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MS Teams Shifts: Everything You Should Know (2024)

Hey there! Let me walk you through why MS Teams Shifts is a fantastic tool for managing your schedule.

MS Teams Shifts is your go-to schedule management buddy. It’s designed to make your life easier by helping you create, update, and manage schedules seamlessly. Imagine having your week’s plan at your fingertips, avoiding those awkward moments when your boss wonders where you are during specific hours.

ms teams shifts

Here’s how MS Teams Shifts can simplify your life:

  • Real-time visibility: Stay in the loop with your shift movements, accessible on your computer or mobile device, as long as your boss keeps them updated.
  • Unavailability settings: Easily mark yourself as unavailable, pick unassigned shifts, swap with a colleague, and even request leave without causing a fuss with your boss.


To manage MS Teams Shifts in your organization

Enabling or disabling MS Teams Shifts in your organization is a breeze. You can toggle it on or off at the organization level in the Microsoft Teams admin center.

For deactivating MS Teams Shifts in your organization, locate the Shifts app, choose it, and hit Block. To activate MS Teams Shifts for your organization, find the Shifts app, select it, and click Allow.

If you want to customize for specific users, create a custom app permission policy—simple, right?

Getting started with MS teams shifts


Getting started with MS Teams Shifts is a breeze. Open the Shifts app—it’s right there on the left side of Teams. If you can’t spot it, no worries. Just hit “More options” and find it on the list. Once you’re online, check out the shifts scheduled for the next week.

If there are no shifts, don’t fret. Just nudge your boss or administrator to assign you one through the web.

microsoft shifts review

Interested in crafting shifts for a specific channel? Easy peasy! Open Shifts, add a new schedule, and hit create.

teams shifts permissions

Now, let’s set the time zone. Choose the one that suits you, and when you’re all set, click confirm.

Creating shifts for teams? Fantastic! Hit “Add People” on the left to bring in members to your newly minted shifts.

Oh, and about that “Unnamed group” on the left—it doesn’t look great, right? No worries, you can fix it. Use the “More options” next to the group name, type in your desired name (I’m thinking Techieberry team), click OK.

Voila! Your screen instantly reflects the cool change. Easy, right?

MS teams shifts view

When it comes to viewing schedules and shifts on MS Teams Shifts, the options are as diverse as your preferences:

  • Take your pick! View your schedule daily, weekly, or monthly. But wait, there’s more! You can also group the schedule by shift instead of people. Tweak the settings to display the information you need, whether it’s groups, open shifts, or anything else you fancy.
  • These flexible viewing options are a godsend for managers. Easily track your staff’s coverage for a specific day, week, or month. And here’s the cherry on top—hide any unnecessary information to keep your screen clutter-free.
  • Guess what? Shifts isn’t just confined to your desktop—it’s on the go too! The Microsoft Teams mobile client brings you a trimmed-down version, perfect for frontline workers. Access Shifts, view schedules, create time-off requests, and swap shifts with colleagues—all at your fingertips.
  • To dive into MS Teams Shifts on the mobile client, simply press the waffle menu in the top left-hand corner of the Teams mobile app. Then, select More Apps, and you’re good to go. Easy access, anytime, anywhere!

MS teams shifts schedule share

Once you make changes, they’ll be marked with a friendly asterisk—just for your eyes as the owner. But hey, sharing is caring! Click on “Share with team *” at the top to let the team in on the plan.

Now, you’re in control. Choose the dates to “publish” after hitting Share with Team. Decide whether to notify the entire team or just those directly affected by the changes or additions.

Remember, sharing is key! Every time you make changes, hit that share button to keep your team in the loop. After all, communication is the secret sauce to a smoothly running schedule!

MS teams shifts time clock

Now that you’ve got your schedule all set up, it’s time to dive into the action—the actual shift execution! And guess what? MS Teams Shifts has a nifty time clock functionality to make it a breeze.

This feature lets you clock in and out conveniently using your mobile device. But wait, there’s more! You can even enable location detection for reporting purposes. Here’s your quick guide on making the most of the time clock:

Open up the associated “shifts schedule.”
Head to the top and click on “Settings.”


For a deeper dive into managing settings in MS Teams Shifts, head over to the Microsoft website. They’ve got all the nitty-gritty details to make you a pro at tweaking those settings!

MS teams shifts schedule

MS Teams Shifts is like the superhero sidekick for your team! The awesome team owners, aka Shifts managers, can whip up schedules to share with the team members. Just a heads up, for now, visitors are on the sidelines and can’t join the shift party.

