Making its debut in June 2011, Office 265 was initially designed for the enterprise. However, as the years have passed, Office 365 services are now available to organizations of all sizes that want to achieve the same competitive edge as enterprise entities. As a cloud-based Office suite, you get Exchange, SharePoint, Lync, and Office web apps. And the premium edition includes these well-known apps:

  • Access
  • Word
  • Publisher
  • Outlook
  • MS Excel
  • One Note (unavailable for the Mac OS)

Some developers have called the cloud the most ground-breaking innovation in the past 20 years. So then, it makes sense that Office 365 would surge in popularity for its ease of access, security features, and mobile compatibility. Are you ready to transition to Office 365 services in lieu of desktop applications? Have you been challenged by the pros and cons? Not to worry. In this guide, we’ll illuminate the advantages and disadvantages of Office 365. As a result, you will be in a better position to make an informed decision.

Discover the advantages of Office 365 services

For starters, Office 365 allows usage for up to five devices. Moreover, Exchange Online also allows up to five devices per license. It’s almost too good to be true. Accessibility is really one of the biggest benefits of Office 365. By utilizing Office 365 services, you can work from anywhere – as can your staff. You can also use both a Mac and a Windows machine for once license. So then, if you feel like brainstorming with your employees at 2 a.m., you can. You never know when inspiration might hit, and it always helps to have collaborative tools on hand. Remote workers can immediately offer their feedback via document sharing and editing on SharePoint – a huge advantage for forward-thinking organizations. Why not give your employees the ability to securely work from anywhere? Now, let’s take a look at a few more advantages of Office 365 services.

Cost-effective: In contrast to purchasing individual licenses, signing up for Office 365 services offers lower upfront costs and a convenient monthly subscription model that aligns with your business needs. For instance, Small Business Premium comes with business-class email services without having to bear the brunt of purchasing, installing, and maintaining an in-house email server. The subscription payment model, on the other hand, makes sense for digital businesses anyway.

Let’s face it, when resources are tight, money talks. Microsoft has been in the software business for upwards of four decades and it offers a proven business suite that you have probably already used. According to a Forrester Consulting study, they found a 162 percent percent return on investment for SMBs and midsize companies that transitioned to Office 365. The research also found that  most organizations achieved ROI in 5 months and were able to decrease overhead costs by around  $8,100. It goes without saying that investing in Office 365 services will lower your licensing costs and prevent the need to purchase a round of new software licenses with every new release. Also included are automated product updates, patches, and releases. It’s a win-win.

So, save your IT team the hassle of updating and troubleshooting. Office 365 does so automatically so your IT department can focus on more strategic company tasks. Your Office 365 services suite will be managed by experts from setup – which is so much easier relative to configuring an Exchange server – to any other necessary configurations and updates. Office 365 is consistently reliable and secure.

User-friendly: Office 365 is quite compatible with mobile and touchscreen devices. It can be used from any device with an Internet connection. If you have team members in another country, no problem. In fact, Office 365 helps your company to build a global team with real-time collaborative tools. If you travel often, you can take Office 365 with you.

Enhance productivity: Office 365, with its extensive suite of business tools certainly improves overall productivity. When your remote workers can access Office 365 from home, they no longer have to worry about coming into the office to get work done – especially useful during a pandemic. Moreover, Office 365 is just like the desktop application aside from more recent features and being cloud-based.

Storage availability: If storage is a concern, Office 365 offers 1 Terabyte of space so that file sharing and collaboration is easy. Your files are stored in the cloud instead of on a local server. If for any reason your office experiences some type of disaster, you can rest assured knowing your files will be safe and disaster-proof. Also, you don’t have to perform any backups – a relief in and of itself.

A few disadvantages of Office 365

Now, to be on the safe side, there are a few disadvantages of Office 365 – this can also depend on who you ask. Like any other business suite, you have your super fans and your critics. What matters are the features that are most relevant to your business needs and objectives. To start, Exchange online is not compatible with operating systems before Windows 7 or Mac OS X 10.5.8. And, this will change as newer iterations are released.

It really boils down to security, and newer operating systems have more advanced security to address current cyber security threats. Many times, cyber criminals will try to exploit bugs in older operating systems so it should be seen as an advantage to use a newer operating system in conjunction with Office 365.

Another potential disadvantage is you have to install every application Office 365 offers whether you use them or not. So then, if you don’t use SharePoint, you still have to install the app. However, this “disadvantage” is easily remedied with some SharePoint training and examples so that you understand how useful this app can be for business collaboration.

In conclusion

If your organization already uses cloud services or is ready to migrate, then switching to Office 365 services provides a reliable, well-known, and reliable business suite. If you have any questions about making the switch, SSI is happy to help.