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What is Office 365?

By: Avtex

Office 365 has been available for some time now, and while most are familiar with what Office 365 is, many of the additional features and services that Office 365 provides do not come to mind initially. Let’s review what Office 365 can be for your organization.

  • Exchange Online – Probably the most heavily deployed workload that can be quickly moved to the cloud. Exchange Online not only provides removing the work of architecting an enterprise messaging solution, but also alleviates concerns about disk space – granting all Enterprise plan users a whopping 50GB of storage. Need more? Take advantage of Online Archiving and add unlimited storage!
  • Lync Online – Need to give users a powerful collaboration tool, delivering Enterprise IM, ad-hoc meetings, desktop sharing, and VoIP Video Conferencing capabilities quickly? Lync Online has your answer.
  • SharePoint Online – Deploy Powerful websites, and collaboration workspaces for your employees to use. IN addition SharePoint Online offers Office Web Apps, allowing users to collaborate on documents directly from within their browser session without the need for having Word, Excel etc. installed.
  • Yammer – Office 365 now includes Yammer which is a powerful enterprise social networking tool. Communicate, reduce email clutter and collaborate more effectively with this platform.
  • Office ProPlus – By shifting your licensing method for desktop applications to Office 365, each user can activate up to 5 copies of the latest Office Desktop Productivity Suite from Microsoft. In addition, gain access to the mobile offerings. By leveraging the Click to Run technology if desired, these applications can keep themselves up to date automatically, removing the IT burden of keeping the Office suite current on patch levels. A common misconception here is that the applications are not actually installed on the device which is not true. The applications do not “live” in the cloud, they only are licensed and activated from it.

Now let’s talk about some of the additional features that Office 365 can provide that are not commonly top of mind.

Exchange Online Protection – Included with Exchange Online you get spam filtering, virus scanning, and everything you would come to expect from a message hygiene service.

One Drive for Business – SkyDrive now rebranded offers 1TB of storage per user! Take back control of file sharing and home drives, reduce network storage requirements, simplify desktop replacement procedures, and allow users to store their documents and such in the cloud. Users can keep all or just important files synced with their desktop devices for offline access. OneDrive easily integrates with Office 2013 and allows users to easily control sharing of information to better facilitate collaboration.

Office 365 Message Encryption – Send secure, encrypted emails to anyone, and eliminate the need for certificates to accomplish this task. Each message in the thread remains encrypted.

Office 365 Multi Factor Authentication – MFA as it is referred to increases security of user logins to the Office 365 cloud services. With MFA enabled, users authenticate with a password, then are required to acknowledge a phone call, text message or notification via smartphone to gain access to their information.

There are many more features of Office 365, but this will give you a great starting point on understanding the robust feature set of the platform. As always, for more information please contact Avtex – a Cloud Accelerate Partner Award winner for FY14.



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