Montag, 5. April 2021

Viva Connections, SharePoint HOME, global Navigation and Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Viva Connections is one of the four Viva modules. Announced as the "home site app," Viva Connections for Teams combines SharePoint intranet capabilities with the chat and collaboration features of Microsoft Teams. With Viva Connections, users will see relevant content, sites and news from across the organization right in the Teams app bar.
Viva Connections uses the global navigation links along with personalized content provided by Microsoft Graph. The global navigation is configured in the SharePoint HOME site. Therefore, the recommended first step is to set up a SharePoint HOME site in the tenant. Technically also any other SharePoint modern site can be used in the Tenant.

Setting up the SharePoint HOME site

The HOME site in SharePoint Online must be set up via PowerShell. As of today, there can only be one HOME site in the tenant.
Setting up a HOME site with PowerShell:

  • Connect to SPO: Connect-SPOService -Url
  • Setup Home Site: Set-SPOHomeSite -HomeSiteUrl <siteUrl>

Details are described in the following Microsoft articles:

Configuring Global Navigation

Since the Viva Connections app in Teams integrates the SharePoint intranet with the Teams app, it makes sense to enable global navigation for the HOME site. However, this is not a must. The Viva Connections App in Teams also works with the classic navigation.

  • As long as global navigation is disabled, the Home icon is associated with the SharePoint home site.
  • Customizing global navigation requires a home site.
  • To enable global navigation, site owner permissions (or higher) are required for the home site.
  • Users need read access (or higher) to the home site to view the global navigation links.
  • Audience targeting can be applied to navigation links in the global navigation.
  • After global navigation is enabled, it may take up to 24 hours to display.
How to enable global navigation in SharePoint HOME site is described in this Microsoft article: Enable global navigation & configure the global Navigation.

Viva Connections

The user used to create the Viva Connections desktop package requires site owner privileges for the home site in SharePoint. The PowerShell script to create the app package can be downloaded here: Viva Connections for desktop PowerShell script.
During the setup in PowerShell, the following parameters need to be set:
  • URL of your tenant's home site: Enter the URL of the tenant's home site that begins with "https://". This page becomes the default landing page for Viva Connections.
  • Name: The name of your Viva Connections desktop package, as it should appear in Teams App bar.
  • App short description (80 characters): A short description for your app that will appear in Teams App Catalog.
  • App long description (4000 characters): A long description for your app that will appear in Teams App Catalog.
  • Privacy policy: The privacy policy for custom Teams apps in your organization (must start with https://). If you don't have a separate privacy policy, press Enter and the script will use Microsoft's default SharePoint privacy policy.
  • Terms of use: the terms of use for custom Teams apps in your organization (must start with https://). If you don't have separate terms of use, press Enter and the script uses the default SharePoint terms of use from Microsoft.
  • Company name: Your organization name, visible on the app page in Teams App Catalog in the "Created by" section.
  • Company website: Your organization's public website (must start with https://), which will be linked to your organization's app name on the app page in Teams App Catalog in the "Created By" section.
  • Icons: You must provide two PNG icons that will be used to represent your Viva Connections desktop app in Teams; a 192X192 pixel color icon for the Teams App Catalog and a 32X32 pixel monochrome icon for the Teams App Bar.

Result: Your Viva Connections desktop app has been successfully created! Please find the app manifest in location 'C:\Users\%name%\Desktop', filename 'Viva-Connections'.zip. Please upload this app in Teams Admin Center to proceed:

Upload the Viva Connections desktop package in the Teams Admin Center:

Pin the app to the navigation bar in the Teams client by default for your users:

The user will then see the app in the left bar the next time he launches Teams: