Each Team (within the Teams part of Microsoft Teams) always has an associated SharePoint site – which provides the backend file storage. All content that you can see in the ‘files’ tab of a Team’s channel is actually stored in the ‘Documents’ library within the associated SharePoint site. Inside this ‘Documents’ library, you will notice that there is a separate folder for each of the channels within your Team.
NB, private channels don’t work in the same way as ‘public’ channels – with each private channel actually being stored within a separate SharePoint site. As such, a Team that uses private channels can technically be associated with multiple SharePoint sites at the back end.
How do we manage the challenge of improving people’s digital skills if we don’t allow them to experiment with the technology?
Personally, I find that I learn best when confronted with actual challenges in real-world scenarios. However, I think it’s fair to say that everyone responds to different types of skills-transfer in different ways.
I feel that many of the main concepts of Teams are simple and intuitive enough for many people to pick up with minimal guidance. However, there will still be some people who need additional support.
I’d personally recommend that people learn on the technology itself, but I suggest that this is supported by short, bite-size training collateral (ideally 2-3 minute videos, rather than weighty user guides). I’m not sure that any form of training course is required; it might be in some organisations, however, typically I think investment might be best focussed on repeatable collateral, such as ‘how to’ guides and short videos.
One suggestion I will make is to consider installing a copy of Microsoft 365’s learning pathways – which provides training information that is regularly updated by Microsoft themselves, in a customisable format. This allows you to pick and choose the information you want to share with your staff and add your own collateral / messaging into the mix. See: Microsoft 365 learning pathways
How are people managing the dual environment aspect when some staff are using Microsoft 365 and some aren’t, with regard to duplication of file storage?
It’s natural that organisations will have multiple systems, and often be in a state of evolving from one environment to another. However, as a rule of thumb, I’d recommend having clear, concise guidance to support each technical capability (e.g. “we use OneDrive for xxx”). When you find yourself in a dual environment situation, the first thing to do is probably to assess the strategy, to see why this has occurred, and discover whether there is a plan to transition to a simplified state.
One technique I’ve seen organisations use is almost to maintain separate guidance for ‘pre’ and ‘post’ transition users, making sure that the communications make it clear to each person which state they are currently in. Obviously, all of the compliance and governance will also need to be duplicated, with say, eDiscovery, retention and subject access requests needing separate processes for each separate environment
However, inevitably, when your information and staff are split across disparate systems, information sharing, collaboration and communication will all be more complex – very often seeing people resort to increased use of email as a primary tool.
If you find yourself in a situation where the strategy looks like the dual-environment situation is likely to last more than a year, it might be worth looking into hybrid solutions in Microsoft 365 – for example, you could potentially set your environment to incorporate on-premise file share content into Microsoft 365 search results. This won’t solve all of the issues you might face with sharing and collaboration, but it could help simplify some scenarios.
How have other organisations actually approached manual labelling of Files from Teams? It’s a big bucket to tackle!
As I think I said during the webinar, I’ve never seen anyone get excited about classifying content. Apart from a few highly specific examples, where users understand that precise processes need to be followed, typically, staff see tagging content as an overhead – and very often this results in unreliable classification.
I’m not sure that training helps too much either – unless there is a clear benefit to the user, typically manual labelling falls by the wayside.
This is compounded in the case of Retention Labels, because unlike SharePoint columns, Labels cannot be made mandatory – any user who can modify the content can choose to de-select a retention label and apply ‘None’ instead.
Automated application of retention labels provided as part of the advanced governance capabilities, are great, and provide excellent capabilities, but are all designed to label specific matching content – rather than label all content. As such, by themselves, automated approaches to applying retention labels will typically result in much of your content remaining un-classified.
The most reliable approach, I feel, is to make use of setting default retention labels on libraries and folders. This approach effectively means the majority of your content gets an appropriate classification by default, hopefully with staff only needing to manually label by exception. The challenge with this approach is to ensure that defaults are applied to libraries. This itself can be undertaken manually, but in larger organisations this really needs to be applied to structures as part of the initial Team (or Site) request/creation process (either manually, or automatically). I’ve even gone as far with one of my clients of building logic to automatically intercept the creation of new libraries and Team channels – so that there is a process to get the person creating the new container to choose the most appropriate classification for it.
Does defaulting Labels require an E5 licence for all members of the team?
Since the webinar was run, I have finally been able to find a definitive answer to this question – and unfortunately, it’s not good news. Buried in a pdf that can be found on the docs.microsoft.com site is the following definitive answer:
The ability to “Apply a default retention label for SharePoint/Teams/OneDrive for business libraries, folders, and document sets and Microsoft 365 Groups” requires all of your users (who can edit content that has a retention label applied to it) to have one of the following licences:
- Microsoft 365 E5
- Microsoft 365 E5 Compliance
- Microsoft 365 E5/A5 Info Protection & Governance
- Office 365 E5
- Office 365 Advanced Compliance
I have to say, I’m disappointed with this change. Applying default labels is possibly the most useful way of accurately and consistently making use of retention capabilities in Microsoft 365. Seeing this feature uplicenced effectively takes away much of the benefit of using retention labels if you aren’t lucky enough to have premium licences for all of your users.
I have been told today that chat’s minimum retention is going from 3 days to 1 day. Is this correct?
I have to say I’ve never really looked at the minimum durations before, but certainly on my tenant, I can set the minimum retention for Teams Chat content to 1 day: