Using Chat Functions in Microsoft Teams (How-to)

Online collaboration space with shared file storage is available to campus departments and groups using Microsoft Teams, part of the Office 365 platform. Microsoft Teams is a product that combines tools and resources such as group chat, calendars and file sharing into one location. Enjoy seamless real-time collaboration, schedule small group or team meetings, post an email in a thread to keep everyone in the loop, search for public teams to collaborate on shared projects, and see past content and chat history anytime. One of the primary features of Microsoft Teams is the ability to chat in real time with others in your department or across campus. This can be done in several different ways.

Channel posts can be seen by everyone on a team if they are general channels, or by channel members if they are private channels. They are similar to Facebook or other social media posts.

In private and group chats, only the people who are part of the chat can see your messages. They are similar to text messages or instant messaging.

New to workplace chat? Here are some links to resources to help you use it effectively and professionally.

Chat Rules for the Workplace

Chat Etiquette

Within the Team Site—Channel Posts

Each channel on your team site has a tab called Posts. This tab is used for a continuing stream of discussion between all the members of a team. This is a permanent and searchable record of the Team’s discussions.
  1. Click Posts to get to the chat area for a given channel.

Posts Channel screenshot

Want to alert the entire team or an individual of a particular message or a document you’ve posted? Type @, followed by your teammate's name or email address (or the team name ), and select them. They'll get a notification in their inbox and/or activity feed letting them know about the new message. Team members can adjust their notifications by going to the Settings under their profile.

For more information on having useful discussions in your Team site, watch the video below:

Within the Chat Function

Want to chat with a single colleague or a group of colleagues? Use the Chat function.

1. Accessing Chat

  1. Click on the Chat icon chat icon screenshot to start or continue a conversation.
  2. You will see your most recent conversations (if you have some). You can use the search bar to find a conversation with a particular person, or search for a keyword to find all conversations that revolve around a particular topic.
Chat function screenshot

2. Starting a Chat

  1. To start a new conversation, click the pencil icon Pencil Icon and then type the name of the person or people you want to chat with.
Start typing a name or group


  1. Type your message in the Type a new message box.
  2. You can attach documents, format your message, use stickers, gifs or emojis, and even schedule a meeting from the chat window.
  3. Use the return key on your keyboard or click the Send icon (the paper airplane) to send your message.
Type a new message box


Article ID: 69235
Wed 12/19/18 9:43 AM
Fri 12/13/19 8:22 AM