Understanding Microsoft VIVA

Viva is one of the newest releases from Microsoft and we will see components of it released throughout the remainder of 2021. But what is it exactly? Is it a SharePoint replacement, is it SharePoint rebrand, is it a Microsoft Teams app, are there additional licenses required… and the list of questions goes on.

According to Microsoft “Viva is an employee experience platform that brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights. Powered by Microsoft 365 and experienced primarily through Microsoft Teams, Viva fosters a culture where people and teams are empowered to be their best from anywhere.”

Microsoft VIVA Overview (Satya)

What this really means is two things:

  1. Microsoft is investing heavily on the employee, the organization, and the future of modern work no matter your physical location.
  2. With Microsoft Teams as the Hub to your modern workplace, Teams is not strictly for chat & meetings anymore. Microsoft Teams with the help of VIVA is a full-blown platform where we can engage our staff with targeted news (thanks SharePoint), develop line of business applications (thank you Power Platform), proactively improve employee well-being (Viva Insights), and integrate third-party systems (Viva Leaning) seamlessly. VIVA allows you to bring the full power of your intranet, systems, and third-party integrations into the Teams platform for the benefit of all involved.Out of the box VIVA contains 4 distinct components that make up the overall experience: Connections, Insights, Learning, Topics.Viva Connections: 
    Harnesses the full SharePoint capabilities into a customizable Teams application that is then uploaded to Teams. In the past, adding a SharePoint tab into Microsoft Teams meant a loss of functionality whether it be your navigation or targeting, but now all of this is second nature in a centralized HUB.CliffsNotes: Bring your Intranet into Microsoft Teams, improve productivity, centralize communications, and effectively disseminate information with Yammer & Stream integration.Viva Insights:Aggregates data on a couple distinguishable levels: Individual, Leader/Manager.


    • The individual can take charge of their mental health and boost their productivity with actionable recommendations, such as scheduling breaks, focused work, and learning.
    • The leader/manager level allows you to focus on your staffs overall well-being, causes for burnout, and anonymizes data to ensure anonymity.

    CliffsNotes: Meet your employees where they are and understand roadblocks to their overall well-being with actionable insights (Excuse the cheap pun).

    VIVA Topics:

    Helps to automatically curate content and expertise across your organization, making it easy for people to find information and put knowledge to work. Most staff spend 1 hour per day searching for relevant content within their organization which over the period of a year is the equivalent of 7 weeks.

    CliffsNotes: Get the right information to the right people at the right time.

    VIVA Learning:

    Helps empower and make it easier for our staff to learn whether it be a formal or informal setting with first and third-party content brought directly into Microsoft Teams.

    CliffsNotes: Bring your/a learning management system into Microsoft Teams, provide guidance or let individuals carve their own path to knowledge.


    Viva Connections: Available now to all customers as part of an existing Microsoft 365 license.

    Viva Insights: See breakdown below:

    • Tier 1: Free, includes the VIVA Insight app (MyAnalytics)
    • Tier 2: If you require manager and organizational view, you will require a Workplace Analytics/ VIVA Insights license.
    • Note: $2 per seat per month for existing Microsoft 365 Enterprise E5 subscriptions or $6 per seat per month, if adding to any other license level

    Viva Learning: To be determined. Currently in preview but more information should come as we see additional information released throughout the remainder of 2021.

    VIVA Topics: $5 per user per month for all users who interact with topics