Office 365 is a pioneering concept in the world of computing and this is the reason why organizations are switching to the cloud based productivity suite, especially Office 365 intranet. Moving the business data to the cloud facilitates business agility, saves time and cost.
However, there are a lot of misconceptions about moving your data and working in the cloud and it is important to get the facts right before making the leap. This article aims at debunking some of the myths around cloud computing and Office 365.
Myth 1 – Office 365 is simply the MS Office that can be used online.
Fact – Office 365 is an advanced version of MS Office that is backed by productivity tools. It will help you work smarter and effectively.
Office 365 is an easy-to-use and productive set of tools that lets you work from anywhere and at any time. Since it is powered by the cloud, its tools are simpler, manageable and stay up to date. In some Office 365 plans, the latest Office applications can be installed on multiple devices, and your information is available even while you are offline.
Here is the list of tools:
- Exchange Online for calendaring and email.
- OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online for websites, workflows, file sync and share, collaboration.
- Power BI and Microsoft MyAnalytics for reports and advanced analytics.
- Skype for Business for calls, messaging and conferences.
- Yammer for social networking.
With Office 365, you are given a choice of storing the business data in the cloud or on premise. Office 365 lets you use Office desktop client including Microsoft PowerPoint, Word, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Skype for Business & other tools that are licensed, deployed and updated as a service.
Myth 2 – By moving business data on the cloud, you will have no control over the technology.
Fact – You still have utmost control over the technology; and your IT department doesn’t have to spend time maintaining and upgrading software.
The time spent on server updates and maintenance is significantly reduced. Your IT staff can concentrate more on advancing the organization’s technology and improving its operations for boosting the overall productivity and agility.
Myth 3 – Keeping the data on premise is more secure than on the cloud.
Fact – With Office 365 security and uptime are at the pinnacle of industry standards.
It is slowly becoming a well-known fact that your information in the cloud is more secure than that which is on premise. Even if you have a large security team it is difficult for them to discover and protect your data from the hundreds of threats that could potentially attack you.
Office 365 gives you extensive privacy controls over where your data resides and who has access to it. Its robust policies, controls, and systems are designed using processes like Security Development Lifecycle and traffic throttling, which prevent security breaches across an organization. With Office 365 you get a 99.9% uptime guarantee.
Myth 4 – Moving everything to the cloud is an all-or-nothing scenario.
Fact –Users can migrate data to the cloud at their own pace, or use a hybrid approach.
It is a misconception that businesses should move their entire data to the cloud, all at once. Most business owners implement Office 365 by moving only their emails over initially. Then they slowly adopt other tools like OneDrive for document storage or MS Teams for project management. This is known as a hybrid approach.
On the hybrid cloud you can go mobile by delivering Office 365 apps to your users in increments. You are in control of what capabilities you want to make available to your staff and you can also scale up or down depending on the technology needs of your company.
Myth 5 – Cloud migration is way too difficult for businesses to handle.
Fact – Cloud migration is manageable and you can be up and running quickly.
Moving petabytes of data to the cloud although not easy, is not impossible. You can be up and running with Office 365 within a relatively short time. Migrating to the cloud is pretty straightforward and your service providers have your back throughout the process. Microsoft’s support staff is prompt and strives to make cloud migration a pain-free and seamless task.
There is an array of online tools available to help you throughout the migration so that your day to day work is not hindered. Microsoft FastTrack for Office 365 is a service that comes free with your subscription, and assists you with a smooth and confident move to the cloud.
Myth 6 – Cyber criminals, corporate spies, and governments will have access to my cloud-based data.
Fact – You are the sole owner of the data; it belongs to you, no one else.
Microsoft was a pioneer in adopting the world’s first international standard for cloud privacy. According to this standard the customer is in control of their data, the data is not used for advertising, and there is strong security protection for their data.
Office 365 offers extensive privacy controls and visibility over data. At no time does any Microsoft staff have access to your data without permission.
Your in-house IT team sets up rights and restrictions on the devices that are being used. Office 365 is backed by strict controls and design elements that ensure that your data does not interact with that of another organization.
Myth 7 – Users need to learn new tools to use and manage SharePoint Online.
Fact – SharePoint Online templates maintain the infrastructure, without changing anything else.
Did you spend hours learning how to set up and manage SharePoint? Your hard work will not go in vain. SharePoint Online features the same management and administration tools that you used on SharePoint; whether your deployment is on premises, on the cloud or is a hybrid of both.
In fact, once you move to SharePoint online, your IT team can stop worrying about implementation and concentrate on configuring and building strong tools that the business can use.
Myth 8 – Skype and Skype for Business are much alike.
Fact – Unlike Skype, Skype for Business features enterprise grade security tools allowing you to host productive virtual meetings connecting up to 10,000 participants.
Even though Skype and Skype for business share a common name, both of these tools are vastly different. Skype can be used by small enterprises who need a free communication tool. It allows you to communicate with other Skype users via IM, voice, screen sharing, conference calls with up to 25 people.
When we talk about Skype for Business, it includes the above-mentioned features plus certain enterprise-grade security tools that:
- Help you manage employee accounts
- Show you who is online
- Allow you to add up to 250 people in online meetings
- Permit you to invite external users to a meeting
- Is integrated into your Office applications
Myth 9 – Emailing is as cumbersome on the Cloud.
Fact – Emails in the cloud are powered by automatic updates; no need to worry about email downtime.
With email on the cloud, your IT staff can spend more time in fixing the major IT issues of the business rather than worrying about email downtime. IT tasks, such as the installation of updates and maintenance are accomplished by Microsoft’s experts. Software updates and fixes are delivered automatically as they are released. Moreover, these updates can be paused or controlled by the IT team when it happens through the Exchange Admin Center.
Myth 10 – Updating Office 365 on a regular basis will hinder critical business applications.
Fact – It won’t impact existing business applications in a negative manner.
Microsoft is committed to ensuring Office 365 compatibility with the day to day business tools that you use.
- They offer a standard range of desktop applications including MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
- They have made sure that the new releases do not result in API changes; so even if your business solutions work on Office 2010 or Office 2016 today, they will work on Office 365. Theycollaborate with software vendors and offer them early access to upgrades to ensure their solutions continue to work well.
- They provide guidance for update management and development to avoid compatibility issues.
Get the most of Office 365’s subscription plans that are specifically designed to ensure better employee communication, cost saving, automated business processes and other productivity aspects. Now that you have a better understanding of Office 365 tools and features, make sure to consider hosting your data on the cloud for better security and increased efficiency.