Art of Pinning channels to the top and using channel notifications for effect

Pin channel is a feature that came out during the Microsoft Ignite. While it is a simple feature, you can use it to organize your Teams a lot better than before. Let’s just with the How to.

You click on the channel’s ”magic three dot” menu and choose Pin. Then the selected channel will appear on the top, before your all teams. You can then Drag and drop pinned channels to desired order.

Removing a channel from the top is as easy as three dots menu and selecting Unpin.

Use channel pinning to improve your Teams experience

The real thing here is, that pinned channels allow you to do changes to your Teams environment. You are most likely, or should be, aware of the Settings – Notifications menu? With Channel Notifications and Pin a Channel you can now start working for a better Teams experience (=less unnecessary noise).

First, note that when it goes to Channel mentions or Followed channels the Settings – Notifications are not the default value for all channels. If you do explicit changes in Channel Notifications those apply to that specific channel. What is the personal preference is if you want banner on specific notifications (personal mentions, chat messages) or just bunch them to the feed.

The other setting I sometimes switch to off is team notifications. I am more advising people to use channel mentions since they can be controlled. Team notification is often just a unnecessary noise. Depends on what kind of teams you belong to and how atTeam is used.

Meeting notification is also very useful to be the banner – you don’t miss that many meetings if a banner pops.

Also, Teams and channels have Show/Hide setting. You can hide specific channels or teams from your active feed.

Recommendations

  • If you are a member of a team but you only need to work on a single channel in a team: pin that channel to the top. You can silence / hide the rest and you can hide the team as well. This is really useful if you have been added to lots of Teams where you need only to follow a single thing. Even when you have silenced all notifications on that channel you see if there are new messages (=it is bolded).
  • Make some channels stand out: pin a few important ones you need daily. This is a shortcut access and you don’t have to worry about first navigating to the team. This is very useful for company news – you may want to keep the notifications silent but you can still see if there are new information to be read.
  • Don’t pin every channel you use. Keep the number as low as you can (=these channels are very important for me) and use also show/hide Teams and channels. Just like any other Teams feature: use with caution / think how you get the best value and benefit out of it. Otherwise you end up with along list of pinned channels without team context. If you need only that one channel from a team then pinning might the best way to go.
  • Use Channel Notifications to get more visible notifications (feed or banner) of selected channels : the ones you need to be up to date. Switch single channels to banner notifications – just remember that what is your default setting (to the feed or off).
  • Hide all those channels you don’t need at your work. Change their Channel notification settings to off if you feel they are using too much atChannel mentioning.
  • Consider turning off atTeams mentioning if that is possible. There is no team level setting for this. A better practice (for company playbook, of course) is to use channel mentions.

With Channel Pinning and Notifications out it is now it makes a lots of sense to rethink your Teams. What to show, what to hide and make that Your teams-list more compact & focused. The result is less noise and more productivity.

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