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Microsoft Office 365 is a platform designed to move the majority of functions a traditional server provided into the cloud. Microsoft in many cases have bundled these features alongside the cost of their software licenses (for example Microsoft office) to make one monthly bill to be paid.
The business version includes a PC / Mac versions of Office as part of the subscription. This not only has the advantage of keeping your version up to date at all times but it also spreads the costs so it’s not all in one big hit. Office 365 also provides web versions of each of these packages which allows you to quickly access and edit your files from any PC even if it doesn’t have the office package installed.
Being online the platform provides excellent collaboration sharing functionality. Documents can be access in real time and shared by two or more users, calendars and contact groups can be shared between groups or individual users. Delegate access can be granted on mailboxes so another user can access during times like annual leave.
Office 365 can be accessed from anywhere. In areas where there is no internet connection, files can be marked as offline creating a local copy which will resync with the server as soon as it has an internet connection again.
Skype integrates with Office 365 allowing it to be accessed from many different locations including Outlook.
Office 365 can host a domain to control the computers connected to it in the same way as a physical server would. This allows for settings to be controlled remotely and pushed out without having to access the PC’s directly
All data is stored online in the cloud. If anything is deleted by mistake it can be retrieved for up to 20 days. Having version control (multiple copies of the same file in different states) is the best protection you can have against cryptlockers and other ransomware as files can simply be restored to just prior to the event.
There is no capital or maintenance costs. Each user is charged on a monthly basis allowing the system to be scalable to staff changes, if somebody leaves then the number of licenses is simply decreased by one.