Microsoft Teams comes to Asante offices
In the pre-COVID “before times,” Asante’s office workers held meetings in conference rooms, chatted in office doorways and visited in break rooms. Those planned and spontaneous exchanges got harder 15 months ago, when hundreds of nonclinical employees began working remotely.
Now we’ve come full circle with the help of technology. On June 2, Asante installed Microsoft Teams on more than 1,000 computers for employees who perform administrative work. The communication software is the next best thing to being in the room where it happens by allowing video conferencing, group chats, real-time screen sharing, one-on-one live chat or video conversations, and other collaboration functions.
“Microsoft Teams will allow us to be productive in new ways and help staff maintain a sense of social connectedness at a time when we don’t have the same level of physical interactions we used to before COVID,” said Michael Olson, director of ITS Strategic Services.
As part of Asante’s rollout, ITS is providing users webcams and headsets to maximize the quality of virtual interactions.
Corporate leaders and administrative employees can find Teams by locating the icon on their Windows 10 desktop or applications folder. Training is available for all Teams users. Although frontline clinical staff can join any Teams meeting with a link, they will still use their regular means for clinical communications, including Halo.
If and when remote workers return to the office, Teams will still play a vital role in communication and collaboration. Meetings that once required employees to drive between cities may be done online with two-way video and screen-sharing.
Besides conferencing, file sharing, chat, document collaboration and screen sharing, next month employees will be able to collaborate even more easily with Microsoft Teams’ virtual workspace features, referred to as “Teams” and “Channels.” These enhanced features, to be introduced in July, allow groups across the organization to collaborate on a given project. Channels are organized according to subject matter or discipline.
Live training began on June 2. A library of tutorials, FAQs, quick tips and a calendar of go-live classes are available on Asante’s Microsoft Teams SharePoint site.
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