Viva Engage Storylines Made Simple

June 27, 2023
4 min read

Viva Engage is Yammer, and Yammer is Viva Engage. There is no difference in backend services, content, governance, and licensing. Viva Engage is integrated within Microsoft Teams, enabling a flow of work across connected applications.

You can access your Viva Engage activities from the left rail in Teams merged with Teams notifications. The right rail comes to life with your Viva Engage communities.

With a premium license, Viva Engage has enhanced the Yammer features with stories, storylines, and more in Leadership Corner.  In essence, Viva Engage stories and storylines are similar to Facebook or TikTok with a slightly different layout.

A screenshot that compares Viva Engage with Facebook.
Figure 1: A simple comparison between Viva Engage (Yammer) and Facebook. | Used with permission from Microsoft.
View Full Size

Try not to overthink it. Most of you who are reading this have used Facebook or TikTok and, in most instances, no one explained how to post from your device to social media. However, here’s a bit more context on what happens post-post.

How It Works

Anyone in your organization can visit your Viva Engage (Yammer) storyline and follow you. Also, when you follow someone, their posts, and stories will be prioritized in your feed and carousels. You can also receive notifications when they post.

The content you create is visible to everyone in your organization. Followers will see your content higher in their feeds, and your posts and stories can be suggested to anyone based on numerous signals, including who follows you, whom you follow, and who engages with your content. This is similar to the subtleties of Facebook and TikTok.

Content does not disappear from your Viva Engage storyline. It remains until you might choose to delete it from a folder tucked away in your OneDrive.

This is where a Viva Engage storyline differs from a Facebook story, as a Facebook story disappears within 24 hours.

I never created a Facebook story because I want my posts to appear the following year on the same day in my Facebook Memories when my memory fades.

The following table gives tips to help you decide when to create a Viva Engage (Yammer) story that is about you and when to make a community post.

Viva Engage (Yammer Story): Your Story Viva Engage Yammer Community Post
Upload a short video or write a post introducing yourself with a photo. New products/services announcements or launches
Share your skills, play a musical instrument, sing a song, read a poem, share a recipe, or baking success. Facilities management (office relocations, car parks, catering)
Share a skill you learned recently or discuss a topic about which people turn to you for expertise. Tech refreshes, training
Share an interesting article or blog post. Diversity, inclusion, accessibility, ethnic communications, LGBTQIA+, working parents
Share an interesting resource or course. Sports, particularly cycling to work, charity matching
I (or my team) just accomplished something. Local environment improvement programs, particular transportation
Share a discovery or achievement. Health & Safety program
Shout out to folks who contributed with @mentions. Photography community
Visited a site and met up with colleagues to share pictures or videos. Pets community
Walking the dog, or even paddle boarding! Baking community


When you want to regularly collaborate with your colleagues on project management, strategy, customers, or third parties and have associated meetings with documentation (uploaded to SharePoint or from your OneDrive), post in an appropriate Teams channel. Use @mention colleagues so they know you’re trying to reach them, and use Announcements to amplify your message.

There is no right or wrong way here other than too many places to share content. The preceding is just a recommendation, and organizations must create an appropriate collaboration framework and taxonomy. This requires change management communication guidance to help employees decide which feature to use and when.

Viva Engage Topics and Answers in Viva

Viva Engage topics surface in Viva Topics and will be even more useful in the future with employee engagement and knowledge management and ideation!

For more information, see my TekkiGurus article Seek, and You Will Find the Answers in Viva!

Topics play a valuable role in the Viva suite. They are active in Viva Engage communities, stories, and now Answers in Viva. Topics enable organizational glue. Each Answer in Viva requires being marked by a topic before it can be posted (yes, before it can be posted!). This is an important means to get new ideas in front of people with the expertise to comment who will be designated and specified as Viva Topic experts.

Answers In Viva requires the Viva suite or Viva Topics licenses.

This screenshot shows capabilities of Answers within Viva Engage. These include ask a question, follow trending topics, search questions, find relevant questions to answer, upvote questions, view topics, view answers, and see awards for your contributions.
Figure 2: Answers overview in Viva Engage. | Used with permission from Microsoft. View Full Size

If you already use Viva Engage (formerly Yammer), simply filter knowledge by voluntarily adding a topic to your post. Add topics from the same drop-down menu where you add a gif! Consider creating topics aligned to objectives and key results, key performance indicators, or personal development themes.

Additional Resources

Submit this form to express your company’s interest in enabling new leadership, analytics, and knowledge experiences for a free 60-day trial: Viva Engage Premium Trial (

Learn more from Microsoft about these community features.

Lesley Crook

Lesley Crook

Lesley Crook, MVP, M365 Apps & Services of 7 years based in Brighton, UK. The Viva Visionary and founder of the Viva Explorers, who are a passionate technology movement of like-minded people who draw on diverse origins to influence employee-centric technology, enabling a modern, empathic and enthusiastic workplace mindset. Lesley's focus is employee engagement, hybrid work, adoption change management, and champions programs on Teams and Microsoft Viva. A tenacious business change consultant, Lesley prepares customers to increase their productivity and nurture collaboration through the lens of Microsoft Teams in their workflow.