Yammer expands collaboration features for external team members

Yammer expands collaboration features for external team members

Seems like collaboration is as much a buzzword at Microsoft as Mobile First, Cloud First currently is.

Just two days ago I wrote about the changes in Delve and its integration with Office 365 that help bring a people centric focus to collaboration and then last week we told you about Dropbox and Office Online connecting to make collaboration easier between users of different cloud storage platforms.

This post yesterday from the Office 365 team set up the discussion about furthering the collaboration for teams and today we see one of the first products to get highlighted with these new features is Yammer.

To get work done, teams need an easy way to self-organize, stay connected on the go, tap into the network of stakeholders inside and outside your company—and do all this while juggling multiple projects. In talking with customers about how they get the most out of Yammer, we’ve learned that those who realize the most value use Yammer as a home for their projects and initiatives. The new world of work we’re living in demands a new way for people to work together. That’s why we’re on a mission to transform team collaboration.

This increased collaboration comes about in three ways:

- Integrate Yammer into Office 365 Groups and Office 365 Graph. This allows team members to easily move around conversations in Skype for Business, Outlook, OneDrive and Delve.

- Using an algorithm in Yammer itself to show individuals teams and conversations they should be aware of.

The third method is new external messaging in Yammer that allows individuals to be added from outside of your company. Imagine being able to have partners, vendors and even customers involved in the conversations and when an action item pops up for them there is no need for separate email or contact. It is all in one place.

Your data stays secure because outside participants only access the conversations they have been added to and not the rest of the information in your network. With 40 percent or more of the U.S. workforce expected to be made up of contingent or independent workers by 2020, companies need to empower the formation of dynamic teams. External messaging is an important step in that direction.

In February of this year Microsoft also announced mobile Yammer apps for iOS and Android to increase the accessibility of the service so this expansion means no concerns about what platform team members have for on the go access to Yammer.

There is a FAQ at the bottom of the Evolving Yammer for a new era of teamwork post at the Office 365 blogs for more information.

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