Microsoft Productivity Score and personalized experiences—here’s what’s new to Microsoft 365 in October

By Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President for Microsoft 365ShareAs I reflect on an action-packed few weeks, I’m struck by how much work has evolved in these past months. And I know our customers feel it too. After quickly moving to remote and hybrid work models this spring, organizations are now seeking sustainable ways to help people collaborate, be productive, and prioritize their wellbeing for the long haul. To help, this month we’re announcing the general availability of Productivity Score to help you understand, and improve upon, the way work gets done across your organization. We’re also investing in technology to help you include everyone in digital transformation, from the information workers learning new ways to connect and collaborate to the two billion Firstline Workers who need solutions to help them work safely and effectively and bring their best selves to work.
Speaking of Firstline Workers, we’re so excited to release a new Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare offering to help the teams on the frontlines of patient care. Read on for details on that, plus new features across Microsoft 365 to help people easily book physical workspaces, create Microsoft Forms on-the-go, make data more discoverable to Excel users, get better visibility and control into their threat landscape, and more. Let’s dig in.
Power your digital transformation this month, we are announcing two new offerings to help power your transformation digital: Microsoft Productivity Score and Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare.
Measure and improve how your organization leverages Microsoft 365 to get work done —It’s essential that people have the tools they need to do their best work. But tools alone are not enough, you also need to help everyone in your organization build the habits that harness the true power of those tools. Up until now, it’s been difficult for leaders to get insight into these habits, and to understand how to help people make the most of the technology they invest in. Productivity Score can help by giving you visibility into how your organization works, insights to identify where you can make improvements, and actions you can take to update skills and systems so that everyone can do their best work. To get started, open your Productivity Score in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center.
Screenshot of Teamwork Productivity ScoreTransforming the healthcare journey with secure and connected patient experiences—This month, we announced the general availability of Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare, a cloud offering that brings together capabilities to empower teams, coordinate care, and generate insights that help improve patient outcomes and workflow effectiveness. Meanwhile, a new Microsoft Teams EHR connector enables clinicians to launch a virtual visit in Teams from within their electronic health record system. Clinicians can also securely capture and contextualize physician-patient conversations right within Microsoft Teams. And new integration between Nuance DAX and Teams provides automated clinical documentation capture for virtual visits. These are just some of the many new features now available as part of Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare.

Book physical workspaces and discover information more easily updates in Outlook help you book physical workspaces and quickly reference notes. Plus, you can now create Forms in the Office mobile app.
Book a physical workspace right from Outlook —As some organizations ease back into office buildings, meeting health and safety guidelines, and keeping people healthy and comfortable, is a top priority. To help, we’ve added the ability to book physical workspaces with capacity and time limits right in Outlook. This helps you limit the number of people working on-site together to provide a safe, productive experience for employees. Once admins create workspaces in Exchange Online, users will see the “workspaces” option when they schedule an event in their calendar — just like when they book a conference room. This feature is available now.
Book Workspace from OutlookEasily reference notes while composing emails in Outlook on the web—Anyone who takes notes across apps and device knows, it can be clunky to find the note you need when you need it. The new OneNote feed conveniently combines your notes across Sticky Notes, recent OneNote pages, and even Samsung notes so you can easily reference them while you’re composing an email in Outlook.com or Outlook on the web. You can use the search to find the note you are looking for and even copy and paste a note right into an email. You can also create a new Sticky Note right from the OneNote feed to capture any ideas or thoughts you have while working in Outlook. Syncing Samsung Notes is currently in beta with full functionality coming soon.

Create forms easily on-the-go in the Office mobile app—Earlier this year, we introduced a new mobile app called Office, designed to be your go-to app for getting work done on a mobile device. This month, we’re announcing that Forms have been added to the Office mobile app. You can easily create, share, and analyze your forms, alongside your other Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files, all from one place. From the “Actions” page of the mobile app, Forms creators can easily create and send out a form, and from the “Home” page of the app, quickly check to see the number of respondents and insights from the information collected. To get started, make sure you’re updated or install the Office Mobile app for your iOS and Android mobile device.
Create Forms in Office MobileMake organizational data easier to find and consume with new data types in Excel—People are faced with more and more sources for organizational data than ever before. And ensuring that data is discoverable, updated, and easy-to-consume is so important, but also challenging. This month, we’re announcing that you can now create data types with data from Power BI and other sources that can be shared with users, simplifying information-gathering and consumption, saving time, and providing trusted data people need to make the best decisions. And because these data types are connected to live sources, users can easily update their spreadsheets, workflows, and other solutions by clicking “Refresh Data.”
Personalize your experiences and be more productive new features in Microsoft To-Do make sharing lists easier and Edge makes it easier to navigate PDFs.
Share your personal To-Do lists with your Work Account—Many of us blend the boundaries between our personal lives and work lives with our email, web browsers, lists, and other tools. It’s not uncommon to need to share things between personal and work accounts. To help make sharing To-Do lists more seamless, Microsoft To-Do will now allow you to share lists from personal to work accounts. Whether you’re creating a grocery list with your family or a project list with an external vendor, collaborating on To-Do has never been easier. To-Do users can start sharing personal lists today.
Quickly navigate PDFs and more with new features in Edge—Support for table of contents is one of the tops requested features in our native PDF handler. Now you can quickly navigate through a PDF by clicking on the sections linked in the table of contents. You can also now set Edge as your default browser on iOS14 so that web links you click on will open on Microsoft Edge. We are also excited to announce that you can easily compare the price of a product you want across other retailers in Collections. Coming soon, we’ll also be adding proactive price comparison and coupons to help you save time and money.
Navigate PDFs in EdgeStay protected and ensure app compatibility new features in Microsoft Defender Antivirus help small and medium-sized business understand their threat landscape, and App Assure now supports ARM64 Windows 10 PCs.
Get more visibility and control into how Microsoft Defender Antivirus is keeping you protected—Understanding your threat landscape is critical to defending your business against cyber threats. Starting next month, we are rolling out a new experience in the Microsoft 365 Admin center that will provide IT teams in small and medium-sized businesses a single place to see how Defender Antivirus is protecting their Windows 10 devices. They will be able to view threat and device status reports, investigate threats and take action. The new capabilities apply to all ‎Windows 10‎ devices that are enrolled in ‎Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Intune) with a Microsoft 365 Business Premium subscription plan.

Get assistance with app compatibility issues on Windows 10 ARM64 PCs—Two years ago, we launched App Assure to help our customers address app compatibility issues. Last month, we announced that we are now providing application compatibility assistance for Windows 10 on ARM64 PCs. This means if you run into app compatibility issues on your Windows 10 ARM64 PCs, such as the Surface Pro X, we’ll help you resolve them at no additional cost. This is part of the FastTrack benefit, which comes at no additional cost with your eligible Microsoft 365 and Windows 10 plans of 150+ licenses.
Also new this month• The Action Pen inking capabilities are now available in Excel to help you easily add and edit content.• The Visio Data Visualizer add-in for Excel is now generally available.• Microsoft Project and Visio are now available via self-service purchasing, giving users a chance to get access to these two powerful apps with more convenience.• Network Device Interface (NDI) support for Teams, which offers a more advanced set of production options for public or private customized, high-scale broadcasts, is now available.
As you continue your navigation to a more sustainable hybrid workplace, we are committed to developing technologies that help your people and teams thrive. From safely and efficiently booking physical workspaces from Outlook to discovering live data sources more easily in Excel, all of these updates are aimed at enabling all of your people to collaborate productively, securely, and safely from anywhere. We look forward to sharing more updates next month. Stay tuned!

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