Just as companies like Slack announce the delivery of things like Shared Channels to help businesses to communicate across networks, Microsoft jump back into the game with a long-awaited, and heavily-demanded guest access feature for the Teams platform.
Customers have been waiting impatiently for guest access features for Teams ever since its original release, and the company finally confirmed on the 11th of September that it would be rolling the new feature out to all education and commercial customers on the Office 365 platform. Finally, you’ll be able to add people outside of your own business to your team chat.
Be Our Guest with Microsoft Teams
The Microsoft Teams update means that Office 365 users won’t be limited to conversations inside of their own enterprise. Instead, you’ll be able to add contractors, freelancers, and people from other businesses to your Teams chat so that they can collaborate with you on your projects, join in with meetings, and more. If you have an Azure Active Directory account, you will already be eligible to be added as a guest in Teams.
According to the company, the accessibility will be extended to anyone with a Microsoft account too. The good news is that if you’re trying to invite someone who doesn’t have a Microsoft account into your platform, then that person will be re-directed towards a web page where they can create a free account using a consumer or corporate email address.
Much to the reassurance of many businesses who use Teams for messaging today, the new feature should come with plenty of peace of mind too. According to Microsoft, the guest access solution comes with enterprise-grade security securely managed through Azure AD. The system makes the most of adaptive learning heuristics and algorithms to detect potentially suspicious behaviour, enabling instant remediation actions to be triggered when necessary.
Updates All Around for Microsoft
There’s a good chance that recent updates to other collaboration suites are part of the reason why Microsoft has finally jumped into action with their guest access solution. The new feature comes with plenty of simplicity for IT professionals who want to access complete control over how much freedom guests have to roam throughout their Office 365 environment. Additionally, admins can revoke or change a guest’s access depending on the needs of the company.
Along with their update for guest users, Microsoft also announced a range of additional support features for developers. Notably, Teams has also adopted support for “Botkit“, one of the most popular solutions for building chatbots, along with brand-new integrations for Atlassian’s JIRA service desk, Github, and Bitbucket cloud.
As a separate update, Microsoft has also brought out a new Mac user app with a toolbar for Office 365 known as My Workspace, which will provide instant access to all of your Office 365 features and applications.