Bulletins and Milestones Apps Available for Dataverse for Teams Subscribers

Microsoft this week announced two new Teams applications that are built using its Dataverse for Teams service.

The new Teams apps, available for download from the Teams store, are Bulletins and Milestones. They are customizable using Microsoft's Power Apps low-code, no-code service. It's possible to edit them right within Teams.

Here's how the announcement described it:

Once installed, you have full access to the source code of these solutions. You can edit these apps using the Power Apps personal app in Teams to bring your own custom features -- such as your company branding, adding proactive communications on new message posts etc.

The Bulletins app, when added to Teams, can be used to view company and departmental news. Its messages can be viewed on a mobile device, as well. The Bulletins app is actually an improved version of the Crisis Communication app that Microsoft released last March to track the status of remote workers.

The Milestones app is another Power Apps addition to Teams that lets users "track work items by owners and status" to maintain oversight on projects. The application can be customized by nondevelopers, Microsoft contended.

"You can update the fields' labels, add new fields, or add business process flows such as notifications," the announcement explained, regarding customizing the Milestones app.

The Bulletins app and the Milestones app are built using Power Apps and Dataverse for Teams. Consequently, they let organizations control things like the data that gets collected, the business rules used and even the branding that's applied, Microsoft explained in another announcement this week.

IT Oversight
Even though nondevelopers typically might carry out these app customizations, IT has some oversight controls, Microsoft's Teams team contended:

I would be remiss if I didn't call out the powerful tools we ship to allow admins to govern apps like Milestones and Bulletins. In particular, we've shipped a powerful template as part of the Center of Excellence Starter Kit to manage Dataverse for Teams environments. With it, users within your company can provide business justifications for Dataverse for Teams so that admins can approve the usage.

Apparently, IT pros can assent to use of the apps through a request process initiated by workers in an organization.

Dataverse for Teams
Microsoft commercially released the Dataverse for Teams service back in November. It's a new product that's spun off from Microsoft's Common Data Service platform, which now goes by the "Microsoft Dataverse" product name.

The Dataverse solutions were poorly described by Microsoft at the time, but they apparently make it easier for organizations to build applications that will scale with business needs.

Organizations had been using SharePoint to build such apps, but they experienced growing pains in doing so, according to a July blog post explanation by Microsoft Most Valuable Professional Andrew Welch. He recommended that organizations should stop building apps using SharePoint and switch to Dataverse for Teams instead.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.


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