Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Ignite 2020 - OD251 - On Skype for Business? Design your path to Microsoft Teams

Presented by: Lisa McKee and László Somi

Session summary:
Join this session to learn and determine the most suitable approach based on your current Skype for Business implementation and business goals. Whether you are a Skype for Business Online or Server customer, we will share best practices, resources and guidance to get to Microsoft Teams today.

My Notes:

A customer case from DSM started the presentation. DSM moved Skype for Business on-premises to Skype for Business Online to Teams. All employees got surface devices and Teams at the same time. In the following two months after deployment chat messages are double the amount compared to the number of emails. This implies users are communicating in a more conversational and immediate way then they had been doing before.

Running Teams and Skype side-by-side is a powerful and manageable way for your users to get comfortable with Teams. However, it is more than an "upgrade" - success comes from technical preparation and user readiness. Driving adoption is critical for success. The end goal is the "Teams Only" mode. Use https://aka.ms/SkypeToTeams to plan for a successful upgrade and organizational change.

Microsoft has guidance and resources to help you
plan and implement your upgrade journey.

Skype for Business Online will be retired on July 31, 2021. This date is valid also for when Hybrid setups, such as Skype broadcast, Cloud Connector Edition and On-Premises Configuration Hybrid, will be deprecated. Use https://aka.ms/SkypeToTeams-Faq if you have further questions. Transition paths to Teams for users homed in on-premises Skype for Business will exist beyond the retirement of Skype for Business online.

Teams upgrade planning workshops are a series of four, live, interactive upgrade planning workshops, where Microsoft will share guidance, best practices and resources designed to help you plan and implement your upgrade to Teams.

If you are using any kind of PSTN calling in Skype for Business this can be replaced by Calling Plans or Direct Routing in Teams (and Calling Plans for Teams are available in Sweden now.)

There will be a new version of Skype for Business on-premises during 2021 which will be available in a subscription model. Side by side upgrade from Lync 2013 or Skype for Business Server 2015 will work and there will be an option of an in-place upgrade from Skype for Business Server 2019.

Teams are not standing still, see coming features in the roadmap at

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Teamsfest 2020 - Demo session: Microsoft Phone system for users

Presented by: Linus Cansby

Session Summary:

Teams is a perfect place for collaboration and one of the parts of the collaboration is voice. With Teams you can activate Phone system and start calling to the Telephone network directly from your Teams client. In this session I will show how it works for the user and what users can expect. This session is for users and administrators that want to know if Teams can be their phone system platform and for users that recently started to use Teams as their phone system and want some tips. Expect demos, demos and demos.

My notes:

Phone system (the "PBX" in Office 365) connects to the PSTN via Calling Plans (hosted by Office 365) or Direct Routing (using an SBC hosted by the customer or a provider.)

The contact list in the Teams client is the same as the contact list in Outlook, and the Teams client have call history and built-in voice mail. Forwarding, Simultaneous ringing, voicemail settings and ringtones can be customized in settings. Call through in Do-not-disturb mode and call blocking can be handled in privacy settings. Call transfer with call back, consultative transfer, calling groups, delegation of calls, handling multiple incoming calls, hold was also demoed. Merging of calls is soon to be released in Teams.

The demos ended with a Call Queues demonstration.

Questions and Answers

When do you use conference mode in call queue?
When you have all agents in Teams (improves performance.)

Is there an attendant console coming?
Yes, several 3rd party options already exist.

Voice calling recording?
Is coming later this year.

If my boss setup my account as a delegate, am I able to change the boss call forwarding settings?

Can the admin set delegation and call forwarding for boss and secretary?
Yes, using the Teams Admin Center.

Are call queue and Auto Attendant reporting by Graph API available?
Yes, and PowerBI reports are coming in the future (announced at Ignite). Reporting for queues and Auto Attendants is available from https://www.codesoftware.net/solutions/microsoftteams/

When is presence for the Teams API coming?
Presence is in beta in Graph API already.

Are there any new custom roles coming for Teams admins?
The Microsoft Teams Communications Administrator now has access to Direct Routing, Auto Attendant and Call Queue administration.

Teamsfest 2020 - Creating your Champions Quarter in Teams

Presented by: Ville Gullstrand

Session Summary:
Most organizations are either managing their own champions program for Microsoft 365 or looking into creating one. The obvious place for your dear champs to share ideas is in Microsoft Teams! During this live demo session will go from nothing to a full scale Champions Quarter where your champs can thrive!

My notes:

The world is changing? The world has changed!

