Microsoft 365 Copilot – your AI copilot for work

a computer screen with the words copilot on it

As a leader within your business, you’re always looking for ways to increase productivity and efficiency in your organization. Your employees’ daily tasks can become monotonous, leading to burnout and decreased productivity.

That’s where Microsoft 365 Copilot comes in. Copilot is an AI-powered tool that helps employees unleash their creativity, unlock productivity, and up-level their skills. By combining the power of large language models with your data in the Microsoft Graph and the Microsoft 365 apps, Copilot turns your employees’ words into the most powerful productivity tool.

With Copilot, your employees can jump-start the creative process in Word and PowerPoint, analyze trends, create professional-looking data visualizations in Excel, and quickly draft suggested replies in Outlook. Copilot in Teams can summarize key discussion points in real-time during meetings, including action items, which is a productivity booster.

Furthermore, Copilot creates a new knowledge model for your organization, harnessing the massive reservoir of data and insights that lie largely inaccessible and untapped today. Business Chat works across all your business data and apps to surface the information and insights you need from a sea of data so knowledge flows freely across the organization, saving you valuable time searching for answers.

Is Microsoft 365 Copilot right for me?

At WheelHouse IT, we understand the importance of data privacy and security. We also appreciate that Copilot large language models (LLMs) are not trained on your tenant data or prompts). Microsoft’s time-tested permission model within your tenant ensures that data won’t leak across user groups. And on an individual level, Copilot presents only data you can access. Using the same technology we’ve used for years to secure customer data.

Microsoft 365 Copilot is your copilot for work, helping your employees be more creative, productive, and collaborative. It is a game-changer for small to medium-sized businesses looking to increase productivity, efficiency, and employee satisfaction.

At WheelHouse IT, we are excited about the possibilities this technology brings to businesses and the way they work.

Introducing Microsoft Video Filters in Teams Meetings

a group of people are shown on the screen

We’re thrilled to announce that Microsoft has generally released video filters in Teams! Microsoft understands that you want to be fully engaged in meetings but may not always have the time to get camera-ready. That’s why they’re now offering AI-powered capabilities that allow you to soften your appearance and add backgrounds in Microsoft Teams. And now, with the introduction of video filters, you can remove unwanted distractions and express your unique personality in each meeting.

video filters

Video filters in Teams Meetings allow participants to enhance their video stream with a range of visual effects, from animated frames to changing the video’s hue. You can even apply these filters before joining a meeting from the lobby. These filters are provided as apps that can be added to your meeting experience via the Teams Platform infrastructure. Microsoft is launching the filters with a first-party app called Custom Filters, but more apps will be available soon.

video filters2

Microsoft continues to be a privacy-first company. They assure you that your privacy and compliance are top of mind. Tenant admins can enable or disable the availability of video filter apps, but these apps are enabled by default. The admin cannot pre-install these apps as they require explicit user consent. Before using the filters, you must provide explicit consent to the app to access your video feed. You can turn off the video filters in Teams by uninstalling the filter app.

in meeting screen

Please note that initially, these filters are only available from a desktop and are not available in EDU tenants. We’re excited to see how video filters can enhance your Teams Meetings experience!

Delivering New Webinar Experiences with Microsoft Teams

a person holding a tablet in front of a laptop

In these challenging economic times, many businesses seek to optimize and consolidate for cost savings and efficiencies. Simultaneously accelerating growth. Hybrid workforces continue to pose unique challenges to keep people connected. Therefore, organizations everywhere ask, “How can we do more with less?”. Virtual events, such as a Webinar, have become an increasingly popular option for businesses of all sizes. Still, with so many different platforms available, it can be tough to know where to start.

At WheelHouse IT, we’re excited to share how Microsoft Teams is evolving the webinar experience for existing webinars within Office 365 and Microsoft 365. The new advanced webinars within Teams Premium are generally available now. Microsoft Teams delivers engaging and richer digital-first event experiences that can help businesses generate leads and drive results.

Seamless setup and preparation before your event ensures every webinar is unique. Microsoft has revamped the setup and management of registration to offer more options to customize registration details and event settings. You can now designate co-organizers and add the relevant event details. Additionally, enhance presenter bios to showcase their expertise and social credentials and manage registration capacity limits for up to 1,000 attendees. You can also specify custom questions to gather pertinent information about prospective attendees. As well as enable consent for event terms and conditions upon registration.

seamless setup and preparation before event 1

To build excitement and drive attendance as the webinar draws near, you can leverage timely, automated reminder emails to ensure the event remains top of mind. On the day of the webinar, presenters can join one another and the host in the virtual green room. Ensuring seamless preparation. With the virtual green room, presenters have a separate, dedicated space from attendees to connect and chat in real-time. Additionally they can stage content, do a quick briefing, and test run without disturbing attendees.

