While Microsoft Office has been a consistent standard for most workplaces for decades, the model for how businesses use productivity software has been changing over the past several years. Cloud services that use a subscription payment model for access to all the tools a business needs are becoming the norm. Microsoft’s offer in this category is Microsoft 365 which includes all the productivity software from Office 365. Is Office 365 right to include in your business’s IT services planning? Let’s look at some of the benefits and downsides for you company.
Office 365 Offers Numerous Benefits for Businesses
The biggest advantage to Microsoft 365 for business is that it is inclusive of so many essential and useful productivity tools in one package. All the software from Office 365, cloud services and file sharing with Sharepoint, email services and more are all part of the package for business’s that opt for Microsoft’s option. It is a very comprehensive list of services and covers a lot of ground. Having everything under one subscription makes things somewhat more convenient from an IT services perspective as well, as it can be managed and controlled from one place.
The cloud nature of Microsoft 365’s functionality is also especially useful and convenient for businesses in today’s working environments. Working from home and working while traveling are increasingly common states for people. The cloud services that come with Microsoft 365 allow workers to access and perform their work remotely from numerous locations. Office 365 allows users to access and edit cloud-saved files from both the browser and within native desktop apps for versatility.
The online version of the Office 365 apps aren’t as robust or user-friendly as their desktop native counterparts. While this won’t matter for everyone, those in situations where their staff need the versatility of the browser-based apps will want to consider it. The fact that the user-experience isn’t uniform across all versions of the product’s tools could also cause confusion or difficulties.
The other downside is that the subscription model, while more affordable in the short term, requires organizations to continue paying monthly as long as they need the software. Long term, the continuous payment model with no end will add up and could be costly. That said, the subscription model is becoming standard even among competing products, so it may be less of a concern with the industry shifting.
There are three tiers of Microsoft 365 service for business. The first tier is only $5/month per user and it includes many of the cloud features but forgoes the desktop version of the Office 365 apps. The second-tier costs $12.50 per month per user and includes the desktop versions of all the office apps. The final tier, at $20/month per user, adds advanced security and device management features.
If you think Microsoft 365 is right for you and you need an IT services provider to implement it for your organization, reach out to the experts at Fullscope IT.