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Microsoft Teams - guest access

When Derbyshire employees need to communicate and collaborate with people outside our organisation, Microsoft Teams allows them to add 'guests' into their team.


When an external guest is added to a Derbyshire Team, they'll be able to:

  • create a channel (if this has been allowed by the Team owner)
  • participate in chat - the guest won't be able to share documents via chat
  • post in a channel including editing, deleting their own messages and share files within a channel
  • share a channel file
  • access SharePoint files

Requirements to join MS Teams as a guest

To join as an external guest in Teams there are some requirements that need to be met.

Device requirements

As an external guest you'll need one of the following devices with a minimum system.

A Windows device (PC or laptop):

  • minimum processor of 1.1GHz or faster
  • 4.0 GB RAM
  • 3.0 GB of available disk space
  • Windows 10

A Mac device (PC or laptop):

  • Intel Core Duo processor
  • 4.0 GB RAM
  • 1.5 GB of available disk space
  • Chrome or Edge installed because Safari isn't fully supported by Microsoft Teams

Currently external guests won't be able to access Teams by a mobile device due to an issue that's being investigated by Microsoft. ​​​​​​​

External guest account requirements

As an external guest you will need an email account that you know the password for and which isn't used by anyone else - it must be personal to you.

The invitation link sent to you to join the Team needs to be accessed within 30 days. If you don't log in for a 90-day period your guest account will be deleted and you will have to be re-invited to join the Team.

Joining a Team as an external guest​​​​​​

To join a Derbyshire Team as an external guest you will need to go through an onboarding process (onboarding is the process of authenticating to access our Teams).

You can only access our Teams from a web browser, not from the Teams app and we recommend Edge or Chrome to do this.

Accepting the invitation to join a Team

You'll receive an email, which comes from noreply@email.teams.microsoft.com.

If you've not received the email inviting you to the Team please check with the person who sent the invite that your email address is correct and also check the invite hasn't gone into any spam or junk folders.

  • click 'Open Microsoft Teams' within the email
  • choose 'Use the web app instead' - you may also get a pop up in your browser and you'll need to click cancel on this first
  • you'll then be asked to sign in again
  • enter the email address that the invite has been sent to and click 'Next'
  • you will then be asked to authenticate, which helps prove your identity:
    • if your email isn't a Microsoft associated email address, such as Outlook, Live, Hotmail or associated with an Xbox account then you'll be asked to authenticate using email, in the first instance - you'll need to check your emails for the verification code
  • enter the verification code in the enter code box that will be in the browser you were using to sign in to the Team
  • review and accept the permissions, this allows us to see your name, email address and phone number (if included) - you'll only be able to access our Team if you accept the permissions.

On selecting 'Accept' this will move you to a further window stating, 'More information required'. This is for setting up your authentication so that you'll be able to access the Team quicker.

There are times when you're setting up access to a Team that you may be asked for a password, this means that your email address is already associated with Microsoft. If you get asked for a password it's the password for your email account. We won’t be able to help with resetting this password.

Setting up multifactor authentication

In a window headed 'Keep your account secure' you'll now be prompted to use the Microsoft Authenticator app for future authentication. This is an app you can download on any smartphone, but you can set up authentication by using a phone call or text message, if you don't have a smartphone.

Once you've downloaded the app, click 'Next'.

If you want to set up telephone or text authentication click 'I want to set up a different method' and follow the guidance steps.

When you get to the 'Configure mobile app' window, you'll need to keep this window open and follow the next steps on your smartphone:

  • download Microsoft Authenticator on your smartphone from the app store
  • if you've never used Microsoft Authenticator before you'll need to click the 'add account' button
  • if you have used it then press the 3 dots and choose 'add account'
  • choose work or school account and then scan the QR code from the open 'Configure mobile app' window

You may need to allow permissions to your camera, then the rear camera will activate to scan the QR code from the open 'Configure mobile app' window.

Once you've scanned the QR code, Microsoft Authenticator will test it works by sending a notification to your phone for you to approve. When the notification is successfully approved, you’ll then have successfully set up the Microsoft Authenticator app.

Accessing the Team

You can only access one of our Teams on a laptop or PC.

When multi factor authentication has been set up, you need to go back to your emails, to the original email you received inviting you to the Team and follow these steps:

  1. Click the 'Open in Microsoft Teams' button in the email.
  2. Click cancel on the pop up and choose 'Use the web app instead'.
  3. Enter your email address and press next.
  4. Go to your email account for the code you’ve been sent.
  5. Enter the code into the box.
  6. Authenticate using Microsoft Authenticator, phone call or text message – which ever option you set up earlier.

You will now have access to our Team.

If you're signing in, authenticating, and then being asked to sign in again you'll need to contact the member of staff who has invited you to the Team and they will need to contact our ICT Service to reset your authentication.

If you receive a 'You can't get there from here' error message when trying to access the Team, this means that you're trying to access the Team in the Teams app, which you'll not be able to do. As such, you'll need to use a web browser instead.

For further help, there is also a helpful guide from Microsoft on how to set up the authenticator app – Microsoft guide for setting up the authenticator app.