Additional programs have been added into the mix over the years, but it could be argued that the biggest innovation has been the move to the cloud with the launch of Office 365 in 2011. This subscription-based model gives users access to the latest version on a device of their choice.
Today, Office 365 is the world’s most popular cloud application and there’s virtually no excuse not to upgrade. But if you’re still on the fence, then why not read our list of the best reasons to buy and adopt Office 365?
Before the advent of Office 365, users would purchase a perpetual license to the latest version of the software. Microsoft would issue security updates and patches in between major releases, but these would often be infrequent and users would have to manage the complex process of installing patch updates.
With Office 365, Microsoft issues iterative updates to the suite periodically and automatically. This means that users have access to the most up-to-date features as part of their subscription and can take advantage of the enhanced productivity immediately.
With the local version of Microsoft Office, the only way to retrieve an asset or file would be to access the PC or network it was stored on. With Office 365, you can access any file on any device because they are stored in the cloud on OneDrive. What’s more, you can share them with colleagues using Microsoft Teams.
Whereas Microsoft Office is restricted for use on PC, Office 365 can be used on just about any device. Applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint are available on Android smartphones and tablets, iPhone and iPad. Access to the mobile apps is included in the subscription, letting users read and edit documents, spreadsheets and presentations on the go.
But logging in with a Microsoft Office 365 account unlocks additional features that further boost productivity, such as advanced editing and formatting, enhanced collaboration and storage space.
What’s more, an Office 365 subscription lets you use the applications on a tablet greater than 10.1 inches.
With the local version of Microsoft Office, users work in isolation, meaning there can be multiple copies of a document circling around an organisation and changes can get lost in a lengthy Outlook exchange.
Because Office 365 is cloud-based, it enables a raft of collaboration opportunities as users can work on documents online, offline or simultaneously with colleagues. This ensures everyone can see the changes that someone has made and there is one, single, up-to-date file in use.
Files can also be shared across an organisation or within specific teams using Microsoft Teams, ensuring everyone who needs to access a document can do so.
To take advantage of these collaborative features and to ensure users can work on the device of their choice, the cloud is the only real place to store Office 365 documents. With Office 365 you get up to 1TB of storage per user, with files easily accessible to anyone with an Internet connection. Not only is this more effective, but it also leaves you to use device storage for other things.
Of course, you could get licenses for multiple PCs with previous versions of Microsoft Office, but Office 365 makes it easier than ever to work across multiple devices. With Office 365 you can sign into five devices at the same time, meaning you can work on your PC, Mac, tablet or smartphone whenever you want, wherever you want.
Because Office 365 is delivered over the cloud, it means you automatically receive the latest version of the software and the most recent security updates. This means you benefit from Microsoft’s significant investments in security and also eliminates the need for patching.
Not only does this remove the need to manually install patches, it also helps minimise the security risks within your IT environment. For a small business, this can save time better spent elsewhere, while for an IT department at a larger organisation struggling with the twin roles of maintenance and innovation, it frees staff up to focus on higher value tasks.
Small businesses and IT departments also benefit from round-the-clock access to Office 365 experts who can assist with technology issues or billing and subscription support. This ensures any problems are resolved quickly, allowing you to get the most out of your subscription with minimal interference.
Traditional Microsoft Office licenses required up-front payment of significant amounts of money. For a small business or organisation requiring multiple licenses this raises cash-flow issues and can make it difficult to scale licensing as new employees join.
With Office 365 you can either pay a small monthly fee or pay for a whole year in one go to save money. This gives organisations the ability to add or remove subscriptions depending on their needs and to reduce the risk of financial waste.
There has never been an easier time to adopt Microsoft Office 365 and with a trusted partner like Insight you can ensure you are getting the right package for your organisation.
Buying through the Insight Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program also gives you flexible monthly billing and built-in support, so you can focus on running your business while we take care of the rest.