With remote working here to stay the challenge of protecting the health and wellbeing of staff working from home is business critical.

The pandemic has changed the way we work forever and Microsoft believes its new product – Viva – is a big part of the solution.

Powered by Microsoft 365 and experienced mainly through Microsoft Teams, Viva is designed to act as a portal for both employees and employers to navigate the challenges of working from home.

Launched in January 2021, Microsoft Viva isn’t an app or even a service but a platform for improving remote working and helping businesses adjust to it.

Viva integrates into Microsoft Teams and works like an intranet by collecting essential parts of a business into a central location.

It helps keep users engaged for longer with tailored content especially for them.

Microsoft is splitting Viva up into four specific modules:

  • Connections
  • Insights
  • Topics
  • Learning

Connections includes internal communications, or resources like benefits and company policies. It is designed to be the portal you’d head to if you just started working at a company and you’ve never even met your co-workers due to pandemic restrictions.

Connections is basically a dashboard for connecting colleagues remotely. It’s built on Microsoft’s SharePoint technology and includes things like company news, employee resource groups and communities.

Viva Insights feels like the next step in Microsoft’s Productivity Score feature. It will include data for managers and leaders to monitor work patterns and trends but privacy will be protected. This means personal insights are visible only to the employee, while insights for managers and leaders are aggregated and de-identified by default to protect individual privacy.

Viva Learning is Microsoft’s third module in Viva and like the name implies, it is for employee learning and development. This is where employers will keep training materials, courses and other content for employee education. This can include content from LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, and even a business’s own content, alongside training material from third-party providers.

The last module inside Viva is Topics. It uses AI to organise content and automatically surfaces topic cards with documents, videos, and related people. Viva Topics will generate topic cards from apps like Office, Teams, and SharePoint.

Microsoft has stated it’s only just getting started with Microsoft Viva but it clearly furthers Microsoft’s ambition to put Teams at the centre of its strategy for work and to act as a hub.

·      If you need any help and advice with Microsoft products, or your IT in general contact Thomas Gwyther, Microsoft Modern Workplace consultant at Manchester-based Everything Tech