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How to use the Microsoft Teams document collaboration tool

Microsoft Teams is known for its collaboration tools but often, its online meeting features overshadow them. Document collaboration works for sorts of files; documents, presentations, and spreadsheets and you can use it to work on any of the files that have been shared over a channel.

Microsoft Teams document collaboration

Microsoft Teams document collaboration tool

The Microsoft Teams document collaboration tool can be used for any of the files that have been uploaded to a channel. You can open a file from the Files tab or you can add the file as a tab to make it easier to collaborate on it.

Add file to channel

To collaborate on a file with team members, you have to add it to a team’s channel.

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Select Teams from the column on the left.
  3. Go to a team and select a channel.
  4. Go to the Files tab.
  5. Click New or Upload and create a new file or upload one from your desktop.

Use Microsoft Teams document collaboration tool

Once a file has been uploaded, it will be visible to all members of the team who are part of a channel. Team members must know how to open the file or how to add it as a tab. Once the file is open, a team member can make changes to it. 

To open a file for editing in Microsoft Teams, follow these steps.

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to the team and the channel the file has been uploaded to.
  3. Go to the Files tab.
  4. Click the more options button next to a file and select Open>Edit in Teams.
  5. The document will open and you can start editing it.

To add the document as a tab, follow these steps.

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to the team and channel the file has been uploaded to.
  3. Determine the type of file it is i.e., a Word, Powerpoint, or Excel file.
  4. Click the plus button along the tabs on the channel and add the app that will open the file e.g., add Word for a document file.
  5. Select the file from those listed.
  6. Click Add.
  7. All users will be able to access the tab directly and edit the file open in it.

Conclusion

Editing is shown live and any changes made to a document will sync within seconds. When you open the file, you will be able to see who had it open last. To view the changes that have been made by other team members, open the file in Teams and click the Catch Up button. New additions made to the document will be highlighted with a blue dot.

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