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Collaboration

Lync has many options for collaboration during conversations and scheduled meetings. You can show your entire desktop or just selected programs. In addition, you can give over control to others, which will enable them to control what’s being shared on your computer. You can conduct polls, share interactive whiteboards, and hold Q & A sessions.

Keep in mind that you need to be a presenter to share presentable content. By default, all meeting invitees and conversation participants will be designated as presenters. If the sharing option is grayed out, ask one of the presenters to give you presenter access.

Note: Meeting attendees who join using the mobile app will not be able to see collaborative content.

  • Share your monitor when you have to switch between programs, or work on documents from different programs. If you are using multiple monitors, you can choose to share one or both monitors.
  • Share a program when you want to present specific programs or documents, and you don’t want people to see anything else on your computer.
  • Share a PowerPoint presentation when you to give a more formal presentation using PowerPoint slides. Presenters will be able to cycle through the slides independently and share annotations.
  • Share a whiteboard when you want to collaborate on something visual or brainstorm. You can also copy and paste meeting notes into a whiteboard and participants will be able to add to them. When you’re done, you can save the whiteboard as a PNG.
  • Create and conduct a poll to gather quantifiable feedback from all online meeting participants. Polls are anonymous, and you can choose to hide results from attendees.
  • Add Q & A (question and answer) to provide a structured environment for answering questions during the meeting. This can be especially helpful in large meetings with multiple presenters. Attendees can ask questions, which appear for presenters to answer.

 


Share presentable content

NOTE: While you are sharing, your Lync status changes to Presenting, and you won’t receive instant messages or calls.

  1. In a meeting or conversation, pause on the presentation icon at the bottom of the window.
  2. On the Present tab, choose the option you’d like.
  3. You should now see the presenter’s toolbar at the top of the window if you are sharing your desktop or program. 
  4. On the sharing toolbar, at the top of the screen, use any of these options:
    • Click Give Control to share control of your desktop or programs with the participants. For details, see Give and take control of a sharing session.
    • blue pin to hide the toolbar and have more space. To un-hide the toolbar, move the mouse to the top of the screen. When the sharing toolbar appears, use any of the controls or click the pin again to keep the toolbar visible.
  5. Choose Stop Presenting in the presenter’s toolbar to stop sharing.

If you want a meeting attendee to share their screen, give them  presenter access, so they can use the controls. If they don’t use Lync, they can still use Lync Web App to present. See Share your desktop and programs from Lync Web App for more information.


Share primary, secondary or all monitors:

If you have more than one monitor, they all display on the Present tab, and you can choose which one to share. When you share All Monitors, the sharing toolbar opens on your primary monitor.


Share a program

  1. Launch the program you’d like to share.
  2. Hover over the monitor icon and select Program.
  3. Lync will display all of the programs you currently have open. Select the one you’d like to share.
  4. You will now be presenting the program. The window with the program will appear to have a yellow outline, and you’ll see the presenter’s toolbar at the top. You can use the options on the presenter’s toolbar to give control to others and end the presentation.

Give and take control of a sharing session

If you want another meeting participant to change a document, help you present, or demonstrate something, you can grant control to that person. You’ll both be in control of the sharing and you can take back control at any time.

  1. On the sharing toolbar, click Give Control.
  2. Select the name of the person you want to give control to.>Lync sends a notification to that person to let them know you’re sharing control.
  3. To take back control, click Give Control on the sharing toolbar again, and then click Take Back Control.

TIP: You can enable people to automatically take control of your sharing session at any time, by clicking Give Control Automatically on the sharing toolbar. We recommend that you select this option only in small and casual meetings. To take back automatic permission, click Give Control on the sharing toolbar, and clear Give Control Automatically.


Share a PowerPoint

Giving a PowerPoint presentation is an effective way to get your ideas across. It lets you present your ideas visually and organize them in highlights to make them more memorable.

Use the meeting controls such as annotation tools, presenter notes, and switching presenters, to help you during your presentation. You can even make the slides available for downloading to all attendees to review after the meeting.

To upload your PowerPoint presentation:

It’s a good idea to upload your presentation in advance and practice with the presentation tools so you’re comfortable using them in the meeting.

