EP 027

M365 Updates You Should Know About

We are in the M365 world every single day, and there are new updates everywhere it seems. It's a lot to keep track of!

Luckily in episode 27 of the Make Other Successful podcast, Mitch, Matt, and Emma discuss all of these recent updates and how they feel about them. Everything from New Teams to Copilot.

Listen to day and see what's on the M365 horizon!

Episode Links
Hosted By
Mitch Herrema
Matt Dressel
Emma Allport, CSM
Produced By
Benjamin Eizenga
Edited By
Eric Veeneman
Music By
Eric Veeneman

Transcript

Mitch (00:06):

Hey everyone, welcome back to Make Others Successful, a podcast where we share insights, stories and strategies to help you build a better workplace. In turn, make others successful. We'll do intros really quick if this is your first time here. My name is Mitch Aroma. I do a lot of our operations here in marketing and sometimes get on technical projects too.

Matt Dressel (00:28):

Matt Dressel, I am in charge of communication, collaboration here at Bubble Digital

Emma Hall (00:32):

And I'm Emma, I our project manager, so I work on a little bit of everything, which leads us to our topic, which will be about a little bit of everything we like to talk about ourselves and kind of call ourselves Microsoft 365 experts, which is a big term because Microsoft 365 is always changing.

Mitch (00:48):

He's the expert. Expert. He's the

Emma Hall (00:49):

Expert. Yeah, I'm not sure I'd put myself in the bucket, but between all of us we do work within Microsoft 365 on quite a few of the tools. So today we want to talk through what has changed. We'll go back as far as maybe the last three to six months and what are our thoughts on some of the updates and what is coming down the pipeline.

Mitch (01:09):

I feel like normally we talk about workplace strategy and sort of Passover, the actual technical tools and leave that up to others, but I do feel like enough has happened where it would make sense for us to just talk through what we're seeing, what we like and don't like. Yeah. Where should we start?

Emma Hall (01:27):

Maybe with the new teams. New teams? Yeah. What we see is

Mitch (01:30):

New teams, the name for it officially.

Matt Dressel (01:32):

No, it's going to be teams eventually, but I mean the reality is today they still are living in the two different worlds. I think it was only a month or so ago that they've officially like everybody should be pushed to the new teams unless you choose to not be in the new teams. I

Mitch (01:46):

Think Teams Classic is now a thing, I believe version

Matt Dressel (01:49):

I believe, but eventually it's just going to be teams. The old one's going to go away. I don't remember the exact timeline, but I mean eventually the classic teams is going to go away and the new teams will be just Be teams. So

Mitch (02:01):

What is new teams for someone who doesn't know new

Matt Dressel (02:04):

Teams is not really new functionality. It's really a rebuilding of the existing functionality. So if anybody's looking for radically different UI in a different feature set and new functionality, nope, that's not what you're going to get. You're going to basically just get teams only better.

Emma Hall (02:22):

As someone who was relatively new to the tool, I'd used Zoom at many of the companies I worked for before and had just started with classic teams a year ago. The new teams to me feels like it's just iterating in a more intuitive way. So a few of the changes, I don't know if we want to outline some of those, but messages no longer being, how did they switch that? So

Matt Dressel (02:42):

That's actually one of the things they didn't do or they did do, but it's different now. So they've gone through basically what started the whole thing off. As Microsoft said, the current tool was built in such a way technically the underpinnings that you can't actually solve some of the major complaints the have about memory consumption, performance, all of these things. So they said we're going to rewrite it, and so they rewrote it from scratch, from the ground up to solve a lot of those problems. But then they also started, that started to be the place where all new features were going, which one of the features you're talking about is channels, channel messages in particular, they were switching where the post message, so the box where you can actually put your text in from the bottom and having all of the old messages being on the top to the other way around, putting the post message on the top and then your messages flowing down.

(03:33):

I have a article or a blog or a video about teams, new teams and it shows some of that feature, but subsequent to that video, I believe they got feedback and they basically said, by default we'll have that off. You can turn it on. So actually today the default is still the same way it always has been, but if you want to turn that on, you can, but flip flop, it's flip, flip, flop, flip back and forth. It's an interesting thing because actually I using it, my biggest complaint about it is that they didn't do it to chat. So chat was the same way as before. They were opposite and they were opposite, and I'm like, that's dumb. It's not. If they made 'em both the same, I would've been like, oh, okay, you could make a case for this. Okay, I'm down, let's try it.

Mitch (04:12):

But chat is traditionally

Matt Dressel (04:14):

Bottom up, always bottom up,

Mitch (04:15):

Even on your phone. It's always, and so that's normal. And so then they tried to fix or fix channels into being more like a forum type. Well,

Matt Dressel (04:24):

Their problem with channels is that it's natively threaded much and

Mitch (04:29):

It's not a conversation. People have these same multiple conversations.

