Do This to Revamp Your Microsoft Teams Updates

Last updated: July 25, 2022 3 min read

“What are you working on currently?”

“What do you plan to do tomorrow?”

“Were there any blockers to your progress?”

Sounds familiar? Status updates. In a nutshell, they are short descriptions of the current progress or status of a task or project.

As a leader, it is vital for you to know what everyone is working on at any given time, so therefore all status updates or reports should reveal relevant information about your team's overall progress on tasks and projects.

Aspects of this information should include what they have completed or accomplished at the time of the update given, roadblocks to that progress, and their next steps (what they plan to do next or what mitigations they have in mind to resolve roadblocks if possible).

A status update done exceptionally well is the deciding factor for alignment of your team members, building trust within your company, and faster practical problem-solving. When done poorly, status updates fail to accurately communicate the direction your work is taking, thus hindering or delaying the overall efforts of your team.

If your team struggles to consistently produce well-done status reports and you are interested in revamping the way it is done, here are some quick tips to follow.

1. Be Clear and Specific

For status updates to be effective, they must be specific and clear. If not, the information will not add any value to the overall work of your team and will fail to inform others accurately.

Revealing specifics about a task's current state is necessary for team engagement and enhancement. For example, saying something like "the yearly report is coming along quite well" is too vague.

Instead, say, "I have completed the 1st draft of the report on day 2, then it is unto proofing and editing, which should take another day to complete. This latter statement gives you and your team much more context to work with and a timeline.

Moreover, status updates should not be overloaded with too many details that may overwhelm your team as they may find it irrelevant and unnecessary. Provide just enough context to help keep the project on the right track.

Another thing to consider is clearly outlining the next steps or action steps to tackle any bottlenecks mentioned.

2. Report Consistently

Everyone onboard may create their own rhythm or follow a standard timeline for doing up and delivering status updates. The more this is practiced, the easier it becomes.

When your team members do this consistently, those around them would not have to worry or wonder when to expect their next update because they would have already gained everybody's trust to come through promptly based on their already consistent pattern.

It makes it much easier for you as a manager to eliminate micromanagement.

In addition, set up a structure for curating status updates so that confusion is done away with, time is saved, and updates are done more efficiently.

3. Highlight Blockers

Information about all blockers and potential blockers should be clearly revealed. These could be delays, risks, and budget increases.

Encourage your team to be open and transparent about them, whether big or small, to foster keeping everyone aware. That way plans can be made in advance to counter those problems and prevent them from happening in the future if possible.

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4. Use Visual Elements

The use of visual elements, especially if you manage a large remote team working on various jobs, is excellent for keeping track of what everyone is doing.

Visual aids are much more engaging than task lists, written summaries, or overviews. Examples such as our app, Vineforce, and other similar work management software make visualizing project progress easier with task boards and timelines for tasks/projects.

Seeing the progression of projects in a visual context (visual aids) is far more stimulating and mentally cements a point much better. For example, the use of colors like green can signal a project is ‘complete,’ yellow could communicate ‘in progress’ and red could symbolize an ‘overdue project.’

Other elements such as interactive checklists that can be checked off can be included, which usually would be a component or feature of a management tool.

Resources such as linked documents are necessary so others can get an in-depth look into the actual status of a project. For example, when using management tools/software, this comes in handy for instances where Word, PowerPoint, or Excel documents are involved.

This way, instead of depending on progress dashboards only, you and others can see the actual work someone did by accessing those documents.

6. Use a Management Tool like Vineforce to Deliver the Best Team Status Updates

With Vineforce as your visual project management software, you can easily capture the status of the tasks and projects everyone on your team is working on at any given time.

This software fosters transparency and trust among any group and encourages the best practice of curating a summary at the end of each workday. The following are the ways our app approaches status updates:

a. My Day View

This feature displays trackable checklists of tasks and projects for each member to track their own progress which can be viewed by everyone navigating the People’ icon on the tab in the left-hand corner of the app. This way their updates are presented automatically and visually.

b. Work Reporting

Our daily "check-out" routine makes it quick and easy for team members to share what they accomplished, were challenged with, and plans for the next day without scheduling a meeting. This information, attendance, and task progress are then compiled into a concise summary that everyone on the team can review.

c. Notifications and Reminders

Vinny, the Vineforce bot for Microsoft Teams, creates reminders for upcoming meetings, breaks, tasks assigned by teammates, and when it's time to sign out for the day. With automatic notifications, Vinny ensures your team gets all important reminders of events or tasks.



d. Time-off Tracking

This feature lets your team and external contacts know when anyone is away on vacation or taking a few days off. Meeting requests will automatically be declined, and you can set your out-of-office messages, ensuring that those who send you via email or Teams are aware of your availability.

e. Team Management

With Vineforce, you have complete control over your remote team, no matter where they are. Real-time visibility lets you stay informed about who is available and when team members plan to take time off. In addition to quickly creating work schedules and monitoring daily tasks and progress.

f. Project Management

Vineforce makes it easy to keep track of your team's progress with automatic updates as tasks are completed, which gives you real-time insights into how a project progresses.


Start a free trial of Vineforce today for 15 days for your team.


When done correctly, status updates do not have to be a drag, especially when you encourage a routine of consistency, clear goals, highlighting blockers to progress, and incorporating visual aids and resources.

Then you can get the most value from these practices if you merge them with practical management tools specifically tailored for your remote teams.