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Published 30 August 2022

Discover and connect with people, communities, and content across your organisation with Viva Engage – the latest addition to the Viva suite. Viva Engage is an update to the Yammer Communities app in Teams. As of this month (August 2022), it’s Generally Available and accessible through Microsoft Teams.

We’re here to answer your top questions about Viva Engage and what its impact will be:

What is Viva Engage?

Microsoft describes Viva Engage as a way to “give leaders a new way to shape culture…by unlocking communication and engagement opportunities for everyone. Viva Engage brings people together across the organisation to connect with leaders and co-workers, find answers to questions, share their unique story, and find belonging at work.”

In our words – it’s a social enterprise network that’s designed to increase employee engagement and act as a tool to improve company culture.

Is Viva Engage and Yammer the same thing?

Yes, Viva Engage is built on the foundations of Yammer. You’ll notice it will still be called ‘Yammer’ when you’re in the browser. Our hunch is the name will permanently change to Viva Engage across all experiences with time.

Why the change?

With so many of us working remotely or in hybrid roles, it’s important to find ways to keep company culture alive. What better way to do that than by giving people more opportunities to share stories and experiences in an engaging and social way? Plus, we know that posts from employees always get more engagement. We connect with people, not brands.

I’m an M365 Administrator, do I need to worry about changing anything architecturally?

No need to worry about changing anything. Viva Engage is simply an enhancement to Yammer.

Can you choose to turn it on?

No, Viva Engage is an automatic update that will be automatically rolled out to users.

Does this require Stream to be enabled?

No, when you upload a story, it gets stored to your OneDrive

Is there a limit to how long a video can be?

Yes, videos are limited to 90 seconds

What’s the difference between stories and storyline?

The biggest change will be the introduction of stories and storyline, which will be available for public preview from September 2022.

Stories are just like 24-hour content that you see on Instagram or Facebook. Storyline will allow individuals to create posts that will live on their own personal page. Employees will be able to view posts from an individual by following them or visiting their personal page.

I’m an internal communicator, how does this change impact me?

The new features of Viva Engage should help internal communicators land important messages in the hands of employees. We recommend that companies create an official ‘company account’ and leverage your ‘influencer’ network through personal feeds to distribute messages. This change should be a welcome update for internal communicators. Our top tip is to make sure you update your guidelines around acceptable use of Yammer, to minimise the chance of people ‘over-sharing’ on the platform. Plus, if you’re unsure of who your top influencers are, we recommend getting in touch with the team from SWOOP Analytics!

How does this fit into the rest of Viva/M365?

Features in Viva Engage, for example stories, will be available across other parts of the Viva platform. For example, in the Viva Connections feed on mobile. This update will also help reduce the chance of an employee missing important updates because of the integration capability within the Viva platform.

How should I let my organisation know about this change?

With so many great new features coming to Viva Engage, now is a perfect time to re-invigorate your Yammer communities and encourage people to start networking with their peers. If you need help will rolling out this change across your organisation, make sure to get in touch.

Want to learn more about Viva Engage? Join our webinar with SWOOP Analytics on September 27