What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is a chat-based collaboration tool that provides global, remote, and dispersed teams with the ability to work together and share information via a common space. You can utilize cool features like document collaboration, one-on-one chat, team chat, and more.  It is naturally integrated with other Office applications and uses the Microsoft Office 365 global, secure cloud platform.


How do I become part of a Microsoft Team?

You must be licensed and either create a Microsoft Team or be added to a Microsoft Team. 

  • To request a new team site for your department, project, or initiative, complete the Teams Request form. Note: If you need a site that is School of Medicine related and/or used primarily for School of Medicine, please use this request form.
  • If you are added to a team, you will receive an email informing you that you are a member and include a link to access it. 

Either of these options will automatically license you to use Teams. 

How do I access?

All Office 365 applications can be accessed through the Office 365 Portal at

Can I collaborate with external colleagues using Microsoft Teams?

Yes, but the external colleague also needs to use an Office 365 account.  You will need to enter the email address for the external user when you add them to the Team (or SharePoint) and this will automaticaly send that external user an invitation email with a link to the Team (or SharePoint site).  Once they click on the link, they will be able to login using their Office 365 account (email address for account must match email invitation was sent to) and then they will appear in the list of users for your Team/site.  Note: external users will appear as guests in Teams.  If the external user does not have an Office 365 account associated with the email you sent their invitation, they can easily create one using the link provided in the email inviation. 

Get more information about Difference between Guest and Member.

How do I get notifications/updates from Teams?

To get the most out of Teams, make sure you have the Teams application installed. Both on desktops as well as mobile devices. This really helps when you don’t want email notifications as the apps will provide notifications.  Follow these instructions on Managing Notifications in Teams if you would like to get updates.

Teams can contain channels to separate topics and/or groups within your team.  Channels can be standard (available and visible to everyone) or private (focused, private conversations with a specific audience) or shared. Once you define the type of channel, you can't change it to the other type of channel so it is important to decide whether you want to keep the information within the channel private to just a smaller subset of people or allow anyone in the team to view it.  More resources and information on teams:

Microsoft Teams training and resource information:

What level of security and compliance does Microsoft Teams support?

Microsoft Teams has a broad set of global compliance and data protection requirements, which includes ISO 27001, ISO 27018, EUMC, SOC 1 Type I & II, SOC 2 Type I and II, HIPAA, and FERPA. Microsoft Teams also enforces two-factor authentication, single sign-on through Active Directory, and encryption of data in transit and at rest.