All Microsoft 365 subscriptions include Microsoft Teams. Teams is a pretty versatile application, that supports team collaboration and is the default Microsoft application for online meetings. If you want to get best value from you M365 subscription, Teams should be your primary choice for online meetings (you don’t need to double up your spend and buy a zoom licence as well!).

Teams meetings can host up to 300 participants and meetings can last for up to 24 hours (well, that’s the technical limit – I imagine regular meetings are MUCH shorter!).  

This post will show you how to : Join a meeting, Schedule a meeting and Make all meetings Teams meetings as default, for both the Desktop Outlook app and Outlook for the Web.

Joining a Teams meeting  

You can join a meeting from within the Teams app, or directly from a link in an email meeting invitation. 

To join a Teams meeting from within the Teams App: 

  1. In Teams, in your Calendar, find the meeting/invite you want to join and click Join –  you can do this before the meeting has started, or join when it’s already in progress. 
  2. For video, ensure your camera is switched on.
Image of Teams Meetings - Your camera is turned off
Use the toggle switch to turn camera on and off
  1. Click Background filters if you want to change your background (perhaps you want to keep the contents of your home private, or your background just isn’t very professional): 
    • Select a custom background, or 
    • Select Blur
  2. Choose your audio settings. 
  3. Select Join now

To join a Teams meeting from an email invitation: 

  1. In your email invite, select Click here to join the meeting
  2. You have three choices: 
    1. Download the Windows app: Download the Teams desktop app – ideally you’d want to allow time to do this before the meeting starts. 
    2. Continue on this browser: Join a Teams meeting on the web – great if you don’t have Teams installed, or you don’t have a M365 account. 
    3. Open your Teams app: Ideal if you already have the Teams app and are logged in; click to go straight to your meeting. 
  3. Type your name if prompted. 
  4. Choose your audio and video settings. (You will have the option to use a dial-in number and conference ID from the email to call in.)
  5. Click Join now
  6. Depending on the meeting settings, you’ll either enter the meeting straight away, or go to a virtual waiting room/lobby where you’ll wait to be admitted by the meeting host/participants.

Scheduling a meeting

As your calendars in Teams and Outlook are connected, there are a few different ways to create a Teams meeting. You can create a meeting directly within the Teams app, or you can create an Outlook meeting invite and add Teams into it.

A key thing to note is that you can invite people from outside of your organisation to a Teams meeting without having to add them to Microsoft Teams. Your invitees don’t even need to have a Microsoft M365 account.

Create a meeting within the Teams app

In Teams, go to your Calendar, and find the desired day and time.

Image of Teams Calendar

Note: If you cannot see Calendar in the left hand side menu, you do not have a Microsoft 365 Business account. If you see Meetings instead, you have a Personal account.

Click a time and a New Meeting window will open.

Add your participants in the Add required attendees field. To invite eternal participants, enter their full email address in this field and then click Invite when prompted.

Complete the meeting details and click Send.

The meeting is now set and your invitation sent. You will see the meeting appear in your Outlook calendar as well.

What do external attendees see?

Any external participants will receive an invite with a link to your Teams meeting. Please see above To join a Teams meeting from an email invitation, for details on how they will join.

Create a Teams meeting in Outlook – Desktop app

In Desktop Outlook, there are a few ways to create a new Teams Meeting

Image of Menu to create a new Teams Meeting in Outlook

From the Home tab, click on the drop down menu under New Items and select Teams Meeting at the bottom of the list.

This opens a new meeting invite pre-loaded with the link to the Teams meeting.

Image of the New Teams Meeting button in the Outlook menu ribbon

Switch to Calendar view and you can click the New Teams Meeting button in the ribbon.

This opens a new meeting invite pre-loaded with the link to the Teams meeting.

Image of an Outlook meeting invitation with the Teams Meeting button added

Create a new Calendar meeting – this opens a blank meeting invite.

Click the Teams Meeting button in the ribbon, and this adds a Teams meeting to your invite. You can do this to new invites and retrospectively if you forget!

Now complete your meeting details, and add your attendees and send as normal.

Create a Teams meeting in Outlook for the Web

For Outlook for the Web, you need to go to the Calendar view and create a new meeting.

Image of the Teams Meeting invitation in the Web/online view

Complete your meeting details as normal.

Ensure you switch the Teams meeting toggle switch to on. Note that this only appears once you’ve added one or more participants.

Send your invite.

Your invite will now include the Teams meeting link.

Make all meetings Teams meetings as default

Now that we are meeting more and more online, it may make sense and save some time to set all meetings to Teams meetings by default.

Desktop Outlook

Go to File > Options

Click on Calendar and then under Calendar options tick the checkbox next to Add online meetings to all meetings. Click OK.

Image of Outlook Options menu with the option to Add online meeting to all meetings

Outlook for the Web

Click the Settings icon ⚙️ in the top right of the screen and then select View all Outlook settings, at the bottom of the screen.

Select Calendar > Events and invitations

Click on Calendar and then under Calendar options tick the checkbox next to Add online meetings to all meetings. Select Save.

Image of Outlook settings menu for Calendar and Events and Settings

Pre-requisites

  • Works on any Microsoft 365 Business or Enterprise plan.
  • You may need to add the Teams Meeting button Add-In (if you do not see the Teams Meeting button as per the screenshots above).