Microsoft Ignite 2016 Atlanta – Groups, what up?

Groups! The king and everybody’s favourite during Ignite 2016. Groups was also the big bomb in Chicago during Ignite 2015 and many may think nothing has happened since. Wrong!

One session that covered a lot about Groups was #BRK3001 see link below. Benjamin Niaulin from Sharegate and his entourage talked us through below slide, and many others.  This slide, was in my book the number one slide overall Ignite 2016. Yes, of course I’ve seen all slides – don’t you know how expensive the Ignite tickets are!!


While IT has been upgrading SP Server users has discovered Slack and Trello for collaboration

This time around it was focus on administering and governance. Tons of new PowerShell scripts. It is now better possibilities to control who can set up Groups and possibilities to inject into the creation process.

Highlighting where you can link to your custom guideline page

Their discussion involved scenarios where you could train Power Users and enable them only to create groups. Other scenarios could be to setup approval request etc.

Many large companies has disbled the creation of groups and a well known hack around this is to go to Planner and create a plan which gives you the Group implicitly during the plan creation. This “feature” will soon be fixed as the Group creation process has been gone through.

No mo hacking yourself a Group via Planner…

Groups can be created in several ways:

Interfaces for Group creation

They also went through some limitations such as maximum number of users as well as bullet points on when it is a good or bad idea to solve your collaboration needs via a Group.

Create a Group when:

  • Frequent emails occur
  • You will share Office documents
  • You are on distribution list today

Don’t create a group when:

  • For large memberships such as all company
  • When you need granular permissions
Office 365 Group limitations

We got to see some of the capabilites availble for reporting such as below where you can go and check the number of and last date of conversations within Groups.


Below is nothing really new but good to remind that you can hook up your Group and get updates from Trello, Twitter or a custom Webhook.

Webhooks to external services

Whats coming up forward then? Well, you will be able to choose Yammer over conversations, have naming policies in AAD, soft delete and restore (yay!), search across Groups and much more.

In the pipe…

Closing remarks would be the Groups after a good 18 months has become mature enough to actually replace Dropbox, Slack and Trello. You think governance still is an issue? Ask yourself what governance you have for the good old Trello and Slack!?

The issue you should think about is user adoption and training. How to make the transission to Groups and keep documents within the corporate domain.

The session i refer to above, BRK3001:

Microsoft Ignite 2016 Atlanta – Groups, what up?

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