What’s Next for SharePoint and Yammer?
This morning Microsoft held it’s SharePoint Virtual Summit, in which it announced the roadmap for SharePoint 2017 and highlighted a few enhancements for Yammer within the suite.
The SharePoint 2017 roadmap includes:
- SharePoint Communication Sites
- People Search enhancements
- A revamped SharePoint admin center
- Every Team Site is now an O365 Group
- Integration of SharePoint and Microsoft Teams
Communication Sites were previously announced at Ignite in 2016 as ‘Publishing Sites’ – the name change would seem to highlight what Microsoft is hearing from customers is a need, i.e. comms, and not “publishing.” However, the gist of these remains the same – they provide a mechanism of push communications, though webparts can be added that will bring in conversation from Yammer and across O365. Microsoft describe them as “beautiful” – they offer a clean, more visually-driven design and are certainly a step-up in terms of look and feel.
The sites are also designed to be mobile friendly, with content including tables rendering cleanly and as expected on mobile.
The changes to people search will allow you to search by interest, skills and projects, surfacing this content where a user has added it to their O365 profile. This is something much needed in many organisations, and is probably long overdue as an enhancement.
For Yammer, the announcements included:
- Embedding authenticated video (such as from O365 or Microsoft Stream)
- Deep integration between Yammer and documents in SharePoint and OneDrive
- Microsoft connectors bring content into Yammer
- Microsoft Flow will connect Yammer to SharePoint, OneDrive, Dynamics, Outlook, and a range of third-party services (including Twitter and Facebook)
- Every Yammer group is now connected to the O365 group service
- Yammer groups can now have dynamic membership, managed by O365 admins
- New Yammer apps for iPad, Windows and Mac
These are some interesting developments for Yammer, and finally show signs of bringing Yammer more snugly into the suite.
There’s been an ongoing lack of clarity about the role and purpose of each part of the O365 puzzle, which this ‘helpful guide’ from Microsoft seeks to address. It should also be noted that these changes for Yammer will go a little way to quieting (for now) the ongoing conversation about what Microsoft sees as the future of Yammer in the world of O365, Microsoft Teams and O365 Groups.