Workplace Analytics Setup Checklist

To successfully set up and implement Workplace Analytics, you need to coordinate and obtain information and buy-in from a variety of stakeholders.

Use this checklist to help assemble the people and obtain the data and configuration information that you need to set up and provision Workplace Analytics.

Tip

This checklist outlines recommended steps and a high-level list of items to consider. It is not intended to be exhaustive. You might want to copy this checklist into a spreadsheet and then customize it for your organization.

Preliminary review task

To prepare for setting up Workplace Analytics, review the following article:

Review this article Owner Outcome
Environment requirements for Workplace Analytics Workplace Analytics administrator Verify that all requirements are in place for setting up Workplace Analytics

Setup tasks

To set up Workplace Analytics, complete the tasks in this checklist:

Task Owners Outcome
Step 1 - Determine key personas and assign roles for implementation Workplace Analytics sponsor (the initial point-person for the engagement) A list of people in your organization with key roles identified
Step 2 - Assign licenses to population in scope for analysis Workplace Analytics sponsor, Workplace Analytics administrator, Office 365 Global administrator, Exchange administrator Office 365 licenses are assigned for the population that will be analyzed
Step 3 - Assign roles to Workplace Analytics Admins and Analysts Office 365 global administrator Workplace Analytics roles are assigned so that administrators can use Workplace Analytics to set system defaults, privacy settings, and upload and verify organizational data. And, data analysts can log into and use Workplace Analytics once data is provisioned.
Step 4 - Configure Workplace Analytics settings Workplace Analytics sponsor, Workplace Analytics administrator Privacy settings are defined in Workplace Analytics and you have confirmed that you are ready to provision the service by using these rules. Default time zone values are defined in Workplace Analytics.
Step 5 - Prepare and upload organizational data Workplace Analytics administrator, HR information system administrator, LOB system administrators, or data analyst Workplace Analytics administrators have determined what kind of organizational data to provide and how to upload the data. See Prepare and upload organizational data.
Step 6 - Validate and verify data Workplace Analytics administrator, data analysts with full access Workplace Analytics administrators are comfortable that data has been provisioned successfully, data analysts are comfortable with the data and ready to use Workplace Analytics for their analysis.
Step 7 - Set up meeting exclusions Workplace Analytics administrator, data analysts with full access Workplace Analytics administrators and analysts are satisfied that meeting query results are focused on the data relevant for analysis.

When you have finished all these steps, you are ready to Explore metrics.

Preliminary review task

Environment requirements for Workplace Analytics

Office 365 tenant requirements

Workplace Analytics requires an Office 365 tenant with Exchange Online. Mailboxes must have Exchange Online Plan 1 or Plan 2 licenses assigned.

Currently, Workplace Analytics supports multi-tenant and vNext environments. Each mailbox that you want to license must have its data stored in Exchange Online.

Workplace Analytics licenses

Workplace Analytics is licensed as an add-on to existing Office 365 subscriptions and does not change the end-user experience in Office 365.

Workplace Analytics licenses are applied to the mailboxes that you want to analyze. This can be all the employees in your organization or a specific subset. The population of employees that you license are referred to in Workplace Analytics as measured employees.

For more information about Workplace Analytics and how to purchase it, contact your Microsoft account team.

Supported browsers

Workplace Analytics works with the latest or immediately previous versions of Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, Apple Safari, Internet Explorer, and Mozilla Firefox.

Setup tasks

Step 1: Determine key personas and roles for implementation

  • Owner - Workplace Analytics sponsor (the initial point-person for the engagement)
  • Task - Identify people in the organization to fill key roles in setting up Workplace Analytics
  • Outcome - A list of people in your organization with key roles identified

Use these personas to help identify the people you will need to help gather data, make decisions, and perform tasks needed to set up Workplace Analytics.

Personas

  • Workplace Analytics sponsor - The initial point person for the engagement
  • Workplace Analytics administrator - This role has access to Admin and Data Sources features, and will set system defaults, privacy settings, and upload and verify organizational data.
  • Office 365 Global administrator
  • Exchange administrator
  • Human resources (HR) information system administrator
  • Line of business (LOB) system administrators, or data analyst

Step 2: Assign licenses to population in scope for analysis

  • Owner - Workplace Analytics sponsor, Workplace Analytics administrator, Office 365 Global administrator, Exchange administrator
  • Task - Determine population in scope for analysis and assign licenses via Office 365
  • Outcome - Office 365 licenses are assigned for the population that will be analyzed

The Workplace Analytics sponsor will work with the Workplace Analytics administrator and Office 365 Global administrator to identify the population (the people in your company) whose Office 365 collaboration activity you will analyze. These people are referred to as measured employees within Workplace Analytics. Employees in your organization that are not licensed for analysis but may have meeting and email collaboration with measured employees are called other internal collaborators.

Some organizations will analyze the entire population, while others will use sub-populations for specific analysis scenarios and sections of the organization.

Once you have identified the population in scope, the Office 365 Global administrator will assign Workplace Analytics licenses to users in this population.

