June 29, 2023

A banner image with the text: "Microsoft 365 Admin Digest: Your monthly IT admin blog for all things Microsoft 365."A banner image with the text: “Microsoft 365 Admin Digest: Your monthly IT admin blog for all things Microsoft 365.”

Welcome to the Microsoft 365 IT admin blog, your monthly source of tips, insights, and best practices for managing and optimizing your Microsoft 365 environment. In this edition, we’ll explore how you can get your tenant ready for Microsoft 365 Copilot, and the impact of healthy Microsoft 365 adoption on talent acquisition and retention while embracing generational diversity. Learn about enhancements to the admin center and read on to catch up about all things Microsoft 365 administration. 


Get your tenant ready for AI (and join the community)


We’re excited to help you start preparing for Microsoft 365 Copilot. While availability is limited to select customers as part of the Early Access Program, Microsoft published a series of articles on steps you can take now to get your tenant ready. 


In the first blog post in the brand-new Microsoft 365 Copilot community, we provide best practices and recommendations that you can implement to help you get ready for Copilot. Microsoft 365 Copilot uses your existing permissions and policies to deliver the most relevant information, building on top of Microsoft’s existing commitments to data security and data privacy in the enterprise. This emphasizes the need for good content management practices to begin with. Therefore, understanding permissions and sensitivity labels, implementing data loss prevention policies, and leveraging reports on data access governance are good practices for a healthy digital environment.


The blog also provides additional details on security, privacy, and data residency, and tips for staying up to date with changes and announcements, so you can help drive Copilot adoption with your users.


The new Microsoft 365 Copilot community is a hub for the latest news and updates from Microsoft on Copilot. There, you’ll find relevant discussions across Microsoft 365 apps and services and a space to interact with other members. We look forward to having you join the community and be part of the conversation. 


Highlights across Microsoft 365 administration


Let’s check out some of the latest features we have launched in the Microsoft 365 admin center and how they could be useful for you.

In our continued effort to make it easier for you to drive adoption, Adoption Score is now available to all commercial customers by default. Group Level Aggregates, now included in Adoption Score, offers data segmentation by Azure Active Directory attributes to help you better assess your adoption data by different areas within your organization. Also, in preview for organizations using Adoption Score, Organizational Messages allows you to use these insights to send relevant tips and guidance on usage best practices directly to your users. Accessible in the Microsoft 365 admin center, Adoption Score is a set of anonymous user metrics and tools that give you visibility into how your organization works with Microsoft 365 and provide insights into where you can improve user experiences by sharing best practices for using Microsoft 365 features. Additionally, Experience insights, now in preview to customers with at least 2000 seats, can help you better support users and increase satisfaction. With Experience insights, organizations gain visibility into sentiment, help article consumption, and usage of Microsoft 365 applications such as Outlook, Teams, SharePoint and more. This data is curated in a single view to help you identify and address issues that may hinder productivity or cause frustration for users. Read the full announcement here.


In addition to tracking adoption, you can use the Microsoft 365 Health dashboard in the Microsoft 365 admin center to understand how well apps and services are running in your organization. Designed to give you a snapshot of the overall health of your environment, the dashboard helps ensure you are keeping updated with the latest software, following best practices for security, and using the products and service you’re paying for. At the bottom of the dashboard, you’ll also find recommended actions for improving your organization’s health across the Microsoft 365 environment.


The Microsoft Edge management service was recently made available for Public Preview (Roadmap ID 123856). You can access the service through the Microsoft 365 admin center, Org settings > Microsoft Edge, and can configure Microsoft Edge browser settings for your organization and apply these settings by group assignment or group policy. Through the portal, you can also manage browser extensions and policies or view user requests for browser extensions. To learn more, read about the Microsoft Edge management service.


An image of the Microsoft Edge management service portal in the Microsoft 365 admin center.An image of the Microsoft Edge management service portal in the Microsoft 365 admin center.


