From the web platform to the application, Microsoft 365 is that holy grail your team’s been looking for. Not only does Microsoft 365 help keep your team organized and on-task through online file storage and sharing, but it also comes with enhanced security features to keep your team safe wherever they log in from.
Gilgamesh never said what we thought he did in our last blog, but to truly and actually quote one of the greatest films ever produced, “Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?”
Monty Python definitely found the Holy Grail of comedy with their adaptation of the Arthurian tale, but with comedy aside, many businesses have been searching for their own holy grail – or maybe we could call it a silver bullet? – to solve issues for their remote workers.
Cue Microsoft 365.
The number of offices in America that are now leveraging some form of remote workers either in addition to or in place of in-person workers outweighs those working entirely in-office now 3:1.
|All the offices utilizing either a mix of in-person, hybrid and/or remote workers||73%|
|All in-person ONLY offices||19%|
|Delaying finalizing plans & teams that self-organize||7%|
*Note: Total does not add up to 100% due to rounding.
For small businesses, Microsoft 365 is everything they need to be successful in the new hybrid era boxed up and packed with a beautiful red bow on top. You can even video conference with your internal team and external clients directly from the app – it’s truly a one-stop-shop for everything you need in today’s working world.
What is Microsoft 365?
Microsoft is continuously innovating and evolving toward new ways of doing business, and that goes for their 365 programming as well. With the way we work undergoing monumental changes, asynchronous communication is the new norm while meetings transcend time and space. AI has unlocked and is continuing to unlock, our potential in ways we’ve never even dreamed of.
To succeed in this new normal, every hybrid business needs a kind of digital fabric that binds the entire team together through secure communication, collaboration, and creation. These strides forward will enable businesses to be nimble and strong through these positive connections across people and teams.
Microsoft, in part through the Microsoft 365 program, is innovating across the Microsoft Cloud and various applications to deliver this digital fabric to everyone in this new era. Microsoft 365, or M365 for short, is a digital application designed to help you and your business achieve more than you’ve ever dreamed possible through innovative applications, intelligent cloud services, and world-class security.
How is Microsoft 365 Useful for Hybrid Businesses?
Covering everything Microsoft 365 has to offer small businesses could take a while – literally every situation you can think of has been pre-empted and considered, and tools are provided to overcome each and every one of them – there are some critical benefits we should definitely cover here.
The key benefit of M365, and its benefit for hybrid businesses of all sizes, is the ability for your team to be productive anywhere they are in the world. Whether they choose to check in from their kitchen counter while their kids run around them or they log on in Lagos during their yearly Formula 1 race trip, they can chat, call, and host meetings regardless.
Another key benefit of the application is sharing working documents in the cloud. No matter what your workplace has looked like over the years, there has undoubtedly been a need to work on documents together and at the same time. M365 allows your team to collaborate on these projects through tons of different Office apps, all while communicating about the work and sharing calendars along the way.
Finally, M365 allows your security team to streamline your internal IT setup from anywhere in the world, level up your IT security management, and keep down automation and organizational costs with a single productivity solution. Normally reductions in security spending are (and should be) met with skepticism about reductions in coverage, but with M365 you can consolidate vendor spending and reduce the cost of covering your security risks.
This of course is in addition to the first-class safeguarding of your business’ data with built-in security features that defend your organization against cyber threats of all kinds. From end to end, M365 automatically secures the connection on your device, making customer data more secure than ever.
How is Microsoft 365 Adapting to the New Era of Business?
The future of the Microsoft 365 application isn’t just bright, it’s like the sun from a little too close up.
Collaboration Beyond Reality
The new application Mesh for Microsoft Teams is creating a new generation of two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) meeting spaces. Because representation in meeting spaces is so critical (see: video chats), the adoption of 3D personalized avatars allows your team to customize their own avatars. Mesh uses AI to imitate each person’s movements and gestures, enabling everyone to bring their own physical presence to the conversation.
Continuous Updates to Teams
Teams, one of the most utilized applications in the Microsoft 365 suite, is updating their UI/UX to foster more inclusive and productive hybrid meetings for end users. Managers are now able to assign specific roles from the meeting scheduling form and view the order of raised hands to ensure that all the voices are heard in the order they wanted to chime in.
Treating ‘Digital Employees’ like Employees
It seems the traditional 9-5 employee experience is no more (and thank goodness, says this writer). Today, droves of workers are no longer defined by or tethered to a physical location. To keep up with their evolving needs, new ways of communication are necessary to keep employees engaged and informed, all in the flow of what you do for work.
That’s where Microsoft Viva comes in to offer a new effective meetings experience and manager insights to help employees build new habits and norms that boost connection, productivity, and wellbeing. Applications like Viva are transforming how we view and treat the modern workforce for the better.
Identify What Your Team Needs & Leverage It
Through a newly redesigned Teams Store, finding the right applications to solve your problems has never been easier. Collaborative apps are the new generation of helpful tools with collaboration at the core of their design. Knowing hybrid is the new normal, these apps have been designed and optimized for flexibility inside Teams, bringing the relevant processes, data, and people together to accomplish more.
Partner applications including Atlassian, SAP, and ServiceNow enable M365 users to engage with the useful attributes of these apps across chat, channels, and meetings inside of M365. Meanwhile, new experiences between Dynamics 365 and Teams bring more data and connectivity right into your everyday workflow.
We could go on for days and days about how effective, useful, and beneficial Microsoft 365 is for your team, but honestly, why not give it a shot? The opportunities for success are endless, and with Microsoft at your back, the sky is the limit.
For more information on how important Microsoft Teams topics like these can help your team, give us a call at 864-552-1291, and we'll help you evaluate capabilities and options. For more information on tech topics like hybrid meetings, sign up for PTG Tech Talk and follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter!