3 recommended updates: Manage Q&A and comments for Yammer live events

3 Recommended Updates 20.12.17 Featured 3 Recommended Updates 20.12.17 Featured

Version 20.12.17

Microsoft MVP Jasper Oosterveld on the ability to manage Q&A and comments for Yammer live events, the general availability of mandatory labeling in Office apps, and the introduction of Portal Launch Scheduler in SharePoint PowerShell.

ShareGate’s easy-to-use SaaS tools enable organizations to achieve more than ever before with Microsoft cloud technologies. In our ongoing series, Jasper Oosterveld brings you up to speed on the latest and greatest from the world of Microsoft 365.

I hope you enjoyed my last update—where I discussed the availability of Microsoft Graph connectors for Microsoft Search, additional Microsoft Teams settings for multiple accounts and organizations, and new ‘Undo’ and ‘Redo’ commands in Microsoft Lists.

Let’s move on to the latest installment!


In this release, you’ll find my opinion on the ability to manage Q&A and comments for Yammer live events, the general availability of mandatory labeling in Office apps, and the introduction of Portal Launch Scheduler in SharePoint PowerShell.

Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at three Microsoft 365 updates you need to know about now.

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Manage Q&A and comments for Yammer live events

What a year Yammer had! I would go as far as to say that it literally came back from the dead. I am hugely impressed with all the updates we’ve seen this year. My compliments to the Yammer team and Microsoft for finding renewed focus to give this service a clear purpose and position in the Microsoft 365 suite.

We kick this article off with an update for Yammer live events.

Community admins will be able to turn off the comments, questions, and answers features for specific events in a community.

Microsoft 365 Roadmap, Feature ID: 66499 Tweet this

Currently, questions and comments in Yammer live events are open to all attendees before, during, and after the event. This allows viewers to engage prior to the event and continue the discussion once the live event has ended.

With this update, organizers, presenters, and producers will continue to be able to post questions and comments at any time. However, organizers and producers can now manage attendee participation by:

  • Beginning a live event without Q&A and comments, which is useful if you want to make an announcement, and then enabling Q&A and discussion after the event begins
  • Disabling all Q&A and comments to present information without feedback
  • Disabling Q&A and comments after a live event stops

Organizers and/or producers can modify the above setting at any time. When scheduling a live event, access settings via the Edit button to enable or disable Q&A and comments for attendees:

screenshot of new Q&A toggle

When a live event is in progress, click Edit event details to access the comment toggle:

image of edit event toggle in yammer

Good to know:

  • Notify live event organizers, producers, and presenters when this feature is available.
  • Start updating your user training and documentation, and prepare your employees by sending out a news post announcing this update and its benefits.

Microsoft started rolling out this update in early December 2020. Are you interested in learning more about hosting live events in Yammer? Then check out this step-by-step playbook from Microsoft: How to Host a Live Event in Yammer.


General availability of mandatory labeling policy in Office apps

This year, Microsoft launched a lot of updates and new compliance features for Microsoft 365. More companies are seeing the value in rolling out compliance updates to guarantee the safety of sensitive information—not only to comply with regulations, but also to protect valuable business assets.

One of the current features that helps fulfill these requirements is the ability to apply a sensitivity label to your Office documents:

image of labels in ribbon

Note the sensitivity label options for ‘Personal’, ‘Public’, ‘Internal’, or ‘Confidential’ in the ribbon at the top of the document.

Soon, thanks to this next release, Microsoft Office apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook) will support enforcement of the Microsoft Information Protection policy setting, allowing admins to require that a label be applied before users can save documents or send emails.

Office apps (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook) will now respect the Admin policy setting to require users to apply a label to documents and emails on Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android (for the Office 365 subscription version of the apps).

Microsoft 365 Roadmap, Feature ID: 68873

The following enhancements will soon be available to your organization:

  • Office apps will enforce the existing policy setting to ‘Require users to apply a label to their emails or documents’ in the Microsoft 365 compliance center under Information protection > Label policies.
  • Office apps will display a new dialog to force users to select a label before they can save unlabeled documents or send mail.

Time to start implementing your company information protection policies!

Good to know:

  • This feature is supported on all platforms (Windows/Mac/iOS/Android/web) for Outlook, and all platforms except the web for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • Support for mandatory labeling on the web for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint will be available early 2021.
  • This feature will be disabled by default. Admins must enable the policy setting Require users to apply a label to their emails or documents in the Microsoft 365 compliance center (Information protection > Label policies).
  • For admins that already have this policy enabled in their tenant, this feature will be enabled as soon as rollout is completed.
  • Start updating your user training and documentation, and prepare your employees by sending out a news post announcing this update and its benefits.

Microsoft will start rolling out this update in late December 2020 and expects to be completed by mid-January 2021.


Introducing SharePoint Portal Launch Scheduler

We finish the last article of the year with an interesting SharePoint update! Microsoft is launching the Portal Launch Scheduler in SharePoint PowerShell:

The Portal Launch wizard available via SharePoint PowerShell is designed to configure the deployment waves when launching a new site. It also provides an automatic redirect for users dependent on which redirect option is selected.

Microsoft 365 Roadmap, Feature ID: 66162

The Portal Launch Scheduler makes it possible to manage a phased rollout for a new SharePoint site. It also provides an automatic redirect for existing sites if needed.

With the Portal Launch Scheduler, you can gather user feedback and monitor performance during each wave of deployment. This has the advantage of slowly introducing the portal—giving you the option to pause and resolve issues before proceeding with the next wave, and ultimately ensuring a positive experience for your users.

Good to know:

  • You need tenant administrative permissions to run the PowerShell cmdlets.
  • With the PowerShell cmdlet, you define the type of redirection; expected number of users; new site URL; and existing site URL (if applicable).
  • This is an optional feature that will not impact your environment until a SharePoint administrator enables this feature on a site.
  • To enable this feature on a modern SharePoint site, a SharePoint admin must run a PowerShell cmdlet. Enabling the Portal Launch Scheduler does not change any site permissions or remove any content.  
  • Head over to Microsoft’s official documentation for more details on how to launch your portal using the Portal Launch Scheduler and information about creating and launching a healthy SharePoint portal.

Microsoft is gradually rolling out this update in December 2020 and expects rollout to be completed by mid-January 2021.


As 2020 draws to a close…

We are nearing the end of 2020, a difficult year. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on all our lives. Many of us have switched to working from home, resulting in personal and business challenges.

Personally, I have struggled, and am still struggling, with the “new normal”. I miss seeing my colleagues and community friends in person. That said, I have to accept this situation; the health and safety of the people around us is more important.

Looking at all the updates and new features released in 2020, Microsoft Teams definitely stands out. The usage exploded, and most of our customers switched to Microsoft Teams to support the “new normal”. I have to give Microsoft a huge compliment on how they have handled this situation. The service is stable and has received regular, valuable business updates throughout the year—ranging from custom backgrounds to new meeting experiences. It’s clear that Microsoft is fully committed to Microsoft Teams, which means we can look forward to another steady release of Teams updates and new features in 2021.

To all the readers: Thanks for your support this year, stay safe and healthy. Let’s make 2021 a year not to forget!

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