  1. Pause on the presentation (monitor) icon, and click PowerPoint.
  2. Find your presentation, and double-click it to upload in the meeting.
  3. To move the slides, use the arrows at the bottom of the meeting, or the arrow keys on your keyboard. You can also use the Thumbnails.
  4. Click Notes to see your presenter notes (visible only to you).
  5. If a slide contains a video, pause on the slide to unhide the video controls, such as PlayPause or Stop. The audio plays for participants who used computer audio when joining.
  6. Any animations in the slides play just like they do outside the Lync Meeting.
  7. Press F5 on your keyboard to go to full-screen view, and Esc to go back to normal view.
  8. Click the Annotations button on the right side of the slide to unhide the tools and draw, stamp, highlight, and so on. See later in this article for more information.

To view slides privately:

If someone else has uploaded and started sharing a PowerPoint presentation, you can move ahead or back to view the slides privately, or take control of the presentation. Please note that you must be designated as a presenter to do this.

  1. Tap or click the slide, then use the arrows at the bottom of the meeting to move through the slides.

This won’t interrupt the meeting, and you’ll be able to return to the slide that the presenter is currently showing at any time. Just select Return to Presenter’s View.


Create a whiteboard

A Whiteboard is a blank page that you can use to work together with other meeting participants by being able to type notes, draw, or import images. When your meeting is over, you can save the Whiteboard with the data from the participants’ collaboration.

For more on interactive whiteboards, see Microsoft’s website.

Create and conduct a poll

Conducting a poll is a great way to get measurable feedback on a question. Polls are anonymous, and you can choose whether to hide or show results to attendees. You can export the results as a PNG.

  1. Hover over the monitor icon and choose Poll.
  2. Give your poll a name.
  3. Type a question to ask with the poll.
  4. Provide choices.
  5. Select Create to distribute to everyone in the session.

TIP: You can join your meeting and create a poll before your meeting starts.


Enable Q&A

Enabling Q&A (question and answer) provides a structured way for collaboration during the meeting. Any presenter can initiate the Q&A session. Attendees and presenters can ask questions, but only presenters can answer.

Note: When you initiate a Q&A session, meeting instant messaging will be turned off until the Q&A is over.

  1. Hover over the monitor icon and choose Q&A. If there are no other content presented, the content stage opens and displays the Q&A manager for all participants. If other content is active, the Q&A tab displays as a new tab next to the Presentation tab.
  2. When a question is submitted, any of the presenters can click Answer and type a reply. Then press Enter on the keyboard to post the answer.
  3. If you’re presenting content when a question is submitted, you’ll see a notification about the new question. You can click the Q&A tab at any time to answer the question, and then go back to Presentation tab to continue your presentation.
  4. If you start typing an answer and change your mind, click Cancel to answer later, or for another presenter to pick up the question.
  5. Click the Unanswered tab to filter for the questions that haven’t been answered yet.
  6. At the end of the session, click Stop Q&A. When Lync asks if you want to enable IM, click Allow All Meeting IM, or click X on the notification if you want to keep the IM off.
  7. If you want a record of the Q&A session, click Save As, type a name and save the file on your computer. Q&A is saved in Notepad and contains the questions, answers, time stamps and the names of attendees and presenters who participated.

Send and receive files

  1. Pause over the monitor icon and select the Attachments tab.
  2. Select Add Attachment.
  3. Browse your computer, select the file, and select Open.

Presenting Content

Microsoft Lync meetings allow for a variety of presentation and collaboration options. When you begin presenting, your Lync status will automatically change to Do Not Disturb, which will block instant messages or calls for the duration of the presentation. Keep in mind that you need to be a presenter in Lync to share content. If the option is grayed out, ask one of the presenters to give you presenter access. Note: Presentable content is not able to be viewed by attendees using the Lync Mobile App. Mac users will not be able to see whiteboards, polling, and Q&A unless they are joining through the Lync Web App.

How to present in a meeting:

  1. Hover over the monitor (presentation) icon in the lower left corner of the meeting window.
  2. Select one of the presentation options.
  3. When you begin presenting, you will notice a Presenter’s toolbar appearing at the top of your monitor.

How to view presentable content:

After you create or upload content for sharing, Lync adds it to the Presentable Content list. Uploaded content will stay with the meeting for 15 days. Keep in mind that if you use the default meeting options, you will see materials from meetings held in the past 15 days.

  1. Once you upload or share content, you will see the items listed by hovering over the monitor (presentation) icon and choosing Manage Presentable Content.
  2. As you share more content, you can use this list to indicate what content you want to share at any time by tapping or clicking the button and selecting from the options that appear.