Matt Dressel (04:31):

People have different conversations about Slack in this regard because people forget all the time to do threads because in Slack everything is message-based and then you can choose to be threaded. Whereas in channels, everything is a conversation or a thread basis. It's really, there's a lot of interesting things, but the bottom line is the main thing is there's now a new teams, which is a new app and a new bunch of new functionality. It's faster, so it's faster, but it also has bugs still. I mean it's relatively brand new, so if you've in the last month noticed that teams has been working a little different or having a little problems, that's likely where it's coming from, but it is the way forward. They're not going back. They're not going to not have that, and it's where all the new features are going to be.

Emma Hall (05:13):

I feel like the one thing we've talked about the most that we like is the new tenant

Matt Dressel (05:18):

Switching control. So as part of whatever they did under the hood, they are now allowing you to have way tighter integration with other tenants, which is a big deal for us. Our customers, I don't know that it's as big of a deal for them, but for us you pretty much can be, I can be in my main bulb tenant and interact and see messages from any other tenant I'm a part of pretty seamlessly. The biggest challenge or difficulty we found with that feature is knowing what tenant you're actually in when you click on buttons, because you can get notifications now from another tenant and then you click on it and it does the thing, but you just signed into a meeting, but the user that you're signing in is not the user that you thought There's some weirdness there that you have to deal with, but otherwise it's been great for

Emma Hall (06:06):

Us, which was a huge pain point before. It's huge point. So it feels they really listen. I used

Mitch (06:10):

To avoid switching tenants almost at all costs and now I'm like, let's go pop into this other one and see what's going on just because it's

Emma Hall (06:17):

Easier. It felt like so much work to go check a message, even a different

Matt Dressel (06:20):

Tenant. I would always have multiple web browsers open with profiles for the different ones, and that's what I was using to manage it, but it was very inconvenient for the scenarios where I as a bulb user in another tenant. I still do that for scenarios where I've got dedicated accounts for a particular customer, but it is just way better, way, way better than what it was before.

Emma Hall (06:42):

I want to skip ahead to my favorite new feature, which is Loop, but maybe we need to talk about new Outlook first.

Matt Dressel (06:49):

We don't have to, but New Outlook is probably a pretty quick one that we can go over. Microsoft has basically created much like it's the same concept, new Outlook, and there's old Outlook, classic Outlook, but it's not exactly the same. So this is basically taking the web version of Outlook and putting it into a desktop app that you can actually install locally on your machine. It's a big change. People would've seen it come up with a little slider that you can choose to go back and forth with. My take on it is I think that new outlook is good enough for a lot of people, a lot of people who are adopting the approach that we are, which is that email should only be used in certain scenarios and that you should be leveraging teams and leveraging other communication platforms for the more broader collaboration and communication space.

(07:37):

However, for people who are live and breathe out of Outlook, and that is pretty much their only communication collaboration platform, it's not there. It's not all the features aren't there that you would need, but I think they're moving ahead of the curve and still moving forward, but they're not forcing it. It's not the same as what teams is. It's not going to be really rapid, I don't think. But I would guess that in the next two years you're going to be forced to do that model in some way, shape or form. But I switched to it. We've had this discussion, you took a little bit longer to even try it out, but I love it, but I also had been using the web version for customers for quite a long time and I got addicted to some of the features that were in the web version.

Emma Hall (08:20):

What were some of the features that you really liked?

Matt Dressel (08:22):

So it's another one that we can talk about that Microsoft has changed, which is reactions. Reactions,

Emma Hall (08:28):

Something, yes, being able to react to an email that has

Matt Dressel (08:30):

Pretty much always been there in the web version for a very long time, but it never worked on, you would react and you would say, Hey, did you see? They'll say, Hey, did you read my message? And they're like, yeah, I gave you a thumbs up, thumbs up. And they're like, I didn't see it. Well then you figured out that, oh, the web version, the reactions in the web version only worked for the web version and that was the way it was for years and now it's available in both a bit different interaction and stuff, but reactions is something that I craved to be able to use, but we never really could because not everybody was using the web version and now it's available in both. Just to be really clear. Now you can do that in both the web and the regular or classic experience, and that's been a couple months in the works.

(09:11):

But then the other thing is pinning or pinning messages was like, I don't know, it was amazing. I always use flagging. Flagging was a big thing for me, but then you flag something and then you had to go into a flagged list and for me, the pinning, the ability to just pin it and it shows up at the top of my keeps it at the top of my email list was so much a better experience for me and how I worked with email that I really, when I had the opportunity, I was like, I'm using it. I'm making it

Emma Hall (09:34):

Happen. That pushed you over the top to actually then want to. Yeah, a hundred percent. Alright, so that was new Outlook. Let's talk about live events. What has been the big change there?

