first look at viva topics blog

LOgo with photos of two peopleIn the first post in this series, we talked about Microsoft Viva Topics and how to perform the basic setup. Let’s dive deeper into the Topic Center and learn how to manage topics that are discovered.

To recap, the purpose of Viva Topics is to discover the things that your organization talks about all the time and allow you to organize them into Topic Pages that your people can curate with information about the topic, related documents and people, and even links to other topics.  That, in and of itself is a nice way to mine knowledge, but Microsoft is taking this to another level by automatically highlighting these topics with a link to the topic page and even provides a pop-up card.

The Topic Center

The purpose of the Topic Center is to provide a location for every topic to live as a SharePoint page.  Here we manage topics that are auto-discovered and even create new topics. You can control permissions to this site, but depending how you setup access in your settings, Everyone will be granted access to this site.

SharePoint Site Home page

Viva Topics – Topics Center Home Page

Getting Started

Microsoft provides a Getting Started section in the menu which is full of some nice material on Viva Topics that includes links to a number of training pages in Docs.Microsoft.com. It is a good starting point for you to find the walkthroughs that Microsoft provides on Topic Discovery and Topic Management.  Don’t forget the also go to the Adoption site that has a plan for you to roll out adoption to your organization.

Managing Your Topics

The Topic Management page is where you can create new topics, but also can find where auto-discovered topics are suggested to you.  This is all search driven and even when you add a new topic manually it will take a bit of time for it to show up in the list of topics.

As the AI crawls your content it will find certain things that it thinks are topics.  These will be Suggested.  Your topic curator will want to review these because they won’t always be relevant.  Once a topic is Confirmed it is ready for the team to curate it and improve on it.  We have a topic, but it needs a description, linked people, linked files, and even links to other topics.  This process may take a while and the topic is only visible in the Topic Center.  Finally, it will be Published and visible to the entire organization.

Manually created topics start out in the Confirmed state until they are Published like regular SharePoint Pages.  That is what a Topic Page is in the end, a SharePoint Site Page that Viva Topics knows how to index and use elsewhere.

SharePoint Page showing a list

Published Topics in Viva Topics

What is next?

Next we will look at what happens once you have the topics Published and how users will be able to see them on other web pages (and hopefully more soon).