You will find some exciting announcements and investments, but before we discuss the future roadmap, let’s dive in to background and benefits of Groups.
The world has changed
Earlier – Information moves slowly. Fixed workforces; siloed teams. Believed in command and control
Now – information travels fast. Leverage the on demand; global talent pool. Always mobile, always moving. Collaborate easily, often and always. Grow up on social networks. They believe in Learn and adopt
The rise of dynamic teams
• Modern collaboration
• Intelligent fabric (office graph and Office 365 groups)
• Personalized insight
Benefits of Groups
1. Single Definition – Groups is definition of team.
2. Public by Default – Enable quick discovery of information in a simple way.
3. Sharing to Non Members –
4. Self Service – It works on demand.
5. Context & History – e.g. New member joining the team
6. Simple to manage
Groups works on Azure AD and works across Outlook, OD4B, OneNote, Calendar, Skype, Dynamics CRM, Delve, Yammer (future ~ 2016)
Tips for Outlook Groups
You can search for groups just like any item. Join any group from within outlook and it will refresh the groups list on the left with all the history and context. Add any group to Favorites list just like any folder. Conversations in the group are displayed fluidly from top (most recent) to bottom (oldest). ribbon context reflects the group you are in. Shows one note, Calendar, files shared, members etc. You can add new members. You can navigate to group calendar and add a particular meeting to your own calendar. Open a document from files and edit. Editing opens a email conversation view on the the right and enables you to send email back to the group. Editing file automatically stores changes back to OD4B.
Overview of Management Features Available
- PowerShell Cmdlets
- Azure AD management portals
- naming policies
- REST API
FUTURE INVESTMENTS & ROADMAP
Coming up by end of 2015
- outlook 2016 & mobile app
- office graph and delve integration
- skype meet now
- file and pages
- invite users
- dynamics CRM
- extensible to third party apps
- eDiscovery & legal hold
- Self delete and restore
- GAL activity monitoring
- Expire inactive groups
- Azure AD connect
- Additonal AAD improvements
The next biggest investment coming up is on Mobile experience. Mobile tailored conversations, files, emails etc. across all mobile devices (tablet, mobile, laptops)
DYNAMICS CRM (JUST ANNOUNCED)
Within dynamics CRM dashboard now you can add groups, start conversations, share files etc. Create groups for opportunities, cases, accounts and all other entities. Groups are surfaced in-context within CRM.