ATOI365D#Office365Challenge – It’s the Big 5 Countdown (African Style). My focus for today, and the 2, final days following, will be the communication tools available to us. Today I’ll share an overview of Planner. You might be thinking how is this a communication tool – but of course supplying information is as important as acquiring information. Planner is a perfect platform to collaborate around the daily activities and responsibilities of your team.

Day:  363 of 365, 2 left
Tools:  Office 365, Planner
Description: Communication Tools in Office 365 – Planner
Audience:  All


To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.

Tony Robbins 

Part of my final Big 5 was giving you an overview of Stream as well as sharing an Infographic on 16 Ways to Communicate with Office 365. Yesterday we also looked at Yammer.

Today’s Big 5 representative:


Microsoft Planner:

What does Microsoft say:  Planner offers people a simple and highly visual way to organize teamwork. Planner makes it easy for your team to create new plans, organize and assign tasks, share files, chat about what you’re working on, and get updates on progress. Planner can be used to manage a marketing event, brainstorm new product ideas, track a school project, prepare for a customer visit, or just organize your team more effectively. Read more…

What makes Planner cool?

Planner is all about organizing. I know how painful it is to have task lists all over SharePoint and Planner definitely makes life easier by bringing it all back into one place. AND… I’m a picture girl. And I’m sure most of us make better decisions when information is portrayed graphically.

Note:  This is not a “How To – Guide”, merely an overview. See this cool video by Microsoft Mechanics (Ignite).

  1. Planner can be accessed from your Office 365 portal – app launcher
  2. Helps teams organize their work visually
  3. Each Plan has it’s own board (think of a notice board to display information)
  4. Each board consists of multiple buckets (for streams or statuses or project phases).
  5. On each Bucket you can add cards (similar to a task or activity), these can be dragged to other buckets
  6. Cards can be assigned to people (they will receive an email)
  7. Plans can be added to Office 365 Groups
  8. Manage your team better by seeing all tasks across people with task statuses
  9. Documents and images can be added on cards
  10. Charts supplies you with the Hub View to help you track overall progress on plans and team members
  11. The Charts allows you to ‘click-through’ for detail on activities
  12. Hover over items also supplies more information
  13. Each Plan has its own Notebook
  14. Documents attached to a card is stored in an Online SharePoint Library
  15. Each board has access to its calendar, conversations, notes, files, team members etc.

Board + Buckets:2017-02-26-20_04_36-communication-infographic-powerpoint

Charts showing dashboards for tasks and team members: 2017-02-26-20_05_50-communication-infographic-powerpoint

Click on the ellipses to open the Conversations, Calendar, Members List in Outlook as well as the File Library on SharePoint online:


Take note of the dashboard when multiple team members are involved (thanks for the image Microsoft):


Visual presentation of Buckets and content added (thanks for the image Microsoft):introducing-office-365-planner-2

Pretty cool. Thanks Microsoft.

Overview of my challenge: As an absolute lover of all things Microsoft, I’ve decided to undertake the challenge, of writing a blog every single day, for the 365 days. Crazy, I know. And I’ll try my best, but if I cannot find something good to say about Office 365 and the Tools it includes for 365 days, I’m changing my profession. So let’s write this epic tale of “Around the Office in 365 Days”. My ode to Microsoft Office 365.
Keep in mind that these tips and tricks do not only apply to Office 365 – but where applicable, to the overall Microsoft Office Suite and SharePoint.