Microsoft Teams Tips And Tricks That Will Help Save Your Time In 2021
In the last two years, the adoption of online collaborative platforms has increased more than it ever has. As a global pandemic hit organizations across the globe, professionals were trapped in their homes, and businesses had to function virtually. Collaborative platforms helped organizations continue with their business processes through a virtual workspace. They allowed employees to interact and collaborate with their peers on digital platforms without affecting their work.
Microsoft Teams has been one of the key platforms to have received a significant boost in adoption over the last two years. As of July 2021, the company announced 250 million active monthly users with 80 million monthly active Teams Phone users. This implies that the platform of MS Teams has helped several professionals across the board carry on with their business processes without the need for a physical workspace.
Now that the COVID-19 situation is under control and organizations are getting back to normal, companies and their employees still prefer working on MS Teams. This can be inferred from the steady increase in the number of active users on the platform.
Microsoft Teams is a fairly convenient collaborative platform that provides its users with various tools and features. From Channels and Group Chats to seamless video and audio calls, MS Teams helps you create a virtual replica of your organization on the screens of your digital devices!
If you are willing to make the most of the in-demand collaborative platform, here are some crucial tips and tricks that would help you save your time while working in 2021:
- Using Keyboard Shortcuts
One of the simplest and most common tricks to save your time while working on Microsoft Teams is using keyboard shortcuts.
Here are some of the major shortcuts you can use to perform specific tasks:
Ctrl + Shift + O – To turn your camera off
Ctrl + Shift + M – To mute yourself
Ctrl + E – To make a search
Ctrl + Shift + P – To blur your background
Ctrl + 6 – To access your files
Ctrl and + - To zoom in
Ctrl + - To zoom out
- Searching Specific Keywords In Your Conversations
As you make more and more conversations on your MS Teams channels and chats, you may need to look for a specific word, phrase, or line said in a specific conversation. In order to look for specific elements from a conversation, all you need to do is type in a word/phrase and hit “Enter”. You will have the search results in the left pane. You can switch between “Files” and “People” by clicking on the respective tabs based on what you are looking for.
However, there may be situations when you need your search to be more specific. In such cases, you can use MS Teams’ integrated Keyword Query Language (KQL) for making more advanced searches.
Here are some of the major keywords you can type in the search bar to use KQL:
“From:” – To view messages or files received from a specific contact
“In:” – To view messages or files in specific channels/folders
“Subject:” – To view messages or files about a specific subject
“Sent:” – To view messages or files sent to a specific contact
- Messaging A User Directly By Mentioning Them
If you are willing to send a message, file, or email to a specific user in your contact list, all you need to do is type in “@” in the search bar, followed by the name of the concerned user. Irrespective of which section of Microsoft Teams you are in, mentioning a user would allow you to connect with them directly. This saves you time in finding them in your contact list before sending them the required messages.
- Avoiding Distractions From Notifications
If you are working on an important project and are not willing to be distracted by frequent alerts, Microsoft Teams allows you to eliminate these distractions. For doing so, you need to click on your profile picture and select the “Notifications”. Here, you can adjust the frequency of the alerts sent to you. You can also switch off the sound of notification alerts to enjoy an undisturbed work session.
- Tagging Your Chats For Better Searches
Your MS Teams channels can contain several threads of chats. If you are willing to filter the chats to make your searches easier, the platform allows you to tag them using searchable titles.
For this, you need to select the pencil icon near the member names at the top of the window and enter a title you want to tag the chat with. You can also add a word or a phrase that helps you remind what the concerned chat is about, making future searches easier.
- Changing Your Background
If you are willing to change your background while working, Microsoft Teams allows you to blur the background or change it according to your preferences. To blur your background as you join a meeting, select the Audio and Video Settings screen, followed by clicking on the ellipsis icon (…). Now, select the option of “Blur My Background”.
If you are looking for a custom background as you launch a video chat, click on the ellipsis icon and select “Show Background Effects.” This will provide you with a range of background images that you can choose from according to your preference.
- Translating Messages
With Microsoft Teams, you can easily translate your messages by hovering your cursor over the message in a foreign language, followed by clicking on the ellipsis icon for the menu. Now, click on “Translate” to get the work done.
Moreover, MS Teams allows you to translate video calls as well. For this, you need to go to the “Translate To” menu and captions to share the content in up to six different languages. All users attending the call can turn on the live captions by selecting the “Subtitles On” option located at the bottom-right corner of the screen.
- Using SharePoint
SharePoint is a document management and file-sharing tool by Microsoft. It is already integrated with Microsoft Teams, and users can access it readily. When you click on the “Files” tab, the platform allows you to share your files with your team members via SharePoint. If a file(s) has been shared to a specific channel, users can collaborate on the same with the help of Office Online or one of the MS Office desktop applications.
- Forwarding Emails To A Channel
Although features like individual and group chats provide you with an alternative to sending/receiving emails, you can never completely get rid of them. Microsoft Teams allows you to forward emails to specific channels without taking much effort.
For this, go to the ellipsis icon located near the concerned channel’s name and click on the option of “Get Email Address.” This would automatically create a dedicated email address for the concerned channel to which you can send any email you want with utmost ease.
- Sending Urgent Messages
Microsoft Teams allows you to send urgent messages to your contacts if you want to connect with them immediately. For this, you need to look for the tab of “Urgent” or “Important” under the text compose box. Click on this tab as you send a message, and it will let the other person know that you are trying to send an urgent message.
If you mark a message as urgent after sending it, the recipient will keep getting notified every two minutes for the following twenty minutes.
- Saving Messages For Later
If you are occupied when receiving a message and want to view it later, MS Teams allows you to save the message for later. For this, all you need to do is hover over a message, click on the ellipsis icon, and select the option of “Save This Message.”
For viewing all your saved messages, you can type “/Saved” in the search box and hit “Enter” to have them appear in the left pane of the window.
- Inviting People To A Team
Microsoft Teams allows you to invite anyone within your organization to use the collaborative platform and interact with them. Follow these simple steps to invite an individual to your team:
Go to your Teams list
Click on the option of “Join or Create A Team”
Select the option of “Build A Team From Scratch.”
Click on the option of “Org-wide.”
Type the name of your team and click on “Create”
This helps you invite people from your organization to join your team. Also, it is important to remember that when you add/remove members from Microsoft 365, Microsoft Teams will automatically update their presence on the collaborative platform.
The Final Word
These were some of the most important and effective MS Teams tips and tricks to help you save your time and increase your productivity.