What is Microsoft Viva?
Announced during Microsoft Ignite, Microsoft Viva is an employee experience platform that brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources and insights. With Viva, businesses can foster a culture where people and teams are empowered to be their best from anywhere. Microsoft Viva includes four main modules: Topics, Connections, Learning and Insights. These modules work together to provide a new platform that drives knowledge management, employee engagement, training and education. They also provide deep data-driven analysis on the effectiveness and productivity of content within the enterprise.
Viva Topics provides new functionality to define keyword topics and allow the AI scanning to work behind the scenes in the M365 tenant to scan allowed content and populate curated results. These results can be viewed on a generated SharePoint modern page for the defined “topic”. Topic Contributors can further customize the “Topic Page” to include Subject Matter Experts, displayed as a People card, curated results from SharePoint Online, Yammer and Teams files, pages and chats. This gives employees a whole new experience.
Viva Learning creates a central hub for learning in Teams where people can discover, share, assign
, and learn from content libraries across their organization to empower teams and individuals to make learning a natural part of their day. Currently, in public preview, Viva Learning enables employees to pursue online training without disruption. This helps encourage a work culture of growth that helps employees reach their potential.
Viva Insights – (Personal, Manager and Organizational)
You can view Personal insights that show how you work and what can be changed so that you are doing your best work. These insights can only be seen by you and provide useful recommendations that help improve your wellbeing while boosting productivity. Manager insights provide visibility into work patterns that might lead to burnout and stress. These include regular after-hours work, meeting overload, or too little focus time. Managers can use these insights to help their teams balance productivity and wellbeing. Organizational insights help business leaders address critical questions about organizational resiliency and work culture, with insight into how work impacts their people and their business.
What is Viva Connections?
Viva Connections provides a consistent global navigation app bar in the Teams desktop and mobile apps.
Many companies have relied on Teams as their primary enterprise communications platform. By further enhancing Teams to integrate a SharePoint Intranet portal directly within the Teams desktop and mobile app UI, employees can access necessary content and company information all within the context of Teams. With all the disruption of the COVID pandemic, companies were forced to find a way to support and stay productive remotely, so accessing official corporate resources while staying in the Teams app became a key need.
Companies spend a lot of time and effort in supporting their corporate intranets. For large corporations who used another web platform or content management system to host and manage their on-premises intranet, migrating to SharePoint Online already provided challenges both regarding content ownership as well as diminishing value from an internal communications standpoint. Being able to integrate a corporate intranet directly into the Teams app is not just a simple connection, Microsoft is driving home the goal of making Teams the primary collaboration app for all information workers. Also, by utilizing the functionality available in SharePoint Online and Microsoft Graph, corporations can leverage these technologies to provide a fresh approach to the traditional intranet portal.
How to Set Up Viva Connections
Viva requires an additional per-user license on top of existing Microsoft 365 licensing. To set up Viva Connections or use Viva Insights an additional license is NOT, but to enable Viva Topics and Viva Learning does require a license. The Viva Topics and Viva Learning modules are the main features of Microsoft Viva, whereas Viva Connections provides the portal integration into Teams while Viva Insights provides the back-end IT admin monitoring of Viva Topics and Viva Learning.
Modern SharePoint Online global app bar
For modern SharePoint Online site templates, you may have noticed the global app bar, which will appear on the left pane but ONLY for modern SharePoint Online sites. The new global app bar feature
s provide the fundamental navigation panel for Viva Connections and only the top “home” icon is configurable. The “Sites”, “News” and “Files” icons and related pop-up links are generated automatically by Microsoft Graph. These are the same results and app bar users will see when accessing OneDrive or their “SharePoint” app icon from a user’s M365 Office “home” page (https://portal.office.com).