Manage and set up storyline in Viva Engage

Storyline empowers everyone in your organization to connect and contribute. It enables your leaders to reach and engage employees. Through storyline, employees can share updates, experiences, and perspectives to reach followers and colleagues across the organization. Engage with storylines from the Web and the mobile applications you use every day—Outlook, Microsoft Teams, and Microsoft Viva.

When storyline is enabled in your organization, you see the following changes in the Viva Engage app:

  • Internal (nonguest) users who have access to Viva Engage see a new default Storyline tab on their user profile page.
  • Users see a new Storylines page. Users can toggle between a personalized feed of posted content or a focused feed that includes only storyline content from the people that the user follows.

Set up storyline

Microsoft 365 Global admins and Engage admins manage storyline for their organizations in the Engage admin center. To access it, select the ellipses on the right side of the top navigation menu, and then select Admin.

Screenshot of the entry point into the Engage admin center.

On the Feature management tab, select Storyline to customize settings.

Screenshot of the entry point into managing storyline settings.

Enable storyline

In the interface to manage storyline, admins see toggles that control the availability of storyline in the organization. When storyline is enabled in your organization, it's available to all internal users who have access to Viva Engage. All internal users have their own storyline feed on their profile page and can see, react to, and respond to others’ storyline posts.

Screenshot of the storyline settings toggles in Viva Engage.


Guests don't have their own storyline and can't see storyline content from internal users.

When you disable storyline, the storylines landing page and the Storylines tab on user profile pages are removed. Users can't start new storyline conversations, but existing conversations aren't deleted. Previously posted storyline content is still available through search and the Viva Engage Inbox for the people who participated in the storyline conversation. Users who didn't participate in the conversation previously don't have access after storyline is disabled. The storyline content continues to be available through network data export and is available through eDiscovery for networks that are in native mode.

Advanced settings

Storyline supports additional controls for admins to customize their configuration. Currently you can set default notification preferences for storyline, and more controls are planned for the future.

Set default notification channels for Storyline posts

In its default configuration, Storyline notifies followers via Teams, email, and Viva Engage when a person that they follow posts to their storyline. Network and Verified admins can override this setup to control what default notifications are selected when a user follows someone. Users can also change from the default selections to their personal preferences for notifications for each person they follow.

The system default selections for notifications include:

  • Microsoft Teams notifications are delivered in the Teams Activity feed.
  • Email delivered to your inbox includes support for actionable messages, so the conversation can be viewed and replied to from Outlook Web Access.
  • Viva Engage notifications are delivered to the Viva Engage notification bells.

Security and compliance

Storyline is built on the same content and conversation platform as community messages in Viva Engage. Therefore, you can use the same tools for storyline that you use for monitoring and governance.

  • Use eDiscovery through the compliance portal for native mode networks.
  • Storyline content is available via network export.
  • Files shared through storyline are stored in OneDrive and are subject to any governance you already have in place.
  • Storylines supports the same Report a conversation feature that's available for community conversations.
  • Microsoft Purview Communications Compliance (E5): Use AI to monitor conversations for bullying, harassment, or topics that are against usage policy.

In addition to the capabilities listed here, storyline also features a feed that includes all storyline posts sorted by the date the storyline conversation was started. To access this feed, go to the storyline landing page. In the feed, select the filter icon in the upper-right corner to switch the filter to All.

Security, compliance, and governance for files uploaded to storyline posts

Storyline posts are backed by Yammer services. Compliance for posts is therefore the same as for the rest of Viva Engage. If you're in native mode, posts are ingested into the substrate and are subject to the same compliance and e-Discovery capabilities as posts in communities, including communications compliance and retention. Because files are stored in OneDrive, they inherit security and compliance policies configured for files in OneDrive.

When users are deleted, for example when an individual leaves the company, the system follows the Microsoft 365 user deletion process that's described in the "Delete a user" section of Manage Yammer users across their lifecycle from Office 365.

File storage for storyline

All files attached to storyline posts are stored in a hidden library in the author’s OneDrive. There's no entry point to this location in the Microsoft 365 user experience, but you can access it through a URL resembling the following example: 


To determine the precise URL for a user's storyline, follow these steps:

  1. Open the user's OneDrive in a browser.

  2. Note the URL to the user's OneDrive.

  3. Locate the user identifier, which is the part of the URL immediately that follows

  4. Replace everything after the profile identifier and the backslash plus VivaEngage, without a space, case insensitive. The resulting URL will resemble this example: 


  5. Press Enter. The library will appear. 

  6. Open the Attachments folder, and then open the storyline folder. The resulting URL to the folder where storyline files are saved will resemble this example:

    https://<tenantname><user identifier>/VivaEngage/Attachments/Storyline

Managing files uploaded to storyline posts

You can use the storyline interface to edit documents and rich media that was uploaded to posts. We strongly recommend that you don't add, replace, or delete documents and rich media directly in OneDrive, as those actions risk breaking the front-end experience of posts in your storyline. 

To delete files associated with a post from the VivaEngage library:

  1. Remove the file from the associated post. From any post, the author or an admin can select the ellipsis (...) menu and choose Edit.
  2. Navigate to the author's VivaEngage library and delete the file.

Frequently asked questions

Why isn’t storyline available in our organization?

Storyline is only supported in Yammer enterprise networks that enforce Office 365 identity. If your network doesn't enforce Office 365 identity or if you have a Yammer Basic network, storyline isn't available to your organization.

Who can see storyline content?

Storyline content is visible to any internal user who has access to Viva Engage. Guests can't see storyline content.

Does storyline work for guests?

Guests are excluded from storyline access. They don't have their own storyline and can't see any storyline content posted by other users.

Can I control who sees storyline content?

You can't prevent any internal user from seeing storyline content if they have access to Viva Engage. Guests can't see any storyline content.

Can I control which users get their own storyline?

We plan to add the capability to limit who gets their own storyline after storyline reaches general availability. This functionality will allow you to use Azure Active Directory groups to designate which users get a personal storyline feed on their user profile page in Yammer. Users that don't get a storyline will be able to reply and react to storyline posts from users who do have their own storyline.

How do I delete custom cover photos that were uploaded to a person’s storyline?

When the preview features toggle is turned on, the user or Network and Verified admin can delete uploaded cover photos. To do this, go to the user profile page and select Delete under Update cover photo.

To delete a previously uploaded cover photo when the preview toggle is turned off, you need to temporarily opt in to the preview so you can access the delete cover photo option.

See also

Access the Viva Engage admin center

Set up the Viva Engage admin center

Identify leaders and manage audiences in Viva Engage