In the last few years, many Irish businesses have made the transition to the cloud. Some operate entirely out of the cloud, while others prefer a hybrid model.
Cloud-based services such as Microsoft 365 generally offer more flexibility and security while enabling business operations to run smoothly, no matter where the employees are located. This is particularly useful for organisations that have some or all of their staff working remotely.
This article outlines the benefits of migrating to the cloud with Microsoft 365, as well as an overview of what’s involved in the process.
Should you consider migrating to the cloud with Microsoft 365?
Microsoft 365 is Microsoft’s most successful product to date, with over 200 million active monthly users. It is a cloud-hosted, subscription-based package of applications and software that all runs on the one platform.
It offers a cost-effective way to deploy the comprehensive suite of productivity tools that most businesses are already heavily reliant on, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook, making them available from anywhere and on any device. And updates are automatic, meaning you’ll always have the latest versions of each application.
Some of the main benefits of Microsoft 365 include:
- Applications available from anywhere, on any device. Employees can access their office applications wherever they are, and on any device, meaning they can work remotely without causing any disruptions to the daily running of the business. Even when accessed on employees’ personal devices, the organisation’s sensitive data is kept safe and secure.
- Better collaboration with Teams. Microsoft Teams allows for more effective communication between team members. Employees can easily connect and collaborate with each other in real time, with various options available for group chat, online meetings, file sharing, and web conferencing.
- Enhance productivity and workflows. It allows for enhanced productivity and more efficient workflows. Emails, calendars, contacts, file sharing and tasks are all in one place and easily accessible to the user.
- Better cybersecurity. Built-in cybersecurity features ensure that company data is secure and protected against common cyber threats such as viruses, malware, phishing, ransomware and spam. Microsoft also provides automatic updated product releases, bug fixes, and anti-virus updates.
- Scalable storage. 1Tb of secure cloud storage allows files to be safely stored, managed and shared from anywhere. All cloud data is backed up on a regular basis and the security settings can be tightly controlled, meaning that data is only accessible to designated people.
It’s clear that moving to the cloud with Microsoft 365 is a great option for many businesses, but how easy is it to do? Let’s take a look at what the process involves.
Migrating to the cloud with Microsoft 365
Migrating by yourself is possible, but it’s a very complex process.
1. Choosing the best plan for your business
The first step is deciding which plan is best suited to your needs. Microsoft 365 offers three business options – Basic, Standard and Premium – each with different features and pricing structures.
2. Backup your data and choose your migration type
After choosing which plan to go for, make sure you backup all your existing data in case anything goes wrong during the migration process. Then, identify which IT assets you’re going to migrate and decide whether to do it in one go (a ‘cutover’ migration) or over a period of time (a ‘phased’ migration).
There are pros and cons to both options, so it’s a good idea to seek expert advice to help you decide what’s best.
3. Setup your users and devices
Next, you’ll need to set up and manage users and devices and enable access to company data. In the past, assigning and activating licenses was a cumbersome process. Thankfully, it is now much easier with the help of software wizards, which guide users through complex tasks such as adding and removing users and licenses, migrating email data, and more.
Microsoft provides in-depth tutorials, resources and support to help you migrate your data, all of which can be found on their website. You can use Microsoft’s Migration Manager to migrate file shares, the SharePoint Migration Tool to migrate your SharePoint server sites and content, and the Mover Tool for a cloud-to-cloud migration.
Even with step-by-step tutorials and the assistance of wizards, migrating to the cloud is still a complex and time-consuming process. There is much more to it than can be covered in one article alone, and there are many instances where it could go wrong. To ensure everything goes smoothly, it’s a good idea to consider outsourcing to an IT company with experience and expertise in the area.
Why choose Calnet IT?
At Calnet IT, we specialise in seamless migrations to the cloud. We have been supplying, deploying, migrating, supporting, managing and securing Microsoft 365 for businesses across Ireland since it was first released, and we have decades of combined experience migrating our clients to the cloud.
When you choose Calnet IT to help you migrate, you can rest assured you’ll be getting our unrivalled expertise, technical ability and reliable support at an affordable monthly cost.
To find out more about migrating to the cloud, get in touch with us today by calling 01 818 3272 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be happy to walk you through your options and identify the best plan for your business.