How you can use Microsoft Groups: A step-by-step tutorial

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microsoft teams

microsoft teams

Microsoft Groups is a comparatively new product within the Microsoft 365 lineup, nevertheless it’s proving to be a extra sturdy competitor to Slack and Zoom. Integrations with different Microsoft apps and cloud companies make it an important alternative, and studying easy methods to use Microsoft Groups isn’t almost as tough as you may suppose (even for big firms).

For these new to the platform, we put collectively this fast newbie’s information. Right here you’ll study the entire primary duties it is advisable to know, plus just a few superior tutorials for issues like digital assembly backgrounds and extra. Obtain the app under and let’s get began!


What’s Microsoft Groups?

Microsoft Teams logo

Microsoft Groups is a productiveness and collaboration instrument that integrates into the bigger Microsoft 365 platform. It has options for speaking with totally different organizations, non-public chats with people and teams, video conferences and conferences, and extra.

Learn additionally: Zoom vs Microsoft Groups: Which is greatest for you?

Groups changed Skype for Enterprise and Microsoft Classroom, incorporating all options right into a single platform. It’s an important choice for each firms and educators, competing with Slack, Fb Office, and even G Suite.

Along with the entire customary chat and video name choices that you just’d count on from a program like Skype, Groups permits you to arrange, nicely, groups of individuals. One group can include as much as 500,000 particular person customers. These groups can then be damaged down into extra particular Channels with threaded posts to maintain every thing organized.

Is Microsoft Groups free?

Microsoft Groups is totally free to make use of, though there are additionally paid plans with extra options. The free model consists of conferences and video calls, 2GB of storage per consumer, and net entry to standard Workplace apps like Phrase, Excel, and Powerpoint.

The paid model adverts assembly recordings, extra storage per consumer (as much as limitless relying on the plan), desktop variations of all Workplace apps, higher safety, and extra administrative instruments to your Group. Relying on what you need to use Groups for, you might be able to stick with the free model indefinitely.

Microsoft Groups pricing

Microsoft Teams prices

For those who do need to improve to a paid Microsoft Groups model, there are three paid Microsoft 365 pricing plans accessible. The most affordable begins at $5 a month (if you happen to pay for a 12 months), and provides worthwhile options like assembly recordings and extra storage (as much as 1TB) for shared information. You additionally get extra security measures and 24-hour assist.

Leaping as much as the Microsoft 365 Enterprise Commonplace plan will unlock desktop variations of all standard Workplace apps. This makes it the perfect alternative for a lot of companies, though it doesn’t add any new Microsoft Groups particular options in comparison with the cheaper plan.

The ultimate plan is aimed primarily at massive companies and once more doesn’t add a lot to the Groups expertise. The one main additions are limitless cloud storage and the power to host on-line occasions for as much as 10,000 individuals. Be taught extra about pricing plans on the hyperlink under.

How you can use Microsoft Groups: Fundamental tutorials

Studying easy methods to use Microsoft Groups isn’t too tough. For those who’ve ever used a competitor like Slack it ought to really feel comparatively acquainted. Even the structure is almost equivalent, with the entire essential icons displayed on the left aspect of your display screen.

That can assist you get began, listed here are just a few primary Microsoft Groups tutorials for on a regular basis duties, together with getting arrange, chatting, and beginning conferences. We’ve additionally included extra superior tutorials under so be happy to skip forward if you happen to’ve already acquired some expertise with the platform below your belt.

Observe that these Microsoft Groups tutorials are written with the online model in thoughts, however the steps are related or equivalent on the cellular and desktop apps, as nicely.

How you can obtain the Microsoft Groups app

Though you don’t must obtain the desktop or cellular apps to make use of Microsoft Groups, it’s a handy method to keep related. To get it, click on right here and choose the appropriate choice for you. You can even obtain the cellular apps instantly from the Google Play Retailer or App Retailer by clicking under.

How you can create a Group

Microsoft Teams create a team

The very first thing it is advisable to do (except you’re becoming a member of an current group) is to create a group. Even in case you are simply becoming a member of an organization group, you could need to create one other one to speak with teams of mates.

Right here’s what it is advisable to do:

  1. Open the Groups tab on the left-hand aspect.
  2. Click on Be part of or Create a group on the backside of the display screen.
  3. Select whether or not to Construct a group from scratch or pull in contacts from an current group or group.
  4. Choose privateness settings: Personal, Public, or Org-wide.
  5. Enter a title and description.
  6. Click on Create group.

