10 Sep Working Around Microsoft Teams Limitations: How Can You Do Your Best Work?
Working Around Microsoft Teams Limitations:
How Can You Do Your Best Work?
10 September 2021 · 4 min read
As hybrid work becomes the new normal, collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams are powering this digital transformation. Teams, with over 250 million monthly active users, is enabling organizations to collaborate through a large library of features.
But Teams faces limitations in provisioning & governance, creating a domino effect across organizational business processes. Without proper provisioning, everyone can create Teams for different projects. Users then struggle to locate data, and as a result, find themselves in a pile of data chaos. And of course, you cannot govern what you cannot locate. So, risk management teams are unable to apply proper security and minimization policies.
But, worrying doesn’t have to be part of the equation. With years of experience in using Teams as early adopters, we have put together a list of limitations and ways you can address these challenges to improve adoption and governance.
The Unwanted Effect of Manual Team Creation
Teams currently offers only manual provisioning of Teams & Channels for a project. Depending on its complexity, this could take an average of 15 to 30 minutes. For organizations that work across hundreds or thousands of projects or matters per year, this manual labor is time-consuming, costly, and prone to privacy & cybersecurity risk.
To avoid this limitation, organizations should seek a third-party solution that integrates with Teams and enables on-demand and automatic provisioning. In turn, organizations can initiate projects across systems in only a few clicks with templates and standardized naming conventions.
Limited Metadata & Lack of Project or Matter ID
In practice, projects or matters in the DMS have IDs to make it easier to identify, manage, and govern them. But in Teams, when creating Teams & Channels, organizations cannot assign such numbers automatically, making it difficult to link data between systems and even more challenging to locate them. Content can get quickly misplaced, exposing the organization to privacy and cybersecurity risk. Organizations need to manually assign a client/project number to Teams. Doing this across hundreds or thousands of projects is inefficient and prone to human error.
On top of that, Teams also allows only limited metadata for its Teams & Channels. The limited metadata for Teams & Channels has a negative effect on your organization’s governance. That’s because risk professionals spend too much time trying to understand the context of each document, and then deciding who should have access to it or what disposition policies to implement.
To address these challenges, organizations need a solution that enables both provisioning with standardized naming conventions & rich custom metadata.
With automatic or on-demand provisioning, a project is created in Teams, the DMS, and any other system the organization needs it. The project will have the same client/project number with any set prefix, suffix, or custom name, which will be easily identifiable across systems. And if the client/project number changes during the project, automatic updates follow. Couple this with assigning rich custom metadata, like author, department, office, type of project, and more, and users can easily place content in the right project workspace and locate it with custom metadata. As a result, risk management teams also understand who should and shouldn’t have access, ultimately being able to apply proper security and disposition policies.
Too Many Team Owners in Teams
Within Teams, users, regardless of their position, are allowed to create Teams, Channels, and workspaces, so no wonder organizations face data chaos. With a lack of strategy on who is allowed to create Teams, Channels, & workspaces, content can quickly spiral out of control and users will not be able to identify where they should place a document.
On top of that, the Team owner has great power here, posing privacy risks since Team owners can change security and add users who shouldn’t have access to that particular content. There is also the possibility that the employee (team owner) will leave the organization, also leaving the team orphaned.
To mitigate this challenge, organizations should properly provision Teams with a System Account. This eliminates the problem by making a System Account the Team owner. No employee would have that great of a power over a Team or Channel. As a result, organizations would also gain the ability to set any geo-location to the Team, complying with client requirements.
Manually Setting User Permissions
With rich metadata to provide context and track content across collaboration systems, it’s important that your organization has strong access management policies in place as well.
Currently in Teams, user permissions are set manually across hundreds to thousands of projects across systems. This results in human error and increased risk for your organization. To have proper access management across the organization, it’s important to automate this process. Specifically, users can be given access only to the content they need, without exposing the organization to a potential breach. Similarly, organizations can then quickly terminate access when the user does not need access anymore, strengthening their governance, improving compliance, and ultimately, increasing efficiency.
By committing to a need-to-know security model, organization could also engage in secure external collaboration. Guest users can be automatically enrolled into the organization’s Teams tenant, and they will have access to only the Teams or Channels they need for successful collaboration.
A solution that enables automatic access management, security on a need-to-know basis, and much more, is needed for proper provisioning & governance.
How Prosperoware Helps
Prosperoware CAM is a Software-as-a-Service platform (SaaS) for adoption and governance of collaboration systems. It allows organizations to provision, classify, protect, move, and minimize data, mitigating data chaos and reducing risks related to privacy & cybersecurity.
CAM enables organizations to create logical locations for users to place data. It provides rich custom metadata, empowering users to locate documents, and risk management teams to understand business context in order to apply the right security & data minimization policies.
CAM integrates with Microsoft 365 (Microsoft Teams, SharePoint Online, OneDrive, OneNote, Planner, Lists), iManage, NetDocuments, HighQ, and more to come.
Here is what CAM can do for you:
- Provisioning of workspaces, Teams, Channels, Lists, users & groups, and folders from Project Portfolio Management, CRM etc., or through a human workflow using readily available templates.
- Rich, custom metadata for project or document context.
- Unified project directory for content location for end users and risk management teams.
- Provision automatically or on-demand internal & external users, manage permissions across collaboration systems, and integrate with leading ethical wall systems.
- Data Loss Prevention (DLP) with activity monitoring and bulk security & metadata changes.
- Data protection by creating a separate archive of documents to access in case of incidents.
- Minimize data by setting automatic data disposition policies or apply litigation hold.