Microsoft 365 is a core part of our business. It allows our team to work from anywhere, collaborate on projects seamlessly, and access all the tools they need for their job.
As well as using it ourselves, we help other businesses set up Microsoft 365 and guide them on their journey with the suite. Dozens of times a year, we see the power that 365 has to improve business productivity and enable employees to work in an agile way.
The conversations we have with organisations tend to be structured around how Microsoft 365 can help them improve their productivity. We recognise that many other businesses might be considering 365 as a solution, so we have put together this article to lay out some of the key benefits and productivity enhancements that Microsoft 365 can bring to any organisation.
Microsoft 365 is a cloud-based service that caters to both personal and business users. From a business perspective, it includes all the standard Microsoft Office applications you would expect, as well as a variety of extra programs, including those focused on productivity and specific tasks.
On top of this, 365 provides a huge amount of cloud storage for businesses which scales to the size of your organisation. This provides the groundwork for many of the benefits that the service provides.
For many organisations, the transition to remote working caused a lot of productivity issues. Often, this was due to their IT systems not being set up for this kind of work.
Businesses that relied on Microsoft 365 found the transition a lot easier. Their cloud storage was already in place, allowing employees to get all their emails and files easily. They also had immediate access to Teams, which gave them an immediate way to begin remote collaboration.
Within 365, all files, whether it be a word document or an excel spreadsheet, are saved and continuously updated via SharePoint when someone is working on them. Employees can access, edit, and collaborate on documents from anywhere.
Another small benefit for organisations in this area is that remote employees don’t need to have their own separate license. They can simply be added to the company’s Microsoft 365 license and get started right away.
Microsoft has been focused on providing secure cloud storage for its customers for many years. By utilising multi-factor authentication (MFA), 365’s cloud storage is much more resilient to unauthorised access, even if an attacker gains access to one of your business’ devices, such as a laptop or tablet.
As well as MFA, Microsoft invests heavily in its server security, threat detection, and anti-malware functionality to make it far more resistant to cyber-attacks.
365 also supports state-of-the-art email encryption, meaning that only the designated recipients of the email can open it. This also extends to customers, or other contacts outside of the organisation, meaning that even a recipient who isn’t a Microsoft 365 customer will benefit from the encryption.
Microsoft 365 offers a variety of ways to improve collaboration between employees, both remote and office-based. Outlook, Skype for Business, and Teams are the flagship programs in this area.
Skype for Business is great for hosting meetings or conference calls between employees or clients. Outlook is one of the most powerful email software programs on the market today, and it’s continuing to be improved upon.
Teams is an amazing instant messaging tool that promotes collaboration through a variety of features. Video calls, real-time collaboration on documents, easy sharing of resources, creation of virtual rooms for different teams or groups, and much, much more.
Finally, SharePoint and OneDrive are excellent tools for documentation purposes. SharePoint makes storing, organising and sharing files easy and quick. Whenever someone edits a document, its changes are automatically saved to the cloud. Multiple people can even be working on a document at once, making collaborative meetings easy.
As well as including all the standard Microsoft Office programs like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, Microsoft 365 features an enormous variety of extra tools that can help you operate more efficiently.
Here’s a list of a few of these tools, just to give you an idea of the depth that 365 has:
- Project is a project management tool that allows organisations to develop schedules, assign resources, track progress, manage budgets, and much more.
- Visio is a diagramming and flowchart creation tool that can be used for numerous different businesses and industries.
- Bookings is a scheduling tool that allows customers to book appointments with a business and integrates with websites, Teams, and Skype for Business.
- Forms is a survey creation tool that allows users to create surveys and quizzes that can be shared. The data can then be automatically fed into a variety of different programs.
This is just a small sample of the over 30 tools and applications that Microsoft 365 contains. There is a tool for every business and the level of integration makes them easy to adopt into your existing systems.
So many solutions operate with a complex payment structure that leads to businesses being confused about their monthly spend and unable to break down the costs easily.
Microsoft 365’s subscription model is easy to understand and track. Organisations select a license level of 365, from basic to premium, and simply pay a price per user every month. Users can be added easily and the billing is updated automatically, taking out any guesswork.
If you are interested in finding out more about Microsoft 365 and how it can benefit your business, get in touch with us today. Our Microsoft experts will be happy to demonstrate the system for you and answer any questions you have.
If you would like to chat about your Businesses needs, get in touch with our IT experts.