CPA Growth Trends

29 Microsoft Teams Tips and Tricks

29 Microsoft Teams Tips and Tricks
Rachael McGrew, Landmark CPAs

Microsoft Teams has become a popular internal communications tool at firms across the country. In fact, the platform boasts having doubled the number of active daily users in the past year to 270 million. Are you taking full advantage of all the features available? Here’s a roundup of 29 tips, tricks and helpful apps to make you a power user.


  1. Send yourself messages and reminders
  2. Email forwarding to a channel
  3. Add custom tabs to channels
  4. Bookmark specific content
  5. Get work done fast with slash commands
  6. Integrate project management with Trello
  7. Connect to your cloud storage
  8. Group users into tags


  1. Use live transcriptions
  2. Take meeting notes
  3. Recap meetings with meeting recap
  4. Use proximity sensing to join a meeting
  5. Send urgent chat notifications
  6. Add subject lines to messages in your channels
  7. Use announcements to make your conversation stand out
  8. Clean up your hypertext links
  9. Quickly edit text with up arrows
  10. Use GIFs to build cultures
  11. Add your favorite contacts to the top


  1. Pin your favorite apps
  2. Get organized with MyHub
  3. Reward your team with Starbucks
  4. Get healthy with Health Hero
  5. Give feedback with Karma
  6. Get social with Sociabble
  7. Have fun with Trivia
  8. Send praise with the Praise app
  9. Take a break with Breakthru
  10. Chat with non-users from within teams with Mio


  1. Send yourself messages and reminders

Good for notes and reminders, and you can pin yourself at the top.

  1. Email forwarding to a channel

Forwarding emails to any Microsoft Teams channel is easy. If you want to send an email to a channel in Teams, use the channel email address. Once an email is part of a channel, anyone can reply to it to start a conversation. Go to the channel name, and select More options  > Get email address.

  1. Add custom tabs to channels

Tabs let you quickly connect users with important documents in Office or third-party apps. To add a tab to a channel, Select “+” at the top of the channel, select a tab and follow the steps. The tab will appear at the top of the channel.

  1. Bookmark specific content

Want to make sure that you can find the information you need in a hurry when you’re working on a project? Microsoft Teams comes with the option to bookmark specific pieces of content, whether it’s a message or an attachment. Hover over the specific chat or content you’d like to bookmark and click the three dots. Click “Save this message.” You can review saved messages later by typing “/saved” in the search bar.

  1. Get work done fast with slash commands

If you want to get work done fast, then you need to make sure that you’re navigating Microsoft Teams as efficiently as possible. One great way to do this is with slash commands. For instance, you can use a slash command to set your status to “online” or “away.” Alternatively, you can make sure you’re not missing out on anything important with /WhatsNew. This takes you straight to the Release Notes tab on the Help channel so you can check out new features.

Some of the best slash commands include:

/Files – Shows the most recent files shared with you on Teams.

/GoTo – Lets you jump straight to a channel

/Call – Initiates a call with someone else on Teams

/Help – Delivers assistance via the Help channel

/Saved – Takes you to your saved messages

Type / into Teams to see other options.

  1. Integrate project management with Trello

You’ve probably heard of Trello, the project management tool that allows you to manage all your projects and tasks easily. If you’re already using Trello, you can integrate it with Microsoft Teams to carry over all your Trello boards, lists and cards into Teams.

When collaborating on a project, you and your colleagues can create new Trello cards, edit due dates, add comments, and mark cards as complete straight from Teams. You can also add the Trello board as a tab to your Teams channel so that everyone can have easy access to it.

The messaging extension for Trello allows you to search a card by keyword and easily share it within a conversation. The app will also send notifications when you’re assigned a card, when a new attachment is added or if any other changes are made to the project.

Check out this article for more info.

  1. Connect to your cloud storage

No matter how much we may attempt to pull all relevant content into a single location, the reality is our content and artifacts are spread across multiple locations. Teams provides a native capability to link to cloud storage, whether they be non-Teamified SharePoint sites, OneDrive accounts, or other non-Microsoft storage locations.

Within Files, simply click on ‘Add cloud storage’ and select from the available options. Or click on the + on the top nav and add a cloud storage option as a tab. Options include: SharePoint, Dropbox, Box, Egnyte, ShareFile and Google Drive.