Matt Dressel (09:41):

Yeah, so there's a couple actually tools in the last year that are going away that either Microsoft announced or actually are going away this year. So some of 'em would be live events. Live events is 2024 is when it's really going to be gone, but they're well on their way to, that's not going to be available anymore and it's going to be replaced with webinars and town halls and all of that stuff within Teams. Another one will be Stream. It's been a long journey. We've documented it for, I don't know, probably four years now where Stream has been moving from Stream Classic to stream on SharePoint and that's coming to a closure this year. I can't remember if there's another one.

Emma Hall (10:14):

What will Stream be replaced with?

Matt Dressel (10:15):

Stream is getting replaced with basically SharePoint. They call it Stream on SharePoint, but it's basically Stream as a service is getting integrated into all of the Office 365 platform. The primary thing is Outlook or OneDrive and Stream is really the main areas. What's

Mitch (10:30):

Interesting is they have other products in their suite like Windows seven, windows eight, windows 10 with all numbers behind them, but all of these apps, I feel like they want to just remain exactly named the way that they are.

Matt Dressel (10:45):

Yeah, it doesn't go along with the cloud model. Evergreen always improving, so

Mitch (10:49):

They label something classic. What happens when the new version there is a classic. It's the

Emma Hall (10:54):

New of the new. Yeah,

Matt Dressel (10:55):

What do you do? But that's the thing is new will become the normal and then new will become the new again. Yeah, it just is, it's kind of like the, it's the

Mitch (11:04):

Apple model.

Matt Dressel (11:06):

It's truly when you think about the way features roll out and how that all happens, that is a more natural, the numbers don't matter because really the truth of the matter is you're currently on Outlook version 14.7 7, 7, 5, 4, 4, whatever. It's you just don't know, and tomorrow you'll get a new one just the way it is. Right.

Emma Hall (11:30):

Let's transition to talking about Loop because that was rolled out kind of interesting in the last six to maybe even 12 months when they started with Loop Components and have now talked through releasing the Loop app. So let's start with components and what struck the both of you when you first saw the power of Loop components?

Matt Dressel (11:49):

So Loop components were always interesting to me. They were really exciting to me. However, they have always been, I pretty quickly said they're not really going to be very helpful to me and it's because they didn't have the ability to really share with external users the way I wanted to. They weren't in channels. I don't do stuff in chat, we don't chat use channels. Well, I can't do a loop component in a channel. I can only do it in a chat. So for me it pretty quickly, it became not useful to me in any way, shape or form, but the vision of where it was headed, having these components where I can edit content in a very collaborative way, in a very ad hoc way was very powerful and was exciting for sure.

Mitch (12:35):

Let's overview Loop really quick just for someone who probably doesn't know because it has just been announced for general availability. It's been this weird preview state for a long time where it had to enable it for you and it never felt like it was fully baked. Should I put my stuff in here and really start using it? We're junkies for that stuff so we jumped in and decided to use it, but a lot of people probably don't really realize what Loop is, so the components aspect of it is where it started. So they built this thing where it's like, hey, you can create a table right here in a chat and have multiple people edit it and work on it together and it always stays up to date. And this concept of just this constantly live thing that lived in context of other apps was really

Emma Hall (13:29):

Cool. I'll give a real world example that I think blew my mind the first time I saw it is how many times have you sat down and thought, oh, I really want someone else to review this email before we send this off. To edit an email real time with another person in the email. Both sitting at your own computers wherever you are in the world was pretty radical. I mean you never really were able to do that, but Loop Components made it possible

Matt Dressel (13:54):

And it truly was a component model. They started with a model that is very much, we're going to do this for a small piece of content that you can live in a Word document and it can live in a chat, it can live in an email, it can live wherever you need it to live. It can live and as you said it, you update it in one location, so you update it in the chat and the person who has the email also sees that update immediately. It transcends all of the mediums that we're using for collaboration and it's a great concept, but like I said, for us it's a challenge.

Mitch (14:24):

I remember the moment where I said, man, I'm so excited for Loop. Loop is coming out and you're like, loop has existed for a long time. We don't even use it. It's just these couple things in teams or whatever. And I was like, no, no, no, you don't get it Loop. That's not Loop. That's Loop components. There's something broader outside of that. And that's what leads us to the app, the Loop app, which again wasn't immediately obvious what it was, but yeah,

Matt Dressel (14:53):

Their marketing on it was not great.

