Microsoft Office 365 Planner App is Out Now

Another feature which is ‘Microsoft Office 365 Planner’ is added by Microsoft that would be beneficial for Office 365 users worldwide. After Microsoft Office 365 Planner App’s launch in last September for selective customers, it is now broadly available to users of its Office 365 productivity suite (Office 365 Planner release date: 6th June, 2016) and over the next several weeks, this app will be available to all suitable Office 365 customers worldwide.

All eligible subscription plans’ users (including Enterprise E1–E5, Business Essentials, Premium and Education users) will automatically see the Planner slab appear in the Office 365 app launcher when it is available for them to use. No specific action would be required by Office 365 admin.

Along with a planner to Office 365, Microsoft introduces a new and better way for schools, organizations and businesses to develop teamwork efficiently and get more and better outcomes.

Microsoft Office 365 Planner App is expected to boost Office 365’s collaboration abilities by allowing business/work groups to create shared plans, assign and collaborate on specific tasks, set deadlines, and much more.

Using this planner

Using this app, you can:

  • Teams can create new strategies/plans.
  • Set due dates.
    Assign, organize and collaborate on tasks.
  • Update plan statuses and share files.
  • Get notified on team progress through visual dashboards and email notifications.

This tool allows you to plan projects for your team, whether it’s for your school, business or a non-profit organization. Once you have added collaborators, you can assign them tasks with due dates, share files with them and get a visual overview of their progress.

Microsoft Office 365 Planner, has adapted the regular board-based interface which is similar to Trello and Asana for organizing business/work group tasks.

In Office 365 Planner

In this app, you can:

  • Set up customized columns for different work phases.
  • Create cards for definite tasks and drag them to track their progress.
  • There is a tab to assess how a group is doing on their tasks, with a color coded layout to represent which tasks are assigned, in progress, completed or late.

All the advantages of having MS Office 365 Planner App is already discussed above, so now let’s talk about some shortcomings of this app.

Limitations/ Cons of Office 365 Planner

As this app is an early bird in the industry; unlike its rivals, it does not have a mobile app that would make this planner to be easily accessed using your mobile phone. You will instead have to log on to this service through your web browser and will have to be dependent on email notifications to know when you have been assigned a new task.

Microsoft says that it is planning to introduce some new features over the next few months that includes:

  • The ability to assign a task to multiple users.
  • An option to allow external user access.
  • Features like customizable boards and reusable plan templates.
  • Apps for Android, Windows and iOS.

I have gathered few user queries on this planner. See below FAQ section to know more.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When will Planner be available to subscribers of Office 365?
A. Beginning from 6th June, 2016 onwards, Planner will start rolling out to all eligible subscribers. We are expecting the roll-out to be complete in the upcoming weeks.

2. Can Office 365 Planner integrate with Office 365 Groups?
A. Office 365 Groups is a service that allows you to easily create public or private groups. Each new plan that is created in Planner will automatically create a new Office 365 group.

3. Has Microsoft developed an Android/iOS App for Planner?
A. Microsoft is still working on the apps for Android, iOS and windows.

Conclusion

So this was all about the new app ‘Microsoft Office 365 Planner App’ provided by Microsoft to it’s users. Well I must say, this app seems to be a promising one from Software Giant Microsoft. Please feel free to share your reviews, thoughts and any update that I have missed in context to this topic. I am eagerly looking forward to get the updates on this app as promised by Microsoft.