If you have not used MS Teams before we hope you find this information helpful in allowing you to access training on the day.

This guidance is intended to provide you with some essential information prior to the training to ensure you are able to access and fully benefit from the event, so please take time to familiarise yourself before the training.

We recognise that it can be tiring taking part in online training, which can require a lot of concentration and so our courses have been designed to provide the same content as face to face training, but delivered to allow plenty of variation of learning, frequent breaks and based around multiagency breakout group working and self-led development.

One thing that we need to acknowledge is that online training does miss out the experience and interactions that take place sitting in a room together, and that sitting behind a desk in isolation can create opportunities for distractions, such as checking and responding to emails.

In order to fully benefit from the training opportunity and ensure that you are truly in position to better safeguard children we ask that you fully engage and interact with the training and actively encourage asking questions, holding discussions and responding when facilitators ask for your involvement. We also ask that you keep your cameras on at all times, as this significantly improves the engagement and interaction during training.

In short – as with many things, you will get out of it what you put in.

During breakout sessions we ask that you engage with your group members as though you were in a room together. Introducing yourself and your role during smaller breakout sessions creates a much better environment for everyone.

We do appreciate that some people will by now be very comfortable with online meetings, whereas for others this will be a completely new experience, so we will do what we can to help and encourage and ask that  everyone taking part does the same.

We also ask that you join the training at least 15min before it is due to begin and return promptly after breaks at the time specified so that other participants don’t spend time waiting.

Microsoft Teams Guidance

What equipment will I need to access the training?

You must access the training using a computer/laptop or larger sized tablet/iPad device to allow you to clearly see any training materials – mobile phone screens are too small.
The training is also interactive, so as well as your main device you will need access to an internet enabled secondary advice such as a mobile phone or tablet/iPad.

What software do I need?

We use Microsoft Teams for our online seminars.

For the best experience we recommend that you download the Microsoft Teams Desktop App which can be downloaded and installed for free here: Download desktop and mobile apps | Microsoft Teams

If you are unable to do this don’t worry, you will be able to access it through your web browser. If accessing through your browser we strongly recommend not using Internet Explorer as this is no longer supported by Microsoft and incompatible with Teams. If using a browser you are advised to use Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome or Safari that is up to date. The system requirements for Teams are available on their website.

Do I need a headset?

You may find a headset more comfortable; it also allows you to listen to the online seminar without disturbing others, as well as preventing others not taking part in the training from potentially hearing material that may cause them upset. Headsets designed specifically for use with computers are great, but if you don’t have one of these then any headset, including wired or Bluetooth, that you can use with a mobile phone work just as well. If you don’t have a headset you can hear the seminar through the speakers in your computer. Please be aware that if you’re using computer speakers that if the volume is turned up too high this can sometimes cause feedback or echo problems.

If you do experience sound echoing or feedback turning down your microphone or speakers will resolve this issue. You can also find advice and support for this issue here: Your audio device may cause an echo – Office Support (microsoft.com)

Do I need a webcam or microphone?

You will need a microphone to take part in this online seminar. In order to ensure the session is more personable and interactive for the trainer and all attendees, we would appreciate it if you could use your webcam/camera where possible. During a lot of the presentation you may be asked to turn your camera off in order to save on internet bandwidth, however in breakout group discussions or when taking part in Q&A sessions we do encourage you to turn cameras on if you can so we can see your lovely smile and know who is talking.

What internet connection should I have?

We suggest you to use a wired connection instead of wireless (WiFi), to avoid a drop in connection where possible, but if this is not possible then WiFi will do fine.

Can I test the software before the webinar?

We strongly suggest you test your system before the day if you have not used Teams before. If you have the Teams app downloaded on your computer, you can join a test meeting.

How and when should I log onto it?

You will be sent a link to join the online seminar. Please log on 15 minutes before the event to ensure that everything is working. Please close other open windows and applications on your device while the session is running, to reduce distractions and help you focus on the content. We also strongly recommend you test the seminar software before the day, please see above.

When entering the training you may be initially held in a waiting lobby – don’t worry, we will let you in when the training is due to begin. If you attempt to join the training after it has begun you may not be allowed in to prevent disruption to others and to ensure that you gain all the information provided.

Can I communicate with the presenter?

Yes, both your microphone and camera will be functional. Please mute your microphone when you are not speaking to reduce the background noise for everyone. You can also write comments in the chat box during the training where you can communicate with everyone, post questions, provide information or links.

Common Issue’s we have Experienced:

Echo/feedback from sound:

Turning down your speaker and/or microphone usually resolves this issue (see above)

I don’t have the chat/hand-up function:

This can occur at times when you are accessing Teams using your browser, particularly if your browser is not up to date.
It can also occur when you log-in using a different (guest) email account to the email address that the meeting invite was sent to. To avoid this please log-in using the original email address provided.
For the best experience and full functionality, we recommend using the free MS Teams Desktop App (see above for download link)

Nobody can hear me talking:

It might sound daft, but first off check that you’re not ‘muted’. The presenter will automatically mute everyone during the workshop to prevent noise disturbance, so if you do want to say something make sure you unmute yourself first and once you have finished talking mute yourself again. We have found at times however that occasionally even when not muted some microphones doesn’t work.

In the majority of cases Leaving the meeting and returning fixes the issue. If you still have problems check your microphone settings.

My screen is blank/I can’t see the presenter/I can’t see the presentation/the presentation is small etc:

If this occurs, first try leaving and re-joining the meeting – the majority of the time this resolves sound and video issues.
You may also want to try:

  • Click on ‘More actions’ (3 dots) and check the settings, trying ‘Gallery’ / ‘Large Gallery’ / ‘Focus’ / Full Screen to see if this resolves the issue
  • Right clicking on the main (largest) video on the screen and ‘unpin’
  • Right clicking on the presentation if it is a small image and ‘pin’
Audio/Video keeps breaking up/dropping out

In most cases this is due to your internet connection – to test your internet speed click here. If you normally have good internet and following a test find your internet speed has dropped, try resetting your router (unplug it for 10 seconds and then plug the power back in and wait a few seconds for it to reset).

I can’t click on any links provided:

Try holding Ctrl + clicking the link

I’m having difficulty logging into the meeting:

Make sure you are using the email address that the meeting invite was sent to.

I’m not receiving any emails that are sent to me:

Unless we are told differently, we will send all emails to the address you registered on the booking form for the training. Make sure you are using this email address or notify us if you are using a different one.
If you don’t receive materials that you need for breakout sessions, don’t panic, someone in your group would have received it and can share their screen in breakout rooms.

What if I have any problems?

On the day help will be at hand should you need it. The best thing to do is to write it in Chat and we’ll be able to see this and try to help you out without disrupting others taking part.

We have found that most difficulties people have with Teams are due to using an out of date Internet Browser (and particularly Internet Explorer) so avoid using these, or can be resolved easily by leaving/re-joining the meeting.


If you have any questions about the online training please feel free to contact us on: SSCPTraining@somerset.gov.uk

You can also use these contact details to notify us of any difficulties you may be having on the day or if you are able to use the Chat function in Teams during the training we will do our best to help on the day.