A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the new hybrid workplace tools announced at Microsoft’s annual Inspire event in July. One of those rolling out this month is Microsoft Viva Engage, the new social networking app that will live within Teams and Microsoft 365. Built on the foundation of Yammer, the app is designed to further enhance community and interpersonal connectivity in the workplace. As part of the Microsoft Viva suite, the Viva Engage app will be available to all current Microsoft 365 commercial customers with a Yammer license at no additional charge. Microsoft will also simultaneously be rebranding the Communities app found in Yammer as Viva Engage.
So what’s it all about?
Strengthening social connection
According to Microsoft, the goal of Viva Engage – like Yammer – is to build stronger relationships between employees and leaders. While remote and hybrid work have chipped away at our sense of connection over the past couple of years, the new app inspires to spark engagement and conversation in an effort to reestablish it. With Engage, leaders can share news, answer questions and enable back-and-forth communication with staff that bolsters an inclusive culture at work. At the same time, all employees can build their own personal social networks, share their stories and bring their unique points-of-view to their jobs.
Share your story
With the new Storyline feature, users can create posts and stories that include links, files, photos, and videos. (You can watch a short video demo here.) These will reach your colleagues in Microsoft Viva Connections, Outlook, Teams, and Yammer. There will be a dedicated Storyline tab, with a feed of storyline posts from people you follow and recommended colleagues. Think of it as something like a Facebook or LinkedIn for the office, where you build both your personal and professional networks while you work.
Engage (and Yammer) from anywhere
Viva Engage will be available to use in the web, desktop and mobile versions of Teams. And Yammer devotees, fear not! Viva Engage will continue to show the same network, home feed, and communities that you see today in Yammer. Any content created in Yammer.com or mobile – including community conversations, storyline posts, and stories – will be viewable in Viva Engage. Likewise, content created in Engage will show up in Yammer native experiences. Microsoft is hoping to bring the best of both worlds to the user experience!