Groups in Outlook
In our last post, we briefly covered the different Microsoft collaboration tools and what they offered. Now let’s take a deeper dive into Groups in Outlook.
In 2015, Groups was introduced by the Exchange team featuring an integration with OneDrive for Business and OneDrive. To help clear things up, I mind-mapped the pros & cons of how Groups works with Outlook, Microsoft Teams, SharePoint Sites, and Yammer.
Here is the run down.
- E-mail conversations: Everyone knows how to communicate via e-mail. This approach to conversations is an extension of distribution lists, But with more services wrapped around it.
- Outlook: Everyone has Outlook. So there is nothing else to install and people are familiar with it.
- Azure AD Groups: Since the membership is an AD Group, it can be used for security membership to any system that supports it. This allows Group Owners to manage membership without having to use AD management snap-ins.
- Connectors: The connectors allow 3rd party systems to integrate with conversations. For instance, when a new Salesforce opportunity is created, it creates a new conversation. Then the group can have a conversation about the opportunity.
- Basic files experience: Groups does support OneDrive for Business features with sync, but it does not include advanced features of SharePoint Document libraries. This includes versioning, views, metadata, and workflow.
- No Groups Directory: The Exchange engineering team built this (so it is no surprise). But it is a few clicks within the interface. There is no Groups directory as a landing page.
- Mac support: There is no Group support in Outlook for Mac.
- All or nothing: With Groups you can’t disable or swap out files, notebooks, or plans with alternatives. You can totally switch it off as John White explains.