As soon as within the group, you’ll see the primary group chat with a listing of channels under. Channels are mainly group chats round a single theme. You can even have non-public chats with people or teams, which is what we’re subsequent.

How you can begin and come out a chat

Channels are nice for sharing info along with your total group, however for fast inquiries to colleagues, chats are the higher choice. They’re non-public, straightforward to maintain organized, and more likely to get a response than a channel submit!

Right here’s easy methods to begin a Microsoft Groups chat:

  1. Open the Chat tab on the left-hand aspect.
  2. Click on New Chat on the prime of the display screen.
  3. Enter the individual’s title and write your message.
  4. Hit the ship arrow.

The steps for creating a bunch chat are nearly equivalent. Simply click on the small arrow on the right-hand aspect to provide the group a reputation, then enter all members within the To subject. You can even add extra individuals to a one-to-one or group chat by clicking the Add Individuals button. You may even select whether or not or to not embody the chat historical past.

There are just a few different issues you are able to do to make chats much more handy. The primary is pinning them by mousing over the chat, clicking the extra choices icon, then Pin. This can be certain that it’s all the time on the prime of the checklist.

One other helpful factor to study is easy methods to come out a chat in Microsoft Groups. This offers that chat its personal window, so you may have multiple chat open at a time. Like above, simply click on the extra choices icon, then Pop-out chat.

How you can create a gathering

Schedule a meeting microsoft teams

Chatting is nice for fast messages, however typically a face-to-face dialog is a greater choice. Fortunately, it simply takes a second to learn to create a gathering in Microsoft Groups, whether or not it’s with one individual or 20!

There are two methods to arrange a gathering: beginning one immediately or scheduling one for a later time. The simplest approach for fast calls is to open a chat and click on the Schedule a gathering button (it seems to be like a calendar with a plus signal). This mechanically invitations the opposite occasion and works in group chats as nicely.

For every thing else, the method of organising a gathering in Groups is just like what you’re used to from Outlook:

  1. Open the Calendar tab on the left-hand aspect.
  2. Click on New Assembly within the prime proper nook.
  3. Enter the particulars of your assembly.
  4. Click on Save.

Observe which you can additionally create a gathering from a channel, which can mechanically invite all members of that channel. For those who’re having hassle discovering an appropriate time, you may examine the scheduling assistant tab on the higher a part of the display screen to see invitees’ schedules.

How you can be a part of a gathering

Becoming a member of a gathering is even simpler, and once more works identical to you’d count on if you happen to’ve used Outlook:

  1. Open the Calendar tab on the left-hand aspect.
  2. Choose the assembly and click on Be part of.
  3. Regulate your video and audio settings.
  4. Click on Be part of Now.

You can even click on the Be part of Microsoft Groups Assembly hyperlink within the e-mail invite. Relying on the assembly settings, you’ll both be a part of the assembly straight away or enter a ready room till somebody permits you to in.

How you can share your display screen in a gathering

Sharing information in a Microsoft Groups channel is nice, however if you wish to run by it in individual it is advisable to share your display screen in a gathering. Groups makes it straightforward to do that. It even has built-in integration with PowerPoint for simple enterprise shows.

Right here’s easy methods to do it:

  1. In a gathering, click on Share within the middle of the display screen (you could want to maneuver your mouse).
  2. Choose the display screen, window, or doc to share.
  3. A purple border seems across the content material you’re actively sharing.
  4. When completed, click on Cease Sharing within the backside proper.

For those who don’t have the doc you need to share open, you may as well click on the Browse button within the sharing menu to search out it. Typically, it’s higher to share a selected window or doc as a substitute of your complete desktop.

How you can use Microsoft Groups: Superior tutorials

Now that you already know the fundamentals of easy methods to use Microsoft Groups, it’s time to take a look at some superior options. Though they’re not fairly as important because the duties above, all of them are issues you might use each day.

Once more, these are written with the online app in thoughts, however the steps are related or equivalent on different platforms. Let’s get to it!

How you can delete a chat

Whether or not you need to clear up your Chats tab or eliminate mistaken messages, there’ll come a time when it is advisable to learn to delete Microsoft Groups chats. Right here you will have two choices: delete particular messages (solely your individual), or disguise all the chat.

