Knockout in the First Round: Microsoft Teams Beats WhatsApp

Using a private messenger to discuss professional details with colleagues seems to be a quick and apparently sensible solution, at first glance. Research shows that more than half of the employees in German companies now use such services for business communication. However, this is a tricky topic if one considers the data protection and security aspects! Micosoft Teams provides a solution to this conundrum – and it offers plenty more, besides secure communication. So let’s enter the fray in the spirit of sportsmanship. We’ll show you how Microsoft Teams easily knocks the socks off of WhatsApp in the heavyweight division of company requirements.

An article by Thino Ullmann , Senior Technical Presales Executive at COMPAREX

Thino Ullmann, Sales Executive at COMPAREX

Thino Ullmann

If you’re not already doing it, your colleagues almost certainly are: A representative survey conducted by the market researchers at respond on behalf of Indeed has revealed that every second employee in Germany communicates using messengers. Messenger services are booming in the corporate sector – and WhatsApp leads the field. Almost 70 percent of the employees that use messengers to share business information will access this service on a daily basis or at least several times a week. In comparison: “Only” around 20 percent use Facebook Messenger.

Bad for business: The downsides of WhatsApp for company employees

There are many reasons why employees use these services. Necessity is the mother of invention, as we know, and employees are reluctant to do without the conveniences that come with accessing applications that help them organize their personal lives. What’s more, the drawbacks are not immediately evident – and are initially grouped under the somewhat vague heading of “security and compliance” anyways. Many employees are unaware that – unlike in a personal setting – the professional use of messenger services is governed by the Federal Data Protection Act in Germany (BDSG). In other words: Technical measures must be introduced to protect personal data. There are other negative repercussions hidden away as well, among them insufficient knowledge transfer within working groups, inadequate backup procedures or loss of face for the company. It is conceivable that such security vulnerabilities may lead to research strategies or ideas ending up on the doorstep of competitors. Here are a few low blows that you should consider and communicate to your staff before you use a private messaging service to share proprietary business knowledge the next time:

  • Insufficient data protection under European laws if the servers are located in the U.S.
  • No backup of confidential, business content according to company policies
  • No administration function for companies
  • Lack of professional desktop or tablet clients
  • No support for business file sharing solutions
  • No integration in the companies’ processes and IT systems
  • No audit-proofing and no support for companies
  • No protection against data loss

WhatsApp is knocked out in the first round of the corporate division. Plus, many people forget another important fact: Even leaving aside all the deficits in regard to security and company compatibility, the messenger service only provides a fraction of the features and options included in professional solutions like Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft Teams – The place for chats, calls and video conferencing

Private conversations need to be exactly that: In “private chat” – in some cases also called “persistent chat” – Microsoft Teams offers everything that companies need to ensure regulatory compliance and to guarantee security. Additional features like the chat, call or conferencing functions allow connectivity for two people or larger teams, while making certain that the chat or video contents remain firmly “behind closed doors”. You can set up Team channels to suit the varying tasks or topics that come up and can provide relevant documents and helpful links within these channels in a clearly structured way. Doing so ensures that knowledge is shared evenly. You can also use bot programs and the Teams developer platform to integrate current processes and to continue easing the workload on your staff.

Private chat by Microsoft Teams – The alternative messenger for your staff

Microsoft Teams adheres to the statutory archiving period for channels. What’s more, eDiscovery lets you prepare information that will – if necessary – hold up in court. The messenger function encrypts all your data during storage and transfer, and the multi-stage authentication process keeps your identities safe. Telephone support is available 24/7, 365 days a year to answer any questions and offer assistance. Hard-hitting arguments indeed.

All the benefits in on place – Microsoft Teams is integrated in Office 365 as a cloud solution

Microsoft Teams brings together all the functions of Office 365. The other services are integrated in the chat-based tools, allowing the creation of a SharePoint online website and an Exchange Online group inbox for each team. Access to all the important functions is ensured: SharePoint, OneNote, Power BI or Planner are available at the drop of a hat. You’ll find your contacts, files and chats in the smart interface to Microsoft Graph.

  • Chat with one person or project teams in real time
  • Share files, collaborate and speed up project completion
  • Integrate Office 365 tools into your workflows

An overview of supported platforms, browsers and clients

  • Platforms: PC/Mac-System – Android, iPhone & iPad etc.
  • Browsers: Microsoft Edge 12+, Internet Explorer: 11+, Chrome: 51.0+, Firefox: 47.0+
  • Standalone application: 32/ 64-Bit Windows 7+, MacOS 10.10+
  • Mobile clients: Android 4.4 or higher, iOS 10.0 or higher, Windows Phone Windows 10 Mobile

License Microsoft Teams together with Office 365

Microsoft Teams is included in a variety of Office 365 business, enterprise and education plans. Standalone licensing is not available. Click on the following link for more information:
https://docs.microsoft.com/de-de/microsoftteams/office-365-licensing

Would you like to learn more about data security?

Our Modern Workplace initiative shows you how Office 365 can guarantee data security and prevent the spread of shadow IT in your company.

Learn more

Leipzig, 19.03.2018

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