We know you spend a lot of time ensuring your Microsoft 365 tenant is secure from threats. Microsoft is making it easier for you to protect user accounts right from the start with Microsoft 365 security defaults. When turned on, security defaults provide settings that keep your organization safe by establishing strong multi-factor authentication (MFA) settings. To enable or confirm enablement of security defaults, go to the Azure portal, click on Manage Azure Active Directory > View > Properties > Manage security defaults. Learn more here.


Furthermore, it’s good to ensure that you’ve taken all the necessary precautions with your admin accounts because of the elevated privileges they have. Simple best practices include Global admins having at least one other Global admin account created with another user as backup, and keeping their admin account only for administration activities while using a separate user account for their regular use of Microsoft 365 apps. You don’t have to assign a Microsoft 365 license to the administrative account since it won’t be used. Requiring MFA should be a given, and general best practice is to avoid custom permissions for admins and instead use the default permission groups for simpler management. Read more about protecting admin accounts.


The MS-102: Microsoft 365 Administrator exam launches in early July. Currently in beta, this certification confirms the ability to perform Microsoft 365 tenant-level implementation and administration of cloud and hybrid environments. Covering a range of foundational topics including administration and establishing a Microsoft 365 tenants, the exam is also a prerequisite to the Microsoft 365 Administrator Expert certification. Microsoft certifications accredit skills that not only align with workplace needs but can also open doors for Microsoft 365 administrators in their career. To learn more about other certifications across Microsoft administration, check out this blog post.


Viva Pulse is a new employee feedback experience that will be available for use with your Viva Suite subscription. Viva Pulse empowers managers and project team leaders to request and receive feedback from their teams at any time. Global admins will be able to enable the preview for their organization by visiting the Viva Pulse site. From there, select Manage access, then toggle Public Preview access on.


Support Microsoft 365 adoption and embrace generational diversity


A recent study conducted by Enterprise Strategy Group explores how organizations in the Public Sector are facing a generational shift in their workforce, navigating a wave of retiring baby boomers and the challenge of attracting and retaining millennials and Gen Z. Taking lessons from the study, empowering your workforce with modern productivity, collaboration, and security tools can help your organization embrace generational diversity and across four critical areas: recruitment, retention, productivity, and learning. In the constantly evolving work environment, creating a healthy digital environment to attract new talent and retain experienced employees ultimately helps keep companies competitive in their field. Read the blog here. 


An infographic depicting the findings of the Enterprise Strategy Group research study outlining the positive benefits of healthy Microsoft 365 adoption across Recruitment, Retention, Productivity, and Learning.An infographic depicting the findings of the Enterprise Strategy Group research study outlining the positive benefits of healthy Microsoft 365 adoption across Recruitment, Retention, Productivity, and Learning.

IT departments are increasingly tasked with ensuring digital tools are successfully adopted, and this digest blog series has previously covered tools provided in the Microsoft 365 admin center and on adoption.microsoft.com to help track utilization and offer recommendations on how to improve it. Check out the Transforming State and Local Government IT blog post to learn more.


Join these upcoming Tech Community events


  1. Viva Engage & Yammer Rebranding – What’s next! AMA on July 11th, at 9:00–10:00am Pacific time

  2. Adoption Score AMA on July 12th, at 9:00–10:00am Pacific time

  3. Microsoft 365 Copilot AMA on July 13th, at 9:00–10:00am Pacific time


Stay updated


As always, stay current with the latest updates Microsoft 365 admin center updates from the Microsoft 365 roadmap and message centerIn addition, we also highlight new feature releases and enhancements released each month in our What’s new in the Microsoft 365 admin center article.  


Comment below if there are IT admin or change management topics you would like us to explore in the future!


Continue the conversation by joining us in the Microsoft 365 community! Want to share best practices or join community events? Become a member by “Joining” the Microsoft 365 community. For tips & tricks or to stay up to date on the latest news and announcements directly from the product teams, make sure to Follow or Subscribe to the Microsoft 365 Blog space!

You May Also Like…