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Microsoft Releases 'Private Preview' of Viva Goals

A "private preview" of Microsoft Viva Goals, an objectives and key results (OKR) solution, is now available, according to a company announcement on Monday. 

The idea behind OKR software is that it can help team members better align on organizational goals. Typically, organizational goals can get lost in "silos" that are "separate from the employee experience," Microsoft argued.

Viva Goals is at the private preview stage, but a "general availability" commercial release is planned for "later in Q3 calendar year," Microsoft indicated.

Microsoft also described future product integrations plans for Viva Goals. In the works are integrations with Azure DevOps, Microsoft 365 apps and services including Microsoft Teams and Power BI, plus integrations with the other Microsoft Viva suite solutions.

The Viva Goals product is based on Microsoft's acquisition of Ally.io, announced back in October.

Viva Modules
Viva Goals is getting added to four other Microsoft Viva employee experience software solutions, which Microsoft calls "modules." The modules get accessed within the Microsoft Team collaboration service.

Here are the commercially available Microsoft Viva modules, in addition to the coming Viva Goals module:

  • Viva Connections, which provides a news feed and permits content sharing.
  • Viva Insights, which is designed for employee time management.
  • Viva Learning, giving employees access to learning libraries.
  • Viva Topics, used to surface information within organizations.

Viva Goals Use at Microsoft
Microsoft's own personnel have been using Viva Goals, as described in this announcement.

The new OKR solution is being used by Microsoft's employees in a "bottom-up" approach to align with other Microsoft team members. Viva Goals has permitted employees to "reduce the amount of time spent working on projects that are not critical to the business," the announcement indicated.

Viva Goals also has helped Microsoft teams align with the company's goals, even when they are working remotely, according to Omar Shahine, corporate vice president of product for Microsoft 365, OneDrive and SharePoint, in the announcement:

OKRs are how we explain the goals and how people's work connects to them. This insight is especially important when we hire people remotely, where they may not get the opportunity to meet with our leadership team directly.

Microsoft lets its teams "implement OKRs to best suit their needs" as part of its workplace culture, the announcement explained. They've done things like eliminate quarterly results goals for some projects when longer due dates were needed. Microsoft relies on specific team members trained on OKR methodology to help out with the Viva Goals best practices.

TalkTalk Embraces Viva
In other Microsoft Viva news, Microsoft announced on Monday that UK telecom services provider TalkTalk has adopted Viva Connections and Viva Insights to connect its employees, with many of them now working remotely.

TalkTalk also uses Microsoft 365 apps, Microsoft Power Apps, Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Teams Rooms videoconferencing devices, plus Microsoft Stream for company broadcasts. It's also rolling out Microsoft Managed Desktop, where Microsoft oversees device management for organizations.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.

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