green room

Maintain focus and drive engagement during your event. During the webinar, you can easily manage the production of your webinar to showcase a more dynamic, curated presentation by managing what attendees see. You can keep your attendees focused and more deeply engaged by managing their view so they only see shared content and participants brought on-screen. Thus, they are no longer distracted by the multiple profiles of other attendees or an accidental attendee video popping up.

focus

Improve live event experiences with Microsoft eCDN in Teams Premium. To improve live event experiences within your organization, the Microsoft Enterprise Content Deliver Network (eCDN) is now included in Teams Premium. With Microsoft eCDN, organizations can seamlessly and securely live stream global meetings, all-hands gatherings, and town halls. As well as distribute company-wide trainings using Teams Live Events.

Enhancing existing webinar experiences, Microsoft continuously improves the existing webinar experience in Office 365 and Microsoft 365 plans that users have relied on daily to deliver events worldwide. Microsoft has revamped the setup and management of registration with a new structure and expanded options to customize registration details and event settings.

enhancing webinar experiences

Live stream Teams Meetings and Webinars to Meta Workplace Live. As webinars are intended to reach a broader audience, typically outside of your organization. Microsoft is making it easier to connect with your extended network right within Meta Workplace Live. Now organizers can live stream a Teams meeting or webinar to Meta Workplace Live. Thus, increasing your reach and enabling attendees to engage wherever works best.

At WheelHouse IT, we’re excited to extend our knowledge to bring these new webinar experiences to our customers, partners, and community around the world. Whether you’re a seasoned Teams user or recently new to the application.

What’s New in Teams Feb. 2023

two screens showing the same person on their phone

The February 2023 edition of What’s New in Teams is focused on the launch of Teams Premium. Teams Premium is more intelligent, more personalized, and more protected. Additionally, includes new features such as Intelligent Recap, Live Translation, Meeting Templates, Branded Meetings, Custom User Policy Packages, Watermarking, Who Can Record, End-to-End Encryption, and Sensitivity Labels for Teams Meetings. Teams Premium also makes use of new AI features such as Intelligent Recap to improve productivity, and Suggested Files in Chats to find documents to share with colleagues.

Intelligent Recap

Intelligent Recap is a tool that uses AI-generated chapters based on PowerPoint Live to divide meetings into sections using presentation content. Therefore, it helps save time spent reviewing meeting recordings.

intelligent recap
Intelligent Recap

Personalized Timeline Markers

Personalized timeline markers are only visible to the user and call out when a user joined or left a meeting recording or when their name was mentioned. Additionally, they are visibile when a screen was shared.

Live Translation

Live translation is available in Teams Premium. Subsequently, providing AI-powered real-time translations in 40 spoken languages for captions in meetings. This helps with collaboration challenges, especially when working with people who speak different languages.

live translations of captions
Live Translations of Captions

Custom Meeting Templates

IT admins can create customized meeting templates, such as a client call, brainstorming meeting, or help desk call. Thus, automatically including the correct settings and ensuring meetings adhere to company policies.

Branded Meetings

Teams Premium also provides advanced personalization experiences, including branded meetings that display the logo and colors of the company. As well as infuse the brand colors into the meeting itself.

Custom User Policy Packages

Custom user policy packages are finally available. Thus, allowing IT to create a customized bundle of policies for users with similar roles in the organization.

Watermarking

Meeting organizers can also leverage a unique watermark over attendee screen shares and video feeds. Thus, deterring leaks when sharing sensitive or confidential meeting content.

branded meetings 1
Branded Meetings

Who Can Record

With the “Who can record” option, meeting organizers can limit who can record specific meetings. Thus, keeping discussions private.

End-to-End Encryption

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) for online meetings can be applied to disable core meeting features. Such as recording for rare, extremely sensitive meetings.

Sensitivity Labels for Teams Meetings

Microsoft 365 E5 customers with Teams Premium can enable Microsoft Purview Information Protection sensitivity labels for Teams meetings. Therefore, automatically applying relevant and important meeting options based on the sensitivity of meeting content.

Teams Premium includes webinars, allowing users to host various virtual events as well as offer personalized touches for presenters and attendees. Webinar organizers can also enable registration waitlist and manual approval to manage registration and review registrants.

Hosts can customize registration start and end times to make it easier to plan and manage events. Additionally, webinar presenters can join the virtual green room to prepare before the webinar without disturbing attendees.

If you’re interested in getting access to Teams Premium you can book time on the calendar below.

In addition to Teams Premium, there are core updates to Teams for Meetings, Virtual Appointments, Calling, Chat and collaboration, Teams for Education, and Management are also available to everyone.

