When you begin looking for your first digital workplace solutions provider, or an update to an existing one, you should strongly consider the suite of applications you may already have at your disposal, Microsoft 365.
Microsoft 365 has been a cornerstone for users with office tools like Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. What might be new to you, however, is that Microsoft also provides premium workplace communication and collaboration tools that help you effectively engage your employees.
Applications like Teams have allowed companies to connect their workforce, helping them advance office collaboration to new heights. Tools like SharePoint have allowed companies to create powerful corporate communications platforms that keep employees in the know and provide them with the content that they need daily. Extensions like Yammer have given corporate communicators a social network that is able to connect employees to each other, drive engagement, and share important knowledge across the org.
With Microsoft 365, digital workplaces are more than just a medium for communication and collaboration. They become an inclusive ecosystem of tools that help your employees work at their most productive levels.
This eBook comes from the pages of our Intranet Whitepaper and focuses in on the various advantages you have to gain when choosing Microsoft 365 as your Intranet or as your entire digital communication and collaboration platform.
We have divided these advantages into three categories:
The following is a glimpse at what you can expect from each section.
In this section of the eBook, we highlight the 3 main communication and collaboration applications.
Teams is a perfect example of Microsoft innovation at work. It combines video conferencing and collaboration tools into the ideal workstation. However, the innovations do not stop there. Microsoft Teams is also a powerful platform for your digital workplace. It continues to push the boundaries on communication and collaboration through apps, connectors, and customization capabilities.
If you have not already, it has never been a better time to join its 145 million daily active users in improving the way digital communication and collaboration happens.
Since most of the buzz has been around Microsoft Teams, you might be wondering, “is Yammer still relevant?” Absolutely, and it has advantages you will want to leverage on your journey to a more social digital workplace. Yammer is a great place to have social interactions between colleagues without adding more clutter to your Teams channels. Instead, save those conversations for Yammer.
For over a decade companies have been relying on SharePoint for their Intranet. A strong indicator of its relevance is how many times the application has been the foundation for the Neilson Norman award, the equivalent of winning a Grammy in the Intranet space. We are proud to say that some of our colleagues have been awarded that very award for their work on a SharePoint Intranet.
While many have relied on it as the foundation for their Intranet, SharePoint has taken things up a few notches, enabling advanced capabilities for engaging with your employees. Their modern UI/UX is as simple to use as a Square Space website, and as easily configurable. If you are not already using SharePoint for your Intranet, you should know their users have doubled year-over-year, and it is for a good reason.
SharePoint is at the heart of Microsoft 365’s digital workplace solutions and even the backbone for some. Its purpose includes improving the overall employee experience and engagement through effective communication and collaboration. Fortunately, SharePoint’s purpose aligns with Microsoft’s commitment to a better digital workplace, and the results have been outstanding.
Each of the identified benefits has been proven, based on industry experience, to impact the business significantly and deliver considerable value. The benefits in this section of the eBook, identified as having a high estimated impact, should be prioritized, and a plan should be put into place to track and realize them.
While no particular digital workplace area is inherently more important than another, Microsoft and its 3rd party ecosystem do provide stronger benefits in some categories than others. We have organized the benefits, their impact, and alignment with key digital workplace categories:
In the supporting advantages section of the eBook, we look at how innovation, cost savings and the Microsoft 365 ecosystem play a role in bettering your communication and collaboration efforts. Below are snippets of the sections.
Microsoft continues to push boundaries across its product line, and the pandemic only accelerated this process. From SharePoint hitting over 200 million active users, to the Microsoft Teams hitting 145 million daily active users, organizations are primed to reap the benefits of Microsoft’s countless innovations.
In the last two years alone, Microsoft has successfully launched 636 updates, is currently rolling out 237, and has 597 in the pipeline – at the time of release.
Moving your business to SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) can automatically reduce operating costs. Moving your business to Microsoft 365 as your SaaS provider can save your company money in many ways.
Millions of users are familiar with Microsoft technology and have used it at one point or another. This makes the learning curve a lot shorter when learning a new application and saves your company countless hours.
One of the most significant ways Microsoft 365 saves your organization money is by providing access to their entire suite of applications for a low cost, rather than having to purchase or pay for a variety of applications.
The Microsoft 365 or Office 365 ecosystem of applications makes it easy to integrate your existing technology with the stack, switch between apps, create an integrated experience and bring your workplace on the go with mobile features.
You can liken the experience to one found as a consumer of Apple’s ecosystem. The difference is that since Microsoft 365 is a business solution, it can also easily configure to fit your specific companies’ look and feel and be built to fit your organization’s needs.
There are an incredible number of other ways to measure and track the value Microsoft 365 provides with their Intranet software against your internal communication efforts. Users across the industry have exposure and have worked with SharePoint, Microsoft 365, and Microsoft Teams, which can significantly reduce the change management costs or the need to re-learn digital skills. This benefit applies to content authors of your Intranet or contributors across your organization.
Microsoft 365, or SharePoint Online, is the platform used by many winners of the prestigious Nielsen Norman Intranet Award, including the awards our team has won over the years. In some years, 80% of the winners use SharePoint Intranets.
So, what are you waiting for? Whether you are looking to gain a strong understanding of the advantages available with Microsoft 365 or were you looking for a document that you can share, this eBook is for you!