Microsoft Viva and the Digital Employee Experience

Microsoft Viva and the Digital Employee Experience
August 3, 2021 Manee Withoeft

The digital workplace is indispensable for many people today. This also includes modern intranets, as we design them for our customers. They contain aspects such as news, information, work and collaboration. Our customers also value that the intranet offers transparancy to the corporate culture, supports the change management and feedback. The intranet thus presents a good foundation for internal communication. With SharePoint Microsoft offers a platform that can be used as a content management system (CMS) and also as a basis for portals.

For the past three years Microsoft has once again invested heavily in the CMS capabilities of SharePoint Online and is continuously releasing new features. This makes O365 very attractive not only as a digital workplace, but also as a platform for the company-wide intranet portal. In particular, data management from third-party systems in O365 can be easily intertwined and made more accessible through very different initiatives. This includes the Graph Connectors for Microsoft Search. Such initiatives always reveal new possibilities for displaying interactive content directly in the portal.



Digital Employee Experience in Microsoft Viva

Microsoft Viva was presented in spring 2021 and is closing remaining gaps in the digital employee experience. With its four topics, it enhances the experience in O365:

  1. Viva Connections
  2. Viva Topics
  3. Viva Learning
  4. Viva Analytics

From an intranet point of view, the three subject areas Viva Connections, Viva Topics and Viva Learning are particularly interesting at Microsoft Viva. Viva Analytics as a fourth area provides metrics that help organizations improve. In this article we will focus a little more on the first three areas.

Viva Connections

From an intranet point of view, Viva Connections is a very promising initiative because Microsoft Viva covers the following questions: How can users, who do not have a digital workplace, access the content of the intranet with its personalized newsfeeds? How do you reduce the number of media breaks when you combine collaboration and news? And how can you combine information with actions using interactive dashboards? In the past, approaches to solving these requirements often required adjustments and thus generated considerable effort in development. Microsoft Viva is now delivering technical approaches that do not require any additional O365 license costs. The mobile Viva Connections app simplifies both communication and access to information for all users, both with and without a permanent IT workplace. Viva Connections Desktop can already integrate the intranet into Microsoft Teams. Thus, the intranet can be viewed without media breaks because you do not have to leave the Teams app and switch to a new browser. In the future, Viva Connections dashboards can be used to centrally display information in combination with apps. 



Viva Topics

Viva Topics is a new component for search and knowledge management in O365. Viva Topics as an interface between search, knowledge management and wiki builds up a knowledge database in the background. It is build up on information from SharePoint Online, Teams and in the future also on the content of the Graph Connectors. As part of the digital workplace, the company’s knowledge is indexed, categorized and can be accessed using so-called topic cards and topic pages. The user no longer has to switch between different systems and applications to get his data, but can find his information within the Office apps as a quick help in emails or in Microsoft Search. Here you avoid media breaks simplify the workflow too. In contrast to Viva Connections, Viva Topics has a license model so that all users and administrators must have licensed accounts.

Viva Learning

With Viva Learning, Microsoft Viva provides apps and features for education and training. It integrates learning content, courses and pending certifications into O365. The special feature is that users can also access content from third-party systems. This is possible, for example, with SAP SuccessFactors, LinkedIn Learning, Cornerstone, EdX and many other third-party systems that can be used to complete or manage tasks from training courses.

Are you interested in a deep dive, Viva demos or licensing Viva products? Then please reach out to us!