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Feature Eventually Rolling Out After Long Delay
Last November, Microsoft published message center notification MC296205 about the ability to create multi-language Teams meeting invitations. Updated on June 2, Microsoft now says that the feature will roll out to tenants in mid-June with deployment due for completion by the end of the month. GCC roll-out will happen in July. This is Microsoft 365 roadmap item 81521.
Languages Controlled by Meeting Policy
In a nutshell, the new feature allows Teams administrators to define up to two languages for meeting invitations through the MeetingInviteLanguages setting in the Teams meeting policy. Selecting a single language works. If set, the defined languages override user preference. This makes sense in large organizations where consistency in meeting invitations is a good thing. It’s also good in situations where local regulations dictate that written communications should be in two languages. Irish government departments, for instance, usually generate text in both Irish and English. In this instance, they’ll be disappointed to discover that Irish is not one of the supported languages (see below).
Policy-driven language selection takes precedence over the language selected by the user creating a Teams meeting. For example, someone who uses Teams in Spain usually generates meeting invitations in Spanish unless the meeting policy applied to their account dictates what the language(s) should be. Let’s say that the policy mandates English and French. With this policy in place, any system-generated text in subsequent meeting invitations generated by the user will be in English and French. The change is very noticeable and underlines the need to tell users before introducing a new policy that affects the invitations that they send.
System-generated text includes the joining instructions for the meeting and the links for Help, meeting options, and legal. Some elements of Teams meeting invitations are customizable. Teams changes the link names to match the selected languages, but the custom footer text remains as is.
Setting Corporate Languages
Currently, the only way to select corporate languages for meeting invitations is via PowerShell. Make sure that you have the latest version of the Teams PowerShell module (I used version 4.4.1).
For example, here’s how to use the Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy cmdlet to define US English and Danish as the two languages used by any account assigned the HQ Users meeting policy:
Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity "HQ Users" -MeetingInviteLanguages "en-US,da-DK"
Figure 1 is an example of a Teams meeting invitation sent after the policy became effective. Like any change to a Teams policy, expect that it will take several hours before clients pick up the new policy settings. You can see that Teams generates the joining instructions in the order set for the languages in the policy (U.S. English first followed by Danish).
In this instance, the custom settings for Teams meetings include a corporate logo, and Teams inserts the logo for each language. You can’t specify different logos for each language.
Because Teams generates the joining instructions for meeting invitations on the server, the policy-selected languages apply to all Teams clients, no matter what platform or language a client uses, including meetings created from Outlook using the Teams meeting add-in.
According to MC296205, the following language codes can be used:
To surprise users, you could select two languages at random just to see if anyone pays attention to meeting details when invitations arrive. It’s entirely possible that they don’t ever see meeting invitations if their mailbox settings allow automatic acceptance. But they’ll see the details when the time of the meeting comes around. What would users do if they received meeting invitations like the one shown in Figure 2? It might be a nice April Fool’s Day joke…
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