To delete a selected submit in a chat or channel, mouse over it and click on the extra choices icon, then click on Delete. For those who do that by mistake, you may undo the deletion as nicely. Once more, you may solely delete your individual posts, and any nested replies out of your colleagues will nonetheless seem.

Sadly, there’s no method to delete a whole chat in Microsoft Groups, however you are able to do the following neatest thing: disguise it. Simply mouse over the chat, click on the extra choices icon, then Cover. It’s going to now disappear out of your checklist, cleansing up visible litter. This works for channels as nicely, however they’ll all be tucked away in a hidden channels checklist.

How you can set up apps

Microsoft Teams apps

Apps and connectors are an effective way so as to add particular features to Groups. They simply take a second to put in, and you’ll add them for simply your self or your total group. There are three locations to put in apps, and every of them performs a unique operate.

The primary is within the sidebar, which is custom-made only for you. If another person in your group provides the identical app they might share info (with apps like Trello, for instance), however others (like OneNote) will solely present your information. You may add these by clicking the apps button within the backside left of the display screen.

The second place so as to add apps is as a tab, which reveals up for everybody in a Group on the prime of the web page. There are just a few default tabs like posts, information, and wiki, however simply to the appropriate of these is a plus icon, which is how one can add extra. Apps might not look or work precisely the identical relying on the place they’re added.

The ultimate place is instantly within the chat window, showing subsequent to choices for formatting, emojis, attachments, and extra. Simply click on the extra choices icon, then choose the app so as to add. For those who click on extra apps, groups will mechanically pull up the checklist with the messaging filter utilized.

How you can change your Groups assembly background

Within the present period of telecommuting and dealing from house, it’s doubtless that your private home workplace isn’t precisely essentially the most skilled atmosphere. That is usually superb, however for consumer conferences or video conferences along with your boss you may want one thing a bit extra discreet. That’s the place Microsoft groups digital backgrounds are available.

There are two methods to alter your Groups assembly background: One with a easy blur or one with a background picture. Each take just some seconds to arrange. Observe that not all {hardware} helps this, so if the choice doesn’t seem you could must improve your digital camera first.

You may change your background earlier than or after a gathering begins, however the steps are just about the identical:

  1. Within the assembly controls menu, click on the extra choices icon.
  2. Choose Present background results.
  3. Select a blurred background or digital background picture.
  4. (Optionally available) Click on Add new on the prime of the background settings window so as to add your individual photographs.

For those who do find yourself including your individual picture, be certain that it’s sufficiently prime quality or it might look too blurry. For enterprise use, you also needs to keep away from utilizing copyrighted images or imagery.

Different FAQ

Q: Is Microsoft Groups HIPAA compliant?
A: Sure, Groups is HIPAA and GDPR compliant, however directors might must take some further steps. An Workplace 365 E5 enterprise subscription consists of entry to the Workplace 365 Safety & Compliance Heart, which supplies a number of instruments for information administration. Be taught extra right here.

Q: Does Microsoft Groups have video games?
A: Sure, Groups has just a few trivia video games accessible as apps. Just a few standard choices are Kahoot! and Quizlet. You can even play Pictionary utilizing the whiteboard characteristic.

Q: Can I take advantage of Microsoft Groups on Linux?
A: Sure. You will discover each Debian (.deb) and Crimson Hat-based (.rpm) distributions on the official obtain web page.

Q: Does Microsoft Groups work on Chromebooks?
A: Sure. You may each obtain the Groups app from the Play Retailer or use the online app at groups.microsoft.com.

Q: Can I arrange an out of workplace message in Microsoft Groups?
A: Sure, however it is advisable to set it up in Outlook. Your Out of Workplace standing will carry over to Groups, however as a substitute of an e-mail reply, your message will seem below your profile.

Q: Is Microsoft Groups a part of Microsoft 365?
A: Sure, Groups is part of Microsoft 365, and is included in all subscription plans.

Q: The place are Microsoft Groups recordings saved?
A: At the moment, all Microsoft Groups assembly recordings are saved in Microsoft Stream. Nonetheless, beginning in early 2021 all conferences will as a substitute be saved to OneDrive and SharePoint. For those who’d like to change early, you may study extra right here.


Be taught extra about different collaboration and video conferencing apps:

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