FMCN March Newsletter – Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft’s Office 365 Small Business solution has been a hot topic of late for small business users who now can have one centralized suite of products and features for an affordable monthly fee.

Included in the $15 premium package is:
* Office Professional Plus which includes Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, Publisher and One Note.
* Activesync for Outlook allowing for full synchronization of email, calendar, contacts and tasks across Blackberry, IOS and android smartphones, tablets and devices.
* One drive (formerly Skydrive) for file sharing
* Lync and Skype for Instant Messaging, conferencing and worldwide calling

Since last year when Windows 8 became more prevalent and the smartphone wars heated up with intense competition between Blackberry and android, our clients have been demanding more from their productivity suites.

Our initial draw to the Office 365 package was the integration of Activesync allowing for all smartphones to synchronize data wirelessly. For Blackberry users, the only options were BES or desktop sync since the previous versions Activesync were server heavy and required a lot of support. For IOS and android users, using Gmail sync or other 3rd party apps was sometimes confusing and not always reliable.

Since moving ourselves and our clients to the Office365 platform, stability and speed have been reported across the board.

Having the newest Office suite immediately available to be installed on up to 5 devices made our clients very happy to get rid of scores of cd, dvds and volume licensing material from the past. Also, knowing that as long as they keep up the subscription, future updates and upgrades to Office will be included for all licenses.

For those users who collaborate online, the one drive service allows shared files in the cloud to be accessed by all users on the same plan. This is great for documents, revisions, commenting and general file storage. However, One drive isn’t designed as a backup solution so a separate backup should still be in place.

One drive also integrates with Outlook for web only access which means even if you are not at a computer but want to login to the Outlook web client, you will still have access to all your info in real time.

Finally to round out the communication side of things, Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype now means integration of your calls, chats and profiles can be combined with Lync, the new IM of the Office suite.

As a whole package, the Microsoft Office 365 business package is now one of our favorites and we have been converting as many clients who meet the criteria as possible.

Since the package works across PC, Mac, tablets and smartphones there are a lot of advantages and convenience to having it all centralized through one account.

For more info, contact us anytime.

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