New collaboration features for Office 365. Microsoft no longer roll out big Office releases like they used to, thanks to widespread adoption of Office 365 and those updates appearing across Office 2016. So, you therefore have to keep checking the news and blogs to find out what the latest features are.
November saw the release of improved collaboration tools, enabling and encouraging people to work across the same document, without the need for emailing it around to different people for edits, changes, approval and so on.
One of the latest features is the ability to co-author a document using PowerPoint on the Windows desktop, with the feature likely to roll out to other devices in the near future. This allows users to see what anyone else accessing the presentation is changing, and you can discuss the document live over Skype chat or a call to discuss further changes. Having more eyes on a presentation during its creation should create slide shows or meeting briefs with more impact and better, sharper language, to help get key points across.
Mobile users will now also get notifications if changes are made to their documents, so they can keep in touch as a file passes around the various people involved in its creation or management. Similarly, if you attach a file in Outlook, it will be stored in the cloud and people changing it will only be editing a single version, saving users the hassle of having to tidy up changes from several different versions of a document.
Office applications also now have a collaboration features 'shared with me' menu item, so users can easily find the files they are working on with others, reducing the need to go hunting for them in folders or buried somewhere in their email.
These collaboration features, the improved file sharing abilities, and the roll out of Office 365 to even more countries should help make companies more efficient when it comes to document work. Employees should also be able to spend more time on the important aspects of their work and less time acting as an editor or compiler of changes.
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