Teams Getting Started


Overview

Microsoft Teams is a messaging platform for your group, team, or department. It provides a workspace for real-time collaboration and communication, meetings, plus files and app sharing.

Teams includes the following tools and capabilities:

  • Chat-based collaboration hub
  • Keeps all conversations in one place
  • Create, upload, store and share files in one place
  • Integrates with Planner to organize and manage tasks
  • Virtual space for meetings that include audio, video, and recording capabilities
  • Each team comes with SharePoint site in the background

Maximum Limits and Specifications

To review restrictions and limitations, such as storage limits and maximum limits on number of teams, members, etc. go to Microsoft Support: Limits and Specifications site for the most current information.

Storing Sensitive Information

Important

Microsoft cloud platforms are fully compliant with all regulatory frameworks, but if you are going to store Critical data (formerly Level 1/Confidential) in your Teams site, contact your Tech Support staff first.

Accessing Teams

There are a few ways you can access Teams:

Losing access

You are strongly encouraged to add additional owner(s) to your Team or Site to ensure that they remain current in the case that you leave the university or are not available to respond to the renewal requests.

A team will expire one year from date of the last activity. Auto-renewal is automatically enabled for any team that has at least one channel visit from any team member before its expiration date and is automatically renewed without any manual intervention from the team owner. 

If your team has been inactive for 365 days, team owners will receive messages via email and within the Teams Client 30, 15, and 1 day(s) before the expiration date asking if they wish to renew. If no one renews, the group and all related content will be sent to the Recycle Bin and permanently deleted 30 days after that.

Leaving KU

Students and faculty lose access to their KU email 210 days after leaving the university.​

Unclassified Professional Staff (UPS) and University Support Staff (USS) will lose access immediately after leaving the university.​

Desktop App

You have the option to open Teams in a web browser from the Office 365 landing page or you can use the desktop app, which can be downloaded and pinned to your taskbar. 

To download the app, select your photo or initials from the upper right-hand corner and choose download the desktop app.
View ScreenshotSelect 3 dots next to University of Kansas to open Settings, select Download desktop app

There are a few differences between the desktop and browser, mainly connected to the Meet now videoconferencing app.

We strongly recommend that you download the desktop app, which will give you more options than the web app:

  • Easy access from your toolbar
  • See notifications without having to log in to the web app
  • Several more options available in the meeting app, including backgrounds, live captioning and breakout rooms not offered in the web app.
  • Settings offers more features and options in the desktop app than the web app.

Create a Team

To create your own Team:

  1. If you don't have the Teams desktop app, go to the Office 365 landing page and choose the Teams icon.
  2. If the icon isn't visible, search by selecting on All apps at the bottom of the apps bar on the left edge of the interface.
    View ScreenshotSelect the Teams icon on the left edge of your screen or All apps icon at the bottom
  3. Click on the Teams app in the app bar to the far left edge of the Teams interface. 
    View ScreenshotSelect the Teams icon in the left app bar
  4. Once you're in Teams, select Join or create a team at the top-right of the screen.
  5. From the 4 templates, we recommend that you choose Other*.
    View Screenshot Choose the Other templat

Instructors Using Teams

If you are creating a team for a course, it is recommended that you use the Class template. Select the link below to learn more about the dos and don'ts of using Teams with courses. You can also request that the Education Technology staff build the course for you.

4 Templates

When creating a Team, you will have a choice of four types: Class, Professional Learning Community (PLC), Staff, and Other. KU recommends the use of the Other template for all of your teams. 
View ScreenshotFour Teams Templates.

If you want to use Teams for a course, KU Education Technology encourages you to use the Class template as a complementary teaching tool to Canvas. Please read Teams best practices in using Teams for your course. 

To have KU Education Technology assist you with creating and configuring a team, contact them at itedtech@ku.edu

To learn more, go to Microsoft Support: Choose a Team Type that outlines the differences between the Team types.

Layout and Background

There are a few options in Teams to change the look and layout. You can choose the List or Grid view, as well as a few background options.

From the List view, find the Settings icon at the bottom-left of your screen to the right of Join or Create a Team.
View ScreenshotIn List view, select the Settings icon is in the bottom left panel, then Switch view.

If starting from the Grid view: 

Settings provides several ways to manage how your Teams client is displayed, as well as managing other Settings preferences. Know that there are more features offered in the Settings area of your desktop app than the web app.

Manage Members

Role Comparison Chart

Currently, there are three permission groups in a Team: owners, members, and guests. Guests are users external to KU.

Permissions apply to the entire permission group and cannot be customized for individuals. 

Guests have fewer permissions than members. See Microsoft Support: Comparison of Team Member and Guest Capabilities to see the differences in member and guest capabilities.

Add People and Assign Roles

  1. Select the More options [...] next to the Team name and select Manage Team. 
    View ScreenshotSelect 3 dots the to the right of team name, select Manage team from panel
  2. Under the Members tab, you can see who is in the Owner, Member, and Guest groups.
  • Select the Add Members button to the right of the Members screen, which will open a field to type names of people you want to add. 
  • You can also add office365 groups by typing the name of the group in the field. 
  • All people at KU are added as members by default, while those external to KU are guests. 

Assign Roles

It's wise to have at least two owners of a team.

  • Owners can remove Members and Guests by selecting the "X" next to the person's name. 
  • To remove other owners, you must first change their role to member, then select the "X" next to the person's name. 
  • Owners can change the Role of a member or owner by selecting on their current role.
    View ScreenshotSelect role to far right of person's name, select role 
  • The Guests role cannot be changed.

Manage Team Permissions

To view or change permission settings:

Guest Access and Permissions

Guest Access

When an external user has been added to a Team, they will receive an email and must accept the invitation by selecting Open Microsoft Teams before they can access the team and its channels. 

Guest users who have an email address that is associated with Microsoft 365 or a Gmail account can access Teams directly. If the guest is using a personal account other than Gmail or doesn't yet have a Microsoft account associated with their email address, they'll be directed to create a Microsoft account for free. 

Guests do not have the same permissions as members. See Microsoft Support: Comparison of Team Member and Guest Capabilities for more information.

Select 3 dots the to the right of team name, select Manage team from panel

Teams Renewal

All Teams will expire one year from date of the last activity. Auto-renewal is automatically enabled for any team that has at least one channel visit from any team member before its expiration date is automatically renewed without any manual intervention from the team owner.

If there has been no activity for 365 days, the Group Owner(s) will receive messages via email and within the Teams Client 30, 15, and 1 day(s) before the expiration date asking if they wish to renew. If nobody renews, the group and all related content will be sent to the Recycle Bin and permanently deleted 30 days after that.

You are strongly encouraged to add additional owner(s) to your Team or Site to ensure that they remain current in the case that you leave the university or are not available to respond to the renewal requests.

Updates and New Features

Join the KU Teams User Group for announcements of new features, tips and tricks, and ask questions:

  1. Go to Teams. 
  2. Join or Create a Team. 

All public teams will be visible to join. Contact us if you are unable to find the KU Teams User Group. 

Teams Features Instructions

Go to our Teams Features page for step-by-step instructions for the various tools found in Teams. The instructions for all aspects of the Meetings feature has its own page. 

Support

Technical Support: itcsc@ku.edu | 785-864-8080

Training Support: training@ku.edu | 785-864-5155