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Microsoft Teams: Top 15 Tips & Tricks

Microsoft Teams Toronto

Microsoft Teams: Top 15 Tips & Tricks

Microsoft Teams is an online communication and collaboration tool that is part of Microsoft Office 365. Accessible through various operating systems, including iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows, Teams combines features that support video conferencing, audio calls, chats, group messaging, and file storage.

With so many organizations turning to Microsoft Teams to facilitate their collaboration and communication needs, having an easier and faster way to access and use tools and features on the app has become crucial.

Check out our latest video to learn the top tricks and tips for Microsoft Teams:

Top Tricks and Tips for Microsoft Teams

Keyboard Shortcuts

Microsoft Teams on Windows and the web application using a PC keyboard supports keyboard shortcuts to make it easier for you to move to Teams’ main options.

To get access to a list of keyboard shortcuts supported by Teams, press Ctrl +Period(.). You can also access the list of shortcuts by keying in /keys on the search tab.

To learn more about Microsoft Teams keyboard shortcuts and how they vary between the web app and the Windows app, click here.

Navigation Shortcuts

These keyboard shortcuts help you navigate between teams, chat, calls, and search for information quickly. To navigate up and down the left navigation tab;

  • Pressing Ctrl + 1 takes you to the activity feed
  • Pressing Ctrl + 2 takes you to chats
  • Pressing Ctrl + 3 takes you to Teams
  • To get access to your Teams calendar, press Ctrl + 4
  • To get access to calls, press Ctrl + 5
  • To get access to your files, press Ctrl + 6

These shortcuts will vary depending on the order of the tabs.

Changing Your Status

Teams allows you to share your status with your colleagues to let them know when you are away, busy, or available. Since Teams is synced with your Outlook calendar, it will automatically set your status for you. You can also change or update your status from the command box. You can change your status to available, busy, be right back, do not disturb, away, or offline.

In addition to changing your status, you can also set a status message and set for how long it will display.

The Command Box

The command box in Teams that appears at the top of the screen helps you launch applications, search, and take quick actions.

  • To search using the command box, type in what you are looking for on the search bar, select one of the suggestions presented, and press enter.
  • To perform tasks using the command box, type in a / to see the list of commands, select the command you want, and press enter.

@Mentions

To get a colleague’s attention in a team conversation, a channel conversation, or a chat, @mention them. Type @ before their name and then select the person’s name from the menu that appears. To get the attention of a whole team or a specific channel, type @team or @channel.

Managing a Team

As the team owner, you can change your team name and picture, add new team members, remove members, make members team owners, and manage team settings.

Searching in Teams

You can search for persons, Teams, and channels from the command box or within chats. In addition to this, Teams has a filter option that can be accessed by going to the funnel or using the Ctrl + Shift + F shortcut.

Editing a Message

Teams allows you to edit the messages you’ve sent to a channel or chat. To edit your message, click on the message and select More options> Edit. Make changes to your message, then press Enter to save the update.

Creating Private Channels

If you’re looking to have more secluded conversations, create a private channel. To create a private channel, create a new channel, and set the privacy level to private.

Turning a File into a Tab

To change a file into a Microsoft Teams tab, open the location of the file, on the file name, click on the ellipsis (visible three horizontal dots) and from the list of options presented, select the  ‘make this a tab’ option.

Adding a Poll

Using Microsoft Forms in Teams allows you to create instant and real-time polls in seconds. You can share these polls in your Channels and Teams and quickly gather feedback. To create a poll in Teams:

  • Open the chat or channel in which you want to include a poll. At the bottom of your Teams window, select Forms.
  • Add your questions and answer options.
  • Select Save and send the poll.

Switching to the Dark Mode

To switch to dark mode, go to your profile and select Settings. In the theme section, select the Dark theme.

Saving Messages

To save a message, look for the message, click on the ellipsis, and select save this message.

Pinning Important Conversations

Pinning a chat or conversation is a great way to keep track of it. To pin a chat or conversation, highlight the chat, then select More options and select Pin.

Formatting and Making Conversations Fun

Teams offers you a lot of formatting options. These options include; highlighting, italicizing, underlining, and making text bold. These options are present in the compose box.

Ready To Leverage Reliable Microsoft Solutions In Toronto?

Do you have any questions regarding Teams?

At Tektonic Managed Services, we offer years of experience and expertise in providing IT solutions to businesses throughout Toronto.

Consult with us today, or call us on (416) 256-9928 and let us help you integrate and customize Microsoft Teams solutions to fit your business’s needs.


