Best Practices for Organizing Your Spark Space


June 12, 2017

One of the core features of Cisco WebEx Teams is the use of a space or room to gather conversation. Here, team members can assemble, chat, upload files, launch meetings, and more. The WebEx Teams Space can help streamline project communications and almost completely replace the need for email.

Like any other platform, however, WebEx Teams is only as powerful as you make it. The key is to organize the Space and your own WebEx application to be as clear and helpful as possible, while avoiding clutter. WebEx Teams is not the same thing as your inbox, and it should not be treated as such.

We’ve gathered some of our favorite tips and strategies here to help you and your team organize your WebEx Teams deployment and gain more value from the solution. 


A Note about Teams


All of the strategies here assume that you will be operating within a “Team” Space. Think of these as root folders that will contain the rest of your Spaces. This is the highest level of organization in your Spark deployment and should be as general as possible. If you’re a marketing employee, you’ll want a Marketing Team Space, or if you are in sales, you’ll want something similar for that team. Managers who are responsible for multiple teams will obviously have multiple team spaces.


Cisco WebEx Teams Space Strategies


The General Team Space


The first Space you will want to create is a General Team Space. This will serve as a catch all for discussions or announcements outside of projects. One of the most important strategies for WebEx Teams is not how you communicate but where you communicate. There’s a risk of this Space becoming like a junk drawer in a kitchen if the team is using it to discuss too many topics. This General Space should really only be for the miscellaneous odds and ends that coworkers need to talk about.

A good rule of thumb is that if a single topic comes up more than a couple times in a quarter, it may be worth creating its own dedicated Space.


What Deserves a Space?

This will largely depend on the kind of business you have and what kind of projects you undertake on a regular basis. Yet the question remains. What deserves to be a Space?

Anytime the team composition changes, a new Space should be created for that team or project. You don’t want someone uninvolved with a project to receive constant notifications. This is especially true in instances where third party team members are involved. Yet, this can go too far as well. The goal here is to make sure the chat room within the space doesn’t bloat out of control while the number of overall spaces stays manageable as well. It’s about balance.

If they do not deserve their own space, create a generalized umbrella Space for that type of project. For example, a marketing department might have a general Social Campaign space instead of an individual space for every campaign they run.


Direct Chatting with Individual Contacts

At any time, a WebEx Teams user can message any other WebEx Teams user in your organization. This is a handy tool for quick questions and instant replies, but there’s a tradeoff. That correspondence can only be seen by the two individuals in the chat, so if you discuss details of a project, the rest of the team will be left in the dark. Part of the value of WebEx Teams is that these rooms are persistent, their content will never go away.

Try to limit what you say in these private chat rooms to non-project related or non-relevant conversations. If something does come up, remember to paste it into the main meeting Space for the rest of the team to review.


Use the @Mention Whenever Possible

Anytime there is something that is particularly important to a certain member of the team, use the @mention tool to alert them. Yes, depending on their notification settings that certain member may still receive a ping anytime anyone chats into one of the spaces their involved in, but the @mention will help them search for important messages in the future (See “Remember the Search Tool” Below).


Remember the Search Tool

The search tool will become your best friend. Using it you can search for any person or file in all of your spaces with a single search. This will be particularly valuable if a file was mistakenly placed in the wrong Space. Additionally, you can also search for any @mentions of your name that a coworker has made. This will help you quickly generate a list of all the most pressing concerns that require your specific intention.


WebEx Teams Is What You Make of It


WebEx Teams users may require a moment to become acclimated to using the platform, but the functionality is always simple, clear, and intuitive. If a little foresight is used to organize how the department is going to utilize WebEx Teams, it becomes that much more powerful. Map out the hierarchy of your Spaces and try to conceptualize the most efficient way to structure your WebEx Teams before becoming too immersed in the solution. Preparation at the outset will save a lot of headaches in the future.

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For Further Reading:

Cisco WebEx Teams as a Marketing Communication Tool

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