In a previous article I wrote about the Office 365 Admin app, specifically the one for the Windows phone. If you have the app on your phone (regardless of phone OS), you will notice the continually updating process that Microsoft has going for this app. Currently the app is at version 2.1 according to its download page on the Microsoft Store.
The current download page has some interesting highlights, see below:
Putting that aside, the app has its virtues, specifically I like these features:
- Password resets
- Live Tile Alerting
- Support Cases
- Passcode for security
*** Note that this is a wish list with suggested improvements for the Office 365 Admin App.
Let’s be honest. The app is good for a quick review of your Office 3665 tenant, but it is not made for in-depth management of your tenant. Even with that restriction, some key features for managing or monitoring your tenant are missing. The app really needs features like the following:
- Exchange Batch migrations – be able to view, pause, stop, start or continue
- PST Imports – be able to just monitor their progress (Similar to the above)
- User Management – More consistent
- Groups – being able to view, manage or even create
- Skype Management or view config at he least
- Licensing – view of subscriptions / licensing
- Domains – view current domains and their status
These features would enhance the Office 365 Admin app tremendously. Let’s review each possible feature:
Batch migrations – I spend a lot of time monitoring migrations. It would be much easier if I could simply check the Office 365 Admin app to see this rather than logging into Office 365, finding Admin, Exchange, Recipients and then Batch migrations. A quick view in an app would allow one to not be tied to your laptop during a migration.
I would imagine it could look something like this in the app:
Click on a batch to get to a summary screen:
PST Imports – Now that the Azure PST Import service is available, it would be nice to view the status of these imports. Especially since these jobs, like the above mailox migrations, take place over hours, I would rather have a way to view it quickly without having to log into a web browser and the go to the import tab.
Like the Migration screen, I would imagine it could structured the same:
Clicking on one of the PST imports would allow you to see the status of each PST file importing:
One of the best features is the User Management piece. From a users details you are able to call them, email them, reset their password or assign a license. However, there is so much more that could be done here. What about changing the domain suffix for the account? User location, etc? Well, while reviewing these settings, I stumbled upon an inconsistency in the interface. If a user is licensed, you cannot Edit or Delete that user. If the user is not licenses, you are able to edit and delete that user. Why the difference?
On the left is a licensed user and on the right is our unlicensed user:
Editing an unlicensed user brings us to this screen:
No option for the location, but you can edit the title as well as other relevant information on the user.
After users, groups (Distribution Groups) are used the most in Exchange / Exchange Online. I would treat this the same way as the user interface is on the app. Would be nice if group membership, approval, and other details were available for editing or just viewing for now. I wont put a mock up here because the User management interface provides a good mock up for this.
For Skype, a list of active users and their SIP addresses would be useful. External communication and General Organization settings (from the Office 365 console) information would also be useful. Lastly, a view of the Dial In settings would be good as well
For licensing, it would be great if there were a view into what is known as the Billing tab on the Office 365 management interface.
General Access to Billing:
Domains are the core of the Office 365 management experience. It is your tether to the rest of the cloud infrastructure and identity management. A view into your domains and their configuration could be useful for an admin. An admin could possibly check the domain configuration – services enabled, DNS records needed, and even the overall status of the domain.
Feel free to provide any comments or suggestions. I will be forwarding my list of feature requests to Microsoft via their feedback link. If you cannot find it, the email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Provide them with your own suggestions to make the app more usable to your organization.