Microsoft Office 365 Benefits for Toronto Businesses

Microsoft 365 Benefits Toronto

Microsoft Office 365 Benefits for Toronto Businesses

Launched in July 2017, Microsoft 365 is a cloud-based subscription version of Microsoft Office. It integrates the core applications of the traditional version of Office 365, including Excel, Word, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, and depending on the business plan purchased, may also include other applications such as OneDrive, Publisher, Exchange, Planner, SharePoint, Teams, Yammer, and Skype.

As a business considering using Microsoft Office 365 in your day to day business operations, what benefits would Office 365 offer your business?

Check out our latest video to learn more about the benefits of using Office 365:

What Are The Top Microsoft 365 Benefits For Businesses in Toronto?

You Can Work Anywhere, At Any Time, and On Any Device

A significant benefit of using Office 365 is the ability to work from anywhere, anytime, and on any device as long as you have a stable internet connection. Because it is completely cloud-based, Office applications (Excel, PowerPoint, Word, etc.), files, and emails can be accessed from any device. You can also create, edit, and share files from your Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices with anyone in real-time.

Microsoft 365 is particularly beneficial for organizations with remote employees, employees who travel frequently, and several office locations.

You Can Easily Collaborate and Communicate with Colleagues

If your company encourages teamwork, you’ll appreciate the collaboration features Microsoft 365 offers. Everyone who wants or needs to edit a document gets to work on the same version of the document and make real-time changes. Teams also provides you a platform to chat, have phone conversations and video chats with colleagues.

You Get Advanced Security Features

Microsoft 365 has built-in security features that help keep your organization’s data safe. They include:

  • Encrypted Emails: This feature allows you to send encrypted emails, stopping everyone else other than the intended recipient from reading your emails’ content. This feature works regardless of the email service the recipient uses.
  • Mobile Devices Management:  this feature allows you to control office on your employees’ mobile devices to protect company data. If an employee’s device gets stolen, it can be permanently wiped to prevent malicious actors from gaining access to company data.
  • Data Loss Prevention: This is a set of procedures that monitors and prevents sensitive data from leaving your business through email.
  • Advanced Threat Analytics (ATA): This feature uses analytics and machine learning to expose and alert your organization to suspicious behavior on your systems and networks. The security features you get will depend on the business plan you purchase.

You are Always Updated

Since Microsoft 365 is cloud-based, you will be up to date with the latest versions of Microsoft features and applications at no extra cost.

You Can Choose a Plan That Is Convenient for You

Microsoft 365 offers various business plans, each with varying applications and features. You can easily switch between or mix and match these plans if your organization needs more or fewer features and applications.

You Eliminate and Reduce Hardware and Energy

Since Microsoft 365 runs on the cloud, you don’t need physical file storage equipment and servers for your networks. Removing or not having servers will not only help to reduce energy costs but also eliminates the need for office spaces.

You Can Easily Budget for Your IT

Because Microsoft 365 is a subscription-based service, once you decide on a plan, you only pay that amount either annually, monthly, or per user, eliminating surprise costs.

You Can Easily Scale Your Business

Microsoft 365 gives you the flexibility to scale your business as it grows. You can easily add or remove users and create customized plans for your users or departments.

Microsoft 365 offers benefits to businesses, whether you are looking to boost your collaboration capabilities, ensure data security, or improve business productivity.

Looking to Leverage Reliable Microsoft 365 Solutions and Grow Your Toronto Business?

At Tektonic Managed Services, we offer years of experience and expertise in providing IT solutions to businesses throughout Toronto.

Consult with us today, or call us on (416) 256-9928 and let us help you integrate and customize Microsoft 365 solutions to fit the needs of your business.


Does Your IT Cybersecurity Include Two Factor Authentication?

Does Your IT Cybersecurity Include Two Factor Authentication?

Does Your IT Cybersecurity Include Two Factor Authentication?

Your IT cybersecurity should manage your login security – but are you only protected by your password? You should have more than one layer of protection. You should have Two-Factor Authentication.

Practically every day, we hear about people whose Gmail, Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter passwords have been broken into.

Just last year a report showed that 86% of more than 2 million breached passwords were identical to passwords that had already been breached. The top 10 most common and repeatedly breached passwords in this report include:

  1. 123456
  2. 123456789
  3. Qwerty
  4. password
  5. 111111
  6. 12345678
  7. abc123
  8. password1
  9. 1234567
  10. 12345

The question is – are any of the above one of your passwords? Even if they’re not, are you making a similar error with any of your passwords?

