Do you find it more challenging to connect with your people now that your organisation has adopted remote working? Has it become harder for your teams to know where to look for important company information and conversations? Are you unsure how well your teams and new staff members are working together?

These are a few of the reasons why Microsoft launched their new ‘Viva’ product earlier this year. The tech giant developed a solution that will help organisations improve their employees’ overall experience at work by bringing together communications, knowledge, resources, training programs, and wellbeing data into one cohesive platform. Microsoft Viva comprises four modules—Connections, Topics, Insights, and Learning—each built to serve a different purpose, but all of it integrated within the Microsoft Teams app.

Today, we will focus on Viva Connections – the module that serves as your personalised communication gateway.

What is Viva Connections?

Microsoft describes Viva Connections as your ‘gateway to a modern employee experience’. It personalises how news, communications, and conversations are delivered to an individual based on their role, location, and other information, much like a social media app would. It builds on existing Microsoft 365 capabilities such as SharePoint, Yammer, and Teams, allowing you to keep up with important announcements, jump into online conversations, and feature content that might be of interest to you.

Viva Connections is now available with a limited feature release, but the powerful mobile app and features such as the Dashboard for actions and reminders are expected late this year. The application gives you one place to go for key tools, suggested activities, or what to do; elements from Viva Insights such as wellbeing data and suggestions for taking a break or mindfulness tips; and aspects from Viva Learning such as recommended training content from LinkedIn Learning, etc. You can also add things like shifts in tasks that are specific to frontline workers.

You can choose what actions occur when someone interacts with the adaptive cards in the Viva Connections dashboard, decide on the card’s display size, and choose which Microsoft 365 apps or third-party vendors to connect to. You can tailor the experience based on your target audience so not everyone sees the same type of content on the cards. This all provides one central place along with your SharePoint Home Site (intranet) where Viva Connections presents in a neat mobile or desktop interface for your users embedded into Teams.

Watch how Viva Connections works in under 5 minutes in this video:

Why use Viva Connections?

We’re loving what Viva Connections brings to the table for organisations who aim to improve their employee’s overall experience. Here are the top reasons why you should start using Viva Connections now.

1 | Cut through the noise.

Viva Connections personalises the communications, announcements, and news received by your people, helping them to focus better on important pieces of information that matter more based on their roles.

2 | All the great features, without the extra costs.

Viva Connections comes free in your Microsoft 365 Business and Enterprise subscriptions and qualified SharePoint stand-alone licenses. No additional investment is required other than a few hours of your time and effort.

3 | No additional user training needed.

Viva Connections uses your existing modern SharePoint Intranet so your content creators don’t need to learn a new set of tools when publishing new content.

4 | Provide users one place to go for news and conversations.

Viva connections means your people don’t need to jump from their SharePoint App to Yammer to Microsoft Teams to catch up on all the important news and conversations. Viva Connections brings this all together in one Personalised feed inside Microsoft Teams.

How do I get started with Viva Connections?

Jumping into Microsoft Viva Connections only takes a few hours! Here’s what you can do now to get started.

1 | Add your SharePoint modern home site to Teams with the Viva Connections app. While its first release is relatively simple, by doing this step, you allow your users to get used to accessing your Intranet directly in Teams.

2 | Add Yammer Communities to your SharePoint home site. This helps with easily broadcasting company wide information and responses from your people that can soon be centralised in the Viva Personalised feed.  

3 | Talk to Professional Advantage about your Microsoft 365 and Viva goals. If you don’t have the modern SharePoint Intranet yet, then you should consider looking at it first so you can make use of Viva Connections and other Viva modules available. We can help you migrate your file shares to SharePoint and plan how Viva comes together with the rest of your Microsoft 365 applications.

Are you using Viva Connections now? What was your experience and what do you like most about it? Tell us in the comments below.

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