Microsoft VIVA – What it is and why you need it for your business

Imagine it is your first day in a new job during lockdown.  You spend your day virtually meeting colleagues and attempting to go through several policies and guidelines while filling in employee forms. An already overwhelming process is made even more so by the fact you are working remotely without the ability to chat to colleagues or ask quick questions about the company and the multitude of acronyms everyone seems to be using.

Microsoft Viva has been created with remote employees in mind to streamline the many different technologies and information already used in businesses and migrate them into Microsoft Teams. With more employees than ever working remotely, and with no end in sight for this new way of working, organisations need to find the best way to keep their employees engaged and informed.  

Microsoft Viva is one tool businesses can use to facilitate this evolution in work environments. Viva aims to create a unified employee experience that brings together everything an employee needs to succeed, from onboarding through to continuous learning and growth.

Microsoft are betting that long after the restrictions of COVID-19 have gone and remote working is no longer essential, a new era of flexible work from home policies will continue. While this has many positives, there is also the risk of employees feeling disconnected from colleagues.

What is Viva, and does your business need it?

Viva is a platform that streamlines business technology and brings it in to Microsoft Teams. If you decide to invest in Viva, here is what you will get and how it will benefit your employees and in turn, your business.

Viva can be split into four modules, all aimed to ensure employee wellbeing.

Connections includes internal communications, resources such as company policies, and benefits. It is also the way for new employees to learn about their colleagues and communicate with them. It is almost like a dashboard for connecting with colleagues remotely, an essential tool in this period of remote working.

Insights will include data for managers and leaders to monitor work patterns and trends however, in response to earlier criticism around privacy, this will be done with the privacy protection of employees in mind.

An example of how this will work is if an employee is regularly working until very late at night. Insights will keep track of this and offer suggestions on how the employee can switch off and use better time management to avoid exhaustion. While employers will not be able to see individual hours worked for employees, they may notice a trend for late hours across a team and have an opportunity to assess workload and productivity.

Learning is, as the name would suggest, all about employee learning and development. The replacement for team building and training sessions you might say. This is where employees can access in-house training materials, courses, and other education materials.

Topics is described as a sort of Wikipedia for businesses. Topic cards are available with access to documents, videos, and related people. Viva Topics will generate topic cards from apps such as Office, Teams and SharePoint. The information available can be related to your own specific business or more general assistance.

Microsoft Viva is an important tool in the inevitable step towards the new remote work trend we are seeing many businesses follow. It is a way to assist in providing employee inclusivity and satisfaction which will in the long run be vital to your organisation’s success.

There is no doubt that the nature of work has changed, many would say for the better. With that in mind, it is crucial for businesses to embrace technology which will assist with this transition so Microsoft Viva could be the way forward for your organisation.