How Microsoft 365 enhances collaboration and flexibility
Insights 6 minutes read

How Microsoft 365 enhances collaboration and flexibility

Want to know more about Microsoft 365? Discover what it is, its features, and why you should use it too!  
Published on
June 27, 2024

It’s no secret that office workers spend most of their time (42% on average) collaborating with others, either in-person or virtual. That’s according to a Workplace Employee study by the Gensler Research Institute.

That’s just one of many insightful statistics on the changing face of work in today’s modern workplace – or what experts are now calling “the new normal.”

In fact, in today’s dynamic business environment, the concept of the workplace has undergone a profound transformation. A hybrid model of remote and in-office work has become standard, as companies globally adopt this approach for its numerous advantages.

According to Gartner, 75% of hybrid or remote knowledge workers report that their expectations for working flexibly have increased.

To accommodate these new working methods, organisations are increasingly adopting digital tools and cloud-based solutions to foster collaboration, boost productivity, and adapt to evolving work dynamics.

Enter Microsoft 365, which stands at the forefront of this revolution, empowering businesses to craft a modern workplace that thrives on connectivity and flexibility.

 

Embracing digital transformation

Certainly, tech leaders recognise the pivotal role of digital transformation in shaping the future of work – and many are asking about the benefits of a Microsoft 365 subscription.

So, let’s take a look at what it is, what it includes, and some of the main features of Microsoft 365 – particularly the collaboration and flexibility benefits.

 

What is Microsoft 365?

Microsoft 365 is a comprehensive suite of cloud-based productivity tools, which has redefined how teams collaborate and communicate.

By integrating applications like Teams, SharePoint, and OneDrive with familiar software such as Word, Excel, and Outlook, Microsoft 365 creates a unified ecosystem where seamless collaboration across departments and geographical boundaries becomes a reality.

 

What does Microsoft 365 include?

The comprehensive suite of productivity tools and services – designed to enhance collaboration and communication for individuals and organisations – includes essential applications such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote, as well as cloud services like OneDrive and SharePoint.

Key features include:

Microsoft Teams: For chat, video meetings, and file sharing.
Exchange Online: Cloud-based email and calendar.
Advanced Security: Multi-factor authentication, data loss prevention, and information protection.

Additionally, Microsoft 365 integrates AI capabilities to boost productivity and offers various plans to cater to different needs, from home users to large enterprises.

 

Decoding the differences: Microsoft 365 vs. Office 365

Many business leaders are asking about the difference between Microsoft 365 and Office 365.

Let’s unravel the difference: Microsoft 365 is an all-encompassing productivity suite that includes Office 365 applications along with additional services and features.

Here’s a breakdown of the key differences:

Office 365: Primarily focuses on cloud-based versions of traditional Microsoft Office applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. It also includes services like OneDrive and SharePoint.
Microsoft 365: Includes everything in Office 365, but adds advanced security features, device management tools, and Windows 10 Enterprise. It’s designed to provide a complete solution for productivity, security, and device management.

In essence, Microsoft 365 offers a more comprehensive package that includes the Office 365 suite along with enhanced security, management capabilities, and operating system integration.

 

Addressing tech leaders’ pain points: How Microsoft 365 benefits the workplace

Undoubtedly, tech leaders often face several challenges, including ensuring data security, managing remote teams, and maintaining seamless collaboration across different locations and devices.

According to a Gartner survey, 68% of tech leaders cite collaboration as a significant challenge when managing remote and hybrid teams. Microsoft 365 addresses these pain points effectively with its comprehensive suite of tools and services.

 

3 key benefits:

Enhancing collaboration

Microsoft 365 facilitates real-time collaboration among teams through tools like Microsoft Teams, SharePoint, and OneDrive. These platforms enable simultaneous editing of documents, easy file sharing, and seamless communication through chat, video conferencing, and collaborative workspaces.

Notably, collaboration and flexibility are indispensable pillars of today’s modern workplace, crucial for adapting to new ways of working and driving organisational success.

In an increasingly interconnected and fast-paced world, seamless collaboration across teams, departments, and even geographical locations is essential.

One of the standout features of Microsoft 365 is its ability to enhance collaboration. Teams, for example, the hub for teamwork in Microsoft 365, enables real-time communication through chat, video calls, and shared workspaces.

Whether your team is working remotely, in the office, or across different time zones, Teams facilitates effortless collaboration and project management. With SharePoint, teams can securely store, organise, and share documents, ensuring everyone has access to the latest information from any device.

Flexibility in workstyles

With cloud-based accessibility, Microsoft 365 allows employees to work from anywhere, on any device. This flexibility supports remote work, mobile productivity, and a distributed workforce, enhancing overall efficiency and responsiveness.

Tech leaders will tell you that flexibility is no longer a perk, but a necessity in today’s work environment. Microsoft 365 supports diverse workstyles by providing access to documents and applications from anywhere, on any device. Whether employees are working from home, on the go, or in a hybrid setup, they can remain productive and connected.

Moreover, according to a recent study by Gartner, organisations that embrace flexible workstyles experience a 30% increase in employee productivity and a 50% reduction in turnover rates.

The flexibility of Microsoft 365 extends to its scalability, allowing businesses to adjust their subscription based on changing needs and growth.

Security and reliability

Microsoft 365 also offers robust security features and compliance tools to protect data, maintain regulatory standards, and ensure secure collaboration across different devices and locations.

Given the recent spate of security breaches, tech leaders know all too well that security is paramount in the digital age.

Microsoft 365, for its part, prioritises data protection and compliance offering built-in security features like Advanced Threat Protection and Data Loss Prevention, which safeguard against cyber threats and ensure sensitive information remains secure.

A Forrester report found that Microsoft 365’s holistic security features reduce the risk of a
breach by 40%. “Microsoft’s native security solutions integrate easily and simplify deployment and management, ensuring that data and users are protected from wherever they choose to work. Information protection, security management features, identity and access management, and the simplicity and frequency of updates reduce the
number and severity of end user security events and the time it takes to remediate them,” the report finds.

Why partner with Interactive

Partnering with Interactive means leveraging deep expertise in Microsoft 365 implementation and management. The team focuses on ensuring your organisation fully utilises the capabilities of these tools for maximum benefit.

Whether your goals involve improving collaboration, increasing flexibility, or enhancing cyber security, Interactive is committed to helping you create a modern workplace that meets your needs.

 

Final thoughts

As businesses navigate the complexities of today’s digital landscape, tech leaders are discovering how Microsoft 365 stands out as a foundational tool for promoting collaboration, enabling flexibility, and ensuring the security of business operations.

Interactive’s commitment to delivering innovative solutions tailored to your business needs ensures that you stay ahead in an increasingly competitive market.

Visit Interactive for more insights and solutions tailored to your business.

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