Microsoft has announced the general availability of Teams Essentials, the first-ever standalone Microsoft Teams offering, designed specifically for small businesses. Teams Essentials gives small businesses a professional and affordable meetings solution to support collaboration, connection and productivity in a hybrid work environment. At Rs 100 per person per month, Teams Essentials is one of the most competitively priced online meetings and collaboration solution in the market.
“We know how difficult the past 20 months have been for small businesses. They’ve had to demonstrate extreme flexibility to adapt, often with limited access to tools and technology,” said Jared Spataro, corporate vice president of Modern Work at Microsoft. “Teams Essentials is built specifically to meet the unique needs of small businesses, enabling them to thrive in this new era of work.”
Teams Essentials provides expansive limits and features for hosting professional meetings and collaborating in one place:
- Unlimited group meetings for up to 30 hours
- Meetings with up to 300 people
- 10GB of cloud storage per user
Teams Essentials also includes existing and new capabilities available in the free version of Teams to meet the needs of small businesses: Simple, easy invitations require only an email address. Users are not required to sign up, sign in or install Teams to participate in a meeting.
In addition to Outlook Calendar integration, new Google Calendar integration (coming soon) makes it easy to schedule meetings in Microsoft Teams. Then, there are professional meeting tools and capabilities like meeting lobby, virtual backgrounds, Together mode, live closed captions and live reactions. Also, one can start a group project and host meetings with anyone, assign tasks to teammates, and create polls to receive feedback quickly all in one hub with the new small-business group chat template. This feature is coming soon to desktop and web.
According to LinkedIn data, SMB open job postings are up 81.9% year over year compared to November 1, 2020. More than ever, small businesses need the flexibility to hire from anywhere and technology that opens the door to new employee workstyles, such as synchronous and asynchronous collaboration. Teams Essentials offers small businesses an affordable way to work, collaborate and grow.