Microsoft Releases Embedded Chat to Teams

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The long-awaited feature of embedded chat is now in public preview for Microsoft users. The release is part of the 2021 wave two updates planned by Microsoft.

Collaboration is critical for businesses looking to provide the best possible experience for customers. Not only must business teams constantly communicate with colleagues but also with stakeholders, customers, and suppliers. 

However, collaboration can quickly become a source of pain for a myriad of reasons—low-quality collaboration platforms being a major contributor. Most solutions require users to switch between multiple platforms and filter through multiple chat sessions to find information. Additionally, valuable context may be missing from work orders which increase frustration and further slow processes. 

Organizations without a collaboration platform face even more risks: security vulnerabilities, team disconnect, and increased errors.

To help business teams avoid potential productivity and security risks, Microsoft has released a public preview of Teams embedded chat. This announcement is part of the 2021 wave two updates and has been a long-awaited feature by Microsoft users.

What is Embedded Chat?

Embedded chat enables users to easily collaborate with fellow employees and outside users without switching platforms. When the feature is turned on, anyone involved with a business process or work order can easily see past conversations that contain critical context and communicate with individuals across an organization.

While the feature is currently in public preview, it includes the following capabilities:

  • Ability to chat with colleagues both in and outside of a work order.
  • View existing chats or start a new one.
  • Link chats to specific Dynamics 365 cases or records which provides seamless collaboration across departments.
  • Associate individual conversations to specific work orders.

The integration will enable teams to significantly improve and accelerate collaboration, ensuring customers, executives, and employees can work together seamlessly. 

How to Turn on Embedded Chat

Users who are interested in utilizing embedded chat should follow these steps:

  • First, log into the Dynamics 365 sales hub and select ‘App Settings’. Next, click on ‘Chat and Collaboration’. New integration options have been added to Microsoft Teams as part of the wave two release.
  • Next, click on ‘Service Management’. A new section titled ‘Microsoft Teams Integration’ has been added to Teams’ sitemap which is where the embedded chat feature can be turned on by users with administrator privileges. 
  • Finally, click on the new icon on the top right of the screen. A new side panel will appear next to the current page and will contain the embedded chat feature.

Once embedded chat is turned on, users can utilize the feature in Teams’ two different tab types:

  • Personal Tabs: These are part of personal apps and are scoped to individual users. These tabs contain personal messages that can be pinned to Teams’ left-hand navigation bar for easy access. Information on how to set up personal tabs can be found here.
  • Channel or Group Tabs: These tabs are used to deliver content to specific groups or channels. They enable business teams to create collaborative spaces dedicated to web-based content. Channel and group tabs can also be pinned for easy access. To create a channel or group tab, follow the instructions listed here.

Do More with Microsoft Teams

With more capabilities planned to be released in the near future, it can feel overwhelming trying to take full advantage of all Microsoft Teams’ tools. Luckily, there’s JourneyTEAM, a Microsoft Gold Partner experienced in customizing Microsoft products to business processes.

To learn more about how JourneyTEAM supports businesses looking to adopt Microsoft Teams and other solutions, contact a representative.

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