Microsoft Office 365 provides the tools to help businesses become more productive. Incorporating the well-known and well-used familiar Office applications – Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, etc. – with the new generation of productivity tools – such as Yammer, Planner, OneNote, Skype for Business, and Flow – Office 365 helps businesses streamline communication and collaboration across the organisation, and with customers, partners and other third parties as needed.
Office 365 is designed to meet the needs of an increasingly mobile workforce, while providing the security, compliance and privacy controls today’s business world demands. With the flexibility and scalability that cloud empowers, as well as marketed in a variety of pricing plans to meet budget and business requirements, Office 365 is growing as the productivity suite of choice for SMBs.
It’s, therefore, perhaps unsurprising that Microsoft is reporting 85 million users worldwide.
“The transition of software services to the cloud is here to stay,” says Oliver Moazzezi, Vuzion Technical Architect and Microsoft Office Servers and Services MVP, “and, even though a relatively new market, it’s one that is already mature and provisioning features and functionality ahead of traditional on-premise solutions.”
And yet many organisations, particularly SMBs, can be nervous of moving to the cloud – and which is why we’ve included a section on migration in our Office 365: The Definitive Guide and advice on suggesting that a business follows a three-step adoption plan –
- Identify key stakeholders to create an adoption team, and build and prioritise business scenarios, and construct an adoption success plan.
- Devise an ‘early adoption programme’, rolling out in specific areas before extending to cover the whole business.
- Drive adoption through driving value, realising ongoing value and continuing to boost user engagement.
Our guide – available for free download – also includes a section covering Office 365’s features, as the breadth of applications offered can come as a surprise to many businesses.
Darren Roberts, Vuzion Channel Business Manager, says, “The general direction of travel, particularly for SMBs, is to the cloud and for general productivity tools to Office 365. It’s, therefore, vital for a reseller to be able to offer these transformational, evergreen cloud-based products.
“Previously, partners were unable to own the customer billing arrangement, but since creation of the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) programme can now sell licensing to customers – and with the ecosystem of integrating products available to partners, along with the ability to incorporate a managed service, offering Office 365 is an opportunity not to be missed.”