Maximizing the Potential of Office 365 Services
Transitioning to Microsoft Office 365 is increasingly top of organizations’ IT to-do lists, due to its great functionality and productivity enhancing qualities. But what those about to take the plunge and migrate to this exciting new system should know is that making the move can be challenging, unless they engage a professional team offering Office 365 services to assist in the process.
Here we explore the main features of Office 365 and find out how to implement it painlessly.
Office 365 services – Flexible and secure data storage
Office 365 is a cloud based system which facilitates off site file hosting and access to company data regardless of time or location.
File storage can be a big problem, especially for small to medium sized businesses. The more data held the costlier and more complex the issue becomes.
Cloud based applications offer a seamless solution whereby the company can upload and synchronize files using in this case a service called OneDrive (recently rebranded from its previous name Skydrive, due to a legal complaint by UK based British Sky Broadcasting).
This is a cost effective and flexible solution, allowing storage capacity to increase in line with business need – no need for a costly new server when the business grows.
For those who may be concerned about the security of their data floating around in the cloud, it is reassuring to know that Office 365 has recently been further enhanced with an additional layer of security added to the system. The introduction of this multi-factor authentication process means that access to company data is protected by more than just a password.
Office 365 services – Connectivity enhancing collaboration
Office 365 also has great credentials when it comes to improving access to company information and the programs which most businesses rely on to function- Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access etc. These programs can be used by employees whether they are at their desks or working remotely from wherever they need to be.
And it’s not just a case of accessing files and programs on an individual basis. Office 365 services facilitate increased collaboration among co-workers by creating a range of opportunities for better team-working. There is no doubt that by collaborating, teams can achieve much more – as Aristotle once said, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”
Employees are able to be productive regardless of their location and using a variety of devices, sharing output with other team members as part of group projects. If one team member makes a change to a shared document, this is available to the rest of the team in real time – consigning the days of duplicate and corrupted documents to history. Colleagues can also avail of instant messaging and conferencing technology to further improve collective communication.
Office 365 – how to shift seamlessly
While it is on paper possible to manage the transition to Office 365 in-house, as anyone who has experienced an IT migration will know, the path is generally much smoother if you work with someone who is experienced and knows the best route.
A quick web search will generate plenty of leads in terms of companies providing Office 365 services, so there is certainly no shortage of help out there. The important thing is to select a partner with the right credentials and experience to lead your organization through the process.
Specific Office 365 services to look for are:
- Comprehensive early stage assessment of existing IT infrastructure, needs analysis in respect of data requirements and scoping exercise to ensure maximum potential of Office 365 is achieved in the context of the specific business.
- Detailed migration plan developed in consultation with staff including communication plan, identification of training needs and agreement on transition timescale.
- Practical business focused approach to actual data migration, minimizing disruption to organization and ensuring staff feel supported throughout.
- Ongoing assistance by professional and accessible staff with specific expertise in Office 365 services.
Office 365 services – next steps
There is no doubt that Office 365 offers significant benefits to modern businesses, whether large or small. Increased accessibility for staff and to staff, more flexibility to work remotely and enhanced productivity through improved collaboration opportunities are just a few of the advantages of adopting this forward looking system.
Businesses who have already implemented Office 365 wonder how they ever survived without it, but the key message is that if you want to emerge from the migration process minus the battle scars, then the smart decision is to engage a consultant to help.
So to secure your future in the cloud, make today the day you find your Office 365 services professional and start your journey towards Office 365 migration.