I was recently asked to take part in a demonstration of what Teams Live Events is all about and how to navigate and produce an event. This made me realize that I had not written anything about this. With this in mind, I have written the following article to help gain a better understanding of what Teams Live Events is about and what it can do.
Microsoft Teams Live Events allow you to produce and present online events to large audiences both internally within your organisation and to the general public.
Teams Live Events allow you to stream both video and digital content to up to 10,000 participants. This makes Teams live events perfect for webinars or conferences.
What are the requirements?
In order to produce a Teams Live Event a user must have an Office 365 E1, E3, E5, A3 or A5 licence. This user must also be a member of the organisation with access to the Teams Admin Centre and with the rights to create live events/assign the relevant permissions to other users who will be taking part in the event.
There are 2 methods in producing a Teams Live Event.
Via Teams: Plug in your laptop and go…
Produce the live event using Teams, a lightweight option to create the event and invite presenters and panellists to participate on their own devices.
An external app or device: Professional camera and sound setup
Produce the live event using an external hardware or software encoder via Microsoft Stream. Use this option if you already have a production setup (for example, media mixers) that supports streaming to an RTMP service. This method is typically used in auditorium events, such as town halls, where a stream from a media mixer is broadcast to the audience.
Live Event Roles
There are four key roles involved in running a Teams Live Event that need to understood before being able to run the event effectively. The roles are:
The organiser is responsible for Scheduling a live event and ensuring the event is set up with the right permissions for attendees and the event group, who will manage the event and sending out the invitations to the event.
Only one participant will be designated the producer role. This user will set the event as live and also end the event.
The producer takes control the event, ensuring that content is being presented at the right time. They can share their own desktop or window as well as their own video and that of the presenter.
You can have more than 1 presenters configured for your event. Each presenter is able to present their video and content during the event (unless the event is produced via an external app).
Presenters are also able to moderate the Q&A session if this has been enabled.
Teams Live Event attendees can be external or internal attendees – depending on whether you make your event public or private. Attendees join the event via their invitation link in very much the same way as Teams Meetings. Attendees join the event via their web browser or Teams app if they have it.
Scheduling Teams Live Events
To schedule a Live event, simply go to your calendar in Microsoft Teams. In the top right corner of the screen, click on the drop-down arrow and select the live event option.
This will then take you to the New live event window to schedule the event.
When clicking next, you will be taken to the event permissions screen for your Teams live event. Here you can configure who you would like to attend the event:
- People and groups: This option will allow you to specify exactly you in your organisation can attend. This includes Groups.
- Org-wide: As the name suggests this will all anyone within your organisation to view the event but will require a sign-in.
- Public: This option will allow anyone with a link to the event to join.
NOTE: By Default, the ‘Public’ option is disabled. You will need to create a custom policy within the Teams Admin Centre to allow meetings to be attended by ‘Anyone’ in order to allow this.
There are also options here relating to how the event is produced. The options cover both Teams production and External app or device production. For this article I will look at the Teams solution.
Under the Teams heading you can choose to set the event to create a recording that will be made available to all attendees so they can view it again later. You can also configure your closed captioning by selecting what language you are presenting in and then select up to 6 languages that will be available for translation. Q&A features can be enabled if you wish attendees to be able to interact with the presenter. Finally, there is an option to enable an engagement report which will provide information on the attendees of the event.
Moving on using the Schedule button will then present you with the invitation screen as shown below:
Here you can copy a URL link for the event to your clipboard using the ‘get attendee link’ option,
All presenters will receive an e-mail invitation like that of a Teams Meeting which they can add to their calendar by accepting the invitation
The event is now scheduled and ready to start. From within your calendar, select the event and hit the Join button…
Once you join the event you are greeted with the following producer screen:
The first thing that you may notice is that the event is shown as PRE-LIVE.
As this suggests the event is not yet live, giving you and your presenters time to prepare for the Live Event.
Before making the event live the presenters and producers may need to add their video or content, ready to share with the attendees. This is done by adding items into the queue on the producers screen. When the presenter shares video or digital content such as a powerpoint presentation, you will see the image of their content at the bottom of the screen for you to select. This will then place it in the queue ready to be sent live.
If you want to the content alongside the presenters video, you can use the small button below the queue window. This switches between a single source or shows the content to the left of the presenter video. This is done by selecting your content a previously directed and then also your video feed. Both will appear in the Queue pane.
You are now ready to click the Send Live button which will add the content to the Live event pane.
The event will not become live until you click the Start button.
You will receive a confirmation prompt as shown below before continuing onto the event.
Once the event has started the yellow PRE-LIVE button will turn to a red LIVE button at the top of the screen showing information regarding the length of the event and how many people are attending.
Content during Live Events
When sharing content during an event, it is important to note that, at the moment, content cannot be stored in a queue to be used in the event. In order to transition between content, it is necessary to stop sharing the content and then click on the share button again for the next piece of content required.
During the setup of the live event there is an option to enable Q+A. This feature allows attendees to ask the producer/presenter questions which can then be responded to, either privately or published to the Q+A board for all attendees to see. Presenters can also make announcements to all attendees in the same window.
If you click on the Q+A icon, it will open your Live event Q&A panel. The Tabs at the Top of the panel show New questions, published questions and the questions you have chosen to dismiss.
The attendees will be able to see the questions you have chosen to publish but not those that were dismissed or replied to privately.
Pressing the red END button will bring the live event to a conclusion. If you have enabled the option during the initial event set up you will be able to obtain the recording, Q+A report and attendee engagement report by clicking on the calendar item for the event in teams.
You will then be given the meeting information and when scrolling down will see the option shown below.
The below examples show the information provided on the the Q+A and Attendee reports:
I hope this article has been informative. For more information on Teams Live Events you can read the official Microsoft documentation Here.