How to make the most of Microsoft Teams Approvals workflow

Microsoft Teams has virtually unlimited helpful features and plug-ins. One of these is Microsoft Teams Approvals, a useful program when a staff member needs to get authorisation for something. 

For example, they may have drafted and reviewed a new policy and require a manager’s ‘approval’ before it’s officially launched. That’s where this software can come in handy.

In this article, we’ll tell you about making the most of the Microsoft Teams Approvals workflow and why it might benefit your business. Let’s get started.

How do you install Microsoft Teams Approvals?

Microsoft Teams Approvals can be found by searching for it under the ‘Apps’ icon in Teams. Type in ‘Approvals’, and it’ll pop up on the right. Click on it to open it up, and you’re ready to go.

Approvals is a built-in app that comes along with Teams, so you don’t have to worry about installing it. However, your ICT admin team (in-house or external) might want to play with the settings slightly to optimise it for your business’s needs.

You can use Approvals directly from the app or in-chat or in-channel features. This can be a great way to manage your approval requests (both sent and received) quickly and efficiently.

Some aspects of Approvals are still in development. See the complete list of finished and upcoming features here.

What can you use Microsoft Teams Approvals for?

You might not think about it too much on a daily basis, but most things in business require approval or authorisation of some kind. Sometimes this is from a manager, sometimes from a separate department, and sometimes from a customer. You might even need approval from a staff member under you in the hierarchy sometimes.

Here are several ways to optimise your use of Microsoft Teams Approvals to streamline your business processes.

Getting authorisation for a task

Microsoft Teams Approvals is about getting official authorisation for whatever tasks you need. This could be a request to release specific material, collect or hand over a payment, begin the process of implementing a new system, etc. The possibilities are almost endless.

Your team members can get ‘approval’ by going to either the Approvals app or the in-chat/-channel icons to create a new approval request, name it and add the details (including attachments, if necessary). They’ll then input the relevant recipients whose authorisations you need and click ‘Send’.

The recipients will be notified in Teams and provided the option to Accept or Reject it. Following authorisation (if it’s given), the sender will be informed with another notification, and they’ll find their approved request in the Approvals app.

All requests are stored and saved in Microsoft 365, whether they’re approved, rejected, or remain pending. This allows for a more complete record in case it’s ever needed.

Automate approvals requests

Microsoft Teams Approvals is built on the Power Automate program. Thus, you can set approval requests to automatically generate based on a set trigger. This saves employees additional time, allowing them to concentrate on the tasks they have in hand.

For example, if someone creates a new file in SharePoint, a flow could be set up to automatically request approval from a specific manager.

Electronic signature approvals

Sometimes, you need that extra layer of security to prove authorisation. The best online form of this is an electronic signature, such as those you find in Adobe Sign or DocuSign.

Microsoft Approvals comes with a built-in signature request feature. Microsoft has developed the software in close association with all the mainstream electronic signature programs. As such, Approvals can keep track of an entire workflow from start to finish, including when the document was signed.

This feature might be invaluable for signing contracts or authorising large payments or higher priority/risk tasks.

Get Vantage 365’s help with Microsoft Teams Approvals

Vantage 365 is a specialist Microsoft 365 and ICT consultant based in Dudley. We pride ourselves on our passion for working with your business to identify its needs and how a Microsoft 365 solution can benefit you. When it comes to Microsoft Teams, we firmly believe it’s the best option to streamline your processes and increase productivity, all while futureproofing your business against the competition.

Microsoft Teams Approvals is an invaluable app for businesses that regularly need multiple authorisations. It’s especially useful if you have employees working from home or in a hybrid system, as many do these days. Creating an effective solution in Microsoft 365 will save countless working hours, meaning you and your staff can focus on what you love doing.

Could you use our help with engineering an efficient Microsoft 365 network and utilising Microsoft Teams Approvals workflows? If so, we’d be thrilled to hear from you. Give us a ring on 01384 593720 or email hello@vantage365.co.uk for a free, no-commitment chat about you and your needs. We’d love to help and can’t wait to hear from you!