Top 5 Microsoft Teams hacks to improve your productivity

We all want to improve our productivity at work, right?  

Microsoft is continually innovating and iterating its products to help you do just that and at Cloudwell, we make it our business to keep up-to-date with these innovations so you don’t have to. 

Like a finely tuned engine, it’s the small changes that can make a big difference to output and these top five Teams hacks are no different.  

They may look small but when it comes to the impact they can have on your daily work life, the gains are significant. 

Productivity tip one: Pin channels to top 

If you belong to multiple Teams at work, so that’s pretty much everyone, you’ll know how much time can be wasted navigating between different channels.  

So, why not prioritize your most frequently used channels by pinning them to the top of your Teams hierarchy? That way, they’ll always be there when you need them. 

Just click on the dots next to your key channels and hit ‘Pin’. Click ‘Unpin’ to reverse. 

Pin channels to top in Microsoft Teams

Productivity tip two: Create shared channels in Teams 

If your work involves collaborating with multiple organizations, leading to lost productivity switching between tenants, this one’s a game changer. 

With ‘Shared Channels’ in Microsoft Teams you can have conversations, schedule meetings, share and co-author files, and collaborate on apps, all from one shared space, without the need to switch tenants. 

You need to be the team owner to share channels. Find out how to create a shared channel here.

Create shared channels in Teams

Productivity tip three: Schedule replies in Microsoft Teams chat

This is a great hack if you’re regularly working with colleagues or clients in different time zones, or if you want to avoid stacking up messages in your co-workers’ chat when they’re away from the office.  

‘Schedule a reply’ is a new feature in Teams that allows you to choose the date and time that your Chat message is delivered. 

To schedule a reply on desktop, right click on the send button to access the scheduling menu and select a date and time within seven days.  

On mobile, write a message and long press on the send button to schedule the message. Select a date and time to deliver message at a set time within seven days. 

Schedule replies in Microsoft Teams chat

Productivity tip four: Use the new ‘Polls’ experience

Microsoft is replacing the ‘Forms’ app within Teams with a new app named ‘Polls’. The idea being to make polls more accessible and customizable in Teams chat and meetings. 

The new Polls experience has improved functionality, results visibility and generally works as a great icebreaker or means to informally gauge the mood of the meeting. 

Use the new ‘Polls’ experience

Productivity tip five: Check out Viva Insights

According to the Microsoft 2022 Work Trend Index, 53% of respondents were more likely to prioritize health and well-being above work than before the pandemic.  

In response to this, Microsoft has launched Viva Insights a platform designed to help employees reflect, unwind and de-stress from work. 

Viva Insights provides employees with private, personalized insights to help them improve productivity and well-being.  

Key features include the ability to send praise to co-workers, schedule focus time and the ‘Virtual Commute’ feature, which helps you unwind and wrap-up your day by crossing off tasks from your to-do list and reviewing events and tasks for the next day. 

You can find the Viva Insights app via the ellipsis on the left-hand navigation bar. 

Check out Viva Insights

Two other useful productivity apps by Team Cloudwell 

And while we’re on the subject of apps, we have a couple of our own that we’ve designed to help rocket-boost your productivity. 

Calendar Overlay App

Our Calendar Overlay App helps you get organized by allowing you to consolidate all your SharePoint lists and libraries, Planner plans, and Exchange calendars in one place.

Calendar Overlay consolidates all your SharePoint lists and libraries, Planner plans, and Exchange calendars in one place.

Calendar Overlay is highly customizable, with multiple use cases and great for project management, conference room scheduling and displaying team member availability.  

See our blog on the top five ways to use Calendar Overlay.

Team Members App

Our Team Members App is a perfect partner to Calendar Overlay. You can view the members of your Microsoft 365 groups, SharePoint groups, Teams, and Active Directory departments all in one place.  

View the members of your Microsoft 365 groups, SharePoint groups, Teams, and Active Directory departments all in Team Members App.

Find colleagues searching by their name, department, job role, or project team and contact them directly all from within your intranet or Teams. 

Think of Team Members App as a handy department directory where you can see who’s who and job roles within your team. 

Like Calendar Overlay, Team Members is highly customizable and supports 22 languages for organizations that operate globally. 

See our blog on how to keep track of all your employees in SharePoint and Microsoft Teams.


Both these apps, available via Microsoft AppSource, were created in response to our customers’ business challenges. And at Cloudwell, there’s nothing we love more than solving our customers’ most complex challenges. 

So, get in touch and let us solve yours.