CBT Nuggets trainer Simona Millham recently completed her new Microsoft Teams course, giving you a practical overview of Microsoft’s chat-based collaboration hub. Microsoft Teams is a critical collaboration tool that enables Office 365 users and administrators with a whole new level of interaction in the course of their work. Simona’s new course is the perfect complement to Microsoft Office 365 courses and certification for administrators, or to Microsoft Office productivity courses for end users.
In this 12-video course, Simona walks you through typical use cases for Microsoft Teams and answers some of the most common (and challenging) questions to help learners get more out of Microsoft’s amazing product. Simona takes on topics including creating and working with Teams, channels and collaboration, private chats, working with wikis, and bots.
We asked Simona about her course and how you can get more out of your CBT Nuggets Learning Experience.
Q: Why should companies train their teams on Microsoft Teams and productivity software? What value do those skills bring to the workplace? The clue’s in the question! Productivity gains! Although it’s hard to put an actual monetary value on improvements in productivity, I think Microsoft Teams does a great job of bringing together all the functionality a group of people needs to work together effectively.
Q: From a learner perspective, what did you keep in mind when creating this course? I assumed that the learner was probably familiar with other Office 365 components (Skype for Business, SharePoint, OneDrive, etc.), so I wanted to be sure to highlight the integration (and overlaps!) with these other technologies.
Q: A lot of our learners will be responsible for administering organizational licenses and supporting Microsoft products. What should they keep in mind about the end users who use these Microsoft products? Microsoft Teams is enabled by default in most of the Office 365 plans, so be warned that users might discover it by themselves and start using it!
Q: What was your favorite Nugget to create in this course? Ooh, the “Tabs, Tabs and More Tabs!” Nugget! I think it’s brilliant the way you can have information from other applications available at your fingertips in Microsoft Teams.
Q: What’s the most important thing you hope learners take away from this course? Pick the tools that best suit the way your organization works, and provide guidance to end users about which tool to use, and when. Smaller organizations might not need to use both Yammer and Teams, for example.
Q: Many IT pros talk about needing to improve their soft skills in order to advance their careers. What soft skills do you think are most important for IT pros? How can they work to improve on those soft skills? I think being able to talk in terms of business value, rather than just technology. For example, with Teams, it’s all very well it being available to users, but IT pros will be able to drive better adoption if they help business units understand how it can improve the way they work. Sometimes techies enjoy technology just for the sake of technology, whereas the average user just wants it to make their life easier!
Q: Some industry insiders believe that Microsoft is slowing trying to take over the world, now that they have decided to embrace Linux and open source technologies, workplace collaboration software, and even real-time chat functionality. But what do you think Microsoft still needs in order to complete its global domination? I’m always amazed at the innovation that continues to come out of Microsoft, but I wish they hadn’t let their attempt at the mobile phone market fade away. It’s hard to take on iOS and Android, but I really do think that the Windows Phone could have found a place in the corporate market, and also for end users (like my mum!) who want a good value smartphone.
Q: Generally, people either love or hate Microsoft. Rarely do we find end users (or IT pros) who are content to be ambivalent about Microsoft and its products. Why do you suppose people hate Microsoft so much? And why do you love it? You’re right, there are some people who really do hate Microsoft! I think the fact that Microsoft was so dominant in the market through the 90s and beyond doesn’t help; nobody likes a monopoly. And I know that the update model in Windows 10 has caused some controversy! But I love Microsoft products for the functionality they provide to the end user. Microsoft Office takes some beating! Competing products can’t come close to the functionality that Word, Excel, and Outlook offer… and I’m cursing as I type this in Google Mail!
Q: What do you think are the most exciting advances Microsoft has made with its productivity products in the past five or so years? It’s got to be Office 365. All those different services that just keep on evolving; Power BI is a great example. And I think that the model of regular updates allows for that continuous innovation to get straight into the hands of the end user, rather than the organization having to make a strategic business decision every five years about whether there is value in upgrading.