The overwhelming theme of this year’s virtual Microsoft Inspire 2021 conference was that Microsoft is fully committed to being the very best partner they can be to their partners. Satya Nadella started the conference with a powerful keynote acknowledging that Microsoft has gotten where it is today solely because of its partners and that it will only continue to grow if its partners are also growing. Every major takeaway from the conference carried along this theme, yet concepts ranged from security to reduced costs to higher functionality. Below are what we believe to be the most impactful takeaways from Microsoft Inspire 2021.
Just as it seemed we might be seeing clear skies ahead in terms of the pandemic; another dark cloud began to rise on the horizon. The Colonial Pipeline breach hit the news, and many people started to panic. We were all too familiar with the uncertainty of the future, and last year’s toilet paper rush was replaced with people filling gasoline in plastic containers of all sorts and sizes.
Are there tasks at the office that you are consistently required to complete that take “focus” time away from your day? Are there times that you have ever thought, if only these tasks could run themselves, then I could get more done with my day? Microsoft must have been listening to our inner thoughts; thus, they have developed a solution. This solution, called Robotic Process Automation (RPA), was first announced at the 2019 Microsoft Ignite Conference. At the conference, Microsoft introduced the robotic process automation as a part of the Power Automate Desktop. Since the announcement in 2019, Microsoft has doubled down on this investment and has seen the return on investment. Hundreds of thousands of organizations have accepted it and are using it to automate billions of tasks each month. You may be wondering, how do I use this technology to lighten my load of “busy work” and increase my value by allowing more time for deliberate and innovative thinking?
It is accurate that 2020 changed the way we work. Many believe that we will never go back to thinking about work as a location but instead a culture. Microsoft is doubling down on this theory and has created a platform to truly connect employees in a virtual setting. As Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said, “As the world recovers, there is no going back. Flexibility in when, where, and how we work will be key.” Micirosoft's solution, is newly released Microsoft Viva. Like the “Intranet” of old, Microsoft Viva is a platform that connects essential aspects of a your business in one central location.
It is 2021, and many of us vowed to be a better version of ourselves as soon as that New Year's Eve ball dropped. I hope you have followed through with your resolutions, but even if you have not, how about if you strive to be a better Microsoft Teams user. With over 75 million active daily users, no matter where you work, there is a good chance that you are using Microsoft Teams. While you're trying to be the best you can be, why not be the best you can be at Teams as well? To be the best, you need to know the trade's real tricks to save you time and energy. Let's take a look at the top keyboard shortcuts to make your use of Teams even more useful.
We all could use a little help in remembering our tasks from time to time. In the busy world we live in, it can be challenging to keep up with our day-to-day duties, and many times, emails and tasks out of the ordinary get lost. In a perfect world, we would all have an assistant that briefs us on our day and reminds us of tasks that may have been forgotten. Fortunately, Microsoft understands that most of us are not privileged enough to have a personal assistant, and instead, they created a virtual assistant for all of us. Introducing, Cortana Briefing Emails.
In March of 2020, work as we knew it instantly changed. We were used to an office environment where physical office space was the norm. Virtual meetings were the exception and were primarily used when clients were distant and travel was impossible. Although more and more companies had made working virtually more acceptable, the trend was merely beginning. The global pandemic of COVID-19 changed all of this. Many will look back on this year and remember it as a disaster. However, because of the challenging world pandemic, technology quickly evolved and was adopted faster than would have ever happened.