Microsoft 365 has a captive audience in the business world.
At least, it seems that way. It’s racked up over 200 million active users, with many subscribers making the most of multiple Office apps, many times a day — but if you’re simply spending time in Outlook, Word, and Exel, you could be missing a trick.
There are many more features to explore, so here, we’re sharing thirteen hints, hacks, and tips to help you get more from Microsoft 365.
Ready to get the full bang for your buck?
1. Learn What’s What With ‘Tell Me’
When you first use Microsoft 365, you may feel somewhat overwhelmed. There’s lots you can do, making it hard to know what to try first.
This is where ‘Tell Me’ comes into its own. Tell Me is the search box that sits at the top of most apps that’s always imploring you to “Tell me what you want to do…” So stop ignoring the request and use it to learn how to do almost anything — from writing a sales pitch to creating a ledger.
Even if you think you know how to format the perfect PowerPoint, perhaps Microsoft can show you a better way.
2. Send Email Clutter To ‘Clutter’
Now you know how things work, it’s time to get your email inbox in shape. That’s less tiresome than it sounds, all thanks to Clutter. Clutter from Outlook is a smart app that helps you focus on what matters by learning which emails you read and which you choose to ignore.
Once it understands how you work, it will start to filter ‘lower-priority’ messages into a newly created ‘Clutter’ folder, leaving you to read what matters and sideline the rest.
3. Mute Conversations Thanks To ‘Ignore’
If you’ve used Gmail before, you may know of a nifty little feature called ‘Mute.’
Mute lets you pause notifications from threads you’d rather ignore. And with Microsoft 365, you can do just the same thanks to a feature called — you guessed it, ‘Ignore.’
‘Ignore’ is your way to delete conversations manually. It avoids updates from clogging up your inbox — while if a subject becomes important again, you can restore it from the ‘Deleted Items’ folder in one click.
4. Level-up Your Note-taking With ‘Office Lens’
Office Lens is a remarkable integration that uses the camera on smartphones to take pictures of any source of notes (including documents, whiteboards, you name it). It then crops, sharpens and straightens your photo to make it look like a scanned image — leaving you with perfectly legible notes, no ink smudge in sight.
5. Collate Content In ‘OneNote’
Now you know about Office Lens, it’s time to learn where to save your notes.
OneNote is a digital notebook that lets you store notes more effectively. You can even create to-do lists and reminders, then access, or share, your content whenever you like — no matter where you are.
6. Find Meaning With ‘Smart Lookup’
When you’re in full note-taking mode, you won’t want to disrupt your flow by switching between tabs just to find the meaning of a word. Thanks to Smart Lookup, you won’t have to. Smart Lookup lets you highlight words or phrases, then pull up a search window in one click.
Meaning you can find the details you need about whatever you’re researching — without ever having to toggle between tabs.
7. Co-ordinate Teams In ‘Groups’
Once you shift from research to writing, you may well find yourself working across multiple departments. What better way to centralize communication and file-sharing than through groups? You can even include people from outside your organization, meaning that once you’ve set up a group, you can share calendars, files, and direct messages in a few clicks.
8. Co-author Documents In ‘OneDrive’
If you prefer to collaborate directly on a document, don’t default to Google Docs. Get everything you need using Microsoft 365 by saving files to OneDrive, then sharing them with colleagues. Team-mates can now work on documents in parallel while you can track changes on-the-fly.
9. Organize Files Using ‘SharePoint Views’
OneDrive is great for collaboration. But from an organizational standpoint, you’re somewhat limited. Instead, Use SharePoint for file storage. SharePoint lets you create custom views for an altogether more dynamic structure, allowing you to add parameters (like geography, priority, or other custom factors) and only see documents that fit certain filters.
10. Share Files More Easily With ‘Share+’
SharePoint is also great for file sharing, primarily thanks to its ‘Share+’ function. Share+ lets you add a link to your emails, with the link redirecting straight to the source file. Now users can get where they need in one click — and you no longer have to attach an updated file each time you want to share.
11. ‘Pin’ Files For Easy Access
It’s all well-and-good making other’s lives easier with Share+. But what about taking some strain from your own shoulders? Using ‘Pins,’ you can. Right-click any document to see a full list of all the files you’ve had open recently.
Then right-click the documents you’d like to pin to your taskbar for quick-and-easy access whenever you want.
12. Create Slideshows That Raise A Smile In ‘Sway’
We’ve all lost time wading through less-than-stellar slideshows.
Thanks to Sway, those times are a thing of the past. Sway comes as part of the Microsoft 365 package. And it brings you tons of ready-made templates for newsletters, documents, and presentations, helping you create visually-striking content, whether you’re feeling creative or not.
And if there’s an outline you want to use, you can import it straight into the template — saving time from the start.
13. Close Deals Online Using ‘DocuSign’
With your Sway sales pitch generating inbound leads, it’s time to close some deals.
Forget the email back-and-forth and the stream of scanned documents: keep things digital with DocuSign. DocuSign lets you send a word document or email to your prospective client, then collates all the digital signatures in one place — without anyone firing up the printer.
30 Days Of Microsoft 365 — For Free
Microsoft 365 offers a free one-month trial to any company looking to test out the service.
And that’s more than enough time to see if its suite of apps is right for you. If you use the thirteen tips shared above, there’s every chance you’ll want to sign up for a full subscription.
If you do, feel free to give Mid-Coast Tech a call on 207-223-7594 — there’s plenty more advice we can share.