Share your desktop or program in Lync

  • Share your desktop whenever you plan to switch between different programs. Important: When sharing your desktop, everyone in the meeting can see your programs, files, and notifications. If you have confidential information or files that you don’t want people to see, close them or use program sharing instead.
  • Share a program when you need to present specific programs or files and don’t want people to see anything else on your computer.

How to share your desktop or a program:

  1. At the bottom of the conversation window, hover over the monitor (presentation) icon.
  2. On the Present tab, do one of the following:
    • To share the content on your desktop, click Desktop.
    • To share one or more programs or files, click Program, and then select the specific program(s) or file(s). Note: If you do not see the program you’d like to share, click cancel and launch the program and/or file. Then, go back to the monitor (presentation) icon and click Program. You will now see the program appear.
  3. On the sharing toolbar, on top of the screen, use any of these options:
    • Click Stop Presenting when you are done sharing your screen or program.
    • Click Give Control to share control of your desktop or program with the participants. For details, see Give and take control of a sharing session.
    • Click the blue pin to hide the toolbar and have more space. To un-hide the toolbar, move your mouse to the top of the screen. When the sharing toolbar appears, use any of the controls you need or click the pin again to keep the toolbar visible.

If you want a meeting attendee to share their screen, give them presenter access, so they can use the controls. If they don’t use Lync, they can still use Lync Web App to present.

How to share primary, secondary or all monitors:

If you have more than one monitor, they all display on the Present tab, and you can choose which one to share. When you share All Monitors, the sharing toolbar opens on your primary monitor.

How to give and take control of a sharing session:

If you want another meeting participant to change a file, help you present, or demonstrate something, you can grant control to that person even if they are using the Lync Web App. You will both be in control of the sharing, and you can take back control anytime. Note: You can only give control to one person at a time.

  1. On the sharing toolbar, click Give Control.
  2. Select the name of the person you want to give control to. Lync sends a notification to that person to let them know you’re sharing control.
  3. To take control back, click Give Control again, and then click Take Back Control.

TIP:  You can allow people to automatically take control of your sharing session at any time, by clicking Give Control Automatically on the sharing toolbar. We recommend you choose this option only in small and casual meetings. To take back automatic permission, click Give Control, and clear the Give Control Automatically check box.

Sharing videos during a meeting

If you’d like to share a video during a meeting, it’s best not to play or stream the video using the share desktop or program option. Instead, send the URL through instant messaging and give the participants time to go watch the video and meet back in the meeting space.

Present PowerPoint slides in a Lync Meeting

Presenting PowerPoint slides is an effective way to get your ideas across, and make your presentation memorable by focusing on bulleted items and avoiding too many details. Use the meeting controls such as annotation tools, presenter notes, and switching presenters, to help you during your presentation. You can even make the slides available for downloading to all attendees to review after the meeting.

BEST PRACTICE: It’s a good idea to log in and upload your PowerPoint before the meeting. Large PowerPoint presentations can take several minutes to upload. Restrict your presentations to 15 slides when possible.

How to upload your PowerPoint presentation:

It’s a good idea to upload your presentation in advance and practice with the presentation tools so you’re comfortable using them in the meeting.

  1. Join the meeting. You can do this in advance of the meeting.
  2. Hover over the monitor (presentation) icon, and click PowerPoint.
  3. Locate your PowerPoint file and double-click it to upload in the meeting.

How to share a PowerPoint:

  1. To move the slides, use the arrows at the bottom of the meeting, or the arrow keys on your keyboard. You can also use the Thumbnails.
  2. Click Notes to see your presenter notes (visible only to you).
  3. If a slide contains a video, pause on the slide to unhide the video controls, such as Play, Pause or Stop. The audio plays for participants who used computer audio when joining.
  4. Any Animations in the slides play just like they do outside the Lync Meeting.
  5. Press F5 on your keyboard to go to full-screen view, and Esc to go back to normal view.
  6. Click the Annotations button on the right side of the slide to unhide the tools and draw, stamp, highlight, and so on.

How to use the Annotation tools:

By using the annotation tools you can visually focus on various points in your presentation or brainstorm with the participants. Annotating a presentation doesn’t change the actual file. However, you can save a new copy with the annotations if you want.

