OneDrive for Business: Must-Have Tips, Tricks and Cool Features

OneDrive for Business Must Have Tips Tricks and Cool Features on messageops.comCreating power users and driving adoption isn’t easy, but these tips will definitely help

Working smarter and more effectively means more cloud-based tools for today’s average employee. And in organizations where Office 365 has been adopted, both end users and cloud IT admins are making OneDrive for Business their newest focus. It makes collaboration easier for end users and offers additional capabilities to admins searching for better ways to manage big influxes of data.

Even though OneDrive is still in its infancy, admins are eager to implement and share it with their end users. Yet because it’s so new, unfamiliarity is becoming an obstacle that prevents people from using OneDrive to its full potential.

The following must-have tips will help admins encourage more people to become champions and power users while giving their adoption and change management strategies a serious lift. End users can also use them to simplify collaboration and improve productivity.

Work Offline With the Sync Tool

While the cloud allows us to work from anywhere in the world at any time on any device, there are times where we simply won’t have internet access. OneDrive for Business’ sync tool lets you circumvent your WiFi issues by working offline. Up to 20 thousand files and folders can be synced in your OneDrive for Business library.

What You Need to Do

  1. Download the OneDrive for Business sync app.
  2. Sign into Office 365 and navigate to OneDrive.
  3. Find the library you need to access offline and press sync.
  4. If you ever encounter low bandwidth issues, pausing or stopping a sync is easy.

Use Selective Sync

If you know you’ll be working on a device with a small hard drive, you may not want all of your OneDrive for Business folders and files to be synced to that device. But you can actually choose which folders you want to be synced when you’re using the OneDrive for Business desktop application. This setting is also device-specific, so you’ll still be able to view all your files on your computer or through the web app.

What You Need to Do

  1. Navigate to Preferences in the OneDrive app.
  2. Select or unselect the folders you want to sync to your device.
  3. Sync.

Get Valuable Organizational Insights

Microsoft’s relatively new product, Office Delve, lets you see what your colleagues are working on across Office 365. It also integrates with OneDrive so you can search and share documents with instantaneous results. It’s like a project management tool and social media network all wrapped into one simple package. It can help you find people and information as well as group and share documents.

Powered by a technology called Office Graph, which Microsoft says maps the relationships between people and content, Delve has a card-based interface reminiscent of Pinterest. Each “card” is made up of documents and informational bites like comments, likes, views and tags that show you why and how each card is important. Because the cards are dynamic, you’re able to click and immediately edit or comment once the document is launched in Office 365.

What You Need to Do

  1. Launch Delve
  2. Follow the pop-up tips for a quick intro
  3. Start exploring

Save Attachments Directly From Your Email

Many Office users can attest to the fact that much of their workday is spent sending and receiving files through Outlook. But that’s the beauty of this integrated file sync and share solution. You’re able to connect it to the applications you use most often – including Outlook.

The Outlook Web App allows you to save your file attachments directly in OneDrive for Business folder. Once there, you can move them to other folders or email them as a cloud attachment. This means you can access these files any place at any time, without having to dig through all your messages to find it. Collaborating on these files in Office or Office Online is a lot easier since you don’t have to manage and track multiple versions.

What You Need to Do

  1. Be an Office 365 customer with a commercial, government or academic plan. (This feature will become available on the Office 2013 desktop client in a future version. If you want to use this feature before then, simply save the attachment to the OneDrive folder on your computer.)
  2. Open the email with the attachment(s) you want to save.
  3. Save a single attachment to OneDrive for Business by opening the drop-down menu on the attachment and choosing Save to OneDrive. If you’d like to save all the attachments, simply choose Save all to OneDrive.

Make It Your Default Documents Folder

If you want to save all your documents to OneDrive, this will save you a boatload of time.

What You Need to Do

  1. Go to Windows Explorer
  2. Right-click Documents and select Include a Folder. Choose your OneDrive folder and click Set Save Location.
  3. The next time you save a file, OneDrive will be the default location.

