5 Microsoft Teams Integrations for Better Project Management

It happened, COVID-19. In March 2020, if your company was like Advisicon, you found yourself in an unprecedented predicament, forced to work from home. For a lot of us, this is still our reality. As a project manager, how do you keep your team connected and keep track of your projects at the same time? Like so many companies, you probably rely on Microsoft Teams.

Teams is the ultimate collaboration tool for file sharing with OneDrive and SharePoint and communication (chat, audio/video conferencing). Teams also can connect with several Microsoft Project Management tools and other apps, allowing you to manage your projects from one app.

Here are the five most utilized integrations of Teams our Project Managers use at Advisicon.

#1 Tasks by Planner and To Do

This is a newer feature available in Teams. With the ability to pin the app to your left navigation bar for easy access, you can see the Planner and To Do tasks specifically assigned to you. You can easily filter your tasks by priority and date.

You cannot only view your assigned tasks, but you can also add new tasks for yourself and choose which team to store that specific task. This allows you to quickly add new tasks within one app instead of going to each Channel’s Planner Board and adding a task for yourself.

#2 Planner Board Tab for each Team/Channel

Working with Planner in Teams has the full interaction feel and capabilities. As if you were working with Planner itself, the integration features buckets such as “To Do,” “Backlog,” and the ability to add a new bucket. Just like the Planner online version, you can filter items and rearrange the buckets as needed.

What is great about having the Planner Board is that it doesn’t have to be in one Channel only. You can have the Planner board across all channels within the team. This allows you as the Project Manager to assign tasks to those team members working on your project or have access to the Team and Channels. Keep in mind, though, anyone who has access to the Team or Channel has the ability to make changes to each of the tasks, such as adding notes, marking as complete, moving a task, etc.

#3 OneNote

Adding a OneNote tab to the Team Channel is a collaborative way to track or share notes regarding Projects. Whether its customer meetings, internal meetings, action items, or any other information regarding the Project would benefit the other members. By utilizing OneNote, your team can easily access the information as they are already a part of your team. They can also add additional notes or references if they need to refer back to something that happened prior.

#4 Project Online Schedule/Project for the Web Links

Did you know you can add your Project Online schedule as a tab to Teams? This enables you to manage your Project from one place? Using the Website app and your project schedule URL, you can manage your Project scheduled directly from Teams. Keep in mind that a Project Plan 3 or Project Plan license is required to view the Project Online Schedule.

You can also manage your Project for the Web schedule and tasks, much like your Project Online Schedule. However, instead of adding a website tab, you would add a new “Project” tab connecting the Project for the Web schedule to Teams. Anyone with access to the Teams Channel can view the project schedule and assignments. However, only those with a Project Plan 1, 3, or 5 license can make changes to the schedule.

#5 Syncing Document Library with OneDrive

Each Teams Channel, by default, comes with a document library, “Files” tab. Store anything related to the Project within these document libraries. They’re available to everyone working on the Project that has access to the Channel. Having all documents located within Teams allows easy access to information and documents to members of your team.

While all project documents are accessible via Teams, it can be cumbersome to edit documents within the app itself. In most situations, you or your team members would choose to open the file using the desktop app. One way to bypass the pesky step of opening the document in the desktop app is to sync the document library to OneDrive. This allows easier access to the files using your File Explorer. Syncing will enable you to connect OneDrive, Teams, and SharePoint with the benefits of using File Explorer as you normally would, adding new folders and documents, which will show in the Teams channel.

While there are many different apps and files you can add based on your company’s needs, there is definitely a benefit as a project manager to keep everything in one location. Microsoft Teams has become a one-stop-shop for collaboration, project updates, file storage, and assigned tasks.

For additional information and a walkthrough of adding these specific tabs to your Teams channels, be sure to check out our YouTube page and webinar on How to Manage Projects with MS Teams.

For any other Teams or Project Management questions, you can reach out to us here. One of our in-house Microsoft experts will be happy to help.

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