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Benefits of Microsoft Office 365 Over Google Apps

As Google continues to go from strength to strength, its Google Apps for Work is trying to break into the office software market that is monopolized by Microsoft. Every school, office and workplace will undoubtedly have several Microsoft packages installed on all of their computers. This detailed article will review Google Apps for Work alongside Microsoft Office 365 and break down why Microsoft is still king of this hill.

Both Google Apps for Work and Office 365 are all-in-one packages that allow businesses to improve productivity, efficiency, and act as an instrument to bring organisations and their clients together in a way that has never been done before.

Head-to-Head

Until now, major competitors of Office were products that tried to mimic all the features Microsoft Office provides, which is no easy task and saw many fail. Google Apps on the other hand has take a much more simpler approach. Let’s see how that has worked out for them.

Security Features

Google Apps for Work: For business users, features such as data loss prevention, maintenance and advanced security features are absent in Google Apps. Businesses must implement third-party software that may require extra fees, licenses and will not be in accordance with Google’s SLAs.

Google’s main income stream is via advertising, as a result, Google’s privacy policy does state that customer information may be scanned and used for other purposes.

Note: To stop this happening, businesses must opt-in to the Data Processing Amendment (DPA) to avoid their data being shared.

Office 365: Providers uses with security, safeguards and total privacy of business information. Office 365 has its own unique built-in security that goes above and beyond the current industry standard. Security settings are flexible and can be adjusted by businesses to suit their needs.

Winner: Office 365

How Flexible Are They?

Google Apps: One of the biggest downfalls of Google Apps is the need to move operations to the cloud immediately. This offers businesses next to no flexibility and leaves them with an ultimatum. Some may not be ready, have the resources in place, nor deem is necessary to move ALL work operations to the cloud.

Office 365: Gives enterprises and businesses more flexibility when it comes to adapting cloud based technologies. Microsoft presents businesses with a hybrid environment that allows them to run specific parts of their operation offline.

Winner: Office 365

Standard Features

Google Apps: Dependent totally on the cloud, Google have eradicated the need for businesses to buy expensive equipment to run their programs. All that is required is an Internet connection and businesses can access their data from anywhere in the world. Their Gmail (25GB size) inbox is also protected with some of the best anti-spam filters technology out there.

Shared calendars between teams or clients is another nice feature, here team members can set meetings and know when another employee is off work or busy elsewhere. Google Apps boosts a 99.99% server uptime (it does not recognise any downtime until 5% of its user base are affected), although it’s not totally clear how they quantify that percentage.

Google Apps for Work does provide businesses with all the basics they need to conduct day-to-day tasks. However, if a business cannot find an appropriate solution to a problem, they are forced to turn to a third-party associate to meet their needs.

Office 365: With more than one billion users, businesses of all sizes should know what to expect from Microsoft. Alongside the usual Office packages (that can be used offline), Office 365 includes SharePoint, Lync, Exchange and Yammer. Outlook inbox comes with the latest Microsoft anti-spam features with an inbox size of 50GB.

Microsoft are so confident in their cloud technology they have financially-backed SLA agreements in place when their services drops below 99.99%. This means their customers will receive financial compensation whenever their systems are running under 99.99% efficiency.

Winner: Office 365

Support

Google Apps: Operates a 'priority' based support system. In a nutshell this means for businesses to receive faster support, the majority of their staff must be facing problems using Goole Apps for Work. Google do offer its clients a support forum.

Office 365: Along with a moderated forum, Office 365 provides businesses with a 24/7 phone support for all problems including single users.

Winner: Office 365

Other Things to Note

Whether you prefer Google Apps for Work or Office 365, businesses should take into consideration that the majority of their workforce will require very little training using Microsoft packages. Chances are most clients you do business with will also be using Microsoft products, which means filling in macro heavy spreadsheets or virtually signing Microsoft Word documents are going be a much easier process with Office 365 than Google Apps for Work.

Conclusion

Microsoft Office 365 seems to beat Google Apps for Work on almost every level except price (Office is around 3 times more expensive). Microsoft has been the industry leader in this market for decades and have fined tuned their products to provide businesses of all sizes everything they possibly need. Sure it’s a bit more expensive, but you get what you pay for.

This is not to say that Google Apps for Work isn't a viable product, but it may not be suitable for all businesses. It could work very well today, but 6 months down the line when a business has tripled in size they may find Google Apps very limiting in the solutions they provide. Office 365 has all bases covered from security, support and a plethora of amazing software that is used by pretty much every business. Our thoughts: the clear winner is Office 365.


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