  1. Group users into tags

Sometimes its useful to create subgroups within Teams based on role, project or location. Tags can help you do this, making it easy to @mention or start a chat with everyone included in the tag. To do this, find the relevant Team and select the ellipsis (…) and choose “Manage Tags.” A dialog box will open allowing you to create and name a tag and then add members.


  1. Use live transcriptions

A live transcript is not only a feature that makes your meeting more accessible, but it also helps those who are late or missed the meeting to get up to speed quickly. Transcripts also make your Teams Meetings instantly searchable – while the meeting is happening, and once the meeting is over. More details here.

  1. Take meeting notes

Taking meeting notes will help ou and other team members recap important points before, during and after a Teams meeting. The Meeting Notes button will create a panel on the side for jotting down meeting notes, similar to Chat. Once you’re in the meeting, go to “More options” and select “Start taking meeting notes.”

  1. Recap meetings with meeting recap

Teams can now provide a recap with the meeting recording, transcript, chat and attached files being shared with participants in the meeting Chat tab and viewable in the Details tab. To find the recap, go into your Teams calendar, click on a past event and click again on the expand arrows to see a full view of the meeting details, recording and shared notes.

  1. Use proximity sensing to join a meeting

Are you tired of the stress and extra work associated with setting up conferences or huddle room meetings? Now you can connect to a nearby meeting room instantly, using proximity-based pairing. Proximity-based pairing means that your Teams app will automatically detect Microsoft Teams room systems within Bluetooth range of your devices. This means that you can find conference spaces quickly for spontaneous collaboration. After you launch a Teams meeting, just browse through the available nearby room systems to find a space with the appropriate video and audio tech for your needs. You can also start a session in content-only mode, which silences your smartphone microphone and blocks your camera.


  1. Send urgent chat notifications

This is the digital equivalent of banging loudly on an office door. To send an urgent message notification, look below the text compose box and you’ll be able to check Urgent or Important to add either of these words to the message and grab the recipient’s attention. Mark a message as urgent, and once you’ve sent it, they’ll get it every two minutes for the following 20 minutes, which should make it hard to ignore.

  1. Add subject lines to messages in your channels

Grab attention and break up conversations by adding subject lines to your messages. Subject lines are among the rich text formatting options found in the expanded view pane that appears when you click the Format button under the message box. Rick text formatting also lets you change text size, weight or color, and add links and numbered/bulleted lists.

  1. Use announcements to make your conversation stand out

The expanded message composing window that appears when you click the Format icon has more neat tricks up its sleeve. If you want to make a conversation really stand out, you can turn it into an announcement. In the formatting window, click the “New conversation” drop-down at the top left and select Announcement. A field appears where you can type a large headline for your post and include a background image or colored background to make it stand out even more.

Tip: By default, everyone in a channel can reply to conversations, but you might not want that for an announcement. If you click the “Everyone can reply” drop-down at the top of the message composing window, you can select You and moderators can reply to limit responses to only these people.

If you want your conversation to appear in more than one channel, select “Post in multiple channels,” click the “Select channels” button, and on the panel that opens, check the boxes next to the channels you want to post your conversation to.

  1. Clean up your hypertext links

Using a keyboard shortcut, you can clean up lengthy hypertext links to keep your Channel posts short and organized. To do this, highlight the words you want to link and press CTRL-K, which opens a dialog box. Enter your lengthy URL and click “Insert.”

  1. Quickly edit text with up arrows

Oops! If you pressed enter too quickly in a chat or comment, you can quickly edit the text by pressing the up arrow two times.

  1. Use GIFs to build cultures

Company culture is an important building block of success. GIFs and custom reactions may seem superficial, but the shared laughter and cultural references — the “inside jokes,” essentially — can help staff to feel a greater sense of belonging, which is important at a time when remote working has kept them apart. Just select the GIF button below your “Type a new message box” and enter a keyword to find loads of GIFs.

  1. Add your favorite contacts to the top

Constantly messaging the same two or three people? Pin them to the top of your chat to find them easily. Hit the ellipsis and then select “Add to favorite contacts” and they are always automatically placed at the top.


  1. Pin your favorite apps

To pin your favorite apps, press the ellipsis on the left bar in Teams. Find your favorite app and click on it to add it to the bar. It will then appear automatically in your Teams. You can also pin tasks this same way.