Ready for the magic? Clicking on the Shifts icon can make these awesome things happen:

  • When you’re the boss of a team, but none of them have shift changes yet, you’ll get a chance to be the master planner for all your teams. It’s like being the captain of the scheduling ship.
  • If you’re not the owner and none of your teams already have a shift schedule, a friendly message pops up saying, “Looks like there’s no team schedule for you yet.” Time to make some scheduling magic happen.
  • If there’s a shifts schedule in at least one of your teams (whether you’re an owner or a member), that schedule takes the lead. If there are multiple schedules floating around, the latest one you’ve laid eyes on steals the spotlight.
  • First time in the shifts world? You’ll see a nifty chart where you can choose which team’s schedule will be your initiation into the shifts adventure.
  • Here’s a cool trick: Once you have access to at least one schedule, you can open a list of all your schedules and effortlessly switch between them using the “hamburger” menu at the top left corner of Shifts. It’s like having a scheduling buffet at your fingertips.
  • Oh, and don’t forget the Latest Scheduling connection—it lets you attach shift schedules for your other teams from the same perspective. Talk about streamlining your scheduling game!

MS teams shifts create

Time to get creative with your shifts! When you’re in shift-creation mode, check out these awesome options:

  • Start and End Date/Time: Set the stage for your shift by defining when it kicks off and wraps up.
  • Open or Assigned: Decide if your shift is an open invitation or if you’ve already picked the perfect team member for the job.
  • Number of Spaces: Have a popular shift? No worries—decide how many slots are up for grabs. It’s like creating multiple copies of the same cool shift for different folks to rock simultaneously.
  • Custom Label/Title: Give your shift a unique identity! If you leave it blank, the date of the shift takes the spotlight.
  • Unpaid Intermission Duration: Everyone needs a break! Specify how long the team can recharge during an available unpaid intermission.
  • Notice Area: Got some extra details to share? This is your spot! Add any info you want everyone to know about the shift.
  • Sub-Activities Summary: Break it down! Give a quick overview of the different activities happening during the shift changeover.
  • Color Code it: Spice things up with a burst of color! Assign a specific color to each type of shift, and voila—your schedule becomes a rainbow of organized awesomeness. It’s like scheduling with style.

MS teams shifts assigning

  • Feel free to set up a shift as an open one, which can be assigned later, or tailor it for a specific individual (currently only available in the mobile app).
  • Before assigning someone to the change, make sure to connect them to the same community where the change is happening or is planned.
  • Adding members to schedule groups is limited to team members. If you’re applying a change to someone not visible in the people picker, double-check that they are a team leader.
  • Once you’ve welcomed the consumer on board, it might be a good idea to wait until their details align with the changes.

MS teams shifts request time off

  • Team representatives have the flexibility to request time off, and team leaders have the power to either approve or decline such requests.
  • Once time-off is approved, the user’s schedule automatically reflects the blocked-off time.
  • If a team member wants to switch one of their shifts with a colleague’s within the same timeframe, the colleague can either reject or support the request.
  • It’s worth noting that the individuals involved don’t have to be in the same party or participants in all classes.
  • If the swap gets the green light from the other employee, a manager steps in for the final approval. If the users weren’t initially part of the other scheduling classes, they are now automatically included.
  • No need to worry about security—team members can still view all scheduling groups and shifts, even if they’re not members of those groups.
  • Team leaders also have the convenient option to give another team leader one of their shifts without a direct exchange. This clearance process aligns with the method used for change swaps.

You can easily access all these features within the Requests tab.

MS teams shifts group scheduling

  • Even though a team may operate with just one schedule, a project has the flexibility to encompass an almost limitless number of groups.
  • A basic schedule might consist of just one group, but when the need arises for multiple categories or sections, groups are there to support that requirement.
  • When it comes to creating shifts, it’s essential to integrate them into the schedule for one team. Unfortunately, you can’t shuffle shifts between different groups.
  • If you happen to encounter an error or decide to replicate identical changes across multiple classes in the calendar, you can simply duplicate the straightforward change. This way, any action you’ve taken won’t be left out in the move.
  • And here’s a handy tip: If you decide to copy the entire schedule, remember to copy the activities as well for a seamless transition.

MS teams shifts copying

Rather than manually assigning shifts to your staff, streamline the process by passing an established plan to another team member in the same position. Click on the More options button for the specific shift, choose to copy it.

Effortlessly insert it into another spot.

This not only demonstrates how a single shift schedule can be transferred from one member to another but also highlights the convenience of copying and pasting multiple changes across several days.

If you have the same schedule repeating throughout the week, save time and effort by copying it across multiple days. Simply drag the days, copy them, then drag them again and paste them—easy as that!

MS teams shifts recurring

  • It seems the developers haven’t implemented a feature for recurring team shifts just yet, and this has understandably caused some frustration among users. While this highly anticipated feature is still pending from Microsoft, there’s a workaround that allows you to set up regular changes with a bit of extra effort.
  • Simply start by creating a new shift initially. If you want the same shift every day, just copy and paste the contents to the next day. Similarly, if you plan to replicate the change regularly, transfer it forward to the following day whenever you want it to recur.
  • Rest assured, Microsoft has acknowledged the demand for recurring shifts and is committed to implementing the feature. Unfortunately, we don’t have a specific release date to share at the moment. Patience is key!