Mitch (14:54):

Well, in the preview it's in this not released state really. And so yeah, we weren't even sure if we should call it the app, the Loop app for a while. So the gist of that is there's three kind of layers to Loop. One is workspaces, so you can collaborate with people on your team, you can add them to a workspace and see a collection of hierarchical pages, which is the next segment, which is just a very simple text-based, think like a Microsoft Word document but without any of the strings of a document and more just like on a page. And then within those pages you could have components, which then you could link out to the other spots,

Matt Dressel (15:41):

But you don't have to have components. So the component concept is to say, well, I want to be able to take this piece of this page and share it with someone else separate from the rest of the page. So you could just have Loop the page and have content in the page. So as I said, I think their discussion of the strategy and how it fits has been a challenge from the get go, but it has been, the app itself has been the transformative thing for us in

Emma Hall (16:10):

Particular, and I think what really sticks out to me is their long-term vision with all of it is to bring as many of the tools that they've created within teams into one place that integrates everything. And I feel like I haven't seen an app from Microsoft that really does that well until Loop. I know they've potentially tried this before, but I actually really think it's going to work with Loop and the way I'm seeing meeting notes and just everything tied together where the meeting recording is and it feels like their vision is to make it a one-stop shop spot. I don't know if they're there yet, but I think they will get there.

Mitch (16:44):

Yeah, I think about Teams when you think about that concept of this is your one place to go for your workday and that has some success I think depending on how much you have adopted that tool, but Loop is sort of this stepchild, this thing that is coming from behind that I think, yeah, you're right, is going to serve as this. It's somewhere in between teams and a SharePoint team site and OneNote somewhere it, it's storing information about things that is in a casual setting that allows people to all just go in and consume content in a, I'll keep saying the word casual way, but

Emma Hall (17:30):

It's collaborate in a casual way too. I mean it's a place that serves where you can be working together not on a finished document. It really provides for that brainstorming. And the thing I love the most about Loop has copied other tools as well. The formatting is just so simple, kind of are forced to choose between their three headings and their different bulleted lists stripped down for sure. It has everything you need and it makes everything look really consistent and ready to share externally or to a leadership

Mitch (18:02):

Audience. It has enough guardrails where you're not going to make something ugly. You're not going to be able to choose your Yeah, I digress. People can make some crazy looking. I remember SharePoint classic pages. Distracting.

Emma Hall (18:15):

Distracting,

Mitch (18:15):

Yes. A loop is bare bones simple, looks nice,

Emma Hall (18:19):

Clean. You're not going to waste any time on format. No,

Mitch (18:21):

Just focus on the content and it does a good

Matt Dressel (18:24):

Job. You talk about it being the one-stop shop and there was a conversation about it being, I think that's the thing that Microsoft still has to figure out with it, which is Loop is not going to replace teams. Teams can't do what Loop does. How are we going to make them seamless together? How are we going to make it all of the things work with teams? It's one of the things that I think they really have challenges with. I mean the reality is when they built the tool and had that, that's the last tool that this is the place where you do your work. A lot of the deep nuances of how that really works in the real world was left to kind of an afterthought or a future thing to figure out and they need to sort that is the next thing they need to sort out. I think

Mitch (19:08):

They will

Matt Dressel (19:10):

In order for it to be successful. I think they have to figure that out. So bottom line, I don't want this to become a loop. I do

Mitch (19:17):

Podcast.

Matt Dressel (19:18):

Well then we should have chosen a different topic.

Mitch (19:20):

The last thing that I'll just for extra context, if anyone has used Notion before, it's like Microsoft's version of notion. It's not as fully baked as Notion yet because it's a preview, it's still getting there, but for someone that understands the concept of Notion and how you manage data and have all information in one spot, very similar concept and so I'm super excited to see Microsoft tackling

Matt Dressel (19:46):

That. So the big thing that I, because when we started using Loop Notion was another alternative that was being discussed,

Mitch (19:52):

We almost did it. I almost did it. Shoot,

Matt Dressel (19:53):

The big benefit is that it's integrated with everything else. It's seamless to get in out of it, manage it, maintain it, manage compliance. All of that is all the same as everything else that we're dealing with on a regular basis.

Emma Hall (20:07):

If you remember the feeling of going from using a Walkman to an iPod, that's what it feels like. Going from OneNote to Loop would be fine or a flip phone to a smartphone. It just feels

Mitch (20:19):

Someone I did CD player to MP three player, that was

Emma Hall (20:22):

Me. Yeah, okay. Yeah,

Mitch (20:23):

I could have 13 songs in this little

Emma Hall (20:25):

Loop just feels like it organizes information and integrates at such a higher level then not that it's supposed to replace OneNote, but if you're using OneNote and you're not using Loop,

Matt Dressel (20:36):

I think it should replace OneNote. I'll be upfront.

