Office 365 is Microsoft’s cloud-based productivity suite. This amazing product offers your organization email, SharePoint, chat and word processing tools for per-user cost that is only a fraction of what you’d pay to actually purchase the software and hardware required to offer the same services on traditional infrastructure.
Today, we’ll talk you through the initial setup of Office 365. In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to sign up to the system, add users, configure email and perform some basic SharePoint tasks. Microsoft is even offering a free 30-day trial that you can use to try out this cloud powerhouse today.
Get Office 365 : http://www.office365.in/
Initial setup – Creating Your Organization
- Fill out your contact information.
- Select a domain name.
- The initial organization configuration is fairly straightforward. Therefore, we won’t go into too much detail on the initial steps. Simply fill out your contact details and organization name. The domain name is very important since it will determine the URL that users use to access your company’s cloud tools.
- From Admin Home, click Add Users.
- Create User Name and set administrator role level.
- The first step you’ll take is adding users to the system. From the initial “Start Here Tasks” page, click on the Add Users link and fill out the form as shown. The user name field will become the login credentials for your employees, so it’s a good to standardize these fields. You can delegate certain administrative duties to specific users by selecting a “role” for them. After completing the initial setup screens, an email will be sent with the temporary password to each new user.
Configuring Exchange Online
- From Admin Home, click on Manage link under Exchange.
- Back on the “Start Here Page”, you’ll now want to configure Exchange Online, Microsoft’s cloud-based email system. You’ll notice that, by default, all your users are already setup with a basic email account. From here, you can easily create distribution lists or add new accounts.
Adding Roles and Auditing
- Click Roles and Auditing.
- Double-click group name.
- Under Members section, add a user to be responsible for those tasks.
- Outlook has several pre-made email address for your organization. These are emails for things like the Help Desk, a destination for invalid emails and other security and audit roles. You’ll want to assign one or more users to keep an eye on this. Click on “Roles & Auditing”
Adding a Resource or Conference Room
- Click on Mailboxes.
- Click on “New…”
- Select Room Mailbox.
- Anyone who is familiar with scheduling meetings via email systems knows that you can also manage scheduling resources like conference rooms or equipment. You can add a Room mailbox by following the steps above. This email can be added to any appointment so that the room will show as occupied to others who’d like to schedule a meeting.
Adding Mailbox Rules
- Click Mail Control.
- Click “New…”
- Click each drop-down and select the correct options.
- You may want to create special rules to filter out junk mail or monitor email activity. Exchange Online makes this easy. You can create rules to redirect emails for approval when files are attached or look for certain keywords or phrases occur in the content or subject line. You can make as many rules as you’d like.
- From Admin Home, click Manage.
- Review Security Settings.
- Enable or Disable features to your liking.
- Lync is a text and audio chat system that integrates with the other Microsoft 365 tools. The Lync chat system’s configuration is fairly straightforward so we won’t go into too much detail. You’ll be able to set the level of external communication that is allowed to interact with the Lync system as well as connect to an external Dial-in conferencing system from an outside provider.
- From the “Start Here Tasks” page, click on Manage.
- SharePoint is a powerful collaboration tool that is extremely useful to many organizations. It also doubles as a content management system that you can use to create a blog or static website. SharePoint often becomes the online nexus of all workflow for organizations. We’ll take a look at some of the basic tasks you’ll need to perform to get it up and running.
Adding User Profiles
- Click Manage User Profiles.
- Click Manage User Profiles Under People heading.
- Click New Profile.
- Click small address book icon and search for existing user.
- Add additional details such as Preferred Name and Manager.
- Your Office 365 users will need to be manually added to the system. This is because not every organization needs all their employees in this part of the system. You can quickly add new users and also assign their managers by following the steps above.
Adding Site Collections
- From Administration Center, click on Site Collections.
- Click New.
- Select either private site or website and fill out the setup page accordingly.
You can create as many specific page collections as you’d like. They’ll automatically inherit the same rules and users from your main configuration. You might create a collection for your developers, one for marketers and one for the sales team. You can create a public facing website as well as private pages only for internal use.
- Close any Administration popup windows.
- Click Home, Outlook or Team site on the top bar.
Now it’s time to take a look at how the system functions from the user standpoint. We’ll start by looking at Outlook online.
Using The Email System
- As you can see, Office 365’s Outlook web app looks pretty much like any other web-based email. We won’t go into too much detail on how this works since its pretty self-explanatory. You can create new emails, add contacts, filter junk mail and do any other task you’d expect from an email system.
Creating A Calendar Appointment
- Click on Calendar in Outlook.
- Find the time and day on the Calendar and double click.
- Fill in Appointment details.
- Click on Scheduling Assistant and verify that invitees are free.
- Add Resources to reserve them.
- Creating a meeting and inviting other users is easy with Outlook Online. You can change the view of the calendar to find exactly what you’re looking for. Simply double click and configure the appointment as prompted. You can also create appointments only for yourself. These are useful for blocking out personal time or vacation days since others can see your calendar.
Working On Documents
- Click on Team Site on the top menu bar.
- Click on Shared Documents
- Click on a document, then click Check out.
- Make changes to the document in ofice web app.
- Save and close.
- Click Check In and provide comments on what you changed.
Collaboration tools make it easy for users to work together on a large document. When you wish to reserve a file for your work, you can “check out” the file, which means other users cannot access or edit it. If you don’t have Word or Excel installed locally, you can use the online cloud versions to make simple edits. When you’re finished, just click Save and then Check the file back in. The system keeps track of all edits and users can even browse back through previous versions of the document.
Creating A List
- From Home, Click Lists header.
- Select the Custom List template.
- Provide a list name and press Create.
- Click Create Column.
- Add different types of data to your list.
- Repeat until all columns are created.
- Users can now add items by clicking Add New Item.
One of the most useful functions provided by this tool is to create a list that users can add to. This is great for making bug tracking, product feature ideas and even logging calls. Follow the steps above to create dynamic lists that can include combo boxes, check boxes, pictures and lots of other data types.
Office 365 Has A Lot To Offer!
This tutorial just scratches the surface of what’s possible with this amazing tool. Everything in this tutorial can be accomplished within an hour of initial setup. Take the time to try out this amazing system today. You may find it’s the perfect solution for your company’s productivity needs.