Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Using Learning Paths to help with your Microsoft Teams Adoption

Even though Microsoft Teams is already more than four years old, and many organisations have been using it for much of this period, adoption is a topic that should always be in focus. While there is a lot to be gained from using Microsoft Teams for companies of all sizes, from SMEs with only a handful of people to very large MNCs with tens of thousands across the globe, most value is achieved if most of these people start using Microsoft Teams in ways that helps them to improve their daily work. This is where a properly planned adoption comes in, which can help you to achieve a higher usage of Teams generally as well as a more effective usage of Teams specifically.

As part of the adoption planning, you should identify the different persona within your company. Not everyone is expected to use Microsoft Teams the same way, as some people, such as customer service representatives or sales staff, are likely to be using the audio-conferencing functionality a lot more than others, whereas for example the marketing team is more likely to use Teams as a central location to store relevant materials and plan marketing campaigns. Through this identification of different people with different needs, you establish how these people are likely going to use Microsoft Teams, and you can verify with them in which ways their daily work could be improved.

With this information, you can then prepare learning paths for each identified persona. A learning path is a set of selected content meant for a specific group of people to help them get better at what they are doing and perform their role in a more efficient manner. It should include specific guidance for the identified tasks and activities that the corresponding persona is working on and show how Microsoft Teams can be leveraged as part of this. This content can include a variety of materials: you could include an instructional video that showcases how to use Teams for specific tasks; a PowerPoint deck (or a PDF) with information on various processes and the different systems involved; links to sites with further resources; contact persons if there are any more detailed questions; and maybe even information on other learning paths.

Coming back to the example of the customer service representative, they are usually having a lot of calls with customers through the Teams audio conferencing services. You might even consider procuring dedicated devices for them, such as Teams certified headsets, desk phones, or even Teams displays, to improve their calling experience. As part of the learning path, you would then provide specific information on how to use these devices with Teams and share best practices that have been established as part of your initial discussions during the persona identification phase. Through this learning path, you can ensure that any new joiners are well equipped to learn how they can do their work in an effective manner, and you can also make sure that long term employees who may not have used Teams often get to understand the benefits of it.

In the same manner, you could set up a learning path for anyone hosting virtual events – something that is not specific to a single role, but often done by people in various parts of the business, including marketing managers, executive assistants, talent acquisition leads, and more. Within this learning path, you can provide an overview of the different meeting capabilities available in Microsoft Teams and for which purposes they can be used, include any company-specific processes to follow (such as completing a form to be allowed to host a public Live Event), and maybe even share a company-internal community where people with similar can exchange their knowledge and experiences (“How do we best run a live event for our customers?”, “Running town-hall events with the local CEO”).

Learning path resources should be a combination of existing resources that are publicly available and company-specific content that is targeted for your organisation. Through the publicly available resources, such as Microsoft Learn, you reuse existing information that is already easily consumable, and contains important general information. By creating your own internal resources, you cover everything that is specific to your company: any policies and processes to follow, people to contact if there are any further questions, and more.

One other very valuable resource that can and should be used is the Microsoft Adoption site. Besides providing content for various other Microsoft 365 products, it also contains valuable guidance for Microsoft Teams, including a playbook for running virtual events, industry & role specific playbooks, detailed guidance on meetings and webinars in Microsoft Teams, and more.



Rene Modery is a Microsoft Office Apps & Services MVP, working as APAC Collaboration & Productivity Tools Project Manager in Singapore.

For more than 15 years, Rene has lived and worked in Europe and Asia Pacific. The main focus of his work lies on Microsoft and the Power Platform, with occasional excursions into Azure. He is generally interested in helping companies get more value out of their Microsoft 365 and cloud investments. For his contributions to the Microsoft community, he has been awarded Microsoft MVP for Office 365 in 2012 and 2013. Rene Modery – Microsoft Office Apps & Services MVP | Singapore

Posted at https://sl.advdat.com/3D30VHo