Microsoft Teams is a secure collaboration hub allowing both internal or external users to host 1:1 or group chat collaborations, audio/video meetings with up to 300 participants and seamlessly integrates with Office 365 apps.
General notices about Microsoft Teams, including current events, noteworthy dates for future changes involving the service.
We recommend using Teams to hold meetings or group chat, but if you are looking to teach remotely then you should refer to guidance about Teaching Continuity Preparation
Unsure which tool to use for your meetings or events?
Just launched this June, a first phase of a new Digital Online Events Service delivered by Information Services. Here you will find advice and guidance about safely and securely hosting your meetings and events online, supported tools and and a selector to help you choose the right tool right tool for your type of meeting or event:
Getting Started with Teams Training Webinars
If you need help with Microsoft Teams please book a place on the Digital Skills and Training Team's "Getting Started with Teams" training webinars.
To book a place, search for "Getting Started with Teams" in Event Booking:
Planned Features for Teams:
- Virtual Breakout rooms are currently in development for Teams - expected October 2020 (Roadmap 65332)
- Pin posts in Channels - September 2020 (Roadmap 64334)
- Live react during meetings - expected December 2020 (Roadmap 65946)
- Support for larger meetings with upto 1000 attendees - expected December 2020 (Roadmap 65951)
Recently Deployed Features:
- Teams now supports up to 9 video screens simultaneously.
- Teams now supports a raise your hand feature.
Major Change Announcements:
The following changes are rapidly being rolled-out by Microsoft in response to extraordinary usage patterns across UK and Europe with people working from home due to covid-19 measures. These changes are to help preserve higher priority features, particularly for education sector users:
- Presenence indicator frequency - Microsoft are reducing the frequency used when detecting precense status. Impact should not be noticeable.
- Mark as seen indicator frequency - Microsoft are reducing the milisecond frequency used when detecting 'mark as seen' indicator on messages. This has a cosmetic effect where, the intervals before a message is marked as having been seen are increased.
- Capacity has been added to UK and Europe data centres to serve a further 1.9 million additional users
- Temporary change to Office document behaviour via Teams "Files" viewer. An extra click is added to edit a document so users first see the document in view mode and users need to click on the options in the top right of the white bar above the document, "Open in Browser" or "Open in Desktop App" where a separate window will allow users to make edits to the document.
- Microsoft are releasing a new "Raise your hand" feature for meetings in Teams and this will be rolled-out in the next quarter.
Connecting People with Teams
A blog article giving some insights and reflection about how Teams is being used to support people working from home: Connecting People with Microsoft Teams
General Teams Notices
- Please note, if you only wish to connect with people using Teams, use the "Meet now" feature to call them or schedule a meeting using your calendar, you don't need to create a team channel or group chat first.
- Use Microsoft Teams for meetings or chat with colleagues. From July 2021, Skype for Business Online will be decomissioned by Microsoft and all the calling and meetings features are already in Microsoft Teams. Teams would typically be used for your 'inner loop' collaborations and communications.
- If you prefer to use Yammer for your 'outer loop' collaborations and communications, you can still benefit from seeing what's happening at your yammer networks via Teams by adding a Yammer page. Microsoft have not formally announced any plans to retire Yammer. More info about Yammer in Teams
It is important that you please consider Information Governance when sharing information in Microsoft Teams. Please review the University of Edinburgh's policies on Information Security and Data Protection Policies, which apply when using Microsoft Teams:
You can also review the University's privacy notices, which apply when using Microsoft Teams:
Also make sure you have completed the compulsory University of Edinburgh e-learning on Information Security Essentials and Data Protection Training. You can access these by logging into Learn with your University log-in details and seraching for them in the Quick-enrol search.
If you are sharing research data in Microsoft Teams, please refer to the Research Data Service webpage for information:
If you have concerns about sharing data or permissions in Microsoft Teams then please raise a call with us via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further information and guidance:
Recording of Teams meetings
Meetings in Microsoft Teams can be recorded and will be available to download after the meeting from the Channel you had the meeting in or from the Chat space. Your recordings are stored in Microsoft Stream. Microsoft Stream is not enabled at the University, however we are looking to enable this shortly.
Please note that Teams meetings recordings are not on by default and must be turned on by someone in the meeting.
Important principle on recording meetings
If you are the organiser of an event/meeting you must inform your participants of your intention to record the event/meeting and, to meet legal requirements, you must also inform participants whether they can opt out (or if they have to opt in).
Teams will also show a notification banner (shown below) across all meeting attendee's screens to tell them they are being recorded. However, you are still required to inform them.
There are other guiding principles to consider before recording your meetings. Before recording your Teams meetings, please read through our "Guiding principles - recording of online and digital events" on the Online and Digital Events webpage:
How do I record my Teams meetings?
For information on how to record your Teams meetings, please see "Record your meeting" on our meetings page:
How do I control who records my meetings?
By default all meeting participants can start meeting recordings. We recommend that if you are the meeting organiser you change this before your meeting for privacy reasons. This involves accessing the meeting options and changing the roles of your meeting participants. To do this:
- Schedule your meeting and send the invite to your participants
- Then, click the "Calendar" icon in Teams
- Then, click your meeting
- Next, click "Meeting options" (beside the time zone option) and a new browser window will open
- Next, click the drop down beside "Who can present?" and select either Specific people (if you want others to have the same permissions as you) or Only me
- Then, if you selected "Specific people", enter the names of your presenters beside "Select presenters for meeting"
- Finally, click Save. You can now close this browser window, and all meeting participants will be added to your meeting as attendees (unless you added them as presenters).
Adding external guest users in Teams
Please make sure that if you're adding external guest users to a Team that you inform them that their contact email address will be added to our company address book and they can opt-out of this if they wish. If the guest wishes to opt-out then you must raise a request to IS Helpline with the email address of your guest to be hidden from the University address book.
Limits and Specifications
Microsoft Teams has various limits, specifications and requirements that apply to it.
Microsoft provide up-to-date information on these limits and specifications on their website. This gives information on how many people can be in a Team, how many Teams you can create, how many attendees can join a meeting and other information.