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Data Center Decisions? Benefits of Office 365

28 Apr 2016 by Jessica Hall

Between the various plans and offerings, there are a wide variety of options for cloud-based productivity solutions to leverage for email, documents, file sharing and scheduling. One of the most common selections is Microsoft Office 365. Office 365 provides enterprise-class service and capabilities to help your business run smarter. When considering moving to the cloud-based office system, it’s important to understand how your choice can impact your data center.

There’s a new data center model.

Evolving business needs have influenced a transformation within data centers. “In the old, on-premise model, you had to overbuild and buy for the worst-case scenario,” explains Ben O’Dwyer, client director at BlueMetal, an Insight company.

With cloud-based productivity tools, Infrastructure as a Service offerings (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions, that’s no longer the case. “Along came virtualization, and it helped improve some of that, allowing you to thinly provision memory, compute and storage, in some cases,” O’Dwyer says.

Office 365 offers great savings.

Shifting workloads to Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions can help companies consolidate their data centers and increase efficiency. “The cost savings is a lot more than just software; it’s also saving on servers, networking, cooling, rack space and also in the amount of work that it takes to maintain these things,” says Bob German, principal architect at BlueMetal.

You can free up resources.

In running productivity software on premises, IT professionals often spend time applying security patches, upgrading software versions and troubleshooting related issues on a continual basis. SaaS solutions like Office 365 eliminate many of these tasks. “With Office 365, the IT staff can spend more time focused on the actual business needs of their customers instead of just ‘care and feeding’ of the infrastructure,” German says.

Office 365 caters to larger businesses.

Besides cost savings on IT environments and lessening the workload of the IT department, Office 365 is better suited for enterprises.

Allowing users to communicate and collaborate like never before, Office 365 delivers real business value with its comprehensive productivity offering. This solution also provides a first-class hybrid solution for moving to the cloud, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of cloud performance, including:

  • Verified compliance for major industry standards
  • Built-in security controls, customizable to your needs
  • Reliable upgrades and system support

Make the move to cloud-based productivity.

“IT leaders opting for cloud office systems should consider supplementing the base support with either premium vendor-supplied or third-party support options to meet their requirements, especially with large-scale deployments (above 5,000 seats), or if planning extensive integration or customization. This supplemental support must have the ability to bypass the first level of support and provide direct contact to Level 2 support engineers to expedite problem resolution. In addition, the IT leaders must negotiate clear and specific service levels before signing the contract (see "Negotiate Support Services Before Buying Office 365")” according to Gartner’s report, “What to Think of When Considering Office 365 or Google Apps for Work,” published July 2015.

Are you considering a move to cloud-based collaboration and communications solutions? Get help today. We're offering Gartner’s report complementary through July 2016 to help you understand the options and plan such a migration.