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How can SMEs best implement Office 365? Jan 4, 2023


Effective collaboration is the starting point for every business’s success. Most companies who think about switching to a cloud-based platform widely consider implementing Office 365 across their organisation. Microsoft’s team collaboration and business intelligence capabilities have a profound effect on making smart business decisions.

Productivity tools like Word, Excel, Teams, SharePoint etc., are a great starting point to improve the IT infrastructure of your firm with its cloud-based features. The tools create an advanced digital workplace that allows you to scale up the internal content management functions with rich and smooth functionality.

How to prepare for Office 365 Deployment?

The implementation of Office 365 offers greater collaboration but installing such an advanced infrastructure can be a bit challenging. Initially, you will need to create an email migration strategy, determine the migrating content, calculate the network bandwidth and take the final steps from your 365 migration checklist. Hence before deploying the tools, you should prepare the team by building a communication and training plan that provides ample time for translation. You can build a standardised roadmap template that helps that can help your team to go from nothing to adopting every feature and tool available to them via Office 365. This ensures that the whole suite is implemented, integrated, and rolled out in a phased manner.

How to implement Office 365?

Implementing Office 365 in a business can be a straightforward process with the right planning and preparation. Here are some steps to follow to successfully implement Office 365 in your business:

  1. Determine your business’s needs and goals: Before implementing Office 365, it is important to assess your business’s needs and goals. This will help determine which Office 365 plans and features are best suited for your business and ensure that the implementation meets your requirements.
  2. Plan Office 365 Implementation: You should begin the project plan by creating notes about the existing IT environment like Authentication Solutions, Mail routing, Server and Components, Hardware and Software, Network Architecture, and Bandwidth. Then you can strategise your email migration and content migration projects.

There are various Office 365 plans available, each with different features and pricing options. It is important to carefully review the different plans and select the one that best meets your business’s needs and budget.

  • Migrate your existing data and applications: The next step is moving mailboxes and other business-related content from your on-premises environment to Office 365. If your business is currently using another productivity suite, such as Google Workspace or Microsoft Exchange, you will need to migrate your existing data and applications to Office 365. This process can be complex and time-consuming, so it is important to plan and prepare carefully.
  • Train your staff: Once you have implemented Office 365, it is important to provide training to your staff so they can effectively use the new productivity suite. This can include training on how to use the different Office 365 apps, such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, as well as any new features and tools. In order to ensure user adoption, you can even incorporate a communications plan into Office 365  by scheduling alerts and clear instructions.
  • Monitor and manage your Office 365 deployment: After implementing Office 365, it is important to monitor and manage the deployment to ensure that it is running smoothly and meeting your business’s needs. This can include monitoring usage, troubleshooting any issues, and making updates and upgrades as needed.

How do you know if Office 365 implementation was successful?

After integrating new technology into your organisation, you might want to measure its success against your set goals. But how do we do that? Unfortunately, checking the access to training courses doesn’t give a clear understanding of the efforts.

It will help if you start by checking and measuring the engagement of managers and their teams. Are they using tools? Is there a change in their working approach?

Secondly, you can measure and analyse the change in productivity, project costs, time spent on projects and operating costs. These factors indicate whether employees are driving towards adoption and if your organisation is consequently pointing towards achieving set success goals.


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