MS teams shifts export schedules


Exporting your shift schedule as a CSV file is a breeze and comes with some cool features. Here’s how you can do it:

  • Head to “Shifts” in Microsoft Teams.
  • At the top, just tap on More options (…).
  • Choose “Export Schedule.”
  • In just a few seconds, your CSV file will be ready for you in the downloads folder. Easy peasy!
  • If you’re looking to shift your schedule to a different channel, the import feature is your friend. Use the same options, and you’ll seamlessly transfer the schedule to the desired channel. It’s all about keeping things flexible and convenient!

MS teams shifts import schedule

  • Head to your scheduler.
  • simply select More options (…) at the top.
  • Choose “Import schedule.”
  • Download the provided sample Excel template.
  • Once you’ve made your changes, save the file as CSV (comma delimited).
  • Upload the CSV file to your scheduler.
  • If there are unknown columns, feel free to edit them.
  • Take a moment to review the imported shifts, make any necessary edits, and add more shifts if needed.
  • Check out the summary and, when you’re satisfied, click on “confirm.”
  • Your schedule is now populated with all the shifts but remains unpublished.
  • When everything looks good and you’re ready to share, hit that publish button!
  • Dive into your Excel file, and remember, each row represents a shift. Tweak the details as needed to tailor it to your team’s schedule. Feel free to add, modify, or fine-tune information to ensure everything aligns perfectly. It’s your canvas—make those shifts shine.

MS teams shifts audit log

Before diving into the audit log search, make sure to enable auditing in the Microsoft Purview portal. Check out the details on how to do this in the “Turn audit log search on or off” section. Remember, the audit data starts accumulating from the moment you flip the auditing switch.

Once auditing is set up, you can easily search the audit log to keep tabs on shifts activity within your organization. Get familiar with the process of searching the audit log and explore the comprehensive list of shifts activities that are logged there. It’s a powerful tool to stay in the loop and maintain transparency in your organization’s activities.

MS teams shifts notifications

Managing notifications is a personalized affair. Each team member needs to set up their notification preferences individually. Here’s how they can do it:

  • Click on “Settings and more (…)” located in the top right corner.
  • Navigate to Settings.
  • Choose Notifications.
  • Adjust the settings according to personal preferences.

For more detailed guidance on managing notifications, head over to the Microsoft website. It’s all about tailoring the experience to suit each user’s needs.

MS teams shifts for first-line workers

Shifts in Microsoft Teams is your go-to tool for managing schedules seamlessly. Managers can effortlessly plan and create shift schedules, while team members have the flexibility to review schedules and make shift requests directly from their mobile devices, all in real-time. The Shifts experience is readily available and activated by default within the Teams app.

MS teams shifts data

It’s important to note that MS Teams Shifts data is securely stored in Microsoft data centers located in North America, Western Europe, and the Asia Pacific. For additional details about the data storage locations, you can check out the “Where is My Data?” section. Your scheduling data is in good hands!

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How to clear schedules from shifts?

    1. Open the Teams app and go to the Shifts tab.
    2. Locate the schedule you want to delete (for example, Group B).
    3. Click on the three dots (…) next to the schedule.
    4. From the dropdown menu, select Settings.
    5. In the Settings menu, scroll down to the Delete Schedule section.
    6. Click on Delete Schedule.
    7. To seal the deal and confirm the deletion, just give a click on Delete in the confirmation message. It's the final step to bid farewell to the schedule you no longer need!

  2. How do I pass a shift to someone else?

    To hand off a shift to another person, start by shifting it to open shifts and then make the reassignment. While this method can be a bit tricky and may create challenges for automated shift operations, we're here to help you navigate through it.

  3. Can I use Shifts with people from outside the organization?

    Unfortunately, Shifts doesn't currently support guest users, even if you're collaborating with them in Microsoft Teams.

  4. What's the maximum group size in Microsoft Teams Shifts?

    The group size limit in Shifts is the same as the limit for a team.

Ready to boost your productivity on Microsoft Teams? Explore the tips and tricks shared here.

Now, over to you:

What insight from today’s report caught your attention the most? Any burning questions about the topics I covered?

Feel free to express your thoughts by leaving a comment below. Your input is valuable, and I’m eager to hear what you have to say!

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10 Comments

  1. Karel

    hi,

    i have a team that works from 8-5pm with a 24min break. When i select this the total shift hours show 7.6 iso 7.36hrs. Any way i can adapt this?
    thx

    Karel

  2. Rajna

    Is there a way that more than one manager/supervisor can create a shift schedule for different groups within a team and receive notification about Time off request only for his group within that team?

  3. Greg Johnson

    Is there a way in Shifts to only allow you to only view your shifts and not the Team Shifts? Client wants to be able to have the separation of the viewing.

    • techieberry

      Do you get notifications on the teams desktop app? If so, I believe it’s worth to check browser notifications. Below is the article for reference. You can also consider testing on different browsers including incognito mode.
      https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/msteams/forum/all/notifications/f7df9d4c-7728-4d4c-b200-699e805fe4ed#:~:text=For%20example%3A%20Open%20web%20browser,add%20Teams%20web%20URL%20link.

    • techieberry

      Shifts currently don’t support guests. This means that guests on a team can’t be added to or use shift schedules when Guest access is turned on in Teams. We may expect this feature to be available in the future.

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