Cybercrime Is On The Rise – IT Cybersecurity Means More Than Passwords

4IQ published a report this year that lists a number of alarming statistics about how cybercrime is becoming more and more common:

  • There were 12,499 confirmed data breaches in 2018 – a 424% increase when compared to 2017.
  • The average breach compromised 216,884 records.
  • 14.9 billion stolen identity records were exchanged by cybercriminals online.

How Can You Enhance Your IT Cybersecurity?

The simplest way to enhance the protections you have for your logins is with two-factor authentication.

Two-factor authentication is a great way to add an extra layer of protection to the existing system and account logins. 45% of polled businesses began using MFA in 2018, compared to 25% the year prior.

By requiring a second piece of information like a randomly-generated numerical code sent by text message, you’re better able to ensure that the person using your employee’s login credentials is actually who they say they are. Biometrics like fingerprints, voice, or even iris scans are also options, as are physical objects like keycards.

Tektonic uses Duo for our clients’ two-factor authentication, delivering a range of great features:

  • Mobile Convenience: Duo Mobile keeps your staff secure on the go, verifying identities of your users quickly and easily with push-based notifications to help protect against phishing and other identity-based attacks.
  • Wide Range Of Authentication Methods: Duo offers methods for verification that fit your business’ needs, whether it’s temporary access to get approval on a sensitive document, or limited access to let a client have a look at precisely the files you want them to.
  • Robust User Access Policies: You can set simple, contextual user access policies that will follow adaptive authentication, providing you with the ability to exercise more control over those who are given access to your applications.

In the end, managing a strict password policy, creating strong passwords, and using password managers can be frustrating, but it’s incredibly important.

If you’re still worried about your password security, especially when it comes to policies in place at your business, then don’t try to handle it all on your own. The Tektonic team will help you evaluate your password practices and security measures as a whole to make sure you’re taking on any unnecessary risks.

Privacy and security are major concerns for personal users and businesses alike these days, and so you have to be sure that you aren’t making it easy for hackers to access you or your business’ private data.


When Your Business Depends On Your Data, Datto Has Your Back

When Your Business Depends On Your Data, Datto Has Your Back

When Your Business Depends On Your Data, Datto Has Your Back

Running a business is much like being a tightrope walker, walking the proverbial thin line while carrying a long balancing pole with weights on each end to give you equalized stability. For businesses, these weights represent every area you need to consider: staffing, customers, overhead, and everything that impacts your budget. But what has the greatest impact on your bottom line?

All of these areas involve data:

  • Staffing: hiring, insurance and benefits, and payroll details
  • Customers: orders, payments, and customer service are just a few of these related issues
  • Overhead: mortgage or rent/leasing contracts and payments, utilities, furniture, and all your operational costs

That last bullet really could mention countless other items, including infrastructure costs and technology needs. Your technology keeps your business running – there’s no other way to say it. Everyone relies on your technology from an operational standpoint. Without technology, you lose the ability to communicate, collaborate, and coordinate. Your hardware and software need to run as smoothly as possible or you could experience “kinks” that cause delays that add up and impact your overall efficiency and productivity. What happens if you don’t focus as much on keeping your technology up to date?

A local legal firm recently learned this lesson the hard way, but with a happy ending. Outdated hardware with an unsupported operating system malfunctioned – a nice way of saying it just died – and resuscitation was not an option. Basically, everything on the server was lost.

Except that the firm partnered with a managed IT services provider (MSP) and took advantage of Datto Instant Virtualization, which takes a back-up of an entire IT system at regular intervals. Relying on cloud services and the data back-up, the firm was able to use a virtual machine for over a week until the new hardware was in place, everything was loaded and the server was running. The overall impact to business operations was roughly 1 hour of downtime.

By comparison, without Datto, the outcome would have been the complete opposite. Even with a data back-up, the process of ordering the hardware, loading everything from scratch including software and applications, and restoring data from back-ups would take a week on average. Plus, in an IT environment where a business hasn’t upgraded hardware or software, there are added delays from the process. For example, running an operating system that was no longer supported would mean having to perform multiple upgrades first before loading data back-ups.

If a business is solely depending on Windows for data back-up, the experience would have been different. The server would have been unrecoverable, with greater downtime, considerable data loss, and a major impact on operations.

Datto and Your Data

In this case, Datto Instant Virtualization was the ultimate safety net, enabling the IT system to be virtualized in a secure environment and the business to operate with a “business as usual” outlook.