Office 365 - evergreen cloud - Continuous updates are happening and a champions team is needed. This group of engaged persons might be called

  • Ambassadors
  • Pioneers
  • Early adopters
  • Champions
  • Ninjas
  • or something cool

A practical hand-on session on how to build a "Champions Quarters" in Teams.

Add a Team called "The champions quarters" or something similar. Change the logo to something that people will recognize / remember. Create channels called, News, Continuous improvement (for feature updates) and fun stuff. Add an RSS feed to the News channel, for example the Office 365 roadmap and news.microsoft.com. Go and reply on some of the items in the feed to start discussions (be active.)

In Continuous improvement add teamsdemo.office.com as a tab.

In the General channel add a tab to the Teams uservoice. Go to the files tab and open the underlying SharePoint site, add links to this site as well and change the look of the site. Create a new news post with the title "Who are we as Champions" explaining the champions program. Go back to the General channel and add this news post as a tab.

Spend a few minutes to build a nicer SharePoint site.

On the SharePoint site add a list called "Tips in Teams" with the columns Title, Description and Publish date and continuously add tips to this list. Go to Power Automate (Flow) and build a flow to use todays date to publish the tip on the date specified in the list. This way new tips can be prepopulated and posted once a day for example.

Teamsfest 2020 - Building no-code chatbots for Microsoft Teams

Presented by: Tomasz Poszytek

Session Summary:
Chatbots are a good solution for employees to find answers to their questions, help them onboard, participate in processes and much more! We used to think that building a bot requires development. With Virtual Agent this is not true anymore! If you want to learn more how to create a chatbot without a single line of code and give it to Teams users, join this session! You will learn what is Power Virtual Agent is, how you can build your own chatbot, how you can integrate that chatbot with other sources using Power Automate and how you can embed chatbot in Microsoft Teams. Well designed and operating chatbots can save you hours on solving simple employees' problems and answering the most common answers.

My Notes:

Power Virtual Agents (PVA) was first announced in 2019 under the name "Virtual Agent for Customer Service" and have now been incorporated into the Microsoft "Power-" family. PVA combines the Power Platform and the Azure Bot Service and is used to create bots without programming skills. It can also integrate with Azure Cognitive Services. Conversations with the bot can be converted/escalated to chats or voice calls with people. A PVA used within an Organization will not be billed, but a stand-alone PVA is incurring cost depending on the number of sessions connecting to it.

A PVA editor can be added as an app in Teams, and it is possible to start developing the bot right in Teams.

A demo of how a bot is built using the graphical tools followed.

  • Trigger phrases and responses
  • Call actions from Power Automate
  • Catching UserID to do look up’s
  • Publishing the bot

Building a Power Virtual Agent in Teams


  • Adaptive cards, video support
  • Topic suggestions from documents
  • Voice interactions
  • Basic theming
  • List variables

Questions and Answers

In which situations it is recommended to use standalone (paid) Power Virtual Agent?
The most common use case is if you want to interact with users outside of your organisation - you can add a PVA to a webpage.

Is it possible to query the cds database of the team, without premium?
No, the premium license is needed for this.

How soon can we see the published changes?
Normally around 15 minutes.

Is there a possibility to access chat history in order to improve our bot responsiveness?

Can we publish a bot to the left menu in Teams?
Yes, that should be possible. Manage app setup policies in Microsoft Teams

Teamsfest 2020 - A Journey through Microsoft Teams Development

Presented by: João Ferreira

Session summary:
Microsoft Teams is changing the way people communicate and work worldwide and will be part of our lives in the decade to come. Even though it is very robust and comes out of the box with fantastic features, it lacks native support for many business scenarios and this is where you can make the difference by extending it with custom Apps making everyone much more productive. Long gone are the times where software development was restricted to a few geeks living for years in basements, in this new decade anyone have super powers to be a developer and Microsoft Teams clearly embraces and encourage any power user to build their own applications. In this session you will travel through all Microsoft Teams development methods. It starts with the Power Platform, makes a pit stop on the Microsoft App Templates and SharePoint Framework and finishes with the native Microsoft Teams Development. Looking to get more out of Microsoft Teams? This session will teach you how and what is the method that works best for you.

My notes:

Started with the famous "Developers, Developers, Developers" video featuring Steve Ballmer.

How to extend Microsoft Teams

App Templates - solutions provided by Microsoft:

They are secure, well documented, anyone (with permissions in a tenant) can install them and they are free (but some of them may incur Azure costs.)

There is a good "Coffee in the cloud" video discussing App templates.