Emma Hall (20:39):

Well, it definitely replaces OneNote, but I mean it's not only doing that, not

Mitch (20:43):

Actually

Emma Hall (20:43):

It you do so much more. Yeah,

Mitch (20:45):

They'll never say,

Emma Hall (20:46):

Yeah, they'll never that. But

Matt Dressel (20:47):

I mean I don't think they've decided. I think they're

Emma Hall (20:50):

Answer. I don't see a place where you would ever need OneNote if you started using Loop to its full

Mitch (20:54):

Capacity. We also haven't said, we're part of a private preview, so we've been working with their or helping give feedback to their team and one of the things on every survey that they give us is how upset would you be if Loop went away?

Emma Hall (21:08):

I would not want to do our work the way we do it if Loop went away because it supports the way we do projects

Mitch (21:16):

Completely. It's become integral for sure. Yeah,

Emma Hall (21:18):

I'd really miss it. Me too. Hope they don't take it away. So

Mitch (21:21):

To wrap it all up, it's in general availability. Now. It's not this weird preview thing, so go out there. Again, the external access thing is still an issue, but if you want to collaborate internally with your team, go try Loop

Emma Hall (21:36):

Or even recommended just to organize your own thoughts. It is a really great tool. So let's talk about copilot and where that falls. ai.

Matt Dressel (21:45):

Ai,

Emma Hall (21:46):

Yeah. What's going on with Microsoft ai? Matt?

Matt Dressel (21:49):

We have it as the topic as copilot, but I mean it's really, AI is the topic and I don't know that much to say about it other than you cannot look any way and not see AI being the topic of conversation for all of the Microsoft products. Microsoft invested billions of dollars into AI in the last, I don't know, 24 months I would imagine. I guess

Mitch (22:11):

I was just watching Ignite in literally the first hour is nothing but ai.

Matt Dressel (22:17):

The bottom line is Microsoft is making a heavy investment in that. They're also charging a lot for it. Everything is becoming AI enabled and they're charging for it. I'm not going to say AI from a business perspective is something that is getting way more use and it's going to continue to get way more use and it's going to become more advanced and it's going to be become more commonplace in the marketplace. Beyond that, I mean I don't have much more to say about it other than it is the thing that is continuing to be pushed and continuing to be talked about. I have yet to see it be a natural outcome of what a person does day-to-day outside of the things that Microsoft or the company or the technology providers embed into what we're doing. I've said it for a long time, AI is not new. Part of AI is all the predictive stuff about when you're writing an email or a text on your phone that says, oh, I think you're trying to say this, so let me allow you to say the thing next to it. Things like that people use all the time and people will continue to use it if it's that easy. If I have to create a model myself that is like Edge case, not very many people are going to do it still. It's just not going to happen.

Emma Hall (23:28):

Let's take it to kind of a practical, real world example. You're a small business owner, you've got 30 employees. You're trying to decide if it makes sense to purchase that next level, that next step. It feels like there'll be always a more expensive option to start and implement copilot. What do you say to that person?

Mitch (23:44):

Well, you're getting at the point of this recording, the small business community is a little bit upset with Microsoft because they are saying, Hey, copilot is now available, go get it. And there's subtext in tiny other places that says you need to have 300 seats in order to get copilot. And so people are upset because they're like, this marketing feels a little bit disingenuous. I'm a small business, I'd like to

Emma Hall (24:14):

Start

Mitch (24:14):

Using it. I want copilot. And so I told Matt that. I said, I'm using chat GPT until we can get copilot. And so he had a solution, what's your solution?

Matt Dressel (24:25):

Buy the 300 licenses.

Mitch (24:27):

There you go. Everyone small businesses buy your 300 licenses.

Matt Dressel (24:31):

So there's truth to that and there's not truth to that. I mean the reality is you can use copilot without paying that. I use it all the time. The reality is every time I put a search in, every time I do something like copilot exists in lots of different places. The copilot that's being talked about here is creating a model that is based on your internal data. So a model that you can use on your data set internal to your organization that's not the same as the rest of the cloud. So do you really need that for what you're using it for? Probably not. But if that's the only way that I can get you to actually use that rather than the public version that is not protected in the same way. I don't know. That's what I got to do. From

Mitch (25:10):

What I understand, it's a lot of the internal app integrations is going to be behind that wall

Matt Dressel (25:17):

For sure. Hundred percent. A lot of the a hundred percent, right? So

Mitch (25:22):

Not if you have copilot place,

Matt Dressel (25:24):

You have everywhere for what you use it for. Copilot the publicly available one that's been out for years.

