Microsoft 365 Business: Part 1
As a member of the Microsoft Partner Network, we will explain the benefits, tools, and solutions that Microsoft 365 Business offers. This will be a 3-part blog series to educate and provide support with Microsoft 365 Business.
What is Microsoft 365 Business?
Microsoft 365 Business is a “platform-as-a-service” (PaaS) hosted, maintained, secured, and backed up by Microsoft Corporation across geographically redundant data centers. It provides an entire ecosystem of applications and services as a subscription service which can be changed at any time. Once implemented, an organization gains significant mobility, performance, and security benefits which will be discussed in greater detail here. Every user receives: Offices 2016 apps on tablets and phones (up to five devices plus usage on Terminal Server), Publisher (PC only), Access (PC only), 1TB OneDrive storage, 50GB mailbox / calendars / contacts storage plus unlimited archiving, Microsoft Teams (office chat tool), SharePoint Online (file storage), Windows 10 Pro (must already be on Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 Pro already), Delve, Flow, People, Planner, Sway, Stream, To Do, Forms, and Yammer.
Microsoft 365 also includes IT management tools such as Azure Active Directory and Microsoft Intune which allow the firm to utilize sophisticated security and management tools without the need for tens of thousands of dollars in servers and remote monitoring and management (RMM) tools.
This is an entire ecosystem you own. You can pick it up and take it with you. Anyone can manage it (provided they know how). Any you can extend it to any geography.
Advantages of Microsoft 365 Business
Microsoft 365 Business is hosted, maintained, secured, and backed up by Microsoft Corporation across geographically redundant data centers. It provides an entire ecosystem of applications and services as a subscription service which can be changed at any time. Once implemented, an organization gains significant mobility, performance, and security benefits which will be discussed in greater detail here.
1. Simple Management
Microsoft 365 Business allows you to build out traditional server roles like file server, Active Directory / Group Policy, and Exchange, and to simply subscribe to them as a service. No need to install, upgrade, manage, maintain, or backup these services. This is done for you automatically. All you have to do is to setup the rules for how things should work and let the system go. It’s the equivalent of auto pilot for airplanes. A pilot tells the plane where he or she wants it to go, the plane then flies there.
Once properly setup, end-users at any level, entry or executive, should be able to self-service themselves for passwords, authentication, etc. Their apps, documents, rights, and privileges are a constant delivered to them each time they login to their computer. These eliminate many common support requests resulting in fewer total issues and your more urgent issues getting solved sooner.
2. Security & Control
If your IT team has servers, sets the server roles up properly, and manages them daily, you have what’s called “centralized management”. All access and authentication is managed and policed by a sort of air traffic controller. This ensures performance, security, backup and disaster recovery, business continuity, mobility, and more. This kind of overhead, however, is expensive. And for many, it’s also not optional due to industry and regulatory demands. If you don’t have these servers and services, you are under a “decentralized management” model. Enter Microsoft 365 Business. This solution will centrally manage every aspect of your business and enforce it: where your data lives, how it is accessed, by who, when, and under what conditions. In short, it replaces anarchy with law and order. All without having to purchase tens of thousands of dollars of equipment or having to move it physically from one site to another.
3. Clear Visibility
With Microsoft 365 Business, you get 100% visibility into your site. All devices, all storage, all services. You can report on security, patch status, policies, storage, end-user compliance – you name it. Alerts can be setup a central administrator. Adding or subtracting new employees is as simply as creating a user and adding him or her to a group, or deactivating an existing user. More importantly, the solution can make alerting superfluous by enforcing your minimum standards; if the user or device doesn’t comply, they can’t use your services, data, and apps.
4. Seamless Collaboration
With documents living in OneDrive and SharePoint, take advantage of auto-save features and co-authoring. When in a shared document, users can work in the document at the same time. While in the document, users are denoted by name and color and the position of their cursor is known. You can watch them typing all without changing your own position in the document. A chat inside that document can be utilized as well.
With Microsoft Teams, the chat and collaboration platform built in to Microsoft 365 at no extra cost, easily setup private groups called “Teams” and collaborate around instant message, voice, video, and screen share (including extensible control). Each Team allows you to add Channels for added granularity. And each Team has a place to save documents and other files. Firms use these Teams to manage projects, cases, internal initiatives – anything. We have not included time to formally set this solution up in this proposal but users can begin using it by downloading the app and starting a chat.
Looking for more info?
Read Microsoft 365 Business Part 2: Azure Active Directory here