Power Platform is integrated with Teams and every Power app is a Teams app.

  • Power BI
  • Power Apps
  • Power Automate
  • Power Virtual Agents

Two examples of apps developed by non developers from Tacoma Public Schools and the American Red Cross where shown.

Power Automate (previously known as "Microsoft Flow".) can be used to for example post a message in Teams. There are tons of connectors available to build integrations with Power Automate without the need to code.

SharePoint and SPFx (SharePoint Framework) can also be used to develop apps for Teams. SPFx have built-in Graph support, Azure AD secured APIs and hosting in SharePoint Online. There is silent authentication between a Teams client and SharePoint available through the _layout system in SharePoint.

Will a SPFx framework app be able to authenticate via the Teams token?
Yes, an SPFx framework app will do the authentication automatically using the credentials of the user currently logged in to Teams.

Teamsfest 2020

Today I again joined Teamsfest arranged by the European Teams User Group, just like last year. A great community driven event held totally on-line in Microsoft Teams. Look at twitter under #teamsfest for some buzz about the event.

Teamsfest - powered by Teams of course!

The event was running the entire day with many sessions and good speakers. For recordings of all the sessions from the day look at the YouTube page of the European Teams User Group. Thanks to Chris Hoard, Vesa Nopanen, Adam Deltinger and Chris Webb for arranging this event!

The keynote started with a video note form Jeff Teeper - Corporate Vice President Microsoft 365 Collaboration of Microsoft.

Remote everything - the world has changed forever, what we learnt the last few months will stick with us forever.

History of Teams

  • March 2008 - Microsoft Online Service availability
  • June 2011 Office 365 General Availability
  • March 2017 Microsoft Teams General Availability
    (Office 365 85M Monthly Active Users)
  • April 2020 Microsoft Teams 75M Daily Active Users
    (Office 365 258M Monthly Active Users)

Ignite Recap - a few highlights

  • Together Mode Scenes
  • Custom Layouts
  • Breakout Rooms
  • Meeting Recap
  • Webinars
  • Meeting Rooms
  • Calling Experience
  • Teams Templates
  • New Search Experience
  • Power Platform Integration
  • Meetings Extension
  • SharePoint Home Site App in Teams
  • SharePoint Syntex
  • Teams meetings recoding in SharePoint

A big thank you to the community!

About the day - Chris Hoard

Teamsfest is 100% free, 100% community, 100% passion.

  • 8 tracks
  • 85 sessions
  • 50 hours of Content
  • 8 moderators

There is also a lounge for socializing at https://teamsfest.rocks/lounge (aka Veskus virtual sauna)

Teams as a Platform - Vesa Nopanen

It is possible to create a bot to welcome new employees to the company, sending info and relevant links to the user. Teams could become the one-stop-shop for employee onboarding. Other examples are CRM integrations, screen pops at incoming calls, and the new meetings extensibility feature. 600+ applications are available in the store as of today. Power Platform allows "citizen developers" to develop apps and bots without code.

The importance of Wellbeing - Adam Deltinger

Wellbeing comes before productivity (or at least should.) The new work from home environment have several benefits, but also challenges like burn out. Both tricks and features in Teams can be used to ease the stress and improve the wellbeing of any employee:

  • Virtual commute
  • Emotional Check in
  • Meditation breaks
  • Break scheduling
  • Together modes
  • Quite hours
  • Focus assist
  • Do Not Disturb
  • Tasks in Teams

Chris wrapped up by discussing Teams for Education and all the great features in Teams that are the result of feedback from schools using Teams.

Have a great fest!

Friday, September 25, 2020

Ignite 2020 - DB144 - What’s new in Teams management

Presented by: Ronit Ben-Sheffer and Jamie Stark

The Teams Management Goals are

  • Simplicity
  • Granularity
  • Automation

The Teams Admin Center is always found at
and Teams can also be managed using PowerShell or Graph API.

 New features in the Teams Admin Center

The session contained many demos of the Teams Admin Center and the new features. I was assisting with the chat and answering questions from participants. We received a lot of good questions, and I learnt a lot, here are some of them.

Questions and answers

When assigning a different policy to a user in Teams Admin Center or via PowerShell it would be great to see when the functionality is really assigned to the user to be used - I am aware of the note "can take up to 24 hours" but often it is assigned quicker and then it would be nice to be able to see that somewhere - is this somehow possible?
There are several elements contributing to the overall throughput due to policy versus update frequency versus dependent services. We have plans to improve and reduce the frequency. As of now the user policies applied can be seen in Teams Admin Center. It would be optimal to know not just when the policy assignment occurs (which is usually quite quick) but to actually have a feedback loop for when the updated experience is in place at the client - there are plenty of reasons that a client may not have picked up the new policy (including being offline.)

