For years, most companies have defaulted to using traditional Microsoft Office to meet their office productivity needs. In fact, the amount of users of Microsoft’s flagship productivity suite now tops the 1 billion mark. However, as technology continues to advance, about 39 percent of businesses have decided to make the switch over to cloud-based productivity suites. Another 17 percent reported that they were considering using one in the next 12 months. With the benefit of real-time collaboration, these cloud-based productivity suites have led to more efficient means of office communication for the businesses that use them.
The Benefits of Cloud-Based Productivity Suites
The reasons so many businesses are opting to switch to cloud-based productivity suites vary, but they can all be traced back to the wide array of benefits these services offer. The main draw of office productivity in the cloud is the ability to access work documents from any computer and any location with an internet connection. With roughly 37 percent of workers in the United States alone conducting at least some of their work remotely, the ability to access documents on-the-go is a higher priority now than ever before.
Aside from the mobility that cloud-based services offer, the ability to communicate more efficiently and share files with co-workers makes collaborative efforts less taxing on employees. However, much like anything else in technology today, there’s a lot of competition in the cloud-productivity space and choosing the right one is far from simple.
Choosing the Right Productivity Suite for You
According to a Skyhigh Networks study, Office 365 currently stands as the most popular cloud-based productivity suite for businesses. Microsoft’s cloud productivity suite offers all the benefits users have come to love about cloud-based platforms in the Microsoft packaging that so many are already familiar with. While Microsoft appears to have maintained its grasp on office productivity, Google and Apple aren’t sitting idly behind.
Google’s G Suite and Apple’s iWorks, as well as a slew of other cloud-based productivity suites, are now available and finding the right one for your office depends on what your office is looking for. G Suite from Google can be easily compared to Office 365, as it possesses many similar programs. The main differences between Google’s and Microsoft’s suites comes from their capabilities. Microsoft provides a more robust suite with more powerful features, while Google’s platform is a sleeker, as well as more streamlined and affordable. iWorks, a relatively late entrant into the productivity suite space, is being positioned as a real-time collaboration system that allows users to create and edit documents together.
Focus on Your Solutions
When choosing a productivity suite, it’s important to focus less on cost and more on the needs of the end-user. Many organizations continue to use Office because users are so familiar with the platform, and upgrades require little or no training. With Office 365, most users don’t even notice when an automatic update occurs. However, keep in mind that many employees, particularly younger ones, are also just as familiar with Google and Apple applications, so a switch may not be as complicated as you think.