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What is Office 365 Groups

What is Office 365 Groups

Office 365 Groups allows you to easily collaborate and share resources with a set of people you wish collaborate with. These Resources include a shared outlook Inbox, a document library for file sharing or a shared calendar.

With Office 365 Groups you do not have the hassle of assigning permissions to each and every one of these Resources, by adding a member to the Group will automatically give them permission to the Resources as well. Office 365 Groups is an improved version of what we all use to use or still use distribution lists or shared mailboxes.

Do I need a special License to use Office 365 Groups?

The answer is No, as long as your Office 365 subscription has Exchange Online or SharePoint Online you will be able to make use of Groups. The below has been taken from Microsoft highlighting the different features available based on your subscription.

Any Office 365 subscription that has Exchange Online and SharePoint Online will support groups. That includes the Business Essentials and Business Premium plans, and the Enterprise E1, E3 and E5 plans.

If you have an Exchange-only plan you can still get the shared Inbox and shared Calendar features of groups in Outlook but you won’t get the document library, Planner or any of the other capabilities. If you want to use advanced security or compliance features for the shared mailbox created with a group, you need to assign an Exchange Online Plan 1 with Exchange Online Archiving or Exchange Online Plan 2 license to the mailbox.

If you have a Yammer-only plan you will still have the conversations feed in the Yammer group but you won’t get the document library, Planner, or any of the other capabilities.

Create a New Office 365 Group in Office Admin Center

  1. Open the Admin Center and click on Groups, then click on Add a group.

2. On the creation page, when you select the drop down for the type you will notice that Microsoft is recommend using Office 365 groups.

3. You can continue to complete the rest of the information to create the group, before completing the group, you will notice the option for Privacy. This option can be set to all everyone in the organization to see the content of the group or set it to Private so that only the group members can see the content.

4. Last but not least you can specify the Group Owner and then click Add.

Once the Group has been created, you will then notice in Outlook and OWA that the Group is now available.

View in Outlook

View in OWA

Create Office 365 Groups from OWA

To create a Group from OWA, you can simply navigate down to Groups and then click on + to create a new group.

You will be presented with the same options as if you are creating the Group from the Admin Center. This allows users to easily share and collaborate with each other.

After clicking on create on top, you will be presented with another window to add additional members to the group. Once the Members has been added click on Add to complete the creation process.

Note. The creator of the Group will automatically become the owner and moderator of the group.


After the Group has been created you will be directed to the newly created group and you will see a Welcome message in the group.

From the Welcome email, you will notice that you add this group to a SharePoint Team site connect to apps as well as share files etc.

Office 365 Groups simply just allows a group of individual members to come together and collaborate and share file and still have all shared information in one central location.


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