How Google stacks up against Office 365 in the enterprise


Office 365 vs Google Web Apps

What cloud offering will be best for the enterprise: Office 365 or Google Apps?

The announcement of Office 365 has perpetuated an influx of customer questions. One thing we’re being asked, more than just frequently, is “why choose 365 over Google apps?” Here’s what we found when speaking with our in-house Microsoft and technology experts:

Familiar Products: Office 365 relies on the same look and feel of popular Exchange, SharePoint and Lync versions already  in use at many companies, so transitioning to and training on Office 365 would be easier. By introducing a cloud application that is already familiar to your staff you can ensure that both you and your staff will experience a seamless execution. (Note to Mac OS X fans: If you are a current user of Office for Mac 2008, you can seamlessly link with Office 365.)

Co-existence is possible: Having desktop programs that are 100% compatible with your cloud applications makes hosting some content (ie: documents and data sheets) in your own data center and other content (ie: mailboxes) in the cloud an attainable reality. The hybrid deployment optionswill give you the ability to pick and choose what you want to keep close to home in your own data center and what you’re willing to let float in the cloud.

Stop import/export annoyances: Office Web Apps (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote) use native OpenXML file formats (Office 2007 and newer) which mean that there is no loss of content or layout when uploading documents to the cloud service. This means that “round tripping” documents from your desktop to the cloud back to your desktop is completely possible and hassle free.

The software’s trusted: The Lync and OneNote features of Office 365 are incomparable to most alternative products out there – there simply is very few good replacements. No other software offers you the flexibility and end-user experience these programs do.

Safety Net: Google Apps is a great system but as with any system there can be difficulties in execution. Since Google is only available via the web the support network for their applications exist only with web connectivity. That means troubleshooting in real time could be a pain. With Microsoft you are backed up by not only the retailer’s support staff but also your reseller’s support network. So really, you need to ask yourself if you’re ready to venture into unchartered IT territory alone or if you want the comfort and security of partner enterprise support staff.

Overall we found that by migrating your business to the Microsoft cloud you can enjoy a seamless transition, maintain use of the programs that you currently love, eliminate the need for new trainings and lost hours of work, and introduce a new, more productive program into your work place. Office 365 can provide your business with the cloud solution you’re searching for without having to worry about how your enterprise will adapt to the change.

But is the cloud even right for you? Read about our assessment to find out

Related: Details on Office 365’s Enterprise Agreement amendment

Everything you need to know about Office 365 licensing

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About Theo Wolski

Marketing Communications Specialist