Easily See How Much Storage Space is Left

Microsoft recently increased the amount of cloud storage space available to Office 365 business subscribers from 25 GB to a full tetrabyte – that’s a 40x increase. So how do you check how much space is available to you? (Hint: If you find that you need to free some up, clearing your Recycle Bin is a great place to start.)

What You Need to Do

  1. Sign in to Office 365 as an admin
  2. Check the Storage Metrics page. If you’ve received the update, there will be a bar in the upper-right corner showing how much space is in use and how much is available.
  3. For those with OneDrive for Business installed on a Windows PC, you can also right-click the program icon in your notifications (right side of the taskbar) and click Manage Storage on the shortcut menu.

Enable Version Control to Stay Current With Changes Made to Documents

If you’re working with one or more people on a particular document, you’ll want to stay up date with the latest changes made to that document and version control is an easy way to do that.

What You Need to Do

  1. Make sure that version history is enabled in OneDrive for Business. Find out by choosing any file in your library and following the path to Files > Version History. If it’s greyed out, contact your organization’s admin to enable it.
  2. Admins can enable or remove version control from an entire list or library as well as configure settings to save a new version every time an edit is made. A version cap can be set so that the oldest version of a document is deleted once a certain threshold is reached.
  3. Once enabled, use it to view, restore or delete previous versions of a document.

Configure Links to OneDrive for Business in Your SharePoint

Admins in organizations using SharePoint 2010 and OneDrive for Business can set up a like that sends users directly to their OneDrive for Business accounts right in your organization’s SharePoint. This will improve efficiency and productivity since users can quickly and simply transition from SharePoint to OneDrive.

What You Need to Do

  1. Follow the steps in this Microsoft Technet article.

Use Your Mobile Phone

Organizations that use OneDrive for Business have the unique ability to access it on Windows Phone, Android and even Apple devices. While these apps are designed to be on-the-go versions of their desktop and web-based counterparts and therefore may not be as powerful, they do have some inherent capabilities that are beneficial on these devices.
For instance, you’re able to pin folders on an Android home screen so you can quickly access commonly used documents. You can also set up a PIN or use iOS TouchID for enhanced security when accessing your OneDrive accounts.

What You Need to Do

  1. Download the Windows Phone app.
  2. Download the Android app.
  3. Download the Apple app.

Create and Host an Online Survey

Want to gauge employee satisfaction or decide who should cater your next big event? Want a signup sheet you can see in one place online? Create a survey with Excel Online and poll your staff right from your OneDrive account. Everyone’s responses will be compiled into one online spreadsheet.

What You Need to Do

  1. Login to OneDrive for Business
  2. Click New > Excel survey
  3. Create your survey. Enter a title and description or delete this placeholder text. Drag questions up and down to change their order within the form. Click Save and View to see exactly what your recipients will see. Use Edit Survey to continue editing or, if you’re ready, click Share Survey and start the process for creating a link to your form that you can send through email, a message, a post or any other way you choose.

Add Cover Images to Any Folder

When you open OneDrive for Business in a web browser and choose the Thumbnails view, you’ll see that each folder cycles through the images inside. But it may be easier and faster for you to choose a single, static image that quickly identifies each folder.

What You Need to Do

  1. Open the folder, find the cover image you want to use, right-click and choose Add As Cover from the menu.

Realizing the Full Business Value of OneDrive

As an increasing number of organizations migrate to Office 365, OneDrive for Business will become a critical feature for admins and end-users to master. Unless admins are able to take advantage of all the management capabilities OneDrive for Business offers, users won’t be able to use the tool to its full potential and they may be at risk for sharing sensitive information.

Cloud office systems like Office 365 are an effective way to foster collaboration and productivity among all levels of employees, but only if leaders adopt it and encourage others to do the same. If you’re struggling to overcome the adoption hurdle, we can help you show the value of OneDrive for Business – or the entire Office 365 suite – to stakeholders and end users alike.
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