Learn more about Microsoft Office 365 and what it may offer your business
Small and medium-sized businesses are being relentlessly targeted by Microsoft talking about their new Office 365 application. But what is it, and why should it matter to you?
Read on for the answer.
What Microsoft Office 365 is not
Office 365 is not like a traditional boxed copy of Office:
- It’s not installed on your desktop PC as such.
- You cannot ‘buy’ a perpetual license.
What Microsoft Office 365 is
Office 365 is called ‘Cloud software’ or Software as a Service:
- It is installed on a server somewhere outside your office (like Ireland.)
- You access Office 365 via a web browser.
- You pay a monthly or annual licence fee for the software.
Office 365 - the same, only different
Despite being hosted online, everything still works the same as the retail boxed versions of Office:
- Access to all your familiar applications: Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook.
- The same functions and features, running in your web browser.
- The same user experience so there’s no loss in productivity if you switch.
Office 365 – the financial benefits
Cloud software sounds complicated, but it offers distinct financial advantages:
- Lower cost for new licenses.
- No more upgrade fees – new versions are included in the subscription fee.
- Flexible licensing – pay only for what you use.
- Microsoft Office 365 support services included in licence fee.
“Office 365 delivered an ROI of 321% with a payback period of 2 months for the composite midsize organization. Office 365 improves productivity, provides IT peace of mind, and reduces TCO compared to a similar on premises implementation.” - The Total Economic Impact Of Microsoft Office 365 – Forrester Research.
Office 365 – the practical benefits
Cloud software offers your business a competitive advantage:
- Per user licensing allows you to use Office 365 with up to 5 devices per subscription.
- Any time, any place, any device access to productivity suite via the Cloud.
- Online file storage and collaboration tools for improved productivity.
- Immediate access to the latest tools to boost productivity.
Office 365 – more power
But wait, there’s more included with a subscription:
- Fully managed Microsoft Exchange Server email functionality.
- Conferencing and messaging services via Microsoft Lync help you stay in touch.
- Company website hosting included in the fee.
- Share files using OneDrive Cloud storage to collaborate with remote employees.
Office 365 – making your IT cheaper
Office 365 can save you money in other ways too:
- Lower Office support costs – Microsoft Office 365 support services cover everything to do with Office, which can save you money.
- Improved availability – all services covered by 99.9% uptime agreement.
- Improved security – enterprise-class security provisions keep your data safer than your own company server can.
Why you should bother
Office 365 is worthy of your consideration because:
- It is effectively a cheaper and better way to run Office.
- It allows you to create a mobile workforce quickly.
- It allows you to stay up-to-date more cheaply.
- It removes much of the operational headaches associated with SME IT.