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Microsoft Teams creates effective collaboration space for group work

Inside the Microsoft Office suite of services is a tool capable of bringing your group together digitally in a common workspace. Microsoft Teams combines conversations, meetings, storage, files, application integration and notes into a single place for open and seamless collaboration. 

Especially in this time of remote working and learning, Teams can provide your group with the resources to get tasks done. 

Now available to Rutgers students, staff, and faculty with self-created teams feature that allows you to launch your own group on the platformMicrosoft Teams brings a new realm to what you can do within your department, organization, or project group. 

Teams advances past previous collaboration tools available to the Rutgers community like Sakai’s Project Sites with a slew of features that make the experience easy and customizable for each of your group’s goals. It also gives you access to collaborate through Office 365 applications including OneNote, SharePoint, and OneDrive. 

These features are all available without the need for separate accounts to create or join a teamYou just log in with your Rutgers NetID credentials. 

The possibilities of what you can do with Teams are endless, but review some common uses that can get you started with the service: 

Organizational Management: Managing, administering, and collaborating within a department or unit can be made easy through Teams. You can track discussions in message threads across various channels, schedule meetings or training sessions in the team’s calendar, organize files in the team’s OneDrive component, and more, all in one place. Restrictions can be implemented and configured by a team’s owner that can be beneficial for submitting documents, viewing private files, or chatting in private spaces. 

Chatting and Video Conferencing: Teams allows you to host remote virtual meetings within your team or between users individually. You can screen share, join conference calls, or hold a video conference for team members to join. They can be scheduled ahead of time or made on the spot. A great thing about Teams meetings is that they can be recorded and saved to Microsoft Stream as an option for others to view later or reference. This can be used for orientations, training sessions, interviews, and more. 

Student Project Sites: Individual or group work efforts are made easier with Teams. Students can make their own Teams with either their ScarletMail or Rutgers Connect accounts. External users can also be added to these self-created teams. Creating a team provides students with the ability to virtually meet and work with group members, store all files/documents related to a project in one space, work together on updating a document, mark due dates on calendars, and more. 

Research Sites: Teams can act as a repository for research-related activities. Each team has its own files component with unlimited HIPAAcompliant storage and an associated email address. Sharing and reviewing research files is made convenient — you can email the group a document that can be viewed (and saved) in the team space. You can reference files in a discussion thread within Teams while editing the files in real-time. External collaborators can also be included or restricted to certain files, channels, and discussions. 

Cooperative Project Sites: If a department has a number of projects that need managing, Microsoft Teams is a great tool for the job. Whether your project relates to software development, lab work, hiring, promotion tracking, or committee organization, having a number of Office 365 products in one space can help tasks run smoothly. With SharePoint, OneDrive, OneNote, Flow, and other integrations at your disposal, you can work on and manage your projects in a simple and easy application that has everything in one place. 

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