A Microsoft Team in short is a collection of people, conversations, files, tools and collective outcomes in an organization working collaboratively.
A Channel in MS teams is a dedicated section to a department, project, a discussion in a team/group.
Channels are the places where conversations happen and where the work actually takes place. While channel conversations are public, chats are just between you and someone else (or a group of people). Every Teams has a General (common) channel by default and we can’t delete it. We also can have multiple threads within the channels to have organized and focused conversations in the organisation.
Types of MS Teams channel:
Channels can be open to all team members or to a particular department, group or a project.
i) Standard Channel:
A common channel which is open to all team members to collaborate collectively and share conversations, files, tools and other tasks.
ii) Private Channel:
Private channels create focused spaces for collaboration within your teams.
Only the users on the team who are owners or members of the private channel can access the channel. Private channel acts as a restricted channel for certain group of people.
iii) Shared Channel:
Shared channels are mainly used as a collaboration space for inviting users from both inside and outside of our teams and organization.
Only members of shared channels can see and participate in shared channels that they are added to. Other members of the team to which the shared channel is connected won't be visible.
Required Licenses for MS Teams: Below table gives the list of licenses that can be signed up for getting MS Teams access:
How to create Standard channel?
To create a Standard channel, need to launch MS teams application via desktop app/web app/Mobile app.
We can find the “Teams” section on the left side of the bar, then choose "join or create teams" , choose create teams and provide a name for it, by default we will have "General" channel created.
Next step, to create a new standard channel, we can select “More Options*** ” click on Add channel and the other option we can choose “Manage Team” and then add a channel by selecting the “Add channels” tab. Once clicked on channel tab, provide a channel name, description (if required) about the channel details.
Next, select Privacy tab, click on the dropdown list and then choose option – “Standard – Accessible to everyone on the team”
Then select "Create".
As per Microsoft recommendation, we can create up to 200 channels over the teams and that number includes both creation and deletion.
How to create Private channel?
Private channels can be created on the same teams channel, we have to go to “Teams” section and select “More Options*** ” and click on Add channel, provide the name and description details.
Select Privacy tab, click on the drop-down list and then choose option “Private – Specific teammates have access”
Choose the Create to add the private channel to the team.
Next tab, we can add the required members by typing their email addresses to allow access for the private channel and once all set ready, we can click "done" and private channel gets created successfully.
Even after creating the private channels, Channel owner can add/remove/modify members.
We can create up to 30 private channels on a teams and each can have a maximum of 250 members in it.
Teams Administrator can limit the access to private channel creation/modify.
How to create Shared channel?
Go to Teams and select the “More Options***” and click on “Add Channel”, create the channel by providing the name and description details
Next, choose Privacy tab and click on the drop-down option and choose for “Shared – People you choose from your org or other orgs have access”
By default it will be enabled to “share this channel with everyone on the team”, its up-to the team owners decision to share with entire teams or restrict it by unchecking the box, then click on “Create”
Next tab, it will ask to “share the campaign collaboration channel”, we can choose the people we want to invite for this channel by typing their email addresses for both inside and outside our organization and then select Share.
By default the permission level will be member and the team owner will have the access to modify the permission levels.
If Shared channel option not visible in privacy tab, have to reach Teams administrator to enable it, has it depends on organisational policies.
Admins must enable required federation (B2B direct connect - External collaboration sharing) to allow other organisations, so we can add people outside your organisation to a shared channel
The Teams mobile app doesn’t support creating shared channels.
We can never change a shared channel into a standard or private channel and vice versa. Once you create a shared channel, you can't change the team.