  1. Click the Annotations tool set icon on the upper-right side of the PowerPoint slide to unhide the tools. Screenshot of annotations button
  • Pointer tool: a virtual laser pointer. Drag the pointer across the slide.
  • Select and Type: selects an area where you can type, change font, color, and size.
  • Pen: draws freehand.
  • Highlighter: highlights a specific area of the current slide.
  • Eraser: removes specific annotation that you chose.
  • Stamp: inserts a stamp on the displayed slide: Arrow, Check, or X.
  • Shape: draws shapes such as lines, arrows, squares.
  • Insert Picture: inserts an image on the slide from your computer.
  • Delete Selected Annotation: removes the annotations that you’ve selected.
  • More Options: provides options to select the annotation, undo, redo, copy, cut, paste, paste as image, Save as, and Send to One Note.

How to select who can download your presentation:

To keep the focus on what you’re presenting and avoid distractions, you can restrict access to download your presentation. Then at the end of the meeting, you can change the options to let people download the slides to view later.

  1. After you’ve uploaded the presentation in the meeting, pause on the monitor (presentation) icon, and click Manage Presentable Content.
  2. Click the Permissions menu and choose an option:
  • Organizer: Only the person who scheduled the meeting can download the presentation.
  • Presenters: Any of the presenters in the meeting can download the presentation.
  • Everyone: Anyone in the meeting can download the presentation to their computers.

How to download the presentation:

The participants, who have permission to download the presentation, can save the file on their computer.

  1. Pause over the monitor (presentation) icon.
  2. Click Manage Presentable Content.
  3. Click More, and then Save As, or Save with Annotations.

How to select who can view your presentation privately:

If you don’t want attendees looking ahead in the presentation, you can lock them to your view. Be aware that other presenters can still look ahead in the presentation.

  1. In the meeting room, click More Options and Lync Meeting Options.
  2. Choose the permissions on annotations and view options.
    • Who can annotate PowerPoint presentation.
    • Who can look at content on their own

Use this option when you want your participants to be able to look at the presentation on their own, without interrupting your meeting. This is also a good option for other presenters who might want to skip ahead to a slide they’re about to present.

How to view privately or take over as presenter:

Presenters can take turns presenting the slides in a meeting. While one person is presenting, another can skip ahead to a specific slide and then return to the current view.

  1. To view the slides privately, click the arrows at the bottom of the meeting to move through the slides. This won’t interrupt the meeting, and you’ll be notified that you are viewing the meeting privately.
  2. To go back to the current view, click Return to Presenter’s View to synchronize your view with the active presenter.

How to return or take over as presenter:

  1. To present, click Take Over as Presenter to take control of the presentation. Be aware that the meeting automatically switches to your view.
  2. When you have finished your presentation, click Stop Presenting.

Whiteboard

A Whiteboard is a blank page that you can use to work together with other meeting participants by being able to type notes, draw, or import images. When your meeting is over, you can save the Whiteboard as a .PNG with the data from the participants’ collaboration.

BEST PRACTICE: Whiteboards are a great way to comment or collaborate on something that is visual.

How to open a new Whiteboard:

  1. Hover over the monitor (presentation) icon, and then click Whiteboard under the Present tab.
  2. A blank Whiteboard opens on the meeting stage on everyone’s screen.
  3. The annotation tool set opens automatically on the right side of the Whiteboard.
  4. Click any of the tools to annotate on the Whiteboard, such as: Pointer tool, Pen, Highlighter, Eraser, and so on.

The Whiteboard closes automatically if you switch to another presenting option, but will be available in the Presentable Content window if you want to open it later in the meeting. Just pause on the monitor (presentation) icon and click Manage Presentable Content, to access the Whiteboard again.

How to use the annotation tools:

Use the tools along the side of the Whiteboard to visually focus on the page or brainstorm with the participants. Many people can work on the Whiteboard at the same time, but each tool can be used only by one person at a time.

  • Laser Pointer: a virtual laser pointer. Click and drag the pointer across the page. A blue circle appears in the meeting indicating your name.
  • Select and Type: selects an area to type. You can change font, size, and color by clicking the arrow next to the Select and Type to open the menu.
  • Pen: draws freehand. Click and start writing or drawing in black, or click the down arrow next to the button, and then select another color.
  • Highlighter: highlights a specific area of the current slide.
  • Eraser: removes specific annotation you choose.
  • Stamp: inserts a stamp on the page: Arrow, Check, or X. Choose an option from the menu, then click on the Whiteboard to stamp.
  • Shape: draws shapes such as lines, arrows and squares. Click the down arrow next to the button to select another shape or color.
  • Insert Picture: inserts an image on the slide from your computer.
  • Delete Selected Annotation: removes the annotations that you’ve selected.
  • More options: provides options to select the annotation, undo, redo, copy, cut, paste, paste as image, Save as, and Send to One Note.
     

