Valo Connect: consolidate the intranet within Teams environment

    With the introduction of Valo Connect, Teams and Intranet users will enjoy a much more streamlined experience. Read on to learn how it can help!

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    More and more businesses are using Microsoft Teams as their main collaboration tool, providing access to communication, information and various other tools. However, until now, the intranet has not yet been integrated in a user-friendly way inside Teams. Instead, it has lived primarily in SharePoint as a separate application 

    Recently, Valo introduced Valo Connect, a revolutionary solution to consolidate the Intranet within the Microsoft Teams environment. 

    The Microsoft Teams evolution 

    Organizations around the world are turning to technology to enable their employees to work remotely. With Microsoft Teams, organizations can hold online meetings, employees can chat or make calls, and documents and other information can be easily and securely managed and sharedDue to the number of people currently working from home, Microsoft has seen dramatic increases in the daily use of their communication and collaboration platform within a short period of time. The number of daily active users on the platform has increased more than five times in recent months, growing from 20 million users in 2019 to 115 million as of October 2020.  

    All the power of Microsoft 365, which enables you to work from anywhere and collaborate with anyone, is available through Microsoft Teams. But your organization also needs ways to communicate with all employees and assist them in accessing the most important tools and employee information. This is where your intranet comes in – an essential guiding tool. But as employees are getting more and more work done from within Microsoft Teams, you might ask yourself: couldn’t we integrate the intranet inside our Teams environment and thus offer a more blended experience? 

    Valo Connect blends the intranet and business apps in Microsoft Teams.

    Microsoft already allows you to display your intranet inside a Team. But this feature has its limitations: 

    • The intranet is somewhat hidden inside a Team. Users need to do multiple clicks to access the intranet homepage in the Microsoft Teams environment. 
    • Microsoft Teams is oriented towards real-time updates and notifications, which may overwhelm some users with less relevant information. 
    • Microsoft Teams stands for flexible communication. Anyone can communicate with any group of colleagues. The intranet is usually geared towards one-way communication: corporate news and information for everybody. Employees personalize which news they want to see in their feeds. 

    Valothe maker of our favorite intranet-in-a-box Valo Modern Intranet (check out our blog article to see why), has introduced a solution to these limitations.   

    Valo Connect will not only integrate the intranet inside Microsoft Teams; it will empower the intranet with more capabilities than ever, all from under the umbrella of your favorite tool. 

    Valo Connect is the latest product in Valo's digital workplace ecosystem.

    Valo Connect in 4 dimensions 

    There are many ways in which your team can benefit from this new solution. Here are the top four.

    1. Integrate your intranet in Teams 

    Suppose you have a beautiful intranet in SharePoint, built with Valo Modern Intranet. The communication team posts regular news updates, and analytics show that those posts are read by a majority of the employees. Now your organization starts rolling out Microsoft Teams: the new tool has a high adoption rate, and you see the number of intranet visits going down. The employees explain that opening the intranet in their browser has become unnecessary. They also report that news updates are not displayed in Teams. What can you do? 

    Valo Connect adds an app in Teams that beautifully integrates the intranetThere is no longer a need to open the browser to check the latest news or to get access to important company resources.  

    1. 2. News notifications 

    Users can also be notified via Teams when a new article is published on the intranet. With this, the organization can inform all employees almost instantly when important messages are sent out  and employees can access the news without leaving their Teams environment.  

    When an important news message is published on the intranet, the user will see a notification dot in Teams that informs them of that message, and they can open the message from directly within Teams, without leaving the application.  

    1. 3. News subscriptions 

    Valo Connect enables people to subscribe to newsfeeds by becoming a member of a certain Team. The Team has a dedicated newsfeed that brings news about a certain topic. Members receive a notification in Teams when a new article appears. 

    This means users can personalize their newsfeeds. While the corporate newsfeed remains part of the intranet, a user can join a public Team about the topic “Modern Workplace. As soon as they jointhey will receive a notification in Teams for every news article that is created in that Team, while users that did not join are not bothered with these updates.  

    This gives the organization the freedom to create updates about non-corporate topics, e.g. knowledge sharing between a group of people, interest groups about sporting activities, news from the floor, and morein an extremely flexible and user-friendly way. 

    Search in the news articles of the current Team.

    1. 4. Other integrations 

    Valo Connect introduces a host of other Teams improvements, allowing you to maximize your resources.  

    • Business apps: instead of hiding business apps inside a Team or having to create a separate button in the main menu of Teams for each one of them, Valo Connect allows you to define an easily accessible app inside the main Teams tab. 
    • Advanced search featuresValo Connect comes with an advanced search center to find content in all of your Teams, but also allows for a search center tab inside a single Team. 
    • An administrative portal: manage the configuration of the main Valo app in Microsoft Teams, add business apps, define default tabs and more, all via an easy-to-use interface in Valo Connect. 

    Integrate business apps with Valo Connect.

    Search for content within a Team.

    Valo Connect enhances Microsoft Teams 

    The latest product in Valo’s ecosystem enhances your Microsoft Teams environment; integrate your Valo Intranet, reach more people with all news posts consolidated in one place and allow your employees to personalize their experience. Valo Connect maximizes the use of Microsoft Teams. 

     

    Published on    Last updated on 03/11/2020

    #Digital Workplace, #Office 365, #Intranet

    About the author

    Alexander Ernon is ECM Business Consultant at Amplexor. Alexander has over 13 years’ experience in business analysis, software consulting and project management, specializing in SharePoint and Office 365 collaborative platforms. He's a Prosci Certified Practitioner in Change Management and certified by Microsoft Microsoft 365 Teamwork administration and deployment.

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