Do you have Office 365? Is it on the horizon? Do you know what it is, how it works and how to use it?

If you’re asking yourself these questions, let me help you.

I’m plotting a future blog post and would love to help you understand more about Microsoft’s latest offering and what it means for professional communicators.

If you have a question about Office 365, please let me know what it is and I’ll do my best to answer it.

Why am I doing this?
This week I attended CIPR Inside’s #makeitcount annual internal communication conference and had lots of discussions about the technology communicators are using.

One of the hot topics was Office 365 and how to make head or tail of what’s on offer from Microsoft, how it all works together and what the difference is between the options.

Office 365 is now available in 246 markets worldwide in 44 languages. Under its umbrella sits a wealth of information and functionality, with apps and services including OneDrive, Yammer, Teams, Skype for Business, SharePoint and much more.

Searching for information
I’ve written endlessly about Yammer and internal social media/enterprise social networks over the past eight-and-a-half years. It felt like the conversations were dying down and collaborative software was becoming the norm.

However, over the past year, and particularly the past few months, I’ve noticed more people searching for information about collaboration and platforms on my blog, including Office 365 and Workplace.

Office 365 often falls into communicators’ laps via their IT colleagues.

Only this week I’ve had three separate conversation with IC pros who have been tasked with “making Office 365 work” and “communicating it” – helpful!

So what do you need to know?
There’s a lot to understand, but it’s not as tricky as it first appears.

We’re fortunate that there’s a lot of information out there, not least in articles I’ve published on the All Things IC blog. I’ll pull out some of the relevant ones at the end of this post.

However, I find case studies and promotions from suppliers and vendors seldom address the queries professional communicators and their IT colleagues have. This is where I want to plug the gap by asking you to create content we can use as an industry.

Further readingHow to achieve success with Office 365.
Further reading: @Office365 and the Office blogs from Microsoft.

What does it all mean?!

As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog post, What do CEOs think of internal communication, my husband Jon @JonMillerUK is an independent Office 365 consultant.

He runs his own business too and we regularly work together to offer each other’s clients the Comms or IT perspective, bringing teams together to facilitate discussions, make decisions and train them.

I love the way he works and how he translates ideas into technology, mapping what a business needs and its culture against what is available technology-wise. Our worlds regularly cross-over and we learn from each other.

Following yesterday’s post, we were chatting last night and this morning and thought we’d offer you the chance to pick our brains. So you get two consultants for the price of submitting a question.

Sound like a good deal?

Over to you…

What are you grappling with when it comes to using Office 365? Thank you to everyone who has Tweeted me already @AllthingsIC this morning.

How to get involved
Do please ask me there, comment below or use the comment form if you want to be anonymous. Jon and I will address your queries, publishing your questions and our answers. It will be a crowdsourced article that you can use to inform the discussions inside your organisation.

Having the combination of IT and Comms involved when thinking through technology is crucial.

We met whilst working in-house in the railway as business partners for our respective departments. We oversaw a large technology refresh and now draw on each other’s expertise to aid our clients.

The worlds of IT and Comms collide and blur more now than ever before as internal social media and collaboration tools have grown in popularity.

With ‘dark IT’ and ‘dark comms’ on the rise, it’s imperative communicators stay ahead of the game by increasing their knowledge.

Further reading: Are you ready for GDPR and shadow comms?
Further reading: Glossary of internal communication.

Do submit your questions and we’ll do our best to help.

Ones we’ve received so far include:

Further reading on the All Things IC blog around these topics:

Please get in touch to help us make the article as useful as possible for internal communicators.

Thank you,

Have a great weekend.

Rachel

Post author: Rachel Miller.

First published on the All Things IC blog 3 November 2017.

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