Mitch (25:29):

The conversation models

Matt Dressel (25:31):

To go out and ask to summarize this piece of text. It's there today. You can do that today.

Emma Hall (25:36):

So in some ways for the small business owner, it's not even a decision at this point because they can't actually, but I'm sure it'll be coming down the might.

Matt Dressel (25:44):

It's just really expensive. The question is how can you justify how much value, how much value can you really get out of it? And to be clear, get out of having a model that is based on your internal content versus using the generic model and

Mitch (25:58):

Having it integrated into the tools

Matt Dressel (26:00):

And having it deeply integrated into

Mitch (26:02):

Tools. Yes, yes. Okay. Now, so I just want to close that with they're going to tackle small businesses at some point. There's no way that they're just going to say 300 or bust. I'm hopeful that comes soon, but right now it feels like it's all very much behind this curtain that we can't see behind right now.

Emma Hall (26:19):

Okay, so that was copilot. What is going on with Power Pages? What has been the updates

Matt Dressel (26:24):

There? Yes, so Power Pages, it's been out for maybe longer than six months, but I think now Microsoft is finally fully migrated or fully moving us in this direction. It's basically the replacement for power portals, power apps, portals. So a lot of people, you can talk about it as a name change, but architecturally it's a revamp of the entire software package and a rename of what it is. If you know what power apps portals are, you're going to be doing Power Pages now is basically the gist of it, but it's also going to be way easier to implement. It's going to be way, it is a better solution. There's a lot of investment and improvement to the solution, but it serves the same basic function and purpose.

Mitch (27:04):

For someone that doesn't know Power Pages or power apps portals was or still is the way to get information from dataverse out to external people or external people.

Matt Dressel (27:17):

It creates a webpage that can interact with dataverse and you can have users that log into a customer portal and then use that customer portal to interact with your staff on the backend that use dataverse or power apps on the backend. So

Mitch (27:31):

While a lot of under the hood is still just power apps portals, a lot of the outside of it is it's gotten a facelift. When you

Matt Dressel (27:40):

Built a Power Pages or Power Ops portals before it was from the nineties quite frankly, and now it's more, it's got a nice

Mitch (27:48):

Current front end. There's still, you can tell you're working with a legacy like backend. Sometimes there's some weird interactions that I've had to do, but it's getting better. It's definitely a lot cleaner and

Matt Dressel (28:01):

I would lump this into actually a bigger broader thing, which we don't really have a topic that we were going to discuss about this, but this is part of Microsoft's overall revamping and modernizing of the power platform as a whole. Like the classic experience for power. If you're dealing power apps and power automate, the classic editing experience is turned off by default. Now you have to actually turn it back on if you want those features. For years you've been dealing with this kind of bifurcated world where most stuff you can do normally can kind of be done in the modern ui, but I don't know, at some points felt like 60% of what you had to do you had to do in the classic experience. Now as of a couple months ago, they're like, Nope, the classic experience is off by default. Show us why you really need it. And it goes across the board, like model driven apps have a modern controls canvas, apps have modern controls. There's just a lot of that kind of thing going across and Power Pages is just another one of them.

Emma Hall (28:54):

So it sounds like overall net positive

Matt Dressel (28:57):

It it's for sure positive. Yeah, a hundred percent. But it's a naming change so you can hear,

Mitch (29:02):

Sorry. Power Pages still deals with the weird licensing model that is not just buy a seat for somebody. It's based on how many anonymous users or how many people log in

Matt Dressel (29:14):

Sessions. It's

Mitch (29:15):

A little bit strange to explain to people sometimes, but just know that there's one license for someone building it and then there's a different segment that is for access and someone using it.

Emma Hall (29:27):

What's happening with intra id?

Matt Dressel (29:29):

So intra is a branding change by and large, so it used to be called Azure AD Active

Mitch (29:37):

Directory?

Matt Dressel (29:38):

Yeah, active directory. So it used to be called Active Directory and then it became Azure ad when it went to the cloud, the cloud version of it, and now it's becoming intra id. And the big reason we're bringing that up is mostly because people are going to start seeing the name change all over the place. Are lots of URLs and names of things are all getting changed. I don't know of any major actual feature improvements that you're getting with the name. There's a bunch of stuff that's coming as part of it, but it's just enhancements to active directory that were, I think already in place or moving.

Emma Hall (30:12):

Do you have any insight into just the why behind a change like that?

Matt Dressel (30:16):

It's not clear to me why they're changing the overall branding. I think it's because they want to separate it further from Azure and the whole suite of Azure services. I personally, I think it's going to be a hard thing for me to stop saying Azure ad. Azure AD for me rolls off the tongue intra id. I don't know.

