I think that the key thing when it comes to looking at Office 365 is to step away from, we’ll call it the Microsoft Marketing Machine and to actually look at what it is you need. When people hear Office 365 or they think I’m moving to the Office 365 Cloud they believe that it is the bundles that Microsoft has. They call them E1, E3, E4 you may even hear the Enterprise Cloud Suite. They’re packages of services. Those are all basically just Exchange, SharePoint and Skype online packaged into a bundle. Some of those would include the Office product as well. The challenge that most organizations have is, say they’re going to move to Office 365 and go and try and negotiate a deal for the packages with Microsoft, but when you actually peel it back and take a look at what you are actually trying to accomplish internally the thing we actually hear the most from clients is, “I want to move my Exchange mailboxes to the Cloud because I want to get rid of storage that’s associated with Exchange because that’s expensive so let Microsoft have those costs.” Or, “I’m migrating mailbox users to the Cloud.” We don’t hear, “I’m moving to Exchange and SharePoint and Lync and I want to access Office in the Cloud.” It just seems to be Exchange. Now that’s changing a little bit. More organizations are looking at SharePoint and looking at Link, but if you look at it most people have a roadmap that starts with moving from Exchange Online to maybe SharePoint online down the road, a year and a half, two years later to Link. So it’s not buying everything. The challenge is why am I negotiating an Office 365 deal if all I’m doing is looking to migrate my Exchange environment to the Cloud. You really want to step back and think through, “What is it that I’m doing? Where am I going with that?” It makes sense to look at alternatives before purchasing. There’s a lot of confusion out there in the marketplace, but the alternatives really are, “Let’s take a look at purchasing maybe just Exchange Online. I can do that,” and so people when I say that look at me and kind of say, “What? I didn’t know I could do that. I thought I had to buy E3 or E1.” Well, no you can actually just buy Exchange Online and that’s a fraction of the cost of E3. There are some benefits to that. Maybe there are some disadvantages to that, but you really want to go back internally and take a look at what it is you’re doing, where you’re going and what your roadmap looks like and figure out if Office 365 is the thing to buy. Again, Office 365 is a bundle of marketed services put together where all you maybe need is Exchange Online.

About MetrixData 360

MetrixData 360MetrixData360 translates software licensing agreements into clear understandings and drives significant cost savings in audits and negotiations.