What makes Office 365 different

Microsoft products are an established go-to for business tools, with Office, Excel and PowerPoint being the most-used programs for a variety of work tasks. When it comes time to upgrade, however, what option should you choose? You can go with the traditional Office 2016 product or get the programs as part of an Office 365 subscription. Let's take a look at what makes Office 365 different and the advantages it can bring.

1. Includes more functionality

Office 2016 comes with the traditional package of programs. Once you buy it, you own it until you want to buy a new version. Office 365 turns this model on its head by offering the usual software tools alongside a variety of other applications, How-To Geek stated. The subscription model is particularly beneficial for those that want to always use the most updated tools, while paying only for what you use. Businesses could install Office 365 on up to five computers, while Office 2016 requires a license for every machine. Microsoft is adjusting Office 365 to be a better deal for company users and transition out of one-time-purchase versions. With the variety of available apps and cost savings, Office 365 is proving to be the more flexible option.

Office 365 comes with a variety of applications for business users. Office 365 comes with a variety of applications for business users.

2. Enables mobile operations

With traditional Microsoft Office products, employees could only access them from a desktop or laptop. However, workers are no longer chained to their desks and are seeking more mobile and remote work opportunities. Office 365 provides web-enabled access to critical business resources including email, calendar and documents from almost any device, technology consultant Michael Moran wrote in a LinkedIn post. With Office 365, workers are free to work where and when they choose. They're better able to respond to important requests and be productive outside of the office.

The comprehensive mobile capabilities afforded by Office 365 will have a direct impact on efficiency. Colleagues can send instant messages and participate in online meetings, ensuring that projects are completed on time. Mobile capabilities can also significantly aid in bolstering the customer experience by ensuring that employees have the tools on hand to collaborate, communicate and deliver results within one portal.

"Using professional services like Office 365 tells potential customers that you're serious about business," Moran wrote. "With these state-of-the-art but easy-to-use collaboration, mail, and messaging services, you can set yourself apart from organizations that use free or ad-supported services."

"Built-in security capabilities regularly scan messages for malicious software and spam."

3. Ensures security

When looking at online tools, leaders might jump to concerns over safety and security of their most valuable assets. However, with Office 365, you can use the same systems used by Microsoft to protect your network, documents and email. Built-in security capabilities regularly scan messages for malicious software and spam. Users are immediately notified of any unusual activity, enabling them to respond quickly even if they don't have advanced IT knowledge. This could make a big difference in preventing breaches and warning users of similar attack methods.

Because there's control over data in the cloud with Office 365, that also opens up the opportunity to use this platform as a means of disaster recovery. If the office is inaccessible or data is compromised, Office 365 ensures that resources are still available and can be restored. As threats become more prevalent, having these capabilities will give teams piece of mind that their information is safe.
Office 365 is certainly different from the products that most organizations associated with MIcrosoft. The benefits of security, features and mobility are too great to ignore, enabling the solution to become a standard for other productivity tools to follow in the future. For more information on why Office 365 is different and how to leverage it yourself, contact ISG today.

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