How to create teams and channels in Microsoft Teams?

Here’s a reader question:

So far we have been using SharePoint for document libraries and Skype for Business for Chat and calls. Now it seems that my workplace is complementing that with Teams for business communication and sharing/collaboration around meetings. Key question, how to start using Teams – creating teams, channels and so forth.

Thanks for your question, In today’s tutorial we’ll focus on the basics of Teams and channel creation, so that you can get started with Teams. Make sure to go through our entire catalog of Teams related content to go beyond the basics.

Define a new Microsoft Teams

In order to create a Microsoft Teams team, proceed as following:

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. From the App bar in your left hand side, hit the Teams icon.
  3. At this point you might see all relevant Teams you were added to.
  4. At the bottom part of your Teams list, hit the Join or Create Team button.
  5. Next you’ll be prompted whether you would be interested to join a team or create a new one. Hit the Create team button.
  6. As you probably have a predefined group of people that you are working with on your project, you can now decide whether to use an existing team of people or create one from scratch. For simplicity, we’ll create a new team.
  7. Next, we’ll define whether this is going to be a private team or a Public one. This is an important setting as it determines who’ll have access to the team files, chat conversations etc’. Public teams are available to any people in the organization whereas Private teams require permission to join. Depending on your installation, you might have the option to create Organization wide teams.
  8. Double click on Private to create a Private team.
  9. Next Provide a Team name: in our case My Team, and a brief description.
  10. Next we’ll be able to add people to the newly create Team or leave it for later (by clicking the Skip button).
  11. The new team will be created as shown below.
  12. Hit the Add more people button, to invite people to join your team as needed.

Launch a Microsoft Teams channel

By default, when you define a new team, a new channel named General is created. But what if you would like to define additional work areas for sub-teams of your project, say the marketing team. Let’s see how to leverage channels for that.

Creating a channel in a Team

We’ll define a new channel for the Marketing team:

  • In the Teams tab, navigate to the relevant Team.
  • Hit the More options (…) icon.
  • Select Add channel.
  • Provide a meaningful name and description.
  • Now define a privacy level (standard – for everyone in the team; or private – for selected team members appointed by the owner).
  • Now go ahead and hit Add.
  • Your new Marketing channel will be created as shown below:

As you can see, the new channel launches with specific tabs for Posts and Files collaboration. Your next step will be to add relevant files and apps such as the document library, Word, PDF reader, Power BI for report sharing as well as 3rd party applications as tabs to your newly created channel.


  • Your organization might have restricted the definitions of new teams and channels. If that’s the case, kindly work with the relevant owners to have your team collaboration structure created.

Enjoy Teams and feel free to ask any relevant question.