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Microsoft Viva is a new platform that's built to improve the employee experience

Viva Nadella
Viva Nadella (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft announced Microsoft Viva today, a new platform to help improve the employee experience.
  • Viva focuses on four modules; connections, insights, learning, and topics.
  • Viva integrates directly with Microsoft Teams and will have a mobile app later this year.

Microsoft Viva is a new platform from Microsoft that aims to improve the employee experience. Microsoft announced Viva today and explains how it works in a series of videos and press releases. Viva helps people out through four modules; connections, insights, learning, and topics. It integrates directly with Microsoft Teams and will also have a standalone mobile app later this year.

"We have participated in the largest at-scale remote work experiment the world has seen, and it has had a dramatic impact on the employee experience," says Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Even Nadella says that sometimes he doesn't know if he's working from home or sleeping at work.

Microsoft summarizes the four key areas covered by Viva:

  • Viva Connections provides a personalized gateway to your digital workplace where employees can access internal communications and company resources like policies and benefits and participate in communities like employee resource groups, all from a single customizable app in Microsoft Teams. The Connections app for Teams will be available on desktop in public preview the first half of 2021 with a mobile app coming later this year.
  • Viva Insights gives individuals, managers and leaders personalized and actionable insights that help everyone in an organization thrive. Personal experiences and insights, visible only to the employee, help individuals protect time for regular breaks, focused work and learning, as well as strengthen relationships with their colleagues. Managers and leaders can see trends at team and organization level, as well as recommendations to better balance productivity and wellbeing. The insights are aggregated and deidentified by default to maintain personal privacy. In addition, a new dashboard allows organizations to combine employee feedback from LinkedIn's Glint with collaboration data from Viva Insights, enabling leaders to more accurately identify where teams may be struggling, proactively adjust work norms, and then measure the impact of those changes over time. Customers will also be able to incorporate data from third-party services like Zoom, Workday and SAP SuccessFactors. The Viva Insights app in Teams and the new Glint and Viva Insights dashboard are now available in public preview.
  • Viva Learning makes training and professional development opportunities more discoverable and accessible in the flow of work. It aggregates all the learning resources available to an organization in one place, including content from LinkedIn Learning; Microsoft Learn; third-party providers including Skillsoft, Coursera, Pluralsight and edX; as well as an organization's own content library. From traditional learning courses to microlearning content, users can discover, share, assign and track a wide variety of learning as a natural part of the workday. The Viva Learning app is now available in private preview, and starting later this year Viva Learning will offer integrations with leading learning management systems, including Cornerstone OnDemand, Saba and SAP SuccessFactors.
  • Viva Topics delivers a knowledge discovery experience that helps people connect to information and experts across the company. Using AI to reason over a customer's Microsoft 365 data, and with the ability to integrate knowledge from a variety of third-party services such as ServiceNow and Salesforce, Viva Topics automatically surfaces topic cards within conversations and documents across Microsoft 365 and Teams. Clicking on a card opens a topic page with related documents, conversations, videos and people. Viva Topics is now generally available as an add-on to Microsoft 365 commercial plans.

The Connections app for Teams will be available in preview in the first half of this year. The Insights app in Teams is already available in public preview, while the Learning app is available now in private preview. The Topics add-on is already available for Microsoft 365 commercial plans.

Sean Endicott
Sean Endicott

Sean Endicott is the news writer for Windows Central. If it runs Windows, is made by Microsoft, or has anything to do with either, he's on it. Sean's been with Windows Central since 2017 and is also our resident app expert. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at

  • Watched the videos, read the article. But still, what is it?
  • It looks like it's another portal for people to communicate better with each other in the digital world. Looks like there will be some overlap of other Microsoft products as well (perhaps SharePoint/Yammer and others). I can see this being good for very large businesses or companies that are spread out over a large geographical area. I wonder if this was something they had planned before the pandemic or if this was an afterthought to meet some needs that came up. I just hope it's not pushing us to be more digital in our communications and helps us be more personal in our communications, if that makes sense.
  • Like a really fancy company wiki with FAQs, handbooks, procedure checklists? It could be useful for companies with lots of distributed teams, to get everyone on the same page.
  • More like spying on employees remotely. MS can keep this intrusive trap for their own employees.
  • One way.
    For life.
  • That football video is the most vanilla thing I've watched. It doesn't even begin to explain a damned thing about whatever Viva is. Anyway, as it's a Microsoft team add-on/clone, can only assume it'll be the exact opposite of a "fun time, chilled out, all about you" app...probably more like a "we've figured out a way to make people work harder, but with some fancy graphics in the background" app. In summary, wtf is viva and that video is stupid
  • It sounds useful but OMG the the PR speak is nothing but fodder for buzzword bingo.
    They could have simply said: "Customizable front end for corporate TEAMS management."
    That makes sense.
  • Good idea! Structure similar to Azure👍