Microsoft Teams Users Getting Project for the Web Integration
Microsoft 365 subscribers are getting the ability to use Project for the Web and the Project Roadmap app within Microsoft Teams, according to a Microsoft announcement this week.
The integration of Microsoft's Project planning applications with its Teams chat and collaboration application was described as having been released, but the announcement didn't indicate whether it's a commercial or a preview release. Moreover, there are some limitations, as Teams right now just specifically integrates with the Project for the Web solution, per the announcement:
Project app integrates with Project for the Web and hence allows you to add projects created using Project for the Web as a tab. It does not support projects created on PWA (Project Web App) or Project client (MPP files).
With the integration, Microsoft Teams users can create projects or roadmaps within the Teams app, provided that they have the requisite Project licensing to do so. However, sharing Project for the Web views more generally will be possible. All Teams users with E1, E3 or E5 licensing (or equivalent) have read-only rights, so project views can be shared with Teams members. These use-rights details are summarized in this Microsoft document.
Here's how Madhuri Jain, a Microsoft Tech Community contributor, characterized the use rights, per the comments section of Microsoft's announcement:
Users with one of these active subscriptions, Project Plan 1, Project Plan 3, or Project Plan 5, will have the ability to create and edit projects. A Project Plan 3 or Project Plan 5 subscription user can create and edit a Roadmap. All Office 365 users will be able to view Projects/Roadmaps shared within Teams in a read-only mode. Learn more about Project for the Web licenses here.
The Roadmap app, by the way, is used to show an overall view of the various projects that get set up within an organization, as described in this Microsoft video.
New Teams Capabilities for End Users
On top of the Project for the Web integration, Microsoft announced lots of Teams features last month, with most being at the "general availability" or commercial-release stage.
Here are some October highlights:
- File sharing and permissions: Users with files stored in Teams can create sharable links to them. In addition, end users can set permissions on files stored in SharePoint and OneDrive and can add those permissions when attaching files during Teams chats.
- Notification options: A new setting was added that lets end users control the types of notifications they get in Teams, which can be used to help track "the activity you care about."
- Offline presence option: Users have a new "Offline" option to indicate that status in Teams.
- SharePoint page additions: It's easier now to add a SharePoint page to Teams, which appears in a "tab." However, any edits to the page happen via SharePoint, and some of the functionality is being "introduced gradually to organizations," Microsoft indicated in a support document.
- Language-aware proofing: Teams desktop app users writing in multiple languages now get spellchecking support in those particular languages.
The announcement also listed features specific to government, education and "firstline workers" Teams users.
Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare and Teams
Notable among the October Teams items was the announcement that Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare had reached the general availability commercial-release stage. Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare is described as Microsoft's "first industry-specific cloud offering."
There's a Teams connection with Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare. It's made possible via a "new Microsoft Teams EHR connector for Epic EHR," Microsoft noted. This connector links Teams to electronic health records. With this capability, clinicians can "launch a virtual visit in Teams from within their electronic health record system," the announcement explained.
IT Pro Perks
Most of the October Teams features reaching general availability were improvements for end users, but a few items could be notable for IT pros.
A new Power Automate app for Teams is available, which can be used to automate workflows.
It's now possible to put an organization's brand on applications in the "Teams line-of-business app catalog," Microsoft announced. However, this capability was described as being at the preview stage in this document.
The ability to assign "resource-specific consent" when using the Microsoft Graph 1.0 API is available. It's an option that can be used to delegate app install permissions. "This capability empowers Team owners to install an app for their specific team and restrict the app's scope and access to data to only that one team, without needing the global IT admin to provision access," the announcement explained.
At some point, Microsoft is planning to give IT pros expanded policies that can block the sharing of Teams videos, Microsoft announced. Currently, it's possible to block video sharing to others outside the organization by policy, but Microsoft plans to add controls at some point that can block the sharing of incoming videos within Teams, too.
IT pros can now create custom Teams templates that can be used by end users. These templates can help "standardize team structures, surface relevant apps, and scale best practices," Microsoft explained.
Hardware was part of the Teams news. It's now possible to run the Teams client on ARM64 devices, including the Microsoft Surface Pro X device. Also, Dell launched a new Meeting Space Solution for Microsoft Teams Rooms videoconferencing product.
Also, Microsoft Teams Rooms videoconferencing device users are starting to get a "hard mute" feature. With this feature, meeting organizers can disable participants' microphones during a Teams session. Additionally, there's also a so-called "spotlight" feature that's starting to roll out, which ensures that a particular presenter gets shown to all Teams meeting participants.
Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.