07 Jan Feature flashlight – Co-Authoring
Problem: Working together on the same files and documents can be difficult
Solution: Live Co-Authoring in Microsoft 365
Working collaboratively is of the utmost importance when running a business. It ensures that the most productive ideas make their way from being just thoughts to actually being of benefit to the company in the long run, from ways of increasing productivity levels to financial benefits to the business.
With Covid-19 looking like a staple of our lives for the foreseeable future, companies around the world have been looking for a way to mirror the levels of collaboration and productivity they have grown accustomed to achieving in office.
Beyond Covid-19 remote working is expected to continue to grow, with managers realising the potential benefits of having at least a partially remote workforce, whether this be in case of another outbreak of something similar to COVID-19 or just to save money on office space. According to Forbes “By 2025, an estimated 70% of the workforce will be working remotely at least five days a month.” ¹
Microsoft 365 has a solution in its arsenal that can assist you in achieving advanced levels of collaboration both in-office and when working remotely.
Introducing Co-Authoring in Microsoft 365 and Teams
“With Office and OneDrive or SharePoint, multiple people can work together on a Word document, Excel spreadsheet, or PowerPoint presentation. When everyone is working at the same time, that’s called co-authoring.” ²
Before Co-Authoring, if multiple members of your team were to be involved in composing a single document multiple copies would need to be created, saved, and sent around via email to all members. This creates a chaotic work environment and makes it easy to misplace the most up-to-date version of the document.
Co-authoring can help you achieve top levels of productivity from anywhere. If used correctly it can have pride of place as one of the best tools you have in your repertoire.
How can it help my business?
For example, you run a marketing company and have recently come to an arrangement with a large business to provide them with two written blogs and a presentation for their brand new ad campaign. The only problem is that three of your six-strong marketing team are working remotely when ideally you would prefer to have them all in a room together to ensure ideas flow freely. Unfortunately, due to the current climate, this is not possible.
This is where Co-Authoring comes in. It allows your team to work together through technology. All of the team can access documents and PowerPoint slides at the same time and can communicate within a chat feature incorporated into the Co-Authoring feature.
Now we have looked at one of the many circumstances Co-Authoring can help you achieve your goals, let us explore how Co-authoring works.
How does it work?
Here are some brief instructions on how to use Co-Authoring within Microsoft Word. (The same rules apply for other Microsoft programmes.)
Open a document of your choice in Word as normal.
You then need to put the document into the Cloud to allow co-authoring to be possible. To do this go to the top right of your screen and click ‘Share’.
Once having clicked Share an option appears in the centre of your screen to upload to OneDrive.
On selecting OneDrive, it will upload the document for you. Now it is in OneDrive you can share the document with others.
In this section, there are many controls you can apply to allow or restrict entry to the document (passwords, etc). You can decide who is allowed to see and edit the document.
You have done it! Co-authoring is now possible with your colleagues!
You both have the document open simultaneously. At the top of the document, you can see who is co-authoring with you.
You can also see what part of the document they are specifically working on by locating their cursor. The name will be displayed above the cursor.
Used correctly, Co-Authoring can assist you in achieving advanced levels of collaboration whether your team are in the same room or spread across the globe. The feature is truly revolutionary and has become even more important to many businesses now that the future of business looks to be remote working.
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