Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is a secure, Cloud-based chat and group collaborative workspace that seamlessly integrates with other Microsoft 365 applications, including Exchange, OneDrive, and SharePoint.

Using Teams, you can check who is online and start a chat, schedule a meeting with the whole team, or manage projects using Microsoft Planner—a project management platform which enables users to create and manage plans and tasks on various ad-hoc projects.

Team owners can manage work and vacation schedules for members of a team using Microsoft Shifts, and use Microsoft Lists to allow users to track issues, assets, routines, contacts, inventory, and more.

To determine if this is the right storage option please see the Document Sharing and Data Storage Finder.


Features and Benefits

Collaboration and chat

  • Collaboration and chat
  • Chat one on one or in groups
  • Create channels to organize your conversations
  • Office integration includes built-in access to SharePoint and OneDrive
  • Co-author Office documents right in the app
  • Review a project's history

Team management

  • Access to your Outlook calendar
  • Hold online meetings
  • See a team member’s current status

Host meetings

  • Scheduled - audience limit 1,000
    • From Outlook
    • From Teams client (must have mailbox in Microsoft 365)
  • Ad-hoc 'Meet now'
  • Live Events - audience limit 10,000
  • Breakout rooms
  • Webinars

Available across all platforms

  • Desktop
  • Mobile
  • Web browser


Available to

  • Students
  • Faculty
  • Staff





How to Request Service

To request a new team, click the "New Teams Request" button to the right.

A team must be created by Northwestern IT. Teams can be private to only invited users, or public and open to anyone within your area.

You may select from one of two teams: Classes and Staff Members. Please note: The maximum number of private channels per Team is 30. Additional limits and specifications for Teams.


Expiration and Automatic Renewal

From the date a team is created, all teams are configured with a one-year lifecycle. Teams that have activity throughout the year will renew automatically. If not, the team’s owner(s) are notified via email and in Teams to renew.

Teams that have not been used for one year, and not manually renewed will be expired and deleted one day after the stated expiration date. Expired teams can be recovered within 30 days from the date they were deleted by sending a request to the IT Support Center or via the restore notification email that is sent to the team’s owner(s).

When a team is deleted, all of its associated services (the mailbox, Planner, SharePoint site, team, etc.) are also deleted and are not recoverable after 30 days.


Email notifications

If there is no activity within a team for one  year, an email notification for renewing the team is sent from Microsoft to the team owner(s) 30 days, 15 days, and one day before the team’s expiration date. When the team owner(s) receives the expiration notification, they can click Renew now in team settings to renew the team. How to renew a team

If there is any activity within a team then the team will renew automatically, and no email notification is sent.


Getting Started

Via the desktop client (preferred)

  1. Download the Teams desktop client.
  2. Enter your Northwestern email address.
  3. You will then be redirected to Online Passport.
  4. Sign in with your NetID and NetID password.

Via the web

  1. Go to
  2. Enter your Northwestern email address.
  3. You will be redirected to Online Passport.
  4. Sign in with your NetID and NetID password. Note: If you are already signed in to Online Passport, you will go directly to Microsoft Teams.


Support Resources

For answers to commonly asked questions about the use of Microsoft Teams at Northwestern, visit the IT Knowledge Base.
Additionally, Microsoft offers the following help guides and webinars:


Teams Add-On Licenses

Teams Audio Conferencing

Provides meeting organizers with the option for participants to join a Teams meeting by dialing in from their phone. This license also allows the host to lead audio only (dial in) meetings. Teams audio conferencing is available for purchase through iBuyNU via CDW.

Teams Premium

Teams Premium builds on the current Teams experience with additional capabilities to help make Teams meetings more intelligent, personalized and protected. Teams Premium is available for purchase through iBuyNU via CDW.