You can use the Office 365 Web UI or Office 365 PowerShell to assign Workplace Analytics licenses to users.

Use the Web UI to assign licenses

Use PowerShell to assign licenses

Mailboxes not fully migrated to Office 365 Exchange Online

If your organization has not fully migrated to Office 365 Exchange Online, you may encounter mailboxes that are hosted using Exchange on-premises. Your Office 365 Global administrator or Exchange administrator can help to determine if you will encounter this scenario, and assist you with the following options.

Options for mailboxes hosted using Exchange on-premises

  • Migrate these mailboxes to Office 365 Exchange Online
  • Contact the FastTrack team to understand the process for analyzing these mailboxes (this requires additional work streams within your organization).

Step 3: Assign roles to Workplace Analytics admins and analysts

  • Owner - Office 365 global administrator
  • Task - Assign users for administrators and data analysts to Workplace Analytics service.
  • Outcome - Workplace Analytics roles are assigned so that administrators can use Workplace Analytics to set system defaults, privacy settings, and upload and verify organizational data. And, data analysts can log into and use Workplace Analytics once data is provisioned.

To allow administrators to set system defaults, privacy settings, upload and verify organizational data, and to allow data analysts to be able to use Workplace Analytics, you must assign users to the Workplace Analytics service.

Workplace Analytics roles and the level of access

  • Analyst: Has full access to all service features except Admin. This role is used for the analyst who requires the most complete access to the data.

  • Analyst (Limited Access): Has access to the Home and Explore the metrics pages, and to flexible queries. This role is used for the analyst who only needs access to insights generated from our curated set of Explore-the-metrics dashboards.

  • Administrator: Has access to the Administrator and Data-sources features. The Workplace Analytics administrator has responsibilities to configure privacy settings and system defaults and to prepare, upload, and verify organizational data.

  • Program manager: Has access to the Home and Explore the metrics pages. They also have access to the Solutions tab and its Manage page, on which they can set up programs, and to its Track page, on which they can track the progress of active or ended programs.

To assign users to Workplace Analytics

Group-based licenses in Workplace Analytics

Use PowerShell to assign roles in Workplace Analytics

Step 4: Configure Workplace Analytics settings

Time zone

  • Owner is the Workplace Analytics administrator
  • Task is the default time zone value the system will use in metric calculations if the data is not available for a measured employee or other internal collaborator
  • Outcome is the default time zone outcome as defined in Workplace Analytics

The default time zone is used to compute after-hours metrics when a time zone has not been configured by the user or provided as part of the organizational data. This is typically the time zone of the corporate headquarters or the time zone in which most employees reside. If a measured employee or other internal collaborator does not have a time zone defined as part of the organizational data, the metric will be computed using the default time zone.

The default time zone for Workplace Analytics is Pacific Standard Time.

For a complete list of valid times zones, see Time zones in Workplace Analytics

To change the default time zone

  1. On the Settings page, select Settings.
  2. Under System defaults, select the time zone you want from the Default time zone list.
  3. Select Save.

Important

This setting takes effect the next time organizational data is received and processed for the following month. A change in this setting does not affect any historical data.

Working days and working hours

Users can set their own working days and working hours in their Outlook settings. While there is no option to upload working days or working hours in organizational data, a Workplace Analysis administrator can set default working days and working hours for the organization on the System defaults area of the Settings page:

System defaults area of Settings page

These admin-configured default settings are used for a particular user only if the user has not already configured their working days and hours.

Privacy settings

  • Owner is the Workplace Analytics sponsor or Workplace Analytics administrator
  • Task gives company-specific legal and privacy guidelines to define settings to use in Workplace Analytics
  • Outcome occurs after you define the privacy settings and confirm that you are ready to provision the service using these rules

Being aware of employees’ rights is a key component to ensuring a successful program using Workplace Analytics. It is important to consider ever-changing laws and regulations regarding employer-employee relationships, privacy, and personal data, as well as company policies, before using Workplace Analytics.

Workplace Analytics does not encode any specific policy, instead it provides controls that administrators can use to configure the product to be consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and company policies. Your organization selects what data to use in Workplace Analytics.

Important

Please consult with your legal and human resources teams before enabling Workplace Analytics for your organization.

Once you have examined your privacy needs, you will use the Settings area in Workplace Analytics to define the privacy settings for your data.

Detail display

  • Minimum Aggregation Size: Set the minimum group size required to display data in Explore Metrics. By default, the minimum group size is set to five.
  • Decide to show or hide subject lines in meeting reports

User data exclusion:

  • Exclude emails/meetings to, or from, specific users, or all users from a domain using “;” as the delimiter
  • Exclude emails/meetings with specific terms in the subject line using “;” as the delimiter. Terms can be any combination of letters, numbers and special characters, e.g. client attorney privilege; D&I

Note

If you exclude email addresses, do not assign licenses to them. You should also include all email aliases for individuals.

To set your privacy settings

  1. On the Settings page, select Settings.
  2. Under Privacy settings, configure the settings to meet your company's needs.

