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Asian businesswoman with tablet watching online video in modern cafe


Lockdown restrictions may be easing, but a return to the workplace does not mean the end of video calls, a training specialist that works with Microsoft has warned.

Video calls very quickly became a fixture of modern working life and now, with the prospect of a flexible working option for UK workers being made compulsory by the Flexible Working Bill, there’s little chance of them going away.

In addition, businesses’ heavy investment in Microsoft Teams as they moved to more modern, flexible and collaborative ways of working, means they’ll want to see a return for that outlay. According to, Teams generated $0.2bn revenue in 2018, $0.8bn in 2019 and an astonishing $6.8bn in 2020.

Attensi, a specialised training provider that has developed a Teams training app, Gamified Microsoft Teams Training, says businesses are unlikely to let that investment slide without seeing a return.

“There’s no doubt that the pandemic provided the catalyst for this surge in revenue, as businesses across the globe scrambled to adopt more flexible ways of working,” said Attensi’s Ellen Vrålstad.

“We hear of people getting ‘Zoom fatigue’ – that they are desperate to return to an office environment – but I don’t think we’ll be seeing the back of Teams calls for a very long time.

“One of the most common complaints we hear about Teams is the time that’s wasted on calls, especially because people don’t know how to use it efficiently. It’s an easy product to use but can be complicated to master, but it sits alongside the other Microsoft tools as being an essential part of most modern office workers’ toolkits.”

Attensi’s has been built to help businesses unlock the potential in their investment, to ensure staff are using the tools efficiently, and to ensure ‘video-first’ strategies are maintained as lockdown measures are relaxed.

The app uses custom-built simulation voice-acted 3D avatars and gamified mechanics to guide Teams users through a step-by-step process on how to communicate and conduct virtual meetings more effectively. Users are presented with a series of typical work communication scenarios to solve, with points scored for correct answers and real time feedback offered on how they can improve should they get stuck.

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Ellen said: “Microsoft Teams is one of the most popular communication apps on the market. However, the increase in remote working due to the Covid-19 pandemic highlighted an urgent need for training in using this kind of technology more effectively.

“While video kept us all in touch with one another during lockdown, it meant many people were experiencing conferencing tech for the very first time at home and in the workplace.”

Ellen says Attensi is seeing an increasing number of businesses starting to rethink the way they do things with a ‘video-first’ strategy.

Ellen added: “So far, six of our clients are now using this solution and we have around 2,000 users on the training programme. Some of them have even built custom-made modules on top of the training because they are seeing the cost-saving benefits that a video first strategy can offer.

“There is also the gamification part which makes it fun and engaging. You just want to repeat because you want to better your score, get more points and ultimately, beat your colleague to top the leaderboard.”

Following an Attensi survey of people using the new technology, 97.5% said they liked the training and that it was relevant for their work. Another 95% said that they have become better at using best practice behaviour in virtual team meetings.

Silje Gulbrandsen, Product Marketing Manager in Microsoft Norway, says: “The reason this kind of training works so well is because users are active. They actually have to click in order to progress in the training, make choices, and be a part of what is happening on the screen.

“Finding new and innovative ways of engaging people is the single most important thing to have them learn something new because learning itself is becoming such an important piece of retaining talent and developing company culture.”


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