Chats, feeds, instant messages: keeping everyone in touch

Encourage employee engagement and collaboration

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Don't let poor communications hold your business back

With hybrid working styles seemingly here to stay, making sure that dispersed teams and workforces stay connected is a challenge that organisations need to address. A number of platforms offer instant messaging, real-time conversation and face-to-face video calls, but the real issue for many organisations is making the right choices and rolling out the right tools. Otherwise, you could face a number of issues, such as:

People failing to communicate well with each other, leading to misunderstandings or delays to projects

Key project information being lost if chats and messages can't easily be stored like other project resources

Employees using apps and tools that aren't appropriate for business use, and that may bring security and other risks

Difficulty communicating organisation-wide messages  

Limited opportunity for the organisation to collect and benefit from shared knowledge


Make chats, feeds and messaging easy with the right tools

Depending on what you want to achieve, you may need more than one platform. For example, broadcasting messages to all employees requires a different tool from team collaboration. Fortunately, Microsoft 365 incorporate a range of communication apps to meet varying needs across your organisation.

Microsoft Teams allows real-time collaboration with internal colleagues and external partners, with workplace chat, instant messages and online conferences keeping the team connected. This helps you move replies and acknowledgements out of email threads and into quick chats where they belong.

Team members can instant message one-on-one or with a group — tagging other team members to get their attention — on any device, in any location. Chats and messages in the context of a project will typically focus on project goals, and can be stored along with other project resources for future reference.

Microsoft Yammer, on the other hand, can have a much wider audience. Acting as an enterprise social network, Yammer enables connection and engagement among groups, communities of interest, or your entire organisation — helping everyone to feel feel involved. It allows everyone to keep up with the latest organisational news, brings people together for real-time discussions, and allows spontaneous conversations between colleagues.

Just as with any other social networking service, users see content and posts on their Yammer home page that are most relevant to them. The selection of messages displayed in the home feed is personalised, because it reflects each individual's interests and community memberships, and the people they follow and interact with.

Yammer is easy for anyone to use as it integrates with other Microsoft 365 apps. And being part of Microsoft 365, it's as secure as all the other apps in the portfolio. In addition, you can gain insights from the chats and instant messages that employees exchange using Yammer, giving you the opportunity to gather feedback, collate knowledge or analyse the corporate mood.

Your benefits at a glance

Enhance communication among colleagues, within teams, and across the organisation.

Improve engagement by helping everyone stay informed about news and events and aligned to organisational goals.

Gather ideas and feedback to help your organisation benefit from employee knowledge, ideas and innovation.

Keep communications secure within teams and across the organisation.

1. When should we use Yammer rather than Teams?

As an enterprise social network, Yammer is designed to connect and engage people across organisations with messages usually visible to everyone. You can use Yammer to broadcast messages to all employees, foster communities of interest, or give colleagues an easy way to chat with each other. In contrast, Teams allows members of a project team (both internal and external) to chat and message with other team members. The messages they share will generally not be available outside the team; and will be stored along with other project resources.

2. When is instant messaging better than email?

Email is great for recaps, updates and other exchanges of information. But it can slow you down when what you need is a snappy response to a simple question. So when you need a quick conversation or fast answer, instant messaging (or chatting) may be better. It lets you hold a two- (or more) way conversation in real time and keep the ball rolling.

3. Where are Yammer files stored?

Yammer files are stored in your organisation's default SharePoint document library. This ensures they follow the security and compliance settings you’ve enabled for SharePoint.

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