Microsoft Teams updates aim to empower first-line workers

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firstline workers

Many digital workplace offerings are well suited to helping employees who are sitting at their desks for most of the day. However, many organisations have first-line workers who can be much harder to reach through traditional intranets. In fact, there are more than two billion people worldwide who work in service or task-oriented roles across industries such as retail, hospitality, travel, and manufacturing.

Microsoft Teams has announced three new updates that aim to empower non-desk based workers to do their best work.

Here’s a look at what’s new via a recent announcement on the Microsoft blog:

Enable Firstline Workers to communicate and collaborate effectively with a customizable Teams mobile experience and new mobile features

New customizable mobile Teams experience that gives Firstline Workers the tools they need to communicate and collaborate effectively on the go. It’s simple, familiar, and secure, with several new mobile-only features that have particular relevance for Firstline Workers, including location sharing and smart camera, as well as the ability to record and share audio messages. The customizable mobile experience is available starting today.

Integrate workforce management systems with Teams using a new API

Many companies rely on workforce management systems to handle important operational tasks related to their Firstline Workforce, such as shift scheduling, payroll, benefits, time, and attendance. Microsoft is working on a set of new APIs that enable organizations to integrate their existing workforce management systems with Teams.

With Shifts, managers can easily plan shift schedules, and team members can review schedules and make schedule change requests, all in real time.

Keep your Firstline Workers engaged and motivated with new Praise feature

Firstline Workers such as retail associates play a key role in representing a company’s brand, but this segment of the workforce experiences some of the highest turnover rates. Taking steps to engage and recognize employees can go a long way to improving their satisfaction and reducing turnover. The new Praise tool, rolling out this quarter, gives managers and employees a simple way to recognize coworkers, right in the Teams app where the whole team can see it.