Premium Non-Teams Updates:

Meetings

  • Tabs can now be accessed by anonymous users in Teams meetings.
  • In-meeting notifications can now be sent by a bot to specific individuals.

Virtual Appointments

  • A Virtual Appointments Teams meeting template is now available in Teams Calendar for external meetings.
  • Additionally, developers can create and manage Virtual Appointments for business-to-consumer scenarios using Virtual Appointment Graph APIs.
virtual appointments teams meeting template in teams calendar for external meetings
Virtual Appointments

Calling

  • iOS devices can now use picture-in-picture mode for multitasking.
  • Co-organizers can now create, manage, and move between Breakout Rooms.
  • Usability of the presenter window has been improved during screen sharing.
  • Authentication improvements include improved sign-in reliability and detailed error messages.
  • Survivable Branch Appliance has enabled new call controls.
  • Android devices are also now supported in the Teams Rooms Pro Management portal.

Certified Devices

  • Lenovo ThinkSmart One collaboration bar and Lenovo Core Bundle for Teams Rooms on Windows are now certified.
  • Crestron FLEX Microsoft Teams Rooms kit with Dell OptiPlex for Teams Rooms on Windows is also certified.
  • Yealink UH37 Dual/Mono Headset is now certified for personal peripherals.

Chat and Collaboration

  • Teams users can now chat with distribution groups, mail-enabled security groups, and Microsoft 365 groups within their organization.
  • New text formatting options are available in Teams messages, including strikethrough, quote, and code.
  • The sharing experience in Teams has been improved. Thus, allowing users to preview and select multiple files at once.
  • Suggested replies are now available in Teams chats to provide quick responses to common messages.
  • In-app notification settings can now be customized by users to prioritize the notifications that are most important to them.
  • Teams now integrates more closely with Outlook. Therefore, enabling users to access their Teams conversations directly from Outlook.
  • Teams now supports additional languages, including Hindi, Filipino, Bengali, Telugu, Tamil, and Marathi.
teams chat with distribution groups
Teams Chat with Distribution Groups

These updates are designed to enhance the functionality and user experience of Teams. Thus, improving collaboration and productivity for both individuals and organizations.

Interested in learning more about how WheelHouse IT can help you get the most out of your Microsoft ecosystem?

Google Workspace vs Microsoft 365 Email

an iphone with several different app icons on the screen

Google Workspace (formerly known as G Suite) is a suite of cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools from Google. One of the most popular offerings is Gmail for business, the professional email solution from Google.

Gmail for business provides a secure, private, and ad-free email experience tailored to companies’ needs. It works with Microsoft Outlook and other email clients, making it easy to switch over or integrate with existing systems.

How to Create a Professional Email Address with Google Workspace

Here are the steps on how to create Google professional email:

  1. Sign up for Google Workspace

The first step is to sign up for Google Workspace, the business version of Gmail. You can choose a plan that fits your needs, ranging from Business Starter to Enterprise plans with advanced storage features.

  1. Set up Your Domain Name

Once you are set up with Google Workspace, you must create your custom domain name. Then, add it to your account. This will be part of your professional email address (e.g., janedoe@yourcompanyname.com).

  1. Create Your Professional Email Address

Using the domain name created in step two, create a custom email address for yourself or each employee working on the same project/team. The primary email address will be in the format of firstname.lastname@yourdomainname.com.

  1. Set up Email Forwarding and Access

Google Workspace allows you to set up forwarding for any professional emails sent to your account, making sure no important messages are missed. You can access the email account from anywhere with an internet connection using one of Google’s applications or a third-party application like Microsoft Outlook.

  1. Ensure Compliance and Security Standards

Google Workspace offers enhanced security features that help keep your data private, secure, and compliant with industry standards. These features include two-step verification, encryption protocols, spam protection, and more. This ensures that all of your emails are safe from hacking and fraud.

Google Workspace makes it easy to create a secure business email address that is secure, private, and compliant with industry standards. With communication tools like Microsoft Outlook integration, email forwarding, and enhanced security features, Gmail for business is an excellent choice for organizations looking to stay ahead of the competition.

What are the Types of Professional Emails?

Professional emails can be divided into two main categories: transactional and marketing.

Transactional emails are sent from an individual or a business to another individual or company to complete a transaction, such as an invoice or purchase confirmation. Transactional emails should contain relevant information about the transaction that is easy to digest and understand.

Marketing emails are sent from an individual or business to a group of people to promote products, services, events, etc. These emails typically include promotions and discounts, website links, blog posts, social media accounts, etc. These emails must be clear and concise so the recipient knows what it is about at first glance.

