I would like to introduce you to Kathrin. Kathrin works in a medium-sized company called Spectrum Inc and has a computer department that has “booked a plan” at Microsoft based on current condi­tions and infor­mation researched on the internet.

Now at Kathrin’s workplace there is Teams installed and it starts every time the PC is powered up. She has also received some meeting requests, made ad hoc video calls and seen that new teams are obviously forming at the left edge of the screen — almost every day the list grows. There is also talk of channels.

Somehow, she finds the user interface confusing. Finally, she waited for an infor­mation and at some point asked her colleague where it would stay. He then said “I sent you that in the team.” By the time she found it, the info had already lapsed. So now she had two places where infor­mation was stored on the same subject. This annoyed her, because Teams should help organize infor­mation and find content every­where. But somehow it didn’t work.

What Kathrin has already stated: If the network strikes, nothing works. Teams notizes: They are offline. Rien ne va plus, finito, game over. No content, no chats, no channels.

So after Kathrin has gained her first experi­ences, she would really like a training. Unfor­tu­nately, there was only one non-binding infor­mation from the computer. “The appli­cation is intuitive” — that didn’t really help. Good — then just self-study in the home office.

Join Kathrin on her journey through Teams and learn step by step with her!

The secret: Slash!

Kathrin’s colleague Alfred has been working with Microsoft Teams for a long time and has become an in-house insider tip. He always tells everyone who has questions about Teams: Did you ask the slash? He always smiles meaning­fully. When she first heard this answer, she looked at him in disbelief: “The slash?” Alfred said: “Enter the slash at the top of the search box. Then you know what I mean. ”

Said, done. The result is surprising:

Search in Teams

Even if Kathrin can’t quite assign every­thing exactly at the moment, this tip helps enormously in struc­turing the infor­mation managed by teams.

In addition to this tip, Alfred also provided Kathrin with a small documen­tation on how to get into Teams and clarify the basic terms, which she likes to share below:

The Access: Teams Versions

Teams is an online appli­cation. This means that all content is in the cloud, i.e. in Microsoft 365. There is a desktop client, but it is useless without cloud access.
The current desktop version and the web login can be found under https://teams.microsoft.com/

The idea of integration

Teams is often used for chat and video commu­ni­cation. However, the range of services is completely different that these two functions only exploit a fraction of the capabil­ities. The Team idea is that a variety of functions can be provided or integrated under a common roof, so that Teams workspaces can be optimally designed according to the task to be solved. External appli­ca­tions can also be integrated, but users has no longer to log on. The respective Teams workspace appear as one.

The user interface

The user interface in the main window (hereinafter 4) differs depending on the appli­cation selected.

  • App Navigation — The app navigation at the left edge of the screen contains programs and modules. These are compiled by the user or specified by the administrator.
  • The Teams View — Shows the teams and channels. Microsoft Teams provides a two-tier hierarchy. The layer marked with a small square is the team, the under­lying layers are the channels.
  • Horizontal navigation — This navigation provides the function­ality that techno­log­i­cally supports the team’s work. These menu items can be expanded similar to app navigation (1) and restricted to certain items (for example, a list).
  • The Workspace — Workspace is the main view of Teams. Here the contents of the selected area / menu items are displayed. These are, for example, the chat window or the video view of the partic­i­pants in video calls, contacts or the overview of items in linked appli­ca­tions. This view typically collects, changes, or deletes data.
  • Search bar / Program settings — In the search box, the full-text search is started in Teams. All content that Teams find about the captured search term is displayed. Very useful here is the slash (/). When recording, a menu of the available search areas opens (see history above).