What are Office 365 groups?

Office 365 Groups is a service developed with collaboration in mind. Office 365 Groups is shared workspace for email, conversations, files, and events where group members can communicate and collaborate. For example, you can create a group for your team and invite other users to join the group, and then share documents, conversations, meeting notes, calendars, and OneNote information related to that specific group. It works with the Office 365 tools you use already, so you can collaborate with your teammates when writing documents, creating spreadsheets, working on project plans, scheduling meetings, or sending email.

Groups in Outlook

By creating an Office 365 Group, you’ll get:

  • Shared Inbox: For email conversations between your members. This inbox has an email address and can be set to accept messages from people outside the group and even outside your organization, much like a traditional distribution list.
  • Shared Calendar: For scheduling events related to the group.
  • OneDrive Document Library: Central place for the group to store and share files.
  • Shared OneNote Notebook: For gathering ideas, research, and information.
  • Planner: For assigning and managing project tasks among your group members.

You don’t have to manually create any of those resources; creating the group automatically creates them for you and assigns the necessary permissions for your group members so they can start using them right away. One of the best parts is that each Office 365 Groups comes with 1 TB of storage available within the Office 365 Groups shared OneDrive Document Library for group members to share and collaborate on data.

You can access these resources through the familiar Microsoft Outlook 2016 desktop client, via Outlook on the Web, or using our dedicated Microsoft Groups apps on iOS, Android, or Windows Phone.

Can I use Office 365 Groups in my email client or only through OWA?

Outlook 2016 (Windows) has the ability to use Groups as well as OWA. See Compare Outlook Groups on All Platforms for more details.  

How do I add an Office 365 Groups calendar to my Outlook calendar pane?

The Group appears in the Mail section of Outlook (Outlook 2016 only). If you click on a group's Calendar button, the Group calendar opens in a new window. 

However, if you want the Group calendar to show up in your Calendar Navigation pane, you need to add the group to Favorites (right click on the group and then choose "Add to Favorites"). Once you do this, the group Calendar will show on the Calendar Navigation pane at the bottom of the My Calendars group.

Deleting Groups

If a group outlives its intended purpose, it can be deleted by its owner or CITS. Please follow these instructions to delete an Office 365 group

Warning: When you delete a group, you are permanently removing the group team site, group conversations, email messages, files, calendar events, and any other related information.

Want more information?

Much more information about Microsoft Office 365 Groups is available from Microsoft. Here are some helpful links: