O365 Groups

Many products within Office 365 using O365 Groups as the building block for collaborative working.  O365 Groups can be created within Outlook, Yammer, Teams, SharePoint and Planner. For more information from Microsoft on how O365 Groups are used please see Learn about O365 Groups

Key Features

Diagram 1 – Group Creation Points – Users

Roles in Groups

Only staff members within Glow can create an O365 Group.  The creator of a group is made an Owner of the Group (in Yammer this is described as Admin).  However additional Owners can be appointed and we would recommend having at least two Owners in each group – especially if learners are in the group.  Be aware of the permissions an Owner has and the potential impact on the group of inappropriate ownership.

Owner Member
•      Add/remove members

•      Rename group

•      Add additional owners

•      Delete conversations subject to other settings

•      Access everything in the group

•      Can’t change settings but can update/change/add content

NB these are roles in the O365 group and are not related to job roles.  So teaching and non-teaching staff are not automatically Owners.

Types of Groups

Groups can be created as Public or Private, or their type changed after creation.  Public groups (and their contents) would be visible to all Glow users and should be used only where appropriate.  Care should be taken when uploading content to the group to ensure it’s appropriate for the possible audience.  Please see Information for Educators and refer to your own local policies.

Public Private
•      Content can be seen by anyone within organisation

•      Anyone can join

•      Content only visible to group members

•      Group may not be visible

•      Owner needs to approve members joining

Using Groups

Each O365 group may contain a number of storage areas e.g  an Exchange mailbox, a SharePoint site, a Team, a Yammer Group.

Any action you take on an O365 group in one area of O365 will affect all other areas as the group is the underlying structure.  It may be useful to think of the individual Office products as wrappers around the group.

  • Example 1:    The Team associated with an Office 365 group is no longer required and is deleted.  This will delete the Team and also the O365 group.  An alternative would be to archive the Team.
  • Example 2:    Users are added to a Plan in Planner.  The user is now part of that O365 group and will have access to all the group resources eg Team, SharePoint etc.

Top Tips for Group Housekeeping

  • Review your group membership and ownership on a regular basis: https://myapps.microsoft.com/
  • Where appropriate assign additional or new Owners to groups, especially if your role changes or you’re leaving your current employer. Please see Glow account guidance for more information.
  • For groups where you’re an Owner check the membership is correct on a regular basis
  • Delete groups that are no longer required.  Remember to save content from the group if you still need it.