Managing your transition to Office 365 effectively

Office 365 is slowly becoming more and more useful to businesses across the country.

 

Previously seen as only useful to educating bodies and larger enterprises, Office 365 is becoming extremely valuable to many SME’s. As it can handle a range of tasks using much more than just Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

 

This week Superfast Business Wales talked through 7 reasons you might want to use Office 365 on InsiderMedia.com. In summary here is what they suggested:

 

1. Easy to maintain
Using the cloud, updates and maintenance are managed for you.

2. Get more done
Store more files and access them from anywhere.

3. Grow your business
Pay for what you need with the flexible subscription.

4. Protect your data
Using the inbuilt security features, stay protected.

5. Choose your device
You aren’t stuck to a desktop, the cloud allows you to use any device.

6. Keep your tools in one place
Utilizing the tools provided, you don’t need to switch programs.

7. Work online to boost productivity
Make edits in real time, and work collaboratively.

 

 

Now we above all agree with these points, they prove that Office 365 is a great option for your business.

But we want to answer a more valuable question, how do you manage the transition effectively?

 

Examine what you currently have

 

After deciding that converting to Office 365 is going to work for your business. It’s important to look at your current IT infrastructure and make sure it can support Office 365. After all, you don’t want to purchase a subscription to learn you can’t use it.

 

We have a range of processes we go through before converting a client. However, Microsoft do have a list of checks you run through to put your system through. You can find the check here.

Alternatively, make sure the server you are running is still available for continued support. Read more about end of life dates here.

 

Back, up, back up!

 

One of the most common problems is that back up and restore plans are not considered when migrating. Although Office 365 does a great job of protecting your data, as well as preventing file losses. It does fall down when the accidents are out of their control. For example, a natural disaster.

 

A disaster or accident such as this cannot be protected and leave your data vulnerable and at risk. In short, as Office 365 is a cloud based package it is just as vulnerable as a physical server.

 

The resolution? Find an IT service provider well equipped to put a plan of action in place.

 

Gather the troops

 

A major issue we have experienced is that employees aren’t warned or involved in the transition to a new system. It may seem unnecessary to involve them in the process, but it can identify potential problems a lot quicker and provide great solutions.

A fantastic step we have found is to dedicate the new product to an employee, someone who is willing to absorb the new technology and learn from onsite training.

As we are an MSP with Training services, we provide a coherent service where a trainer can be onsite on the day of launch – as well as drop in for sessions leading up to the implementation.

Read about our migration training courses here.

 

Next Steps?

 

If you have decided on moving to Office 365, make sure you have spoken to your IT in depth and are ready for a transition period.

 

Alternatively, if you would like advice or information about migrating and how we can manage that for you, please get in touch.

 

If you have any other questions about Office 365 and how to migrate your workload properly, then please get in contact with us on 02920 887 362 or send us an email at info@excellence-it.co.uk

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