If you are part of big or small business corporate world, you may collaborate and connect with your colleagues on projects and documents. Microsoft Lync 2013  is a productivity app which provides an interface to streamline communication with office applications.

Lync 2013 is available with a lot of enhanced features, functions and cleaned, simplified comfortable navigating user interface called Quick Lync Menu which can be customized.  The menu gives access to all the functionality its buttons and options are revealed over hover.  When you install it, it will come with 2 options  Lync 2013 and Lync Recording Manager.

In the version below Windows 8, the icon be created, and in Windows 8, it will be there in the desktop environment, you can see it running in the background by clicking on the taskbar. Click on the Lync icon on the taskbar to open the window. At the top you will find link logo (integrated with Outlook), text and standard minimize, maximize and close buttons. As it runs in the background, clicking on the close button will just close the opened window, the Lync will be still running.  Next line says, what is happening today, here you can add text, to let people know about yourself, where, what, when, why, who and How. You can type your status like ‘on vacation’, ‘do not disturb’, ‘not available’.  If you don’t want this feature, you can click on the drop down and turn this feature off.

Next icons, you can view represent contacts, conversations, and meetings. In the right side, there is drop down which gives access to options.

If you check your status, you will see your own name and picture. The green bar down on the left side indicates that you are available, you can change your status by hovering over it and change to busy, do not disturb or appear away. If any meeting scheduled in Outlook, the status will appear ‘in a meeting’.  Other options you are sign out and exit link, which will turn the status to be unavailable.  There is location information, which shows, from where you are working like ‘home’, ‘office’ or a different one.  You can create the different one by right-clicking on the Word Office and choose something like ‘head office’ and press enter. Switch to this new location.

Lync replaced Office communicator in 2010.  Linc desktop client can be purchased as a part of office 365 small business premium membership.

The plan includes:

Office Suite – Latest version of all the office Apps, without performing an upgrade.  As a premium member of Office365, if required, you can setup the software and list of programs that come with a suite of apps and can be installed on a local computer.

sharing of applications running on a desktop and virtual whiteboard with attendees.

finding, editing, grouping, and instant messaging to contacts (like Windows Live Messenger)

use of presenter controls to share PowerPoint slide shows.

Integration and interoperability with 3-rd party auto conferencing providers like Skype, Outlook, and OneNote (for Notetaking and co-edit). A shared One Note notebook is a linked meeting with other participants.

Chat meetings and Conferences: Streamline communication which includes persistent chat rooms, one-click meeting invitation with HD video conferencing and topic feeds. Multiparty sharing for holding a meeting to share audio and high-def-video conference calls with Voice over IP without a phone line.  It gives best online marketing experience. Meeting controls for an online lobby and enhanced meetings, record meetings. There is a favorite group which lists people you contact most often thus giving easy access.  Contacts can be organized by relationship, status and more and can be customized as per needs like ‘Frineds’, ‘Familiy’, ‘Workgroups’, ‘Projects’. Contacts may belong to more than one group. They can be arranged on a status basis, to know how many areas available, away, unavailable to unknown. An option is available to see who has added you to contacts. You can also add people by clicking on ‘add a contact’. Contacts can be added for those who send an email message to you or you can do so manually if you know their email ids.

Contact List: You can build a contact list for those online profiles with whom you interact. These contacts may be from within or outside your organization. Contacts may be organized into groups which can be sorted and arranged by status or by relationship.

Conversations:  Conversation icon is available, which shows the list of previous conversations to let you pick from where you have left. When you hover over the icons, you will find the icon for instant messaging.  You can call a person, set up a video conference and look up its contacts. You can have multiple conversations in one window; tabs are available for easy switching between chat rooms, instant message, and conversational calls. A gallery view is available which allows seeing everyone in the video conference.  Lync allows you to customize audio and video settings for hardware, so before you start meeting, you can check if they are working fine for you.

In the left bottom of the Lync 2013, there is a shortcut for selecting primary device and adjust settings.  You can adjust speaker, microphone or ringer volume.

The third option available is meetings. You can view the list of meetings you have, which comes directly from outlook calendar. A meeting can be also be joined from Outlook even reminder or from calendar or meeting pane on the mobile device.

Ad Hoc Meeting – Where you don’t have Lync installed on your computer,  you use Lync web app account from a web browser to securely communicate with virtually anyone, everywhere from the computer, tablet or mobile device having network connectivity.