What Happened at “Talking Teams” in Government #HableEvent


Last week we teamed up with Microsoft for a special event, “Talking Teams” in Government, which we held at the Microsoft HQ in London. One of our core four areas of work is with government organisations, a journey which started four years ago with Houses of Parliament. Since then, we have been privileged to work with Homes England, The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government and most recently, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, to name a few, assisting them with their transition over to Office 365. As we have built up our repertoire of government clients, we have found many similarities in both the problems they face as organisations in terms of transitioning to Office 365, as well as seeing the incredible benefits that have been achieved through a well implemented change management plan, enabling these organisations to do the important work they do with even greater efficiency.

After some discussion with Microsoft, who we are a partner to, we felt inspired by our potential connective power and decided to provide a platform bringing different government clients together, where they could have the opportunity to learn from experts, and most importantly, to get people together and share ideas and challenges with peers from other government agencies.

During this half day session, attendees had the opportunity to hear about how Microsoft Teams allows for better ways of working and connecting with colleagues both internally and externally. The session was headed by Hable’s Managing Director, Sean O’Shea and our Government Lead, Nathan Rhodes. We were also joined by Microsoft’s Richard Fisher, Lizzie Falkowski and Rakhi Sachdeva sharing their Teams expertise, and Gerardo Iachetta who joined us to share the BEIS journey.

The session was separated into four parts; Teams in Gov today, Teams in Action, the BEIS Teams Adoption Story and finally, tips on how to get started for those thinking about transition over to Microsoft Teams.

Sean O’Shea kicked off the session with an introduction to Teams in the context of government today. He illustrated the main problem facing many organisations in their transition over to Office 365, and that is….. “The Way!”

Ah, the path of least resistance, the well known way of doing things. This, as we well know at Hable, is often the biggest obstacle to overcome when introducing a big change to an organisation. But, as Sean assured us all…

A good change management plan that puts people first – not the technology, is needed for the change to work for everyone. At the end of the day, the reason we should be implementing new technologies, is because it will empower the people using it to improve their day-to-day working lives, not just for the sake of having the most up-to-date technology. This is often forgotten in the excitement of innovation and what could be possible. But not when #TeamHable is around!

Next up, we had Nathan Rhodes who has experienced life on both sides. In his life before Hable, he worked as an auditor for the National Audit Office, giving him a unique perspective of being an employee within government and experiencing the frustrations of “The Way” first hand, and now somebody working with government organisations to implement a change management plan which enables employees to overcome the barriers which he has previously faced himself, and allows them to discover new, better ways of working using the power of technology.

If that face doesn’t exude job satisfaction, we don’t know what does

We had three experts from Microsoft, so a big thanks to Richard Fisher, Lizzie Falkowski and Rakhi Sachdeva, who joined us to illustrate some of the great features Teams has to offer in an interactive demo session. We particularly like the much-loved background blurring option available in Teams, which means if you are working from home or in a busy environment, you can blur the background to have less distractions during a meeting, rather than changing where you are or quickly trying to tidy up. We also got a preview of the new customisable backgrounds which are soon to be rolled out… that’s all we can say on that here!

Our final guest speaker, Gerardo Iachetta, Change and Engagement Lead at BEIS, gave us the lowdown on the roll-out of Teams in their organisation, opening the floor to attendees to share their own journey. It was also a great opportunity for those who are about to embark on their own Office 365 transformation, or for those thinking about it, to ask questions.

It was a really insightful day all round, we absolutely loved working with Microsoft to provide this platform and space to connect so many of our great clients. A day which really embodied our philosophy of putting people first!

As well as stimulating talks and discussions, we had a great spread provided by Microsoft, which also featured Great British Bake Off alumni Priya O’Shea‘s cakes, which are becoming a regular feature at Hable events!

A big thanks to everybody who came down, we can’t wait for more Hable events like this! Stay updated and follow us on social media. We are active on Linkedin and Twitter.