As internet speeds increase and networks become more reliable, cloud-based software packages continue to grow in popularity and business value. Moving beyond the limitations of on-site storage and isolated applications, cloud-based productivity tools deliver additional benefits with unlimited storage and integrated collaboration tools.
According to the 2017 BDO Technology Outlook Survey, 74 percent of technology CFOs said cloud computing had the most measurable impact on their business in 2017. A few names have emerged as productivity front-runners, with Microsoft Office 365 and Google G Suite offering advantages and disadvantages for your team.
Pros of Office 365
Microsoft Office 365 is the most robust and best-known office software suite in the world. Produced by the biggest name in business technology, this productivity software package includes a wide selection of the most familiar document applications – Word, Excel and PowerPoint – and newer collaboration tools like SharePoint and Microsoft Teams.
Office 365 subscriptions are customizable to some degree with available Business, Enterprise
Cons of Office 365
Microsoft Office 365 is not the right package for everyone, especially with confusing product variations and a complicated pricing structure putting some people off.
Unexpected service limitations of Office 365 include a 24-hour cap on the number of email recipients, which restricts list-based communication. In addition, end-user support is lacking with no direct phone support and online help limited to articles and community forums. Some Office 365 subscribers have also been affected by downtime on the Microsoft servers.
Office 365 offers limited control over your data for individuals and smaller organizations. To receive the full set of highly advanced security features, you need the more expensive Enterprise for maximum control of your data.
Pros of G Suite
G Suite is powered by the Google cloud. This comprehensive SaaS package includes a range of productivity and collaboration tools. While Google’s applications are not as pervasive as those created by Microsoft, G Suite includes cloud-based word processing, accounting, presentation and much more. Security features are also tight since G Suite uses the same cloud infrastructure as Google itself.
Unlike the 1 TB storage limitation of Office 365, G Suite offers unlimited cloud storage for Business and Enterprise plans that include five or more users. This may be a significant advantage to large companies, creative service agencies or media organizations with extensive data storage needs. G Suite also offers seamless integration with its conferencing applications, including free local calls using Google Hangouts and Google Voice.
Cons of G Suite
Google G Suite offers a comprehensive and increasingly popular range of tools, including Gmail, Google Drive, Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Hangouts. However, Microsoft applications are still much more popular in
G Suite doesn’t have comparable desktop apps that you can use on your computer, which makes it more challenging to maintain productivity when you’re offline. This can be a significant disadvantage to some businesses with frequent travel or meetings in areas with limited internet access. While G Suite storage is better when there are more than five users under the Enterprise plan, individual users are limited to 30 GB rather than the standard 1 TB available from Office 365.
The winner is … your business
According to Deloitte Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions, 2017, IT as a service will represent more than half of all IT spending by 2021. When investing in your business, it’s important to do your homework and find the best solution for your needs.
Regardless of what productivity platform you choose, Office 365 and G Suite both highlight the many advantages of working in the cloud. The power, scope, and collaborative potential of these packages can help your business to become more efficient and productive. Who knows, once you’ve experienced the wonders of the cloud, you may want to transform your entire operation into a turnkey virtualized office