One of our customers was struggling to cut down costs on communication which at one point shot up to unmanageable levels. While they were already subscribers to O365 plans that included Skype for Business, their users were ignorant of the capabilities of Skype for Business and so they kept using the traditional applications that came to them at an added cost. I showcased the features of Skype for business that contained more than what their traditional and costly applications offered. Now they are looking forward to a lot of savings as Skype for Business is their current app of choice for communication.
Here are some of the various
productivity features that might make Skype for Business the first choice for
internal as well as external communication:
Presence and app integration
Show your presence and availability to others in
the team, your department and the whole enterprise from any device from
anywhere – just sign into Skype for Business in your Laptop or Desktop or Lync
2013 app in your mobile devices (iPad, Android tabs, Windows phone/ iPhone /
You can move your status to “Do not disturb” so
that others may know you are busy – they can’t even ping you in Skype for
Business when you are in Do not disturb status.
When you start a mail or reply to a mail, stop and
think twice – you can connect with the respective persons through Skype for
business if they are online and are available. Click on the person’s name from
the To box and start a conversation. The Subject line of the mail (if any) will
automatically become the title of the conversation window.
You can do a lot in the Chat window to minimize the
number of mails exchanged – all the texts exchanged are saved in the
Conversation history folder of your mailbox in Outlook.
Ad hoc Meetings
You can add people with just a Skype id to your
contacts list. They don’t have to subscribers to Office 365 services.
You can create a federation with other client /
customer Business enterprises (that have Office 365 subscription) at the admin
level if you frequently communicate with them. (Kindly contact IT dept. for
this). This will enable seamless communication between you and them.
Start a chat with anybody in your Skype for
Business contact list by just double clicking on the id and clicking on the
If you want to include one or more persons into an
already open conversation window, click the Plus icon on the top right corner
of the window and search for the respective person from the contact list.
You can also drag that person’s id from the Skype for Business window to the
conversation window. Make sure he is available and inform him first before
bringing him in.
Click on the Phone receiver icon to connect with
the participants through audio conferencing. Make sure you have a good
headphones and a mic to have a real good audio conferencing experience. Your
smart phone’s hands-free will suffice.
Click on the Video Camera icon to connect with the
participants through HD video conferencing.
You can share your screen (desktop, one or more
open windows/programs, White Board) or run a PowerPoint presentation by
clicking the More option from the Monitor icon.
Requesting for control, giving control and taking
back control of the desktops and screens is possible during such meetings.
Except for the text exchanges, nothing else of this
ad hoc meeting is recorded.
Scheduled Meetings / Webinars
schedule an online meeting by
on the New Items option of the Outlook window and choosing the Skype Meeting
a new appointment window from outlook calendar and clicking on the Skype
Skype meeting” link is generated on the notes area which will be required by
the meeting attendees to join the online meeting
meeting request can be sent to the invitees irrespective of whether they have
an O365 subscription / Skype id or not
with a Skype for Business subscription will have a Skype window open during the
meeting. Others who join from the meeting link will have a browser opened to
attend the meeting. (Think of Remote interviews and On boarding of new
can join the meeting from wherever they are using any device that is
audio and video enabled and has a connection to the internet.
250 attendees can be accommodated in scheduled meeting
meeting can be recorded in its entirety – chat, audio, video and screen shares
- and shared with the participants and those who missed it later on by posting
it in SharePoint. External attendees cannot record the meeting,
request/give/take control of the shared desktop.
can be floated during the meeting to gauge the interest of the attendees and to
gather their opinion