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Implementing Microsoft Collaboration Tools in Your Industry: Best Practices and Use Cases

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The Microsoft Collaboration Suite covers a lot of ground and is adopted by every sector imaginable. From healthcare and manufacturing to finance and energy, here’s how the various applications are helping organizations build a productive digital workplace.


Healthcare Industry

Coordinating healthcare teams and delivering the best patient experience requires seamless coordination. Not to mention, every application that handles patients’ personal identifiable information (PII) needs to be compliant with HIPAA, HITECH, and other regulations.

Microsoft Teams allows you to send secure messages, capture and share images, as well as relay urgent information in real-time via mobile or desktop devices so care team members can stay on top of everything whether they’re in the office or on the go.

Meanwhile, Teams’ integration with Epic electronic health record (EHR) provides real-time updates on patient information so everyone involved in a patient’s care can get real-time updates to deliver the best care.

Teams also helps streamline telehealth workflows and coordinate multiple care team members by consolidating scheduling, reminders, and more. Meanwhile, Azure API for FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) can bring together health data from disparate systems to ensure that everyone is working off the same data.

Finance Industry

Security is of paramount importance when configuring and deploying software applications in the financial industry. You need a system that adheres to various regulatory compliance and data governance requirements.

Microsoft Teams provides a collaborative space with built-in compliance and privacy measures. Cross-functional teams (e.g., IT, retail, wealth management, financial crime unit, etc. ) can store sensitive client information and conduct conversations around sensitive topics in a secure environment.

The cloud-based Office 365 allows multiple team members to edit or collaborate on a file in real-time. This can minimize costly errors and delays caused by multiple versions of an important document being circulated. Teams’ group naming and expiration policies help ensure that employees are accessing the appropriate groups and prevent the over-retention of data.

Furthermore, Teams can be used as a “virtual data room” in which cross-functional teams (e.g., investment banking, asset management, or private equity) can collaborate on a deal by securely sharing documents and conducting conversations in an auditable location.

Manufacturing Sector

Today’s manufacturers have to manage not only complex supply chains but also facilities across the nation or the globe. Employees need access to the right data (e.g., from IoT devices) so they can respond to the information in a timely manner.

Field technicians can use Microsoft’s collaboration tools (e.g., video calls) to resolve issues on- and off-site. They can leverage mixed reality features to share issue details with a remote expert and address problems promptly to minimize downtime. Also, a live video and the corresponding schematic details can be viewed side-by-side to facilitate the collaboration process.

Frontline workers can connect with supervisors via Microsoft’s secure collaboration and information management tools. This allows managers to provide supervision in real-time to workers in different facilities from a centralized location.

Meanwhile, operations managers and product development managers can tap into aggregated sensor data, customer data, and technician insights in real-time to get the big picture view and optimize productivity across facilities.

Oil and Gas Industry

An oil and gas operation involves professionals who need to utilize a vast amount of data from multiple sources. Real-time information exchange is the key to leveraging such data to support accurate decision-making.

Microsoft Azure provides a centralized location where multiple partners can access information stored on the corporate network. It also allows your team to create digital twins to facilitate collaboration among technicians on-site and off-site.

You can use the Azure IoT Hub to model any physical environment, gain insights across multiple environments, and have the information accessible to any team member from anywhere to break down silos and facilitate decision-making.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Teams’ offer robust features that can be accessed on any device — in the office or in the field — to streamline communication and coordinate activities across multiple locations and departments to ensure that the right actions are taken at the right time.

The Key to Maximizing Your IT Investment with Microsoft Collaboration Suite

Every industry has specific requirements and priorities. You need to select the right applications to support your overall business strategy, configure them properly, ensure that your platform complies with all regulations, and have an ongoing maintenance plan in place.

Here at Blue Sky, we are your IT partner for all things Microsoft. We ensure that you have access to a comprehensive solution that works for every aspect of your business. Learn more about our Microsoft Services and get in touch to see how we can help you implement a future-proof digital workplace solution here.

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