Workplaces nowadays require that you force every ounce of value out of the tools that you have at your disposal, your tech is the most important of all. It is even more essential now; Microsoft have recently begun raising their pricing for their 365 subscriptions. It has come as a shock to many but, to be fair to Microsoft, they haven’t increased their pricing since 1990 so it is well overdue.
The difference in value they are offering their clients in comparison to over 30 years is unfathomable, some of the advancements in the Microsoft suite have been the driving force for many businesses all over the globe.
Why the increase in price?
As we touched on, Microsoft have increased the value offered from their products. Think of it this way, the tools that you and your team are using daily to complete your daily tasks are continuing to improve year on year, but the price you are paying for them hasn’t, so a change in price was inevitable.
Of course, some may not think they have achieved the increase in value that others have, value is subjective of course, but the majority of us would agree the Microsoft suite is unrecognisable in comparison to all those years ago and the tools in it have increased in value and functionality.
The minute details of the price increases are long winded, but, in simple terms, the increases are designed to guide you from an E3 bundle to an E5 bundle. We will now take a very brief look at these bundles.
- The E3 bundle – Comes with a full license to install the desktop version of Excel, Word, Outlook, OneNote, and Publisher.
- The E5 bundle - Offers the same tools as the E3 bundle but comes with Microsoft Advanced Threat Protection software as standard, which effectively guards your company against malicious threats in email messages, attachments, and links.
Microsoft are guiding their users to the slightly more expensive – but better equipped – E5 package, because the less equipped E1 and E3 bundles are both so similar in price and offering now, it is cost effective to spend a little more and purchase the better equipped E5 bundle instead.
What you need to do before the price change
Assess the tools that you use daily, your aim is to pinpoint the level of value that you and your team are achieving of said tools in the 365 suite, which then determines the value you are getting from your chosen level of subscription. It is important to know how often you have been using it and whether you are going to continue using it or not, this is only way to know whether the amount you expend in using it is justified.
We mentioned Microsoft’s justification being value, if you aren’t using all of the tools you pay for as part of your subscription then you aren’t achieving maximum value – in turn making the price rises seem unjustified.
Unfortunately, most Microsoft customers aren’t using the tools at their disposal to their full potential – most have integrations in place from other vendors even though Microsoft has an alternative included in their subscription, this is of course counterproductive, why pay for something else when you already have something that can do the job?
Don’t worry if, once having taken stock, you realise that you aren’t achieving maximum value. One of our experts can help you to make some changes, we will help you change the way you are using the tools you have, or to amend your plan so as to ensure you are getting maximum value for money. Involving a professional with a proficient level of technical prowess is recommended here, it can be hard to look at something you have been doing for some time and find a problem with it, a fresh set of eyes may see differently.
Of course, we aren’t recommending that you use every tool in the suite to get value, but we are saying that using the right tools in the right way – in conjunction with others in the suite – will jettison your team to levels of productivity never before thought possible.
Microsoft informing users about the change offers a unique opportunity – we can use our time wisely and prepare. Ask yourself, are these tools delivering what I want them to? Are there tools outside of the Microsoft suite that you are using that could be replaced?
Some aren’t achieving value because they don’t know how extensive the Microsoft suite actually is, or the value that those tools can offer them.
The Microsoft Suite
Microsoft PowerBI is a powerful analytics tool designed to turn your unrelated sources of data into coherent, immersive, and easily useable insights. With the basic version being included free with your subscription for anyone that wants to see if it is for them, Power BI is a powerful tool. Even if you just give it a try, its free, it is worth taking advantage of!
Microsoft To Do
Microsoft To Do is a Cloud-based task management app – it can be used from multiple devices or a computer. To Do is widely popular and is great at what it is designed to do, staying on top of your tasks is easy with To Do.
Microsoft Power Automate
Power Automate helps you create automated workflows between your apps and services to synchronize files, get notifications, and collect data. Power Automate integrates seamlessly with other tools in the Microsoft suite allowing all of your work to be inter-connected. Automating mundane tasks allows your team to be productive with their time rather than wasting it on tasks that could be managed by a machine.
Microsoft SharePoint is used as a place to organise, share, store, and access information. It is secure, can be used from any device, and works in conjunction with all other Microsoft applications, meaning that your entire workflow can run in conjunction with each other as smoothly as possible.
Microsoft Teams – we are certain that you have heard of this one, since its release in 2017 it has been gradually growing in popularity, but the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic jettisoned it to new heights of fame. Teams now has a daily user count of over 250 million people worldwide – the app allows you to boost levels of collaboration, communication, and productivity to levels that no one could have dreamt of a couple of years ago, for many it has become the most vital tool in the arsenal and without it their businesses would simply fail to function.
In conclusion, it is essential that you get the most value possible from the tools at your disposal, doing so will improve the standard of service that you can offer to your clients, whilst simultaneously making sure that you get the most from your Microsoft subscription. As we said earlier, this can all be exceedingly difficult, get in contact with our expert team and we will help you to be sure that you achieve value.
Ensuring you get the most from the tools at your disposal
Our team of experts will take the time to get to know you, your team, the way you do business, and your goals and visions for the future. We will work together with you to learn what compliments the way you do business and will ensure that you are constantly up to date with the latest tech that is beneficial to you, whilst simultaneously ensuring you stay compliant to regulations at all times. We will help you with your Digital Transformation and educate your team on how to use the new tools at their disposal to their full potential. With our help you can introduce up-to-date tools, remain compliant, and be confident that your team are doing everything they can to aid in both. Don’t hesitate, get in contact with us and see how we can help you.