More and more businesses are turning to professional email providers like Google Workspace and Microsoft Office 365 to create their business emails. These services provide companies with the custom tools and features they need to ensure compliance and security standards, as well as the ability to access their emails from anywhere with an internet connection.

Creating a professional email address with Google Workspace or Microsoft Office 365 is manageable. It can give your business an edge over competitors by providing customers with a secure, private, reliable, and effective email experience. With these services, you can rest assured that your emails are safe from hacking and fraud, allowing you to focus on what matters most: growing your business.

How Does Google Workspace Compare to Microsoft 365?

Google Workspace is an excellent choice for businesses looking to create professional emails. The service provides users with all the digital tools they need to ensure compliance and security standards and access their business email from anywhere with an internet connection. Google also offers additional features such as email forwarding, video conferencing, automatic backups, two-step verification, encryption protocols, spam protection, and more.

Microsoft Office 365, on the other hand, is an email service provider that equips users with robust compliance and security features such as data protection solutions, advanced virus scanning capabilities, and automated archiving. Microsoft also offers useful collaboration tools like Outlook Calendars and OneDrive for Business, making it easy for teams to record and collaborate in real-time.

Comparison

The compliance features of Microsoft Office 365 are superior to those of Google Workspace. This makes Microsoft Office 365 an ideal choice for businesses that must ensure their data is secure and compliant with industry standards. However, if you just need essential email services, Google Workspace might be the right choice. It offers all the features of a professional email service at a lower cost.

Even if you don’t need all of the features that come with Office 365, it’s still worth considering. This is due to its superior compliance capabilities. Microsoft Office 365 offers advanced security and compliance features such as data protection solutions, automated archiving, encryption protocols, two-step verification processes, advanced virus scanning capabilities, and more. All of these are designed to ensure your company meets industry standards and regulations.

Regardless of your choice, investing in a professional email service like Google Workspace or Microsoft Office 365 can help protect your business’s data and give customers a secure, private, and reliable email experience. Investing in security and compliance tools is essential for any business looking to stay ahead of the competition.

When Choosing an Email Platform: What Should You Consider?

Now more than ever, businesses must ensure their data is secure and compliant with industry standards. Professional email services like Google Workspace and Microsoft Office 365 provide robust tools and features that help protect customer data while providing them with a secure, private, and reliable email experience. Choosing the exemplary email service for your business is essential and can significantly protect customer data and stay competitive.

When selecting an email platform, it’s essential to consider each service’s features and capabilities. Ask yourself questions such as Does this service have all the features I need? Is this service secure? How easy is it to use?

It’s also important to consider the cost of the service and whether or not you can afford it. Generally speaking, professional email services like Google Workspace and Microsoft Office 365 are more expensive than free services. However, they offer additional features that make them well worth the investment.

Finally, you should consider any specific compliance regulations your business may need to adhere to. Depending on your industry or sector, particular rules or standards may exist for data security, privacy, and compliance. If so, it’s essential to ensure that the email service you choose is up-to-date with all the latest regulations and standards.

By taking the time to compare different services and understand what features each one offers, you can make an informed decision when selecting an email platform for your business. Investing in a professional email service is essential for any business looking to stay ahead of the competition. As well as to ensure data security and privacy to gain customer trust.

How to Configure Your Professional Email from a Google Account with Microsoft Outlook

If you’re looking to configure an email account from a Google Account with Microsoft Outlook, there are several steps you should take. First, open Microsoft Outlook and select the File tab in the top left corner. Next, click Add Account and enter your name and business email address into the appropriate fields. Once that is done, select Manual Setup or Additional Server Types to open the Choose Service window.

Now select IMAP from the list of options. Then, enter imap.gmail.com for both the incoming mail server (IMAP) and outgoing mail server (SMTP). Next, choose Sign In to enter your Google credentials. If two-factor authentication is enabled on your account, you must provide an app password when prompted by Microsoft Outlook.

After successfully logging in, select the Advanced tab and enter your Google Account information. Make sure to select SSL as the incoming server encryption type and TLS as the outgoing server encryption type. Finally, click OK and then Finish to save your new account settings.

Now that you’ve configured your professional email from a Google Account with Microsoft Outlook, it’s essential to make sure you are taking steps to keep it secure. This includes using strong passwords, setting up two-factor authentication, configuring advanced security features such as domain authentication and data encryption services, and using anti-malware software to protect yourself against potential cyber threats. By following these steps, you can ensure that your emails remain secure and protected.

With a combination of Google Workspace’s robust suite of applications and the security features offered by Microsoft Outlook, your business can benefit from a secure and reliable email system. Both platforms offer powerful tools that will help keep your emails safe. Meanwhile, providing the scalability and feature-rich options you need to run a successful business.