While remote work dominated 2020, this has become the year of hybrid work. New apps and features announced by Microsoft this year aim to further improve collaboration. For instance, the new Microsoft Teams share-to-stage feature takes a huge leap toward making hybrid meetings fully inclusive and interactive.
In the hybrid workspace, meetings typically include a mix of in-person and remote participants. Meeting leaders can find it challenging to include all attendees to an equal degree. Consequently, remote participants may feel left out, and meetings prove less effective without active collaboration from everyone involved.
Microsoft Teams meetings have previously allowed participants to collaborate through apps using in-meeting notifications or the side panel. While a step in the right direction, Microsoft recognized the need for even more dynamic interaction. Share-to-stage provides that.
Truly Collaborative Whiteboard Experience
Up until now, meeting presenters could share their screens and give control to another attendee for a time. But only one user at a time could edit the content. With the share-to-stage feature, not only can users share content, but all meeting participants can interact with that content in real time.
Consider the possibilities for brainstorming over distance. Instead of a presenter and observers, everyone can gather around a virtual whiteboard at once, building on each other’s ideas. One user can draw a diagram. Then others can add to the diagram, insert sticky notes and arrows, create drawings and more. Everyone has a voice.
Apps Supported in Microsoft Teams Share-to-Stage Feature
In its announcement about the share-to-stage feature, Microsoft indicated the first whiteboard apps that will tap into this capability. They include the following:
- Microsoft Whiteboard – Microsoft’s native whiteboard app integrates deeply with Microsoft Teams. It delivers flexible tools for diagramming, sketching and annotation and brainstorming.
- MURAL – Enables users to create multiple whiteboard areas on a single canvas, resizing and rearranging as necessary. They drive the collaboration process with chat boxes and a timed voting session.
- Miro – This intuitive whiteboard allows users to add multiple templates to a board, expanding the discussion with notes, text, and shapes. A wealth of built-in features and deep integrations with other trusted tools make it extremely versatile.
- Lucidspark – This easy-to-use app includes color-coded cursors and shapes for each user, making it easy to follow the collaboration. Expand ideas through breakout boards and group sticky notes by trends or themes to move the discussion along. A built-in timer helps keep the meeting on track.
- Freehand – With templates for everything from brainstorming to information architecture mapping to ice breakers, Freehand jumpstarts collaboration.
More Exciting New Teams Features to Power Hybrid Work
Share-to-stage joins a lengthy list of robust new Teams features that Microsoft has released or announced to support hybrid meetings. For instance, an Outlook RSVP feature will enable participants to indicate if they will attend a meeting in person or remotely. And if they are attending a meeting while driving, they can use Apple CarPlay to join meetings using Siri.
Microsoft Loop enables users to create and collaborate on independent blocks of content. By breaking free of the traditional boundaries between applications, this new tool facilitates fluid collaboration in the hybrid workplace.
Additional features announced in June include a Front Row feature that relocates the video gallery to the bottom of the screen to make the experience more natural. Additionally, AI-powered cameras will provide active speaker tracking and people recognition.
Discover Additional Microsoft Teams Share-to-Stage Benefits
To get the most out of your Microsoft Teams investment, tap into the expertise of the consultants at eMazzanti Technologies. With deep Microsoft experience, we can help you configure your system for optimal productivity and security.
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