Is it possible to assign App Policy to an Office 365 Group from the Teams Admin Center?
Yes, the ability to assign policies to groups is now available in Teams admin center and we are rolling out support across different policy types, including App Setup and App Permission policy.

Is there a way to track or audit Anonymous users?
Not really. They are anonymous and not part of your tenant.

When you have an external guest in your Team, is it possible to stop the guest downloading content?
If this is content from the Files area, you can apply policy at SharePoint Online level. This should also be possible using combination of Conditional Access policies.

Is there a connector / way to connect to PSTN reporting data from Power BI?
You can use the Call Records API and get the CDR data streamed to your data store of choice, and from there you can use Power BI to create custom reporting around that.

How far away is call centre functionality from teams?
We are always adding new capability to the Auto Attendant and Call Queue capability of Teams Admin Center, and folks certainly use this for customer contact scenarios. For more sophisticated scenarios we will always point to partners who are building contact center solutions on top of Teams.

PowerApps can now be integrated into Teams. Can PowerApps settings be administered through the Teams Admin Center?
The Teams Admin Center will help you administering Teams capabilities. PowerApps are only surfacing in Teams.

What is Advisor for Teams?
Advisor for Teams is a tool that helps rollout Microsoft Teams to your organization. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/use-advisor-teams-roll-out

Can Call Que managers see the status of the team members and know who is actively answering calls or not?
We are working to deliver real-time reporting for Call Queues.

What is a teams display device?
It is a personal device that serves as companion device, supporting the ability to join meetings, making calls, checking calendars, interact with chats, and of course supporting Cortana for voice interactions. Think about it like a modern, more capable, desk phone replacement.

Are Admins informed of any TOC / EULA change of a 3rd party app?
Not really, Apps do not "run in Teams". Instead we use Teams as a canvas to have an App User Interface. It is a scenario we are looking at across a few different dimensions - including whether the app has updated their compliance with 3rd party standards or privacy policies. We think this is particularly important for regulated industries.

The Alerting for Devices - is that only for devices with Teams installed or also for Intune devices?
These alerts are limited to Teams devices.

Is the data history for Graph API up to one year or more than one year?
It is up to one year.

What about detailed meeting reporting visibility, like who scheduled, how many attendees, attendance report and meeting duration at the tenant level from the admin center?
This will be soon announced in the beginning of next year as part of the meetings and calling usage dashboard.

Can I filter by location to bulk assign users in one location to a Teams app setup policy?
At this time, Teams do not support this capability.

What possibilities do we have for filtering users on group-based assignment?
Group based policy assignment is now available.

Is there a good way/tool to use in a Teams meeting to allow voting? (Scenario: 250-300 participants are key stakeholders who need to vote on proposals.)
With the new meeting extensions that will become available in the near future a lot of applications can be integrated directly into a Teams Meeting. Applications like Forms, Polls, Polly, etc. will be natively available in a Teams Meeting. If the meeting is in a channel, you can use either Polly or Forms for an instant poll/vote.

Is it possible to disable the video recording in Teams live events which gets recorded even though it is disabled at tenant level?
Video recording availability for attendees can be disabled at the moment that you schedule the live event. It is always enabled for producers/presenters.

Can apps be restricted to publish for specific Teams?
Yes, you can set a policy to assign the app to specific group of users.

The Consolidated PowerShell still need to have separate connection to Teams and Skype, will this change?
Yes, this was the first step of bringing the two modules together, in the future there will be a single connection to the back-end.

When is the new Teams PowerShell module coming out?
It is available here:

What is the best way to list the client version used in our Tenant?

The Call Quality Dashboard contains this information.

Are there any plans to provide a Teams native mechanism for retrieving peer to peer or channel chat logs (other than eDiscovery) for large groups of users?
Our team is working on APIs that can be used to address this scenario.

Can you clarify how call quality is measured?
There are definitions on when a call/stream is marked as poor or not.

Any good links to how we get devices on the Teams room device list? (seems some of our devices appear there, but others never appear.)
Suggest opening a ticket with support to prosecute this more completely. For reference, the docs are here.
and generally, the docs are linked (Learn more) at the top of the relevant page in Teams admin center.

Can the alerts be sent to email?
At this time, we support alerts via Teams channels and via webhooks.

