Technology

3 steps to make Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams has come a long way since it first entered our daily workspace with Microsoft Consulting firm. Microsoft has been remarkably good at responding to the various requests and building the platform in an agile way, while ensuring that the various features and functions added do not lead to Teams clutter.

However, over the years, I’ve noted several missed opportunities to get Microsoft Teams adopted by a wider audience. Microsoft Teams is clearly more robust than competing apps like Zoom. Yet Zoom is much more widespread. What explains this paradox?

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First of all, it seems to me that Zoom is doing everything to make it easier for people who are not in their familiar ecosystem to get started, unlike Microsoft. If Microsoft wants to conquer the mainstream consumer market as well as it has conquered the enterprise market, it must make Teams more accessible.

Since working from home isn’t going away any time soon, and once we get back to the office, companies will likely continue to allow working from home on some terms, now is a great time to expand the reach of Teams. Different measures would allow Microsoft to strengthen the appeal of Teams for small businesses, startups, or even individuals. Here are a few.

Facilitate access to the application

First of all, we must remove certain barriers to access to Microsoft Teams. Currently, to be able to access Microsoft Teams, the standard user must manually register, have a Microsoft account and follow a sign-in procedure. For a user such as a parent wishing to log in to control a student’s homework, having to create an account can seem unnecessarily complicated.

For comparison, just clicking “Sign in” on the Zoom website will be presented. With different SSO authentication options via Google or Facebook. I don’t mean that Microsoft should accept authentication using a Google account. But that there should be a “two-click solution” in place that allows users to access the interface of Teams and start a meeting (even without a Microsoft account).

Facilitate access to meetings

I have noticed that users particularly appreciate the simplicity of the codes used in Zoom. Once a user has created a meeting, any other user can join by entering a simple eight-digit code. There are security concerns, of course, but the appeal to users of being able to join a meeting by simply “dial a number” should not be underestimated.

Microsoft Teams already provides the ability to invite users through a “Meeting ID”. If Microsoft made this code a central part of meeting access to streamline the process, the user experience would be comparable to that in Zoom. Also, having a place to enter this code directly on the Microsoft Teams website would be a big plus!

Facilitate the organization of meetings

This aspect is one of the undeniable strengths of Zoom, but I believe that Microsoft can easily do better in this area. In Zoom, after creating an account and logging in, any user can immediately create meetings.

Tremendous! However, meetings with three or more participants are limited to 40 minutes. Disappointment!

This is where Microsoft has a card to play and can beat Zoom at its own game, offering the same terms, but setting the limit at five people. Or, better yet, by imposing no limit  on the first meeting! This simple measure alone could have the effect of a bomb and allow Microsoft to steal the show at Zoom. There is no doubt that Microsoft Teams is the leading collaboration platform in professional circles, but if Microsoft wants to be as attractive to the general public as its competitors are, some changes are necessary. Do you have any other ideas on how Teams could capture the interest of the general public? Let them know in the comments below!

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