If you haven’t heard, Microsoft is making some big changes to some of their productivity suite plans. From rebranding to adding new features, they are poising themselves to appeal to a new way of work — remote work.
Many of us have transitioned to remote work in the previous weeks, and Microsoft has taken notice. Companies and individuals have been finding new ways to collaborate online, with Microsoft Teams being a top choice. In fact, Microsoft saw daily active users of the app jump from 32 million to 44 million in just one week last month. And although Microsoft experienced challenges due to this increased demand, they are leveraging the opportunity to create new features to improve their products for employees working from home.
So, what exactly are these changes, and how can businesses improve their collaboration and efficiency with Microsoft tools? Let’s find out.
Office 365 Becomes Microsoft 365
Microsoft has been providing small, mid, and enterprise-level businesses productivity tools for years. This has come in the form of one of their Office 365 plans. Recently, Microsoft announced a significant change for its small to mid-sized business plans, rebranding from Office 365 to Microsoft 365 as of April 21st.
This change comes with no other adjustments in pricing or features at this time, but Microsoft notes that it’s part of an exciting push for innovation and growth at the company.
“Today, we’re simply announcing name changes. But these changes represent our ambition to continue to drive innovation in Microsoft 365 that goes well beyond what customers traditionally think of as Office. The Office you know and love will still be there, but we’re excited about the new apps and services we’ve added to our subscriptions over the last few years and about the new innovations we’ll be adding in the coming months.”
Microsoft Teams 2.0
As more users are flocking to Microsoft Teams around the world, the company has quickly started working on ways to improve the collaboration tool.
They’ve not only seen a new daily record of 2.7 billion meeting minutes in a single day, but users are also leveraging video conferencing, with video calls up by more than 1,000 percent. Many are utilizing the service for team collaboration, as well as company-wide meetings and town halls. As a result of this increase in use, Microsoft raised its limit of 10,000 participants to 100,000. And this was just the beginning.
Microsoft has also released custom backgrounds for users on video calls, and have announced a “raise your hand” feature coming soon. This allows users to simply press a button indicating that they have a question or comment without verbally interrupting a presenter or meeting. Meeting organizers can now also end a meeting for everyone with a single click. Following the meeting, they can download a participant report that includes join and leave times. If that wasn’t enough, Microsoft is working on expanding the gallery view of video conferences. Users can currently only see four other participants at a time.
These are some exciting changes, but how does Microsoft’s 365 line help support business in collaboration and productivity in general?
Why Choose 365?
Businesses run on communication. The ability to effectively communicate between departments, with clients, customers, vendors, suppliers, and more, are all foundational pillars of any business model. Especially now.
Therefore, it is paramount that a business uses the top technological capabilities to help streamline the efficiency of their communication. This is true whether companies are working in the office or from home like many of us now.
With Microsoft 365, organizations receive an integrated experience of apps and services designed to help you communicate and work more effectively. You’ll have the tools to help improve and enhance every aspect of your business. Here are a few benefits companies see with Microsoft 365:
Microsoft 365 provides a wide range of functional and familiar tools for collaborative work across teams, devices, and platforms. Users can upload files to SharePoint, which other members of the organization can then access and edit. These changes will be updated across all users and devices. This means teammates can work together on a project without sending files back and forth over email any time an update is made.
And, as you have probably already seen, Teams is a great app for collaboration. It allows users to chat, call, video conference, share files, share presentations, and more all in one place. You can group users by department or project, giving them a space to brainstorm, store files, and keep everything organized and in one place.
Microsoft 365 has fully functional applications for computers, tablets, and phones. These apps work together from anywhere without skipping a beat, creating a work environment designed around the way people work.
This is especially beneficial now that many employees are working from home, as it has cutting edge mobile data protection allowing teams to work safely away from company networks. Employees can be productive and secure from anywhere at any time.
Even more on keeping your data protected, Microsoft 365 comes standard with top of the line security and compliance solutions. This allows information to be shared effectively and securely. As other collaboration and productivity tools have seen security issues, Microsoft is focused on keeping your data unified and protected.
The in-depth and customizable features allow you to have confidence that your information won’t stray to places it shouldn’t.
Microsoft 365 comes with a wide array of subscription options so that you can find an option that best fits your business’s unique needs.
Transitioning to Microsoft 365
Microsoft 365 is driving collaboration and innovation in today’s workforce. Whether you’re working online or off, from your computer, tablet, or phone, Microsoft 365 has you covered. But if you are currently using another product, the transition to Microsoft 365 can seem daunting.
Data migration can be a complicated process, and data loss is an inherent risk. Therefore, you need to have skilled professionals with years of experience in email and program migration. This allows for a smooth transition and a rapid turnaround for your organization to minimize time loss.
Executech is a certified Microsoft partner with years of experience managing and servicing Microsoft products. Executech employees are experts in helping companies convert from their old providers to Microsoft 365. Also, Executech will stay with you long after the data migration to provide face-to-face local IT support for every technological need.
Executech helps your company fully unlock the potential of Microsoft 365. To learn more about Microsoft 365 and if it’s right for your business, sign up for a free assessment today.