Team Owner Checklist
This Microsoft Teams checklist is made specifically for the team owner. The team owner is usually also the team manager. Nevertheless, it could also just be an employee with managerial responsibilities. Nevertheless, the Team owner has the responsibility of keeping his team in check. However, it’s also useful for the owner to have his own checklist to follow, to ensure that nothing is left unchecked.
For every type of team, there is a specific set of managerial responsibilities. For an organization-based Team, owners should make sure that regularly viewed documents are easily accessible. These regularly viewed documents could be the various company policies, important forms for employees, process documents, etc. Keeping all important team documents in one place saves time for all team members, who do not need to search for documents in multiple locations. Organizing tabs in Microsoft Teams is a good way to keep things organized and therefore easy to find.
Building A Virtual Team
When setting up a virtual team, determine who will have what role in Microsoft Teams. Even for a team that has worked together in person in the past, a new virtual dynamic could be established.
The first defining element of any team is its structure. As we just saw, this structure can be organizational or functional. The second defining element is the name.
The name of a Team should be specific to what it’s going to be used for, or what the members will be working on. It might be too broad to name a Team put together to execute a specific task, such as implementing a new HR tool, “Implementation Team”.
Give the team a specific name, such as “New HR Solution Implementation” Team. That would already be much better and more specific.
The next action-item to check off of your Microsoft Teams Checklist, is to determine who will be uploading or updating the documents and folders in Microsoft Teams. Then, determine who will organize and take notes during Team meet-ups. Finally, determine who will need to contribute what elements to the project, in person and online.
Creating a Microsoft Teams-Centered Culture
To ensure the proper use of Microsoft Teams, it’s important to build a culture around having all internal communications occur on the application. In fact, to ensure effective data management, it’s important to create a Microsoft Teams-centered culture.
Therefore, a Microsoft Teams checklist needs to include a transition plan to proactively encourage proper data management. Luckily, the software is integrated with Outlook and which facilitates the transition. A project-related conversation started by email can easily be sent to the entire Team that’s set to work on it.
It’s important to name some key representatives who will champion a Microsoft Teams-centered culture. The Team owner and or another champion should also ensure that the Teams are serving their purpose. A monthly review is recommended, to ensure that the conversations that are being held in Teams are really helping to advance the work.
It should also be on any owner’s Microsoft Teams checklist to gather feedback from their teams on a regular basis.
Microsoft Teams & Information Security
Once you have established a solid Team, the next item on the Microsoft Teams checklist is security.
Hence, an owner should determine in advance what will be discussed with a Team. He or she can also determine who should have access to the conversation. Should the content be available only to certain members?
As a matter of fact, a common best practice is to take note of the purpose of each Team. Then, it may also be helpful to take note of all possible discussions that could occur in this Team, on the platform. This exercise helps to think about which documents might be useful to the team in their workflow or discussions.
For instance, a project team might need easy access to the main project schedule, or to the project budget. However, maybe certain more junior employees do not need access to the budget, and therefore, certain folders need to be placed elsewhere.
Disbanding or Changing Teams
Indeed, it is important to remember that everyone invited to join a Team will have access to all the files stored in that Team by default. Hence, it’s important to think ahead and to place the right documents in the right tabs. Team owners are responsible for ensuring that all files are where they are supposed to be.
A Team owner also controls who is a member of the Team. For teams that are dismantling or changing, add the following key items to your Microsoft Teams checklist.
First of all, when a team built around a project dismantles, prune the Team to ensure that you only have the right number of people on board.
Secondly, if there are changes to a functional team, make sure that everyone has access to the documents. Team members should have access to all of the conversations that are relevant to them.
A Few Useful Tools For Your Checklist
In addition to the above items to keep in mind when overseeing a Team, owners have access to a few great tools. Every owner or manager should add these tools to his or her Microsoft Teams checklist, and try them out as soon as possible.
First of all, it’s easier than ever to send out an email to a large group. With the distribution email address function, every Group created on Teams has its own email address. Hence, sending an email to an entire group is a breeze.
Secondly, when comes time to schedule meetings with all the members of a Team, it’s super simple to find the right time with the Group Calendar on Microsoft Teams.
Third of all, Microsoft Teams offers a Planner board. This is a perfect place to pin memos and tasks. You could even put a Microsoft Teams checklist right on this tool, to make sure you take advantage of the tips and tricks from this article.
Last but not least, a great feature of Microsoft Teams is that it offers a SharePoint team site. This allows a team to host and organize content in a highly efficient and fully shareable way.
In a nutshell, we encourage you to make the most of your Microsoft Teams experience. Go ahead and test things out to see what works best for your Team.
Kristina recently left behind fast-paced life of Human Resource Business Consulting to freelance as a Content Writer. A regular Vacation Tracker contributor, she can be found working remotely from her home in Montreal, usually while eating a variety of snacks.