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  • Writer's pictureSara Millis

What are the pros and cons of Office 365 for Business?

So you are considering Office 365 for Business but want to know the pros and cons to weigh your investment. Well, you've come to the right place!

In this IT Soho guide, we'll help you consider whether this is the right software for you.

Let's start with the pros.

Man smiling and looking away from his laptop, whilst sat at a desk.

Pros of Office 365 for Business

Office 365 has been around for quite some time now, and the platform has proved popular for businesses of all sizes. According to Statistica, in February 2024, companies using Office 365 for Business stood at over a million in the US alone (The top ten countries account for almost 2.5 million companies using the software worldwide).

Here are the most significant advantages:

1. Enhanced Collaboration

The best thing about Office 365 for Business is its ability to enhance collaboration within your team. With cloud-based applications like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, multiple team members can work on the same document in real time. Additionally, Microsoft Teams offers seamless communication and collaboration, allowing team members to chat, share files, and work on projects together in one place.

2. Flexibility and Accessibility

Another great advantage of Office 365 for Business is its flexibility and accessibility. With cloud-based storage and applications, you and your team can access your documents and applications from anywhere, anytime, using any device. This feature is handy if your business has remote workers or a mobile workforce, as it allows everyone to stay connected and productive, no matter where they are.

3. Automatic Updates and Maintenance

The platform provides continuous updates without requiring user intervention, ensuring you're always using the latest version of your applications. This feature also reduces the burden on IT staff by eliminating the need for manual updates.

4. Integration with Microsoft Ecosystem

Office 365 for Business integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft products and services, creating a streamlined workflow and enhancing productivity. For example, you can easily save your documents to OneDrive, Microsoft's cloud-based storage solution, or use Power BI to create stunning data visualisations. This integration ensures that your team uses the best tools for their work without switching between multiple platforms.

5. Robust Security Features

Finally, Office 365 provides advanced security protocols to safeguard your business data, especially if you pick the Business Premium plan.

Additionally, the platform provides features like two-factor authentication, data loss prevention, and mobile device management, further enhancing your security measures.

Let's look at the downside to using Office 365.

The downside to Office 365 for Business

As with any system or software, things may not always gel with your in-house processes and systems. Let's look at the most significant considerations here.

1. Subscription Costs

The ongoing subscription fees of Office 365 can add up over time, which can be a concern for businesses on a tight or tightening budget. To solve this, ensure your IT support updates user numbers and access monthly.

2. Dependence on Internet Connectivity

Office 365 relies heavily on a reliable internet connection. Without it, the software's functionality can be limited, which can disrupt workflow and cause delays. However, some of the programs can be used offline - so not all work has to stop if John from Sales is stuck on-site with a client in a rural location.

3. Learning Curve for New Features

If your employees are unfamiliar with Office 365, they may need time to adjust to the new features. Additional training may also be required to ensure everyone uses the software effectively. However, once you get up and running and have a straightforward system set-up, your team should find what they need and when to work on it.

4. Data Security Concerns

Data breaches and privacy violations are always risky when storing data in the cloud. Addressing your concerns and ensuring compliance with data privacy regulations is crucial for any business using Office 365 for Business. That's why we recommend the Business Premium licence.

Pros and cons of Office 365 for business: What should you consider when planning to buy Office 365 for Business?

Here is a quick checklist of things we think you should consider before investing in any software solution.

  • Assessing your business needs involves identifying specific requirements and goals and aligning Office 365 features with your organisational objectives. Here's our guide to Microsoft 365 licences to help you establish the best for you. In most cases, we'd recommend the Business Premium plan.

  • Planning your budget - Evaluate the total cost of ownership and weigh the financial implications against benefits.

  • Provision for training and support  - Planning training sessions during the transition and ensuring adequate support for employees adapting to Office 365 is critical. You want to ensure your team is fully equipped to use Office 365 to its fullest potential so they can work smarter, not harder.

Do you need an expert IT support partner to help you implement and manage your Microsoft needs? Contact us today; we serve central London and offer various support packages for software, hardware and data needs.


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