As the COVID-19 crisis continues companies have had no choice but to set up their staff to work remotely. We need to adapt quickly or be left behind.
However, this transition from office to home working doesn’t have to be painful if the right tools are in place to ensure that your remote teams remain connected.
Migrating to a system like Microsoft Office 365 will help to keep your team working cohesively whilst they are confined at home.
With the MS 365 package everything is stored in the cloud, meaning your team will have access to collaborative working if they have an internet connection.
Everything you can expect from your Microsoft package, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook is available remotely via Office 365 meaning remote workers will be working with applications they are familiar with, reducing the need for further training.
In addition to all the expected cloud services such as emails and file sharing, Microsoft Office 365 offers the Microsoft Teams application which is a group collaboration tool consisting of video meetings (one to one or with up to 250 people), file storage, and even telephone dialling. In the industry this is known as a Unified Communications tool. This enables you to chat with individual members of the team (or even with clients who don’t have Office 365) by text, and video.
Microsoft Teams also enables screen sharing so you can present your ideas to a team whilst they make notes and interact with the presentation. Using Teams guarantees high quality audio and video as long as there is a strong internet connection. Meetings can also be recorded and then shared with all participants. Teams PSTN dialling (VoIP) is now available for Standard Business 365 plans. This means the majority of plans can now get this excellent additional feature without costly upgrades to their licensing.
Microsoft Office 365 for businesses has a number of other capabilities making it much easier for your team to work effectively away from the office including calendar scheduling, task management and invoicing as well as the ability to prepare a team site where everything the team needs for working remotely is all in one place. Even better the Microsoft Office 365 package is flexible so that your teams can access everything from multiple devices including laptop, PC or Mac, tablet and mobile.
Every business is different, with different requirements, and there are two main versions of Microsoft Office 365 for business.
• Office 365 for Business (Standard and Basic licences) is ideal for small to medium businesses with the most common IT requirements. It offers all the basic apps enabling co-working and online meetings. You even get Azure so you can benefit from more security and cloud based enterprise network services.
• Office 365 for Enterprises is for businesses with numerous users (potentially more than 250) or specific needs or regulatory requirements.
You can also get Office 365 for education and charities which includes a number of totally free services. A perfect starting point for an organisation trying to get in charge of their IT.
One concern many companies have when having remote staff working through the cloud is security. This is something Microsoft take very seriously and offer Exchange Online Protection to protect your emails from spam and malware as well as implementing more than 1,000 security and privacy controls. You can be confident that working in the cloud is safe and will help your business flourish. You can even encrypt your emails using the S/MIME technology built into Outlook. Microsoft are fully GDPR compliant and take great pains to remain up to date and even ahead of the curve.
If you would like to discuss what package would be best for you and your business, why not give the team at Bongo IT a call, they are waiting to help you. Call us today on 01865 988 217.
Thank you for reading. Check out our other blog posts to find more helpful tips.
For more information or a free security audit, or a free IT Strategy review please call us on: 01865 988 217
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