  1. Get organized with MyHub

MyHub streamlines your navigation within Teams, allowing you to create “hubs” that act as favorites so you can locate things quickly and jump to the relevant location. MyHub is a one-stop-shop for managing your sites, Teams and communities. With MyHub, you can:

  • Create workspace hubs based on different criteria, such as purpose or topic
  • Classify Teams, Groups, SharePoint sites, and Yammer communities with customized tags
  • Manage membership of Teams and Groups
  • Easily access content, tasks, and more associated with each workspace
  • Receive notifications from the bot after creating new workspaces

Find more information about MyHub here.

  1. Reward your team with Starbucks

Say thanks, congrats or kudos to a team member with a Starbucks eGift! With the Starbucks app, you can pay from your Starbucks Rewards account, select a gift amount from $5-$100 and use the Starbucks app message extension to send the gift card to a teammate.

  1. Get healthy with Health Hero (Free for <10, Paid App)

With so many competing priorities in the workplace, wellness can fall to the sidelines.

Health Hero helps  make sure your wellness is never ignored at the expense of other business priorities. Health Hero is a Microsoft Teams add-on that allows you to connect your Apple Health, Google Fit or Fitbit with the app and create a fitness challenge within your firm. Users can log wellness activities like movement, meals and mindfulness exercises and see how far they are from completing a challenge and earning their incentives. The app also sends nudges, notifications and reminders to make sure you’re always on top of your wellness goals.

  1. Give feedback with Karma (Paid App)

People need feedback. A little bit of appreciation from a manager or some basic rewards and stickers can be all it takes to keep your staff members engaged and happy at work. Karma is a bot that records small but meaningful signs of recognition from business leaders for members of your team. Karma also allows employees to reward each other when they notice a job well done. This can create a more appreciative and friendly culture within your workplace.

Features include:

Unique user profiles for every member of your team

HR insights for team leaders

Performance tracking

Long-term and instant rewards

Micro feedback

  1. Get social with Sociabble (Paid App)

Sociabble makes it easier to find and engage potential advocates on your team by aggregating company content sourced from various channels and creating one-click solutions that your team members can use to share messages on their social media accounts.

With Microsoft Teams Sociabble app, your staff members can easily click on and upload advocacy posts to their social media pages without having to switch to another app. They’ll also earn badges and rewards for their efforts.

Features include:

One-click social sharing

Easy-to-access employee knowledge

Make it easy to identify your top advocates

Note: Pricing for Sociabble is not publicly available.

  1. Have fun with Trivia (Free + Paid App)

Challenge your teammates with instant quizzes, unpopular opinions, Pictionary and a virtual water cooler all in one place with Trivia. Use Trivia for employee engagement, icebreakers and virtual team building. Trivia games are easy to launch and provide a quick 5-minute break to your workday.

Here are some games Trivia offers:

Instant quizzes: choose from a myriad of categories to get started instantly.

(Un)popular opinions: conduct simple, native polls, and know your team’s opinion in minutes, not through meetings.

Custom quizzes: craft customized questions and answers; launch them with Trivia.

Gotcha!: an MCQ quiz with lots of twists, turns, and baits.

Word Puzzle: boast your English vocabulary to your teams.

This or that: there is no right or wrong answer. It’s all about choosing the popular answer

  1. Send praise with the Praise app (Free)

Recognize your colleagues’ contributions using the praise messaging extension from Microsoft Viva Insights. Access the Praise feature within Teams, choose a celebratory badge, add an optional message and share gratitude within the flow of work. Praise badges can be sent in a private chat or posted to Teams channels for better visibility.

  1. Take a break with Breakthru

Take tiny breaks in your day with Breakthru. Clear your head, find inspiration, or breathe with a guided system of two-minute movement-based breaks. Choose to feel joy, energy, centeredness or confidence. Share and play together to build a collective break-taking habit as a team.

  1. Chat with non-users from within teams with Mio (Paid App)

Want to chat with your colleagues who aren’t on Teams? Mio can help! Mio helps unify chat platforms by connecting channels and direct messages across MS Teams, Slack, Webex and Zoom. This feature does require you to sign up with a Mio account, but then you’ll be able to seamlessly message clients and your external contacts who are on other platforms. This one is pricey, but looks to be a great option if your firm is willing to invest.

What are your favorite Microsoft Teams tips, tricks and apps? Share with us on the Open Forum!