The History of Information Exchange
Once upon a time, we picked up the phone and called a colleague when we had a question or needed information. Could not connect? We would just leave a message. More recently, we decided to simply send an email with our information requests. The recipient could read the email when convenient and respond, and there would be a message thread for historical purposes. Nice option, but sometimes slow and quite impersonal.
And now – texting. This provides faster feedback and snapshots of conversations, but they often occur outside of the business environment and can be too brief to be truly effective. So, we again resort to email, and boy, do we ever get a lot of it. We get so much that it can keep us from being effective and efficient.
Enter Skype for Business
Skype continues to grow and integrate with other aspects of the Microsoft productivity arsenal, especially Teams. It is video conferencing, screen sharing, document collaboration and, for the purposes of this article, Messaging and Group Chats.
Skype for Business helps with email overload. It, like texting, can provide instant access to co-workers, but unlike texting, conversations performed through Skype will be retained (in Outlook’s navigation panel), and are fully text searchable, save-able and moveable. Skype is available across multiple devices and platforms and most O365 subscriptions include it with varying degrees of functionality.
The Messenger features can be configured to be used internally only or be made available to your customers and clients externally as well. It can even be configured and integrated in telephone systems and calling plans. The Messenger can show a user’s availability and status either manually or through calendar integration with Outlook:
How does this save us from the email morass? If you have an O365 subscription, let us help you implement the Messenger portion of Skype. Then, you can use it for short requests of information or lunch plans, instead of emails. Use Skype Messenger for speedy group chats about a specific issue or customer instead of Reply All in email threads – now you are collaborating!
Collaborating? Oh yes.
Skype Messenger has very tight integration with O365 Teams too. If you have been chatting for a while now, let us take it to the next level with Microsoft Teams.
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