Thinking about a Microsoft Office 365 migration?  If you haven’t migrated your messaging and collaboration infrastructure to Microsoft Office 365 you are missing out on one of Microsoft’s premier service offerings.  Oakwood can facilitate and manage the entire upgrade and deployment process for you.  So, why is this so important for my business you ask?

1. Reduce Risks

By moving your email infrastructure to Office 365 you reduce your risks of power outages taking down a mission-critical application such as email. Microsoft’s infrastructure is highly available and Database Availability Groups are implemented worldwide. By migrating to Office 365, the burden of keeping your services up and running is shifted to Microsoft, who has the infrastructure, the staff, and a financial obligation to keep your services available at all times.

2. Microsoft Hosting

By allowing Microsoft to host your Exchange environment, you avoid the burden of patching and upgrades.

  • No more patching On-premise Exchange Servers
  • Forget about purchasing the Exchange Server Software to deploy On-Prem
  • No longer have to worry about upgrading to the most current version of Exchange
  • You won’t have to pay project fees associated with upgrading to the current version of Exchange

3. Anytime, Anywhere Access

Microsoft Office 365 provides web-enabled access to email, important documents, contacts, and calendar on almost any device.  That includes PCs, Macintosh computers, iPhones, Android phones and BlackBerry smartphones. It frees you to work where and when you choose.  as a result, it lets you respond to important requests right away, from almost any location. Enjoy accessing email and documents from your mobile device.  You don’t need to hurry to the office or look for a Wi-Fi hotspot. Traveling without access to Microsoft Office?  No problem.  Office 365 helps you view and edit documents from the most popular web browsers on PCs and Macintosh computers. Take control of when and where you work with Office 365.

4. Safety and Security

Security is a priority at all Microsoft data centers. Leverage the security used by Microsoft and major enterprise corporations worldwide to help protect email, documents, and networks. Microsoft’s systems scan your messages and documents for spam and malicious software (also called malware) 24/7. Microsoft data centers safeguard your data.  And most importantly, they are certified to meet multiple industry-standard certifications.

5. Lets Businesses Do More With Less

Building and maintaining data centers is a costly endeavor. With Office 365, businesses can decrease the size of their data centers — or eliminate their data centers altogether. The reduction of the numbers of servers, the software cost, can significantly reduce IT costs without impacting an organization’s IT capabilities. This frees up the IT staff to do more innovative things that may have been out of reach in the past.

6. Only Pay For What You Use

Traditionally, companies using on-premises MS Office services had to purchase server and infrastructure capacity that could accommodate peak usage. This meant during off-peak periods, a lot of the capacity was sitting idly, yet you still pay for it during this time. Office 365 turns this concept on its head. Capacity can be purchased then decommissioned as needed, leading to tremendous cost savings.

7. Faster Time to Production

Traditionally, when a business adds new employees, a version of MS Office would be earmarked and installed on the hard drive. This could easily take hours. Multiply this by thousands of employees, and the cost of simply installing software skyrockets. With Office 365, all an IT admin needs to do is buy an additional license, create the user credentials and apply access controls. Instead of hours, the turnaround time is reduced to minutes.

8. Flexible Deployment Options

Office 365 can be deployed in one of three ways, depending on an organization’s security needs or migration timeline.

  • First.  On-premises deployment. This involves deploying the Office 365 Business, Business Premium, E3 or Pro Plus plans that come with the full local install versions of Office 2016. As a result, this allows an organization to deploy in a manner consistent with older on-premises versions of Office with the cost and scale benefits of Office 365. Although Microsoft has made a significant push for the cloud, the company’s O365 is still an offline solution for those who desire it. Thus, the company’s plans include the ability to download full versions of the Office suite to a Mac or PC. On Business Plans, the limit is up to five PCs or Macs per user.
  • Second.  Cloud deployment. This is the deployment method most commonly associated with O365 and involves migrating back-end services like Exchange and SharePoint to the cloud.
  • Third.  Hybrid deployment. Like you might have guessed, this allows organizations to deploy both on-premises and in the cloud. For example, an organization may choose to integrate Office 365 with on-premises Active Directory services or SharePoint.

9. Up-time Guarantee

Microsoft Guarantees 99.9 percent uptime backed by a service agreement. Microsoft has guaranteed that its uptime on Office 365 will be steady. The company says that customers can expect 99.9 percent uptime and offers a financially backed service-level agreement to customers. One other important note: It has 24/7 phone support for critical O365 issues.

10. Single Sign-on

Let’s assume your network is running at least Server 2008 Active Directory on-premises.  Great news!  As a result, you can configure Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS) to achieve single sign-on.  By doing so, users can log on to the domain and be automatically authenticated to Office 365.

Why Consider an Office 365 Migration?

Office 365 allows your business to expand its current capabilities by giving you access to a range of high-quality productivity tools. Thus, this gives your company’s day-to-day efficiency the boost it needs.

With a fixed monthly cost, your business can have access to a lot.  That includes cloud-based email, the ability to edit and view Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote files, as well as team instant messaging, file sharing, and video conferencing. These applications?  They are all hosted, guess where…on the cloud.  As a result, there is no need to worry about start-up and maintenance costs associated with setting up a new IT system.


An Office 365 migration is the future of office productivity and collaboration tools. It is simply a matter of time before all of us are using it or something like it. The question each organization must ask is, when is the time right for us to make the switch? Whether you opt for the big leap to the cloud or the hybrid deployment option, Office 365 can help your organization increase productivity and manage costs. And with migration help and support available 24x7x365 from experts, the time to migrate may be now.

About Oakwood

Since 1981, Oakwood has been helping companies of all sizes, across all industries, solve their business problems.  We bring world-class consultants to architect, design and deploy technology solutions to move your company forward.   Our proven approach guarantees better business outcomes.  With flexible engagement options, your project is delivered on-time and on budget.  11,000 satisfied clients can’t be wrong.

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