Cloud solutions have become an integral part of many businesses. If you are looking to implement a new cloud solution, one of the best places to start is with Microsoft’s Office 365. This business-oriented platform has a lot to offer users, however, as with all other Microsoft products, there are a wealth of plans to select from. Here is an overview of the most common versions.
A brief look at Office 365
The easiest way to classify Office 365 is as a cloud-based version of Microsoft Office aimed at businesses. This subscription-based service offers businesses all the productivity software they need plus a solid platform for their communications. Think of Outlook combined with Lync (or Skype) and Office apps, all of which are accessible via your browser, or can be installed on your own servers.
Beyond this, there is a supporting layer called SharePoint that links all of these apps together, thereby giving you a central place to store all of your documents which can then be collaborated on using various Microsoft apps.
As noted above, Office 365 is subscription based. The business-oriented subscriptions are broken down into two main categories: Business and Enterprise subscriptions. Of course, there are other subscriptions for other categories like Education and Government, but we will focus this overview on the small to medium business categories.
Office 365 subscriptions
There are three plans under the Business subscription category:
Office 365 Business Essentials – Comes with online versions of Office apps (Office Web Apps), Lync for business, online storage through OneDrive and a corporate email address. This plan is ideal for businesses who don’t need full versions of Office apps.
Office 365 Business – For businesses who need installable versions of Office along with cloud-storage through OneDrive. It does not come with hosted email or business communication tools like Lync. If you already have hosted email, and are just looking for Office apps, then this could be a good plan for you.
Office 365 Business Premium – This subscription is for businesses who want the whole package. It combines all the elements of the above plans into a solution which is ideal for smaller businesses or even enterprises. If you are looking for a full solution, then this plan could be the best fit for your business.
It is worth noting here that all three of these plans have a limit of 300 users per plan, giving you a maximum of 300 subscriptions.
Which plan is best for my business?
This is a tough question to answer outright. What we recommend is contacting us. As experts in all things Microsoft, we can work with you to not only help you pick the plan that is best for your business, but ensure it is installed correctly. This can help further reduce costs and increase productivity.
Contact us today to learn more about how Office 365 can enhance your business.