Emma Hall (30:34):

It feels like a lot of vowels got changed between one to the other.

Mitch (30:37):

The thing that I pick up on is the ID portion of it is it's obvious what it is. It's like your identification

Matt Dressel (30:44):

Ad versus ID is

Emma Hall (30:45):

Very, if you didn't know what ad meant directory, active directory, then AD wouldn't mean a lot to you if you were active.

Matt Dressel (30:51):

Directory is a term that's been in the industry for 20, 20 plus years, but it means a very specific Microsoft focused thing. Whereas Id intra, ID really speaks to more of what it is meant to be, which is an identities platform, like authentication platform.

Emma Hall (31:07):

It's more of an approachable term. Sure. Let's close this out by talking through Veeva.

Matt Dressel (31:13):

So Veeva had a lot of changes recently. It was launched as a rebranding of some products into the suite, but then also launching a bunch of new net solutions, Veeva Insights, Veeva Engage, which Veeva engages, Yammer renamed as Veeva Engage. So there's a lot of those things, but then also Veeva more recently they've added a bunch of new net new products even in that suite. So you've got Veeva Glint, Veeva Amplify, Veeva Pulse, and these are all more tools focused around the

Emma Hall (31:47):

Employee engagement. We got to a quick pause, Matt and just say, good job Microsoft, and coming up with really creative words. Can we

Mitch (31:51):

Get Oprah overlaying like you get a name, you get a

Emma Hall (31:54):

Name, you get a name. Yeah. So you're going to talk through Glint, amplify Pulse.

Matt Dressel (31:59):

Yeah, so these tools are, I'm not going to speak to 'em very specifically because they are naming these things and branding them separately under this Veeva old

Mitch (32:09):

Employee experience,

Matt Dressel (32:10):

But it's really all these are just different ways to talk about employee experience things. It seems to be the reason why they're doing it so they don't have to charge so much for the entire suite all the time because if you just charged, everybody gets Veeva and it's all $12 or $14 a person. I think it would be a very tough sell for everybody because when you look at topics or you look at some of the features, they go, I'm not going to use that piece, but really the goals is really important. Or the Pulse, which is getting surveys and feedback from employees. You could make a case for a smaller one, but then how do you manage that? Does that become

Emma Hall (32:46):

So they want to create it to be more of an a la carte option where you can Well, they

Matt Dressel (32:49):

Have, yeah, unlike Project, A perfect example as an alternative way that they brand and market things, but you got project plan 1, 2, 3, 5. What does that mean? What does one mean versus five? I don't know. Right? I mean I do know, but it doesn't

Mitch (33:04):

Tell us, it doesn't

Matt Dressel (33:05):

Mean anything to just the numbers. Whereas this, they have created carved out very specific feature sets that are encompassed for a particular business need related to employee engagement. So it's interesting. It's

Emma Hall (33:17):

More

Matt Dressel (33:18):

Customizable, as you said, a la carte, right? You can choose any one. I think it's for six bucks for, or maybe it's three bucks for any one of the pieces, but then if you want a little bit bigger, which is the common ones that they think most people want, it's a little bit more, and then if you really want everything, it's the full price. My

Mitch (33:36):

Only comment is props to anyone using all these tools. Well, most of the time when we're dealing with clients, they're like way before this phase of being able to embrace those tools.

Matt Dressel (33:48):

Yeah, it's really interesting. A lot of people are like, I want that. I want the outcomes that those things provide, but they also aren't ready to use technology in that way. If you want to do surveys for employees, you have to know what you want to ask them and you have to actually read the results and have to actually do something about it. And some people just aren't, they're not there yet on those things. So I agree with you. It's an interesting conversation to have with customers who, I've seen some customers that have dove headfirst into, I want to try out all of these things, and then they get in, but they weren't ready to do goals. They don't have goals.

Mitch (34:25):

Even topics. We'll have a page on an intranet where it's like, here's your glossary of what these acronyms mean, and sure, topics could do that, but is it worth spinning off that and incorporating it,

Matt Dressel (34:38):

And do you have somebody who can focus on maintaining and managing and being effective with that?

Emma Hall (34:43):

Okay, so to close this out, we're each going to give Microsoft a score from one to 10 and how we feel all of the different updates that we talked through, how impactful we feel like they've been in the last,

Matt Dressel (34:54):

That's an interesting

Emma Hall (34:55):

Six months, so I'm putting you guys on the spot.

Matt Dressel (34:57):

This was not in the plan

Emma Hall (34:59):

One to 10, 10 being they couldn't have done any better. This has just been the best year of updates. This

Matt Dressel (35:04):

Has been the best six months or year of changes.

