Microsoft released Windows 11 in October 2021. It’s a free upgrade for those running Windows 10 that have a compatible system. Here's a summary of the new features that will help increase productivity at your business.

Layout & Desktop Customisations

Users are working with multiple applications and windows at the same time, which can make work challenging when you need to look at more than one window at once.

68% of surveyed employees say they spend at least 30 minutes per day just switching between their different apps.

One way that Microsoft is making this easier is through a new Snap Layouts feature in Windows 11. This feature includes six layout designs that can accommodate between two to four windows at the same time in an optimised view.

Another feature to make work easier is the ability to customise your different desktops. This allows you to compartmentalise your work and give each virtual desktop different wallpaper, apps, and shortcuts.

New Powerful Teams Integration

Connecting with colleagues and clients easily from anywhere has become a main requirement of the new hybrid office. Spending time trying to connect over different messaging apps or explaining to a customer how to connect to a video call wastes precious time and takes focus away from the business at hand.

Windows 11 has a new powerful native integration with Microsoft Teams that make chat, video, and voice calls easy to do with a click. Users can access the icon on the taskbar to initiate a connection without needing to open the full Teams application.

Another innovative feature that’s going to make connections easier is the ability to use the Teams chat app for cross-platform messaging outside of Teams. This includes the ability to use texting via SMS from your desktop.

Widget-Powered Curated Feed

Anyone with an iPhone will be familiar with the use of widgets to create a tailored view of different apps and information. This same capability is now included in Windows 11.

You’ll be able to create and access a curated feed of different types of information from your desktop. This makes it take less time to get to what you need.

Widgets will include things like:

  • Calendar
  • To-Do application
  • News headlines
  • Weather
  • Web search
  • Traffic

Improves Accessibility Features

Windows 11 empowers all users to use their PC more efficiently and get more out of the experience. Microsoft describes Windows 11 as the “most accessible” Windows version that it has ever developed.

Accessibility settings are easier to find and more intuitive to use in the Settings. They include enhancements to current features as well as new items to make using a computer easier for anyone, no matter their limitations.

Some of the accessibility features include:

  • New sound themes
  • More themes for people with light sensitivity
  • Redesigned Closed Caption themes
  • Windows Voice Typing (automatically punctuates transcribed text)
  • Enhanced colour filters
  • More contrast and light/dark themes
  • And more

How to Prepare Your Office for Windows 11

New desktops and laptops are now beginning to come with a pre-loaded version of both Windows 10 and Windows 11 so you will have the option to install the version of Windows that best suits the applications your company is using.

At this early stage, we're not aware of any applications that stop working on Windows 11, and we think it's reasonable to expect that all mainstream applications will be fine on Windows 11.

Windows 10 will continue to be supported by Microsoft until October 2025. This seems a long way off, but most computers these days last for 4 or 5 years, so that means the operating system will be end-of-life prior to the hardware on which it's installed.

Accordingly, our guidance is to hold off a little longer before deploying Windows 11. At Netcare we intend to move to Windows 11 in early 2022, so you might like to wait for an update to this blog before starting your Windows 11 journey.

Check PCs for Compatibility

Check all computers being used at your business for the minimum requirements needed for a Windows 11 upgrade. You can find those and a PC Health Check tool to download to quickly check a device on Microsoft’s site.

For any computers that do not have the requirements, you’ll want to see if they can be upgraded to meet them or if it needs to be replaced.

Check Software Compatibility

Check any software that you run for your business to ensure it’s compatible with Windows 11. Doing this now gives you time to ensure you won’t run into any unexpected complications once you upgrade.

Get Help Preparing for a Smooth Windows 11 Upgrade

Windows 11 offers many productivity-boosting features for businesses.  NetCare can help your business be more successful, more productive, and more secure by reviewing your applications now to ensure a smooth upgrade process next year.

Contact us today to learn more. Call (02) 9114 9920 or reach out online.