Microsoft Teams has been an incredible collaboration platform that has shown to be an essential component of any business operation.

Over the past five years, Teams has had significant user growth where they now have 75 million daily active users, 31 million more than last month.

The pandemic forced many businesses into working remotely, which contributed to the spike in users. Although this meant businesses could resume operations with minimal downtime, they adopted Teams very quickly and without best practices in place.

If you’re new to Teams or feel lost in your current setup, we have 3 best practices for you to incorporate to start utilising all the incredible benefits and features Teams has to offer.

Teams Recap

First and foremost, let’s briefly recap what Microsoft Teams is.

Whether you’re an organisation or a department, Teams is essentially a group of people who gather around a shared objective. Teams is an all-in-one collaboration program that is highly customisable and caters to users’ needs.

These features and functions allow you to:

  • Communicate with other members or departments
  • Collaborate quickly and efficiently
  • Share files, documents, and resources
  • Organise tasks
  • Have productive meetings
  • Onboard new members and catch them up to speed by giving them access to projects, conversations, and resources

With the capability to streamline your work and collaborate seamlessly, Teams is an essential component to empower, connect and protect your business’ IT.

1. Review Your Business Foundations

Enable Microsoft Apps

One way to optimise Teams is to enable all Microsoft apps such as OneNote, Planner and SharePoint. These are the core elements that allow you to effectively collaborate.

Review Processes & Systems

Does your business have too many 3rd party apps? Evaluate your processes and systems to see if you can streamline operations further and bring as much as you can into teams via Tabs. This will keep your Teams organised without any cross-interference from external sources, decreasing the risk of any complications in your workflow.

Know Where Your Data is Being Stored

With constant information being added to Teams, it’s important to manage it all correctly by first understanding where it’s stored.

Your Teams data is stored in the following:

Data Storage Location
  • Files in your team’s library or channel Folders
  • External emails sent to team members
  • A team’s wiki page
  • Each channel’s OneNote assets
SharePoint site online/OneDrive for Business
  • Emails
  • Exchange mailboxes
  • Meeting Invites
  • Media shared within chats
  • Recorded Meetings

2. Create a Consistent Teams Structure

Establish Teams Owners

When you create a Team, you need to carefully decide who is going to be held accountable for each team. The owner can later be changed if needed, but it’s best to ask yourself these questions before assigning the role to anyone:

  • What are the owner’s responsibilities?
  • What actions are they allowed to take?
  • What settings are they allowed to alter?

We recommend a minimum of 2 owners share responsibilities.

Creating Teams

A best practice when creating a new team and adding members is to create and add them gradually. This gives you more time to think about the team’s goals, projects, work items, and users, in addition to creating a manageable workspace that isn’t cluttered with empty teams.

If you already have multiple teams running and want to create a new one, do a quick search to make sure a duplicate team hasn’t already been created under a similar name.

The same thought process goes into creating a Channel (covered later in this article).

So the key here is to plan, plan, plan. Before creating a team, consider/check the following:

  • Does a Team already exist for this?
  • Do you really need a new team, or could this be a channel within an existing team?

Organise and Structure Your Workspace

It’s extremely important to organise your workspaces so that you know how to locate your tasks, projects, and team members.

There are 2 ways to structure your workspace:

Organisational Approach: Structures your workspace by your business’s department, allowing each division to have its own designated space.


> Business Department (Team)

> Channels, Files, Topics

Project Approach: Structures your workspace by project, making it easy to know how to interact with team members in a given department.

Project (Team)

> General (Eg. “Account Plans”, “Help Needed”, “Product Updates”)

> Task Subitems


There is the parent channel called ‘General’ in Teams, and then the two types of subchannels: Standard and Private.

General Channel: Logs general activity, such as who has joined and left the Teams organisation.

Focus Channels…

Standard Channel: Used for open collaboration between team members.

Private Channel: Used for private and focused collaboration between select members.

While Channels have been around for many years, being able to set channels to private and lockdown visibility to specific team members is relatively new. This feature should allow you to simplify your Teams setup as you would have previously had to create multiple teams for the same project or department if you wanted to limit access. Even if you’ve been using Teams for a while, it’s not too late to consolidate and clean up your environment.


Instead of jumping between different platforms, try to incorporate Tabs within Channels. Teams integrates with a long list of 3rd party applications as well as gives you the ability to add website URLs meaning you should rarely need to leave Teams.  

eBook Preview

Download Our eBook

You might also want to consider the Microsoft Teams setup where you and your team can collaborate seamlessly!


3. Protect Your Work

To protect all your hard work, we highly recommend that the team owners set up the ‘Moderation’ feature in your channels. This allows you to create private channels for enhanced security.

Another recommendation is to enable MFA (multi-factor authentication). Although it’s one extra step to accessing your Teams, it adds a higher level of security and protects your work from finding its way into the wrong hands.

A final security measure is to review your industry and company regulations in relationship to Microsoft365’s compliance features.

Download a FREE Microsoft Teams Setup Checklist

Enter your details below to receive your copy!


    Microsoft Teams is an excellent way to communicate and collaborate within your business and with clients, however, it’s important to know how to effectively use teams and channels to streamline work and keep everyone informed.

    At Future IT Services, our IT consultants in Townsville and Cairns can help you adopt or reconfigure your Teams environment to ensure you’re getting the most out of the solution. Let us help empower, connect, and protect what matters most to you and your business.

    Contact Us Now