Office 365 Admin Update: March 2018

March Updates

AMT’s Monthly Office 365 Updates keep you up to date with new features and important announcements from Microsoft. Office 365 has a continuous roll-out of changes. We filter out the announcements that we think will be most relevant to our customers, and send them out in an easily digestible form. Here are the March updates from Microsoft. If you would like to read last month’s updates, click here.

Updated feature: Access Microsoft Teams plans in Planner Hub

With this update, users will be able to access plans created in Microsoft Teams in the Planner web app. They can favourite a plan, or view the team and channels associated with it. You can also open the plan in Teams or keep working in Planner.

SharePoint Statistics

New feature: SharePoint Online page usage information 

After the update of this new feature, users will be able to view different page stats for modern SharePoint Online. Page stats include the number of views, likes and comments on a page. Anyone who has access to the page will be able to view page usage, apart from the homepage as those stats are not recorded.

Updated Feature: Edit faster in Word, Excel and PowerPoint  

Microsoft is enabling a faster and more collaborative workspace for SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business documents. They will now open directly into edit mode, which will allow you to jump straight into working on your word, excel and PowerPoint documents. Targeted release customers have this update already, however, the rollout will be taking place over the next few months.

New Feature: SharePoint Online Hub Sites 

SharePoint Online Hub Sites are the new building block of the internet. They bring together related sites to roll up news/ activity, to simplify search and create cohesion with shared navigation, look/ feel. You will be able to organise concepts, teams, divisions or resources throughout the organisation. When hub site is created, admin approved site owners can associate existing team sites and communication sites to the hub site.

SharePoint Online news 

Quickly create a clean news digest by selecting the desired news articles you wish to roll up into a consolidated email. These can be sent to the users/ groups of their choosing. News articles appear as article previews with thumbnails and a sneak peak of the content with links included. These links then take them to the full article.

This has been released to targeted release customers throughout March and full rollout will be completed in the coming months.

SharePoint Workflows

Workflow updates to Intune Admin UI 

Microsoft is updating the admin experience to give more transparency to the data that is shared. These updates will not affect the end user UI. These following scenarios will add a consent to share data windows: when you enable Android for work, when you enable and upload Apple MDM push certificates, when you enable any of the Apple services such as device enrolment program, school management or volume purchase program.

Use Intune on Azure now for your MDM (mobile device management) 

This change was released previously by Microsoft. However, based on feedback stating that people would like a bit longer before the transition from Silverlight to Intune on the Azure portal – this process has been delayed. Microsoft understand that it takes time to train IT staff and get documentation completed, therefore this change won’t happen until August 31.

If you’re using a hybrid or using the full PC agent for Intune, this change will not affect you as you continue to have access to Silverlight.

Company portal website update for Intune 

Microsoft is introducing a new company portal in April that will improve the user interface (UI). Based on feedback given to Microsoft, the update will improve UI throughout the website, give users the ability to share direct links to apps, and will improve performance for large app catalogues. This will improve the overall performance and make it more user-friendly.

Dynamics 365 Help and Support

Announcing Launch of Dynamics 365 help and support 

This new feature introduces help and support ticketing for admins to contact Microsoft support representatives for Dynamics 365 online. You can access this if you have a global, tenant, service, support or billing admin role. You can also access this if you on one of these support plans: subscription support, enhanced support and professional direct support.

Changes to API requests limit per user account 

From March 19th, 2018, API requests made by each user account within an organisation will be limited. Each user account will have up to 60,000 API requests per organisation within 5 minute sliding windows.

The limit will not affect regular use of the platform and is intended to focus on applications that generate a very large number of API requests. If you would like more info or use apps that make regular bulk API requests, click below.

Dynamics 365 Online, version 9.0.2 

In April 2018, Microsoft will begin applying update 9.0.2 to Dynamics 365 (online – version 9 or higher). The main priority for this update is reliability and performance improvements, as well as some new changes/ features.

Who will receive this update? Any updates from version 8x to 9 that are scheduled on or after April 2nd, will get the update automatically with no change of schedule needed.

You will be sent a ‘planned maintenance’ notification in the Office 365 Message Centre with a time window for the update within your region.

Updated Feature: New capabilities coming to Office 365 message encryption 

Rich new capabilities in Office 365 Message Encryption (OME) protects and controls email correspondence with customers. This update will make changes to Information Rights Management (IRM) configuration in Exchange online.

Updated feature: Embed Web Part 

To reduce the risk of embedded content coming in from unknown sites, Office 365 has a list of websites and domains that are recognised as safe. This list is being updated in March and April, and the rollout will be completed in April.

Message Centre Translation

Updated Feature: Message centre automatic language translation update 

These updates are based on the feedback from the December rollout. Microsoft has updated the machine learning translation experience to accommodate each admins preferences.

LinkedIn Integration: 

Microsoft is now allowing integration between LinkedIn and Microsoft Apps. Users that have connected Microsoft and LinkedIn will see personalised LinkedIn information when hovering over a person’s image, for example in Outlook. This feature is currently being rolled out to Targeted release, however, the roll out process should be completed by July 2018.

Updated Feature: You can now use dot (.) in the group alias when creating a group 

As stated in the heading, you can now use a dot (.) in the group alias when creating a group. This feature is already available in Office 365 Admin Centre, Exchange Admin Centre, and Outlook.

Changes to Microsoft Trust Centre 

Microsoft discloses the names of sub-contractors who have access to customer data and provides advance notice of new subcontractors. Anytime they add new vendors or sub-contractors, they will disclose all information. This will be shown in the Microsoft Trust Centre and send a notification.

Outlook Groups

New feature: Enable your groups in Outlook to receive emails from outside your organisation 

This feature works when you create a group from the Exchange Admin Centre. You can choose to allow the group to receive emails from outside the organisation. This feature will be rolling out in the next month.