How can we make Microsoft Teams better?

Make "Teams" and "Chat" the same Tab

There is no reason that Teams and Chat should be different top level categories in the left navigation. They are the same thing, perform exactly the same function, and making two different items simply confuses the navigation and makes badge notifications and discoverability much more difficult to use.

Please combine Chats into the Teams tab so that you can browse all conversations in one place rather than needing to navigate to different tabs to see different conversations.

Chats and channels perform essentially the same function, which is talk to some people and collaborate. Forcing the user to check two different lists to see if somebody is messaging them is a really bad experience, it is like having two different chat apps.

This is one usability issues that makes Teams less usable for collaboration than both Slack and Skype.

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Samuel Sze shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

239 comments

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  • Chris Gillotti commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I strongly disagree with this functionality! These need to be separate! Chat is for private messages and are like IMs between two users for direct communication. It may not be related to a specific subject at all. Teams channels are for a larger audience to communicate, and are very much subject oriented.

    Lets set that aside for a second and talk about scrolling. If you are part of 20 + teams, you already have a long list of teams to scroll through. Now imagine how many people you IM daily and add that tot he list of items to scroll through. It gets way too messy in a single tab. Having them separate makes it way easier to navigate and prioritize conversations.

    I am not sure what dynamics other users have, but in a company of 5000+ users, this would highly impact the user adoption in a negative way.

  • AJ commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I am part of 11 teams. Most of those teams have multiple channels under them. I am already scrolling through teams. Adding the long list of chats to teams will make my life **** just by the amount of scrolling needed. The separation we have now makes it easier for me to jump between the two. Please do not change that.

  • Ryan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    It's already hard enough to tell if you're responding to an individual or an old meeting. Don't make this harder. Meetings are groups with lots of context required to understand whats going on. Chats are typically smaller threads with specific conversational elements. Mixing these 2 together would be terribly confusing.

  • Jane commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I disagree in that Chat is used for private conversations on a 1-2-1 or small group basis whereas Teams is for Team conversations that everyone who is a member of can see. Its good that they are separated for those reasons, especially if Skype for Business is going the distance in the future, there'll be a need for a built in separate Skype/Chat function in Teams.

    However, the notifications/pop ups for messages could be improved and the ability to open the chat window(s) separately to Teams would be beneficial so that you could use both apps at the same time

  • Michael Read commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    At first glance, this feature sounds good as part of an effort to declutter the app, and the ability to consolidate the active conversations would be positive, but.....I also want to see the ability to detach chat windows so that I can work elsewhere in MS Teams while also having a chat window open. So, if both items were combined permanently, then it would further take away from the multitasking capability.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I like the splitted functionality. In the teams channels we discuss only things within the scope of the channel. In the chat all other - non dedicated - subjects will discussed. So it's a clear overview in the teams channels, without the background noise.

  • Mike commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I'd like to weigh in that as soon as I read this idea I saw the benefit because from my own usage, i'm constantly toggling between those two tabs. I rarely use activity, calls, or files.

  • Jace Copier commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    having to toggle between teams and chat has complicated things. Most employees now just stick to chat and don't bother with teams as things get lost if you stick in the one area. would be nice if everything regarding a discussion was within one area so it would be easier to see when a conversation has occurred whether it be a chat or a conversation with a team.

  • Lisa R commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Adding another vote for this being a user-level preference -- working in a large enterprise, i don't want both fairly long lists combined into an incredibly long list.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I don't mind having them in separate tabs, but would love to have the option of a 'full team chat' sidebar in the main conversation window.

    Otherwise we have members of the team starting conversations, others starting new conversations in response, and more replying below any of the above. It gets confusing.

  • KD commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please implement this. Having to move back and forth between the Chat and Teams tabs is an unnecessary waste of time.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This should be a user-level preference, if implemented. I can see it making sense for people with a limited number of Teams and a small number of chat colleagues. However, for organizations where people are members of 20+ Teams and use Teams instead of email and SFB, the idea of having chat and Teams in one long list is quite frightening.

  • Barry commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I strongly disagree. A chat is a one on one private conversation that is not part of a team, and is ideal for "internal" communications in preference to using email.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Absolutely agree. We currently use Flock for company comms, it's just super simple, one window and you select which chat, regardless of group or personal... teams is just another type of chat... this combined with the option to remove threading (another separate issue) would make Teams so much better!

  • KRR commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Absolutely agree with this. There is a distinction between the uses for Team and Chat but that doesn't mean they should be separate tabs. It would be so much easier if I could see both my teams and my chats on the same tab but in different sections like Slack has.

  • Mark Moore commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I also would like to down vote this idea. Conversations in Teams are viewable by anyone including people you add later to a team. These conversations are potentially a vast supply of knowledge relating specifically to the team. Chat is for private conversations between specific individuals. I would go so far as to say that if you are conducting "chats" related to work/project decisions, that is a backward collaboration step and simply persists the age old "empire building" and "knowledge is power" culture, where only the chosen few know what's going on

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Disagree whole-heartedly. I am stuck using Webex Teams at work and they use a single tab. It a word, it is horrible.

  • A commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Look at Slack/Mattermost, a single list is much more easy than having to click back and forth. You can still have them grouped together to "give a feeling of difference". Please evolve existing concepts/solutions from other tools, don't reinvent want is not broken. This goes for a lot of features in Teams.

    Having worked with/in Teams for a few weeks now it has potential for your team *of developers who writes code*, but I get an eerie feeling this is more and more evolving to a communications hub for a whole company and thus the features are aimed more and more towards the necktie-departments. Please get the channel and peer-to-peer messaging right first.

  • Thomas Emil commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is an important one! It is a real hassle to navigate to the Chat view every time you want to quickly read the chat history and/or reply to a message. The prompt solution doesn't fulfill the need to be able to see what the last few messages were, and it is also very intrusive.
    I would love a chat bar solution at the bottom of the screen, in the same fashion as Facebook's solution. If this could also be made available even when you're not within Teams, then we're really talking!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    YES! Deal breaker for mass adoption. at the very least you need to allow for a SINGLE UNIFIED LIST of ALL chats & channels the person has favorited or has been mentioned in recently. having to check multiple tabs is just as bad as having to check multiple chat clients. This is the difference between me begrudgingly installing because my boss won't use anything else and me uninstalling my other chat clients for full 100% adoption.

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