New Unify Square Teams Services Are Leading the Charge.
There has been a lot of activity in the Teams space since the beginning of 2018. Microsoft started off the year announcing how Teams is already being used by at least 30K organizations, in 145 different markets and that 70% of all Skype for Business customers are already (at minimum) testing or piloting Teams in some way.
Not to be outdone, we here at Unify Square then announced in mid-March that we were launching 3 new services to help enterprise customers with their journey to Teams. Our Teams Transformation Services, Teams User Adoption Service and our Teams Managed Services will combine to streamline end-user Intelligent Communications. There are a lot of uncertainties and complexities involved with any shift to the new Teams platform (whether an organization is moving for collaboration or UC reasons, or both) — Unify Square is perfectly positioned to help enterprises with the transition.
Perhaps of most interest in our portfolio of Teams momentum, is the webinar which we delivered last week on Microsoft Teams. Unlike most of the relatively straight-forward ‘how to use Teams’ or ‘Microsoft Teams vs Skype for Business’ information that one can read on the web, Unify Square deep dives on Teams to take a slightly more philosophical and sociological approach to helping organizations understand the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ of Teams. The Teams webinar drills into some interesting subjects such as the paradigm shift from user-directed to topic-directed work streams brought about by team-chat applications. Also explored is the notion of how Teams can only really be successful if driven by a work group adoption group-think in the organization — the “old school” concept of single user adoption simply won’t work. Finally, the webinar talks about new-age governance issues with respect to topics like applications, team-members and content. How can, or perhaps better said, how will IT change and adapt as a non-IT led platform?
Teams: The Gold Standard
Although many view Slack as the “father of the team-chat” application concept, it will quite likely be Teams which emerges as the “gold standard’ of the category. Certainly the honor of pioneering and combining the concepts of cloud, social networking, a client (and user-driven) app store and persistent chat, goes to Slack. However the extra icing on the cake of adding in the core conferencing and telephone components (from Skype for Business) and ‘merging’ the entire application into the Offic365 platform is most likely what will bring the volume and legitimacy to the category….in much the same way that Microsoft Outlook brought legitimacy to the email space by combining email, calendaring, contacts and tasks back in the mid 1990’s.
And now, here we are in April. It will be interesting to see what comes next in the Teams evolution. If Microsoft sticks to its public roadmap of migrating Skype for Business features and functionality to Teams, we’re due to have a LOT of new conferencing and calling functionality come on line very soon. That Q2 2018 milestone will definitely make the Teams piloting considerations much more interesting, but may also create the potential for a dramatic increase in help desk calls as hybrid (organizations running both Skype for Business and Teams in parallel) scenarios that no one anticipated emerge.
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