    Note

    You can click Save at any time to save the privacy settings you are working on, but the settings are not final and ready for use until you check the I confirm that all privacy settings are complete box. After you check the box, the processing of Office 365 data begins.

  3. Click Save.

    Important

    Carefully validate that your privacy settings are correct, before you check the "I confirm that all privacy settings are complete" box, you can change the settings at any time, but the settings changes will not take effect until the data is processed again for the following month.

  4. To begin the processing of Office 365 data, check the I confirm that all privacy settings are complete box, and then select Save.

Settings in Workplace Analytics

Step 5: Prepare and upload organizational data

  • Owner - Workplace Analytics administrator, HR information system administrator, LOB system administrators, or data analyst
  • Task - Obtain organizational data needed for analysis from other information systems
  • Outcome - CSV file of organizational data is generated and uploaded to Workplace Analytics for final provisioning

Organizational data is the information about employees that your company provides to use in Workplace Analytics. Workplace Analytics combines your organizational data with Office 365 to provide rich, actionable insights into your company’s communication and collaboration trends to help you make more effective business decisions.

What is organizational data?

  • Individual-level metadata that provides descriptive information of a company’s employees
  • Sourced from multiple sources
    • Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) Ex: Workday, PeopleSoft
    • Payroll Systems
    • Employee Surveys (Engagement, Manager Feedback, Culture)
    • Performance Management Systems or Quota Attainment Systems
    • CRM Systems
  • Workplace Analytics org dData is structured as a flat file with each row representing one person with columns representing attribute fields.

How is it used?

  • Provides context for the mailboxes that enables Workplace Analytics to calculate metrics based on the relationship of the Org Data attributes.
  • Enables the user to filter and group data in meaningful ways and generate custom metrics.

How often should it be refreshed?

To account for organization changes, it is recommended to refresh the data monthly. When loading your data the first time, Workplace Analytics loads 13 months of data. Ideally, you would load 13 dated rows of organizational data for each employee.

Who should be included in the org data file?

  • HR Data:
    • It is recommended HR data is collected for all employees in your company, even if they are not part of the measured population.
    • At a minimum, you must have data for all employees in your measured population.
  • Line of Business Data:
    • Scenario-Dependent: You should have line-of-business data for all employees of interest in the scenario you are analyzing.

Note

You can include up to 65 data attributes in your Org data file.

Important

To help ensure privacy, we recommend not including employee names as any additional attribute.

What are common pitfalls to avoid?

  • Too many or too few unique values
  • Redundant values
  • Attributes that only exist for a subset of your employees
  • Dirty data

To prepare your organizational data for upload to Workplace Analytics

Once the .csv file has been created, the Workplace Analytics administrator can upload it into the service. For more information, see Upload organizational data.

Once your upload has been submitted successfully, there is additional validation and processing of your data to complete provisioning. If any problems arise, the Workplace Analytics team will contact your Workplace Analytics administrator.

After provisioning

Once data is completely provisioned, Workplace Analytics users will be able to access full product features. Office 365 meeting and email data is refreshed monthly. This is a good time for the Workplace Analytics administrator to also generate and upload updated organizational data.

Data sources in Workplace Analytics

Prepare organizational data

Upload organizational data

Step 6: Validate and verify data

  • Owner - Workplace Analytics administrator, data analysts with full access
  • Task - Set meeting exclusion rules to reflect your company's meeting norms and exclude meetings that are not relevant for analysis.
  • Outcome - Workplace Analytics administrators and analysts are satisfied that meeting query results are focused on the data relevant for analysis.

Workplace Analytics uses activities stored in a person’s Office 365 email and calendar to reveal internal and external collaboration trends. However, a person’s calendar and email can contain a diverse set of activities (such as personal meetings, work-related social activities, all-day training meetings, and so forth) that are not relevant to work-related collaboration, and if included in the metrics, can skew query results.

Analysts can use the Meeting exclusions feature to create custom meeting exclusions that help ensure query results accurately represent relevant meeting norms within their company. Or, analysts may choose to use the default meeting exclusions that exclude a set of meetings that would commonly fall outside relevant collaboration for analysis.

Understand meeting exclusions

Create custom meeting exclusions

Step 7: Set up meeting exclusions

  • Owner - Workplace Analytics administrator, data analysts with full access
  • Task - Set meeting exclusion rules to reflect your company's meeting norms and exclude meetings that are not relevant for analysis.
  • Outcome - Workplace Analytics administrators and analysts are satisfied that meeting query results are focused on the data relevant for analysis.

Workplace Analytics uses activities stored in a person’s Office 365 email and calendar to reveal internal and external collaboration trends. However, a person’s calendar and email can contain a diverse set of activities (such as personal meetings, work-related social activities, all-day training meetings, and so forth) that are not relevant to work-related collaboration, and if included in the metrics, can skew query results.

Analysts can use the Meeting exclusions feature to create custom meeting exclusions that help ensure query results accurately represent relevant meeting norms within their company. Or, analysts may choose to use the default meeting exclusions that exclude a set of meetings that would commonly fall outside relevant collaboration for analysis.

Understand meeting exclusions

Create custom meeting exclusions