I don't see any of the new features in my Admin Center? When they will they roll out in EMEA?

You can monitor the roadmap where it is indicated when certain features are rolling out to tenants. https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/roadmap?filters=&searchterms=teams

Is there a way to use existing Devices that are used by other solutions?
In order for third party meeting endpoints to join a Teams meeting you can use a certified Cloud Video Interop partner. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/cloud-video-interop

Will we be able to forward from Auto Attendant or Call Queue to external number without having to create "dummy" accounts and configure forwarding on those dummy accounts?
Yes, this is supported - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/create-a-phone-system-auto-attendant#external-phone-number-transfers---technical-details

When is assigning Microsoft 365 groups to a Teams app setup policy in the admin center going to be available in all tenants?
Unfortunately, we don't have a timeframe for support for App setup policy at this time, but the work is planned.

Call Admission Control (CAC) - A wonderful feature in SfB, looking forward to it in Teams, is it on the Roadmap?
Yes, on the roadmap. We have had discussions about it internally and the goal is to create something that is easier to configure and deploy than a traditional admission control capability but accomplishing the same thing of keeping an under-provisioned network from being over-run.

What possibilities do we have for filtering users on group-based assignment?
Group based policy assignment is now available.

Bulk policy assignment is not very efficient through the GUI if you have thousands of users to apply it to?
There are optimizations we will make to the user summary table that will make it more efficient to apply policy to large cohorts of users. Alternatively, there is also now the ability to apply policy to group objects - while that is not available for every policy type today, we are actively working to include more policy types in group assignment.

I am curious if Notifications have been tweaked at all? For us we have to have users go in and enable notifications for each and every channel. If users forget this, important messages go under the radar.
Teams communications require a bit different approach to notifications than mail - users who write to channel should use mentions if they want to catch attention of specific person or all channel/team. This way users will get notifications when there is something they should do. When a channel is important to user then users can choose to get all notifications. We rarely see situations in which users want to have all notifications about all channels. It would quickly overflow user with notifications.

Can we filter by location to bulk assign users in one location to a Teams app setup policy?
At this time, Teams do not support this capability.

Will we be able to add direct routing phone numbers and activate Enterprise Voice from the admin panel? Currently we must add the numbers via PowerShell.
Yes, we are aware of this and have the work in the backlog for implementation.

Do the telephony features include recording calls?
If you are referring to compliance call recording (e.g. record all incoming and outgoing calls to a specific group of users) then this is available. For more information please see.

When you duplicate a Teams policy, you cannot change/edit the Policy Name?
Yes, we are aware of this and have a work item in our backlog to pop a dialog when duplicating a policy with a default name pre-populated.

Can we pull the client logs in a centralized way, instead of asking users to click: Shift + Ctrl + Alt + 1 ?
We are looking to make this functionality available.

Is there a release date for Breakout Rooms in Teams?
Teams Breakout rooms are coming very soon. It is in preview at the moment.
Take a look at this on-demand session for more information.

Why can I not get walkie talkie not stay in Teams Mobile, it appears then disappear, meaning the feature shows up in the client at one time but is not there at another time?
This should not be the case please open a ticket with support - if the policy is assigned to the user it should not disappear.

How about carrier hosted direct routing?
It is possible and depends on your carrier offering. There are carriers offering direct routing with Teams today.

When will (near) real-time audio/video calls analytics be available?
This is coming in the beginning of next year.

Can you manage app permissions via PowerShell?
Yes, the App Permission Policies can be managed via PowerShell:

Is there a report to show who approved consent or see what apps have consent and their permissions consented to?
There is no out-of-the-box report available in Teams that will show who approved consent or see what apps have consent. Consent is registered in Azure Active Directory and can be audited there.

Will it be possible to get data from the reports via an API?
Yes. We have Graph API's to fetch reports.
Microsoft Teams user activity reports - Microsoft Graph v1.0

There are different options available to pull the reporting. Usage Reporting etc. is available in the Teams Admin Center for IT Admins. You have the PowerBI CQD reporting for your data analysts, and finally we have the Graph Call Records API to pull the raw data to build your own reporting.

How do we get the “new meeting experience” activated in our tenant?
The following blogpost on our official Teams Blog will point you in the right direction.
New Meeting and Calling Experience in Microsoft Teams!
Also make sure the Teams Clients are up to date with the latest updates.

Will application permissions be model in a app based approach, rather than user based policies - meaning policies per app, rather than assigning policies per user?
At this time, we support app support policies and app permission policies to be set at a user level. We plan to allow the application of these policies to Groups.