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Many organizations want to provide Microsoft Teams to their employees, but not in a “no strings attached” way. With our customers, we often see the need for a provisioning solution, so people aren’t creating teams without thinking.
With “traditional” team creation (i.e. the built-in “Create a team” functionality) a lot of the teams that get created don’t leverage the full potential that Microsoft Teams has to offer. When a team is created as a blank slate the owner has to know what the possibilities are and how to set it up, to create a team fit for their need. On the other hand, templates don’t satisfy users’ needs either. There is no such thing as “one size fits all”. Again, to modify it, the user needs to have a certain level of knowledge.
A different approach
To tackle these two challenges when it comes to Microsoft Teams provisioning, we had a vision of a provisioning solution where we blend learning with the process of creating your team. We provide the why, the user decides the what, and the tool takes care of the how. This is how ProvisionGenie 🧞 was born.
ProvisionGenie is a tool that guides the user through the creation process. Someone who desires a team can start up the application from inside Microsoft Teams, so they stay in the flow of their work. They will need to provide some basic information such as the name, description, and members of the team. Then the tool continues with some of the essential building blocks of a great Microsoft Teams team: channels, lists and libraries. The user gets information on why they would care about these things, and they can customize them to their liking.
An enterprise-ready solution
ProvisionGenie is built with companies in mind: a scalable database, a reliable workflow engine and a Teams-like user interface.
The data is stored in Microsoft Dataverse, the relational database built into the Power Platform that allows for advanced security scenarios. In the current version, we focus on the front-end for the users of the application. By storing our data in Dataverse however, we can expand this relatively easily in the future with a model-driven application for administrators.
Azure Logic Apps take care of the workflows and logic of creating the team with its resources. Logic Apps not only offer better permission management, they can also be deployed across tenants automatically. They are more scalable and therefore performant compared to their low-code counterpart Power Automate.
Finally, a Power Apps canvas app is used to create a beautiful user interface that fits seamlessly into Microsoft Teams. With a canvas app, there is full control over the look and feel of the UI. The canvas app provides the different options to the user and saves the configuration in Dataverse. There is no direct link between the canvas app and the Logic Apps.
A community driven initiative
ProvisionGenie was born out of the collaboration of two community members because we wanted to provide a different solution for Microsoft Teams provisioning.
We decided quite early in the process that we wanted this to be a solution for the community, by the community. Therefore, this is an open-source project which you can find on GitHub (<<link>>) and to which everyone is welcome to contribute.
Power Platform Architect | Microsoft Business Applications MVP
Carmen is a Business Applications MVP and Power Platform Architect at Qubix (Belgium) with a passion to find the right solution for any challenge that arises. With this solution-oriented approach, she helps customers improve their business processes. She loves to share the knowledge she gains along the way on her blog or speaking at conferences.
Microsoft MVP, Microsoft 365 Consultant, Power Platform Developer
Luise helps customers around the globe to improve their business processes and to get rid of everything that only keeps them busy without adding value in a meaningful way. She is a member of the M365 PnP team and supports developers in extending Microsoft 365. She loves all things community, open-source, stickers, and the number 42.
To write your own blog on a topic of interest as a guest blogger in the Microsoft Teams Community, please submit your idea here: https://aka.ms/TeamsCommunityBlogger
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