The digital imperative to improve productivity and wellbeing
In its latest Work Trend Index Report, Microsoft delved into the challenges that organisations are facing with evolving hybrid and remote work environments. According to the research, employees and employers are divided on how effectiveness, productivity and wellbeing are affected by the emerging work patterns.
However, it’s clear that people need to thrive in order for organisations to gain a competitive edge. The employee experience platform Microsoft Viva is designed to help energise and empower people to do meaningful work. The platform has already been up and running for a year, and in that time has been reported to reduce onboarding time by 50%. It also improves productivity by 75% by reducing time spent searching for resources.
What modules make up Microsoft Viva?
Until August this year, Microsoft Viva comprised just four modules: Topics , Connections, Learning, and Insights. However, this has now more than doubled with Microsoft unveiling five new productivity and wellbeing modules over the past few months. Engage, Goals and Sales are already available, while Amplify and Pulse have just been announced.
The employee experience and engagement platform can be accessed directly from Microsoft Teams in Microsoft 365, and works the same whether you are deploying a single app or a suite of modules tailored to your employee experience.
Learn about the new Microsoft Viva modules
In the hybrid working world, the Microsoft Viva suite provides tools to connect people, and provide them with insights and development opportunities directly in Microsoft Teams.
The newly announced Amplify and Pulse modules are designed to energise and empower your people, going beyond the digital transformation you’ve already undertaken, and towards the digital imperative to make your organisation stand out and thrive. Engage and Goals are already available to licensed users in Microsoft Teams, while Sales is launching in October.
We’ve rounded up each of the five modules and what they bring to the Microsoft Viva employee experience platform.
If you’ve used the Communities app in Microsoft Teams before, you’ll be familiar with Viva Engage. Made available to users on enterprise plans last month, this module is designed to connect people and shape the culture of your organisation.
It helps organisations build connection and community with remote working through features like Storyline and Stories, where your people can share conversations and videos. With these tools, you can encourage connections and provide opportunities for your people to engage beyond those they interact with in their day-to-day roles.
Microsoft has already announced new features, Leadership Corner and Answers, which will be added to the app in early 2023. Leadership Corner is a new feature for team leaders, providing them with tools to encourage open dialogue and feedback. Answers is a new feature for both Viva Engage and Viva Topics – more on that below.
Launched in August, Viva Goals has been created as part of Microsoft’s acquisition of Ally.io, a specialist in objective and key result (OKR) software. OKRs are used to set organisation-wide goals, ensuring everyone is working in line with a common purpose.
Viva Goals allows leadership teams to set and manage OKRs that align with strategic priorities for the organisation. Integrated in Teams, the module makes it easy to view both individual and team OKRs as part of the big picture. You can also track, update and communicate progress straight from the app, and use this to present on OKRs in strategic meetings.
Viva Sales is a key module for any salesperson – it enables them to easily engage with any backed customer relationship management (CRM) system straight from Microsoft Teams. Your sales team can collaborate to keep deals moving forward and easily share knowledge and expertise.
Salespeople can concentrate on building relationships with their clients by eliminating manual data collection and entry. The app is integrated in Microsoft Teams and Outlook, delivering real-time business context and artificial intelligence (AI) powered insights designed to improve customer engagement and close the sale.
This module is available separately from the Microsoft Viva suite. It will be launched for Dynamics 365 Sales Enterprise and Premium users on 3 October, but you can get it on its own licence if you’re not on these subscriptions.
Announced by Microsoft last week, Viva Amplify is a new tool that will help you create and share effective communications that resonate using Microsoft Teams.
The central hub offers everything you need to elevate your communications, with tools to plan, create, publish and analyse your messages. Viva Amplify features guidance on elevating messaging from leadership, HR or corporate teams to energise your people.
Microsoft is setting up a preview programme for Viva Amplify, and you can expect the app to be available next year.
Viva Pulse was announced last week as a new app for managers and team leaders to drive success by gathering confidential feedback from their teams.
Integrated in Microsoft Teams, leaders can put together quick forms and surveys using templates and research-backed suggested questions. Suggested topics range from team collaboration and success to wellbeing and work-life balance.
Microsoft is launching its own Pulse Customer Advisory Board and will be rolling out the app next year.
Other features to look out for in Microsoft Viva
Alongside the new apps, Microsoft has been announced new features that will be rolled out across modules to enhance the Viva experience.
For Viva Topics and Viva Engage, a new ‘Answers in Microsoft Viva’ experience will match questions to the most relevant answers and experts within the organisation using AI. This will help address open questions and make collective knowledge available to everyone. Users will be able to find similar answers, recommended topics and highlighted solutions to their questions.
What’s changed with the existing Viva modules?
The existing four modules haven’t been left out – there are new developments to look forward to next year for those using Viva Learning and Viva Connections.
Viva Learning’s integration with LinkedIn has been enhanced with LinkedIn Learning Hub to make it seamless for people using the two learning management systems. This also includes consolidated options for admins to surface the most relevant content and collections in the Viva Learning module.
Viva Connections is getting a new home experience with at-a-glance information highlighted at the top of the page and a dashboard featuring key company tasks and cards from across Microsoft 365. The daily Viva Briefing email is being refreshed to include personal insights, recommendations and employee experience information.
With all of these developments in the works, we will be featuring a series of blogs over the coming weeks diving into each of the new Microsoft Viva modules: Engage, Goals, Sales, Amplify and Pulse.