Emma Hall (35:08):

It's interesting one. No, nothing was helpful. I can go first. I'm going to give a pretty high score. I'm going to go 8.2 because Loop has really changed my work Life Loop is an exciting tool and whether the other ones have really affected how I do my job. New teams has been great, but the idea of Loop gets me really excited, so I'm giving 'em an 8.2.

Mitch (35:30):

She's just in direct contact with the people looking at Loop, so she's trying to get brownie points. Yeah.

Emma Hall (35:36):

Oh man. See right through me.

Matt Dressel (35:38):

You go next.

Mitch (35:39):

I'm going to go seven. Six.

Emma Hall (35:41):

Okay.

Mitch (35:42):

I think there's an old version of Microsoft. I remember being at an event where an employee from Microsoft came and they're like, we're not the same anymore. Don't hate us. Please. We're trying to change is this plea of we're trying to do things better. That was years ago, eight years ago or something like that. I feel that the effects of that now, I think I do feel the momentum and feel things coming together and it does feel like you see the effort, they're getting things in order. Yes. It doesn't feel as much like, oh gosh, I inherited this Microsoft junk. Just because we have accounts. It does really feel like they're becoming good tools in a holistic system. Obviously I'll still have my, I'll keep the other couple points for my little hangouts, but room for improvements? Yes, sure. It's going good. All

Emma Hall (36:30):

Right. Well let Matt close up.

Matt Dressel (36:32):

I struggle. I could give them a score of four.

Emma Hall (36:37):

Oh, rough.

Matt Dressel (36:38):

Because I think that copilot has not been as transformative. That honestly has been, in my opinion, the big new thing that could transform businesses, and I just don't see it transforming businesses 12 months in the same way except for maybe big businesses or I think there are people who are being transformed, but I don't see it transformed the marketplace. I think they were hoping, right now, I think it's on the verge, I think in another six months, which is why I'm going to make it a seven. Whoa. In reality, because I think what's going to happen or I'm going to give them credit for what I see happen over the next six, six

Emma Hall (37:13):

Months. The foundation that

Matt Dressel (37:14):

They're building, I think this year was a lot of foundation like Loop. It transformed your life because we've had access to it, right? The regular marketplace has not really had access to it. If the regular marketplace buys into it and people get access to it, I think it can transform lots of people, but I think it's up to them to make that happen. It just

Mitch (37:32):

Makes me want to put together more loop learning materials because of how we've seen it transform. I'm like, I want to get ahead of that. I

Matt Dressel (37:40):

Think the big challenge with a lot of these things with copilot loop, all of these things, I think it's really interesting. I think for a lot to make it have a really big impact. The people we need to teach and train are actually unfortunately not the end users and as much the leadership and seeing how it can fit and seeing why it's valuable to enable it, because lots of IT shops are burnt out over new teams, new Outlook, new, everything's new. What do I do? It's

Mitch (38:08):

Not stopping anytime soon,

Matt Dressel (38:10):

But it can be overwhelming and it can create easily and legitimately creates a world where it's like, I'm not enabling anything new for the next six months. I need to catch up. And that breeds the lack in adoption of teams or of Loop and of these new things. And so teaching and explaining to businesses and to IT leadership about how this can help their business, which should be something valuable to everyone regardless of their position within an organization. I think that's where if we were to produce content, that's where I would want to try to do it, is figure out how to explain to people how it fits.

Emma Hall (38:49):

So I'm going to get to a rough average in my head, 7.5 out of 10. It's kind of by response, so room for improvement, but overall I think we see the momentum. Was

Mitch (38:58):

That a c? Is that, yeah.

Emma Hall (39:00):

Oh geez. Well, on the grading scale, I'd say in net promoter scores, 7.5 out of 10 is actually really great response. But yeah, thanks for joining today and we'll definitely do another one of these in six months and see

Mitch (39:13):

What, I love to know people's thoughts. It was this helpful, interesting. It's a little bit different than our normal format, so yeah. Thanks everyone for the conversation.

Matt Dressel (39:21):

Cool. Thanks everybody.

Mitch (39:23):

Hey, thanks for joining us today. If you haven't already subscribed to our show on your favorite podcasting app, so you'll always be up to date on the most recent episodes. This podcast is hosted by the team members of Bulb Digital and special thanks to Eric Veneman for our music tracks and producing this episode. If you have any questions for us, head to make others successful.com and you can get in touch with us there. You'll also find a lot of blogs and videos and content that will help you modernize your workplace and get the most out of Office 365. Thanks again for listening. We'll see you next time.

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