Confidently protect your data and partner with an MSP to have a Business Continuity plan using Datto and know that your data – and your business – are protected from technology interruptions.


What Are the Benefits of Using a Golf Country Club Management Software?

What Are the Benefits of Using a Golf Country Club Management Software?

What Are the Benefits of Using a Golf Country Club Management Software?

Should golf and country clubs get management software for their businesses? How good are they and how can golf clubs ensure that they can use them efficiently?

If you want to run your business in the most efficient way possible then nobody can blame you.

Gone are the days when we would just have to grit our teeth and wade through inefficient methods because there’s no way around it.

But we are in the 21st century and the majority of the inefficiencies of the past can easily be solved by science.

Take golf and country clubs for example. While from the outside they look like well-oiled machines that seem to have no faults. But behind the curtain lies overworked staff struggling with very inefficient processes.

That was 20 years ago. Nowadays, golf and country clubs have it much easier. With newer gadgets and club management software available for them, they can easily manage their club.

But how good are these club management software and how can they help your golf and country club? Also, if do get them, what should you do to ensure you won’t have problems in the future?

Benefits of Using A Club Management Software

In almost any kind of business nowadays, they use a variety of software to help them conduct their day-to-day activities. This is good and all but when you use different applications and software within one organization, there might be some problems when one needs information from one department to the other.

One good example would be when the back-office of a restaurant will do a monthly audit, they need to go and check the POS software, get the data, and input the data on their accounting software, and do the audit.

It sounds efficient enough but you know what would be better? If you cut half of the effort just by putting both the POS and Accounting under one software.

That means every time a sale is made, the POS automatically feeds data to the servers ready to be plucked by the back-office when they need to do an audit.

This is pretty much how club management software works. By putting all club services under one software, data can easily be seen, used, or managed by any member of the staff. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself. Let’s try to list down the top benefits of using Golf and Country Club Management Software.

  1. Centralize Data – The core of efficiency within an organization lies in how they handle data. In the case of a golf club, data can be handled quite inefficiently especially when you have different software or apps for different parts of your club. When you have a gift shop or restaurant, what usually happens is that data is initially processed within the location (in the restaurant if a member decides to eat) but this data just stays there. With  a golf and country club management software, what the customer eats gets shared throughout the system. This means it will be added to the customer’s buying history and monthly bill and it will also update your inventory.
  2. Customer Data Instances – Multiple data instances of one client should not exist unless you are ready for some complications in the future. With a  golf and country club management software, you can have a customer’s data available on all devices within the club. This means when they go to the gift shop or restaurant, you can easily add purchases for billing later. This saves your team time and manpower as this can easily be exported by one click of a button.
  3. Accounting – Doing the auditing and accounting in a golf club is not easy work. What makes it even harder is the fact that you have to take into consideration the hundreds of transactions that take place within the club. With one single system to handle all of the transactions, accounting becomes much easier. From membership fees, purchases, and even payments you make to suppliers. All of these can be seen in one window and with almost no extra effort from your team as data is automatically fed into the system as they go.
  4. Budget Forecasting – Depending on how often your team updates the system, a golf and country club management software can give you a good overview of the status of your club. You know where we have concerns, what item is low on stock, or how many people we will be expecting for the next few weeks. This gives the manager or club owner a way to properly plan out the budget and allocate funds when needed.
  5. Access Anywhere – Out on a meeting but would like to double-check your membership figures? Most golf and country club management software is available online for people who have access. This means anybody can look at, edit, and manage information within the system anywhere they are.

A Good Golf and Country Club Management Software Needs a Good IT Support Partner

Not having a golf and country club management software running is almost asking to go bankrupt nowadays. That’s why everybody is getting them. But they are far from perfect. They have bugs. They fail at times. And they may take time to fully understand.

That’s why if your golf club relies on management software for day-to-day operations, you need an IT support partner who can bail you out when the software fails.

An IT support partner has a good understanding of how the software works and can help you in both installing it on your devices and in maintaining them. This eliminates any possible issues that may come up with faulty installation. In case issues do come up, the IT support team can provide you with a solution right away.

The world of IT can be quite confusing. Good thing you can always have Tektonik Managed Services to guide you. Tektonic has been helping businesses with custom management software from installation to management. We may not have made the software but our team of expert IT technicians will take time to understand how it works. This way, we have all the answers if any issues come up. If you are using custom golf and country club management software, give us a call, and let’s see how we can work together for a better business.