How to move or delete drawings:

You can select, then move or delete any of the drawings on the Whiteboard.

  1. To move objects: Click the Select and Type button, and then click one or multiple drawings that you want to move. A selection rectangle appears around the selected object(s). Drag the rectangle to a new position. Note: For typed text, point to the bar at the top of the text box before you begin dragging it.
  2. To delete an object: Click the Select and Type button, and then select the drawing that you want to delete. Press Delete on your keyboard.

How to view who added or changed content:

  1. To see who added or changed content on the Whiteboard, do one of the following:
    • For non-text items on the Whiteboard, hold the mouse pointer over the drawing to see “Created by” and “Last modified by” information.
    • For text, point at the text, and then hold the mouse over the solid rectangle that appears above the text when you point at it.

How to manage your Whiteboard:

  1. Pause on the presentation (monitor) icon, and then click Manage Presentable Content.
  2. Click the Permissions menu and choose who can download the Whiteboard to their computer:
    • Organizer Only: the person who scheduled the meeting can download.
    • Presenters: Any of the presenters in the meeting can download.
  3. Everyone: Anyone in the meeting can download.
  4. Click the More menu and choose an option: Save As, Send to OneNote, or Rename.

Poll

Polling is a great way to get people involved and interacting in your meeting, and find out what they think about the ideas you’re sharing in real time. You can hide results from attendees, however presenters will always see the results. Also, if you are projecting, attendees in the room will see the results. You can save the results of the poll as a .PNG.

  1. In the meeting window, pause on the presentation icon.
  2. Make sure you’re on the Present tab, then click Poll.
  3. In the Create a Poll window, type your question and the answers, then click Create.
  4. The poll page opens in the meeting and results are shown to everyone as the participants select an option.
  5. Click Poll Actions to manage the poll, such as open, close, edit, show, or hide results.
  6. When you’re done, click Stop Presenting at the top of the meeting room.
  7. To delete a Poll page, hover over the presentation, (monitor) icon, click Manage Presentable Content and then click Remove.

Q & A (question and answer)

Lync Q&A Manager (question and answer) provides a structured environment for answering questions during a meeting. This feature is especially helpful in large meetings where anyone can ask a question but only a presenter can answer them, while someone else is presenting meeting content.

Keep in mind that attendees can ask questions, but only presenters can answer. Also, when you begin a Q&A session, instant messaging (IM) is suspended.

How to start the Q&A Manager:

Any of the presenters in a meeting can start the Q&A Manager and reply to questions. If you are attending a meeting see Use the Q&A Manager as a participant.

  1. In your Lync Meeting, point to the presentation (monitor) icon, then click Q&A. If there are no other content presented, the content stage opens and displays the Q&A manager for all participants. If other content is active, the Q&A tab displays as a new tab next to the Presentation tab. The Meeting IM is automatically turned off until you stop the Q&A Manager.
  2. When a question is submitted, any of the presenters can click Answer and type a reply. Then press Enter on the keyboard to post the answer. If you’re presenting content when a question is submitted, you’ll see a notification about the new question. You can click the Q&A tab at any time to answer the question, and then go back to Presentation tab to continue your presentation.
  3. If you start typing an answer and change your mind, click Cancel to answer later, or for another presenter to pick up the question.
  4. Click the Unanswered tab to filter for the questions that haven’t been answered yet.
  5. At the end of the session, click Stop Q&A. When Lync asks if you want to enable IM, click Allow All Meeting IM, or click X on the notification if you want to keep the IM off.
  6. If you want a record of the Q&A session, click Save As, type a name and save the file on your computer. Q&A is saved in Notepad and contains the questions, answers, time stamps and the names of attendees and presenters who participated.

How to use the Q&A Manager as a participant:

When the Q&A session is shared by a presenter, all the meeting attendees can view and ask questions. Keep in mind that you can switch between the Q&A and Presentation tabs at any time during the meeting.

  1. Type a question in the Ask a question box.
  2. When the question is answered, you’ll see the response below your question.
  3. If you only want to see your questions, click the My Questions tab.
  4. To have a local copy of the questions and Answers, click Save as…, and select a location on your computer.


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