A cost-effective productivity tool is a welcome addition to the small business arena. While there have been several releases of the aforementioned solution, Microsoft’s Office 365 seems to be making the loudest noise.
But moving to the cloud is an important decision, one that requires much research and comprehension. And like other IT solutions, you must determine if Office 365 right for your business? As a cloud provider with years of experience, SimplyClouds is no stranger to business applications, and we can help you decide if Office 365 is right for your business. We’ll discuss both the pros and cons of the application so you can make an informed decision.
What’s included in Office 365?
Office 365 encompasses several Microsoft services. The key features include online versions of Office, OneDrive for file storage and sharing, SharePoint for managing documents, and Hosted Exchange for email, just to name a few.
Office 365’s subscription-based pricing lets you enjoy the Office applications you already know and love with a flat monthly fee, instead of having to upgrade your software every three years. This is but one benefit that this cloud solution has to offer as we look at the rest below.
Because Office 365 is a cloud-based application, you’ll be able to take Office with you anywhere with an internet connection. Email, files, and programs can be accessed from any location and any device. This is particularly helpful if you have remote employees, multiple office locations, or employees who travel often.
Collaborate with ease
Office 365 lets anyone who needs to edit a document, spreadsheet or presentation work on the same version in real-time. You’ll be able to share direct access to your files so people can make changes to that one file. Furthermore, revisions can be tracked, which makes editing quick and easy.
Mix and match plans
The truth is that not everyone in your company is going to need the exact same Office 365 features. This is why you can mix and match different plans so you don’t pay for more than you need. You can view Office 365 plans here.
Leverage multi-level protection
Office 365 has a number of built-in security features to ensure the safety of your business’s data. They include email encryption, data loss prevention, mobile device management, advanced threat analytics, and more. Note that these aren’t available on all plans so you’ll need to purchase them as an add-on for certain plans.
There are many benefits to Office 365, but there are always two sides to every story. So let’s take a look at a couple of potential challenges we need to address.
You may not be able to access your files in the cloud if you’ve lost your internet connection. Note that you can overcome this by syncing your files to your desktop and using desktop versions of the Office programs if your plan includes them.
Compatibility with other business applications
The latest versions of Office programs might not be compatible with your line-of-business applications. Although you’ll be able to use some older versions of Office programs, you need to check compatibility with critical applications before upgrading Office, Windows, or any technology it may interact with.
We put this under both pros and cons because it really comes down to preference. Some business owners prefer to spend a large sum of money every few years and not worry about monthly expenditures. Others prefer monthly subscriptions that help them stay within budget.
After all is said and done, we encourage you to try out Office 365 here. Use it across different devices, try it with your co-workers and see what everyone thinks. If you have any questions or concerns, the SimplyClouds team is always ready to help address them. Just give us a call.