A starting point on where to place your documents in Office 365

With all the options of Apps in Office 365 it can be very confusing to decide what document to store where exactly. There is no strict rule on this, exactly because Office 365 is designed to be used as fits you best.

CloudFolderTo make your life as a user or administrator more easy you could start with the following concept and build onwards/adjust from there.

       OneDriveFull       |        TeamsFull       |        SharePointFull       |        YammerFull

I did not visually work it out (yet) but as a starting point I use the following “ruling”:


  • Personal documents with incidental sharing (HINT: point the Windows My Documents to the local OneDrive sync folders location)


  • Team collaboration “work in progress”/draft documents (The digital war room principle)

SharePoint Team sites

  • Document archive and publishing to a larger team/ department/group of people (SharePoint Team site)
  • “Public” documents (Intranet site) / News page related (published) documents
  • Documents with a minimal archiving period
  • Documents with specific version management
  • Documents with publishing approval

Yammer (in case Yammer is actively used as an inter company social platform)

  • Documents with social info / nonwork related data – not important who does or does not read or can access the document – no retention requirements

This is only a guide so you can start working with documents within some kind of boundary concept with the benefit of “all faces in the same direction” group work.

Review this working method/policy within your group and adapt based on your experience and needs.


Have filing fun!

Is there a future for Yammer?

I like to share my thoughts today with you following up on a Collaboris Post with the title “Will Microsoft Teams replace Yammer?“.


I believe that with the rise of Microsoft Teams, Yammer will have a hard time to keep alive due to the social alternatives out there like the Facebooks and WeChats of this world.

Yammer had two usages before Teams was there: Social Platform and Team collaboration. The last aspect is now being replaced by Teams leaving only the social platform to be taken seriously.

In my experience, people like to keep work and private life separated on the app level. I see a lot of social interaction from global company users outside Office 365, with Facebook, WeChat and WhatsApp for example.

And if we consider the outer circle aspect in an organization then the modern communication/news and hub pages are taking over a lot of the global communication functionality.

In case you want as an organization to have your own social platform like Yammer where your employees interact on social bases you need to find an incentive that offers more than the other players already do.

Still, the challenge for me will be more when to use Yammer and not modern communication/news pages.

Yammer as an app is lacking a lot of features I think. It balances at the moment too much in between Teams (the real Team collaboration app) and a social platform.

Only if Microsoft really uplifts Yammer with a modern experience and functionality like its competitors it has a real chance.

The other reason Yammer might survive for the moment could be that big organizations do not like to switch their complete Yammer setup to Teams and will keep using Yammer as Team collaboration tool. I do not think this will last long though, thanks to the speedy development of Teams and all its beautiful options.

Let’s keep collaborating 🙂

Switching apps dilemma, or not?

Someone send me the following ZDNet article “Survey confirms collaboration and the apps that come with it still suck – We’re wasting so much time collaborating and toggling between apps it’s a miracle any work actually gets done.”

The problem with this survey is that the loss due to the self-centered tools like email is not taken into account. The switching between tools, in my opinion, is compensated more than enough by the gain in team collaboration productivity.

It is also not surprising that it is exactly the older generation that cannot keep up and prefers to stay with the email client because the longer you are used to working a certain way the more difficult it is, in general, to change and start doing thing differently. Just human nature.

The strength of Office 365 is exactly what it is all under one roof and you are less and less switching because you are just moving around within 1 environment.

Office 365 apps are getting so integrated with each other that you can go start speaking about the One Office app. What we might now consider as all separate apps of Office 365 to switch between, are actually just different areas of the One Office app, where you do different things for different purposes.


This article fits with a statement put in one of the Collaboris community guest Teams channels: “one or several team members were heavily established in Outlook – meaning: the mail archive was the primary information repository for these members and they had a very large and detailed mail archive with folders, categories, automated rules, and more. For these members, the switch from Outlook email to Teams conversations equaled a loss of control over how they own and manage the information (an email in Outlook is personal – a conversation in Teams is collectively owned and cannot be tagged and archived individually like a mail).”

What we read here is the reason that blocks modernizing, knowledge sharing and enhanced productivity.

This is typical “me” thinking instead of “we”.

With personal inboxes info is not available for lookup by Team members(in case they were not in the loop of the email cycle). Keeping everyone in the loop by email creates a hog of emails back and forth. Also maintaining documents in your attachments as file storage is entirely not where your mail client was meant for.

So how do we break this line of thought and get people to understand the real power of One Office 365 and forget about the switching apps idea?

The what’s in it for US factor!

Another community post stated: “Have any of you introduced Teams into an organization that already uses Yammer & Skype? What experience or reaction did you have from your user base? My organization is not exactly tech-savvy and is only beginning to come to terms with Yammer and Skype 😄

I my opinion “coming to terms” should change to “embracing” what only works in case the “What’s in it for us” question can be answered by each user with a positive answer driving the user to want to adopt for the benefit of the entire company towards a more productive, enjoyable and efficient work environment, cost reduction and quality of work inprovement.

The focus should not on the need of an IT department to force the new tools on the users but to find the specific need of each user group and the organization that can be better full filled with using more of the capabilities of Office 365.
Especially in an organization with a very conservative attitude, this can be difficult. Here it is very beneficial to find yourself some progressive users that are eager to improve and get new tools and get them test and demo “best use cases” to the rest of the organization.


Lets embrace the One Office 365 app and start to explore how it can enhance our work!


See also my article Office365 Apps Adoption


Office 365 – The proper mindset, names and titles

I encountered several discussions within communities regarding the “issue” that Office 365 apps like Teams would get the new feature of making private Teams findable via search so users can apply to become a member.

The discussion point is that this way the title of the team could reveal information that the private team actually wants to keep await from the public and that’s the first reason why a private team was created (and not a public one).

Some suggestions raised where to have special display settings for administrators to make private teams visible or not, or to have some powershell scripts to hide private groups from the Teams search (in case this feature would come to light).

In my opinion, you are much safer to have a proper mindset. With Office 365 it’s so dynamic that counting on display settings and powershell is for me secondary.

I believe it also about awareness and education. Microsoft has always had the “show it all” concept. I never liked the idea that anyone can see all file share folders on a network drive even without having read access, but that is what it is.

Once you know you become much more careful with titles, the same now for private groups and teams.

So do not reveal your critical info in the names and titles of Teams, Groups, Sites, Lists, etc..

When I was part of a Research and Development team, we used for several projects code names only known to very selective people with NDA’s signed for secrecy due to customer requirements that it can not be identified by the rest of the organization where we are working on or prospecting for.

Taking your work seriously also means watching out for what you write down and where. Throwing it all at IT in case of information leaks because someone puts a “billboard” out is pushing away responsibility.

The reason I would like private groups and teams not visible is likewise with the old file shares, to have the views much more organized and cleaned up. The less you see, the easier you find back what you need and do have access to.

The release of the feature to have private Teams findable seems to be on hold for the moment, but this does not change my idea to think twice before you write something.

Happy name giving!