AGAT Software addresses demands of Microsoft Teams users

Microsoft Teams has quickly emerged as one of the most popular tools for centralising and managing collaboration in the enterprise environment. In a world where employees are becoming increasingly mobile and dispersed, it’s tools like Microsoft Teams that allow modern employees to stay connected wherever they are, without having to worry about things like email lag or lost phone signal.

However, there’s still growth that needs to happen before Microsoft Teams can become the ultimate collaboration solution for every brand. Fortunately, companies like AGAT Software are responding to the needs of Microsoft Teams Users by further developing their flagship “SphereShield” security and compliance solution.

SphereShield from AGAT Software now offers tools such as export, archive, and the option to move channels between Teams. According to the CEO of AGAT Software, Yoav Crombie, the offering was designed to respond to the top compliance and functionality requirements expressed by the Microsoft Teams User Feedback Forum, UserVoice.

Introducing Microsoft Teams Channel Management

Yoav told me that SphereShield is a unified communications and collaboration solution designed to respond to the needs of today’s teams. Customers need the simplicity and convenience that comes with team-based collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams, but that doesn’t mean that they want to compromise on privacy, security, or compliance.

“We extended the features of our premier product, SphereShield to address the two main user needs that we saw in the current environment. Current Teams users told us that they needed help with archiving and moving channels in the Teams environment”

Within the Microsoft Teams UserVoice forums, “archiving channels” was the issue with the second-highest number of votes (9k), while moving channels had the highest number of requests (10k). These issues were among the topics that are marked as ‘backlog’, which means that Microsoft hasn’t yet set a timeline for addressing them.

“Today’s users need the option to archive channels in their Microsoft Teams environment when they’re no longer using them. This stops the Teams space from becoming overly cluttered, and it also means that companies can better manage their limit of up to 200 channels per team.”

While deleting channels isn’t an option, particularly when information in the collaborative space is needed for long-term purposes, archiving presents an excellent opportunity. Unfortunately, Teams doesn’t offer a native export option to allow channels to be moved into different formats.

Archiving Channels with AGAT SphereShield

Just because businesses aren’t necessarily using all of their channels anymore, doesn’t mean that they want to get rid of that information forever. Users from a range of backgrounds have informed AGAT of their need to archive information. “Many of the projects that are handled through the channels in Microsoft Teams are dynamic and temporary in nature. They might include things like mini projects, incidents and tenders. Once those things have been resolved or completed, organisations may still need to keep a record of the information for legal reasons or for reference.”

Many companies adopting modern agile working policies and practices end up creating dozens of channels every month within Microsoft Teams. However, when projects are completed, that means that businesses are left dealing with a huge number of unnecessary and inactive channels. Microsoft has a limit on the number of channels that can be created, which means that businesses quickly end up running out of space.

The SphereShield solution from AGAT Software allows Microsoft Teams users to archive the channels that are no longer active in their environment. This means that companies can retain valuable information for evidence, reference, or use at a later date. Once a channel is successfully archived, it can also be deleted from the original team environment, maintaining a cleaner, uncluttered platform for team members and managers alike.

Moving Channels with AGAT SphereShield

SphereShield channel management

SphereShield channel management – click to enlarge

According to Yoav, as well as wanting a way to archive their channels, companies also want the option to move their channels. Organisational changes mean that needs arise to limit the people who access specific channels or to move certain channels to different teams. With any project, it’s not always easy to anticipate how an environment will evolve. Channels can become specified for specific teams or require different levels of access. Occasionally, channels might be set up and users will later discover that the structure of the channel isn’t suitable.

Yoav noted that AGAT SphereShield will give users the option to manage their channels however they see fit, by moving channels between teams and improving the flow of productivity and information. “Users will be able to confidently start collaborating with the use of channels, knowing that those channels can be moved when needed to address the changes in requirements that happen in any business.”

SphereShield will even support the organisational need that companies have to move data within a Teams channel into an unchangeable format like a PDF document. That hasn’t been possible until now within the Teams channel environment. There also hasn’t been a simple method available for copying and pasting channel content.

“We’re addressing this need for exportation by providing the option to export a channel into a PDF document format that users can then store and share according to their needs”

The SphereShield team is working hard to keep pace with the rapid evolution of Teams, and the changing needs of the end-user. The new features of SphereShield will increase usability, enhance functionality, boost productivity, and increase the adoption of Microsoft Teams.

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