Cloud Consolidation with Microsoft Office 365

By BDO Digital | March 15, 2017

Did you know the average public sector organization uses 721 different cloud services? These services address a wide variety of business needs, such as collaboration, file sharing, development, and social media services. Many of our clients would go so far as to say that these types of services are imperative to their day-to-day operations. While this may be true, it ignores the fact that vendor management, lack of data governance, and service redundancy are becoming a growing concern as new cloud services are being introduced on a regular basis.

As the cloud continues to offer new opportunities, it also requires organizations to change the ways in which they’ve always done things. A good place to start is by re-examining how to best consolidate your cloud services into a single, manageable platform to increase productivity, efficiency, and drive down costs.

Top 3 Benefits of Cloud Consolidation with Office 365

1. Diminish Vendor Management

When services are spread out between different vendors, someone must take responsibility for managing the contracts and service agreements. While this responsibility may not fall on the executives directly, it will impact their bottom line. Consider the time required of employees to do these tasks. The lack of transactional productivity can quickly add up. If each of the 721 services quoted at the top took just one hour a year to manage, that is 721 hours, or 90 work days. By alleviating your IT department of this responsibility, they could stand to gain back approximately 3 months of time to spend focusing on the things that are driving innovation and profitability.

By consolidating most of your services to one provider, you are still providing your users with what they want and need, but saving them the time-consuming task of managing so many different vendors. The productivity wins of Office 365 go beyond the productivity benefits of the products themselves.

2. Streamline Data Governance

If your organization is using different systems that talk to each other, one of the most common issues that crops up is the data does not communicate across the different services you are supporting. This creates an issue with collaboration and prevents your organization from moving forward. If your users are using freeware and you are unaware of it (we refer to this as ghost IT) you have no control over your data and when/where it is stored, or shared. This creates compliance issues and increases the risk for data loss if that person leaves the company.

3. Reduce Service Redundancy

A common question we hear from our clients is which Office 365 capability is best for their needs. We get this question frequently because Microsoft has provided users with a productivity swiss army knife –  a different product for every need and user. From collaboration and communication to file sharing to data analytics, Microsoft can say ‘there’s a tool for that.’

While this may feel overwhelming on the surface, this is a benefit when considering that there are literally services for every need on the market. For an organization who needs to manage and be aware of so many individual preferences, having a consolidated service makes this manageable. If you have invested in an Office 365 license, you can provide the tools your users need without adding to the litany of tools your users will ultimately be requesting down the line.

Through cloud consolidation, using Office 365, this is no longer an issue. The platform speaks across your organization to facilitate your users, regardless of department or preferred capability, and your data loss is greatly minimized.

The important thing to remember here is - if you’re relying on a large number of different cloud services to run your businesses, you’re missing out on the opportunity to consolidate. With Office 365, all your cloud services are in one place, eliminating the problem of vendor management streamlining your data governance, and service redundancy.

How many cloud vendors are you currently using? Connect with us to learn more about how to transition to Office 365 and reap the benefits of vendor consolidation.

Leveraging opportunities in the cloud