3 Key Reasons to Move to Office 365

December 20, 2016

 

3 Key Reasons to Move to Office 365

By Zach Dickson

Office 365 has been around for over five years since its full release in 2011, highlighting not only the maturity of the service itself, but of cloud services in general. In those five years, it has shown incredible growth, to the point where it is now the most popular enterprise cloud service on offer.

According to Skyhigh Networks, a US based cloud security company, analysis conducted of 27 million employees shows in the last two years, Office 365 has eclipsed all other cloud providers to emerge as the most widely used enterprise cloud service by user count.

There are many reasons as to why Office 365 is such a success story, not least its reliability. Office 365 has easily achieved its 99.9% uptime SLA over the past five years, with the service dropping below 99.98% uptime only once going back to the start of 2015, per the Microsoft Trust Centre.

Recent worldwide uptimes for Office 365:

 

 


So, beyond reliability why should you and your business move to Office 365? I have picked three of the key reasons and summarised each below:

 

1. Scalability & Manageable Costs

With Office 365 you can scale both up and down in terms of the number of licenses you are paying for at any given time. This provides pay-as-you-go pricing, which in turn gives you both flexibility and predictability in terms of your billing.

Previously, organisations regularly opted for one-off purchases of Office products as they hired new employees. Office 365 can reduce the risk of sunk costs if an employee leaves your company, allowing you to remove their license as required. Office 365 also offers savings on a lot of up-front costs compared to on premise equipment, as well as removing the need for ongoing server maintenance and the associated costs surrounding it.

 

2. Increase Collaboration & Productivity across your Workforce

With Office 365, users can access their documents across a range of devices, including PCs, Macs, iOS, Android & Windows Phones. This can facilitate a BYOD (bring your own device) policy at your workplace, or simply allow users easy access to their work from any location with internet at any time.

One of the coolest features with Office 365 is the collaboration tools. Users can collaborate with their colleagues in real time, sharing access to documentation and making changes on the fly as their colleague looks on. This can again be done from anywhere on the globe, so you can have someone here in Auckland co-authoring the same Word document as someone based in London making real-time changes on either end.

The rest of the company can have access to the latest version of these files as they are stored online, and therefore always kept up to date. These documents can be shared both within your company, and externally, with you always controlling the permissions and access.

Not only that, but with Office 365 you will always have the latest and greatest versions of the Microsoft applications available, so when they release more cool features in the future, you will have instant access to them.

 

3. Security, security & more security

When you move your organisation to the cloud, you must be 100% sure your information is secure always. As I mentioned in a previous blog post, data is one of the most valuable types of currency a business can own. Microsoft takes protecting your data very seriously and has a wide range of security and privacy features as standard on Office 365.

I have picked out a handful of the most interesting security and privacy features below:

  • Microsoft restricts physical data centre access to authorised personnel only, and has implemented multiple layers of physical security, such as biometric readers, motion sensors, 24-hour secured access, video camera surveillance, and security breach alarms.
  • Office 365 provides robust email protection against spam, viruses, and malware with Exchange Online Protection. Office 365 also offers Advanced Threat Protection (ATP), an email filtering service that provides additional protection against specific types of advanced threats.
  • You can use Microsoft Intune to manage and protect your workforce’s mobile devices across Windows, Apple iOS & Android Platforms. You can identify, monitor & protect sensitive information including Exchange email, Outlook email, and OneDrive for Business documents, based on the enrolment status of the device and the compliance policies set by the administrator.
  • Microsoft enables encryption of customer data both at rest and in transit. For customer data at rest, Office 365 uses volume-level and file-level encryption. For customer data in transit, Office 365 uses multiple encryption technologies for communications between datacentres and between clients and servers.

Finally, Microsoft gives you control over exactly what levels of security and privacy are required for your business. You can turn features on and off depending on your needs, ensuring you as the end user are always in control.

 

Office 365 Migration & Support

Office 365 is the future of office productivity and collaboration tools. If your organisation is considering the switch to either an on premise, cloud or hybrid deployment option and needs expert help, migration services are available through Lucidity. As a Microsoft Gold Certified partner, Lucidity offers services including migration planning, as well as 24/7 ongoing support after the deployment. Opting for these services will not only assist with a successful migration and setup of Office 365, but also help reduce your staffing and support costs.

To talk about how an Office 365 migration might work for you with an Office 365 adoption specialist, please email Zach Dickson, zach@lucidity.co.nz, or call +64 22 658 0920. Lucidity offers a no obligation consultation including an audit of your current IT set up.

 


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