Microsoft Office 365 Search Roadmap

Natural language search
Based on Turing deep learning model – when search engine understands user’s intentions instead of blindly search with keywords
– already in Outlook and Teams, tbd: everywhere
(that’s why we do not have synonyms in Microsoft search)

Image search
tbd: before the end of year 2021

Search for chat messages
Teams messages, outlook groups conversations, yammer conversation
currently search is possible only in the service, ie. you can search for Teams messages only in Teams (yammer in Yammer).
coming soon: search for chat messages from Office.com and SharePoint
nb: from Bing, if it is integrated, you can search for almost everything.

Actionable search results experiences
Search results will soon support actions that will allow users to interact with the result and perform changes to the content directly within the Search application.

Search Federation
federation capabilities will allow enterprises build and integrate their custom LOB search experiences, customized search providers, into the overall Microsoft Search. With federated search, you can make information from systems where the data cannot leave the systems boundaries available to search across in Microsoft 365 productivity apps and services, without indexing its data with Microsoft Search.

Country-specific content
Bookmarks for country-targeted content implementation will be redesigned. It will work based on user country specified in Azure AD.

SharePoint Search Admin Center
will be migrated from SharePoint admin center to to Microsoft Search Admin Center transitioning (Search and Intelligence Admin Center) – long-running project.

Graph Connectors
Graph Connectors are generally available.
New connectors coming to Microsoft Search: Jira Graph connector, Confluence Graph connector.

Profile enrichment with Graph connectors
You will soon be able to enrich Microsoft 365 profile properties like Job title, Phone numbers, Skills etc. with data from HRMS systems using graph connectors.
Then surface this rich profile information on people experiences like profile cards.

Standalone Search
for those who have their data in other productivity suite, have no intent to use m365, but want to search

 

Minor or having not much details changes

  • Ctrl-F to search in Teams: contextual search (chats, documents)
  • Shared search engine results page (developed once – transitioned everywhere)
  • custom dictionaries, spelling suggestions – will retire (move to a graph-driven speller)

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Create Topic Answers with Microsoft Viva Topics to bring together people, content, and information (including synonyms and acronyms)
Knowledge answers provide a direct answer to questions authoritative information in an organization across SharePoint and OneDrive content
Files/Calendars/Links answers

Results clusters
The results shown in a result cluster are grouped together based on the search vertical configuration.

Profile Query variables
Define any attribute from the user’s Profile, as a query variable and it would be resolved during query evaluation (This feature is currently in preview)

Azure Cognitive Search Federation

NB: not sure why, but any “Description” is out of search. I.e. you cannot search for site description content or library description etc.

Microsoft made it possible, but does not recommend investing in custom search results view.
Reasons are – custom search results views are working only in SharePoint and Microsoft is adjusting their search UX unifying it across all services.

 

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