Standalone versions of Microsoft Office, including Office 2010, Office 2013, and Office 2016, will no longer be able to access Office 365 cloud services such as Exchange Online, Sharepoint Online, OneDrive for Business, or Skype for Business, by October 13, 2020. That’s the day that mainstream support ends for Office 2016 and Microsoft’s new support policy kicks in.
Don’t panic — this isn’t the end of your office’s productivity. It just means that now is the time to migrate to Office 365.
We know that switching office systems is almost always a little bit stressful, but we want to help ease the pressure associated with migration. Here’s a look at what you need to know before you — or a support team — help your business migrate to Office 365.
What’s the difference between Office 365 and Office 2016?
Before you make the switch to Office 365, you should know what will change and what will remain the same. Let’s start with the similarities:
You’ve likely become pretty comfortable with the Office Suite by now. Don’t worry, you’ll still get access to Word, PowerPoint, and Excel with Office 365. But you’ll also gain access to a number of new productivity tools, like OneNote, OneDrive and Skype.
Plus, with Office 365, you never have to purchase upgrades. You always have access to the latest version of tools and apps.
Installing Office 365 is just as easy as installing Office 2016. Migrating inboxes will take a little effort, but we’ll explain that later.
Some people will tell you it’s not safe to store important data in the cloud. Yes, you must connect to the internet to access Office 365, but you get access to a security center that allows you and your team to view the overall safety of your organization; configure devices, users, and apps; and get alerts for suspicious activity.
Cost is important to consider when you make any changes to your business. With Office 2016, you got to pick a package based on price. Office 365 is similar — but instead of a one-time payment, you’ll pick a subscription price.
Why do I need to migrate to Office 365?
As we mentioned, standalone versions of Microsoft Office will no longer be able to access O365 cloud services such as Exchange Online, Sharepoint Online, OneDrive for Business, or Skype for Business, by October 13, 2020.
That leaves a number of valuable tools obsolete.
How can I begin the migration process?
If you’re a small or medium-sized business owner, the first thing you need to do is find someone to help you with the migration. This is not something you want to try and do by yourself. Office 365 migration support can make the process simple, quick and enjoyable for you and your team.
That being said, you should still have a basic understanding of what your support team is doing. Here are five quick steps that the migration support specialist will do to move your systems to Office 365.
1. Create an action plan.
You and your team need to have a thorough understanding of who is responsible for what, and when certain tasks need to be completed.
2. Determine which type of migration is right for you.
You, your staff, and your migration support team will then decide which type of migration — cutover, staged, or hybrid — is best for you and your needs.
3. Prepare your hardware and infrastructure.
Reviewing your IT infrastructure and making sure your servers, computers, and network can handle the stress of a migration will make the process quicker and smoother. Be sure to make any necessary hardware upgrades, run all the latest software updates and perform a few system backups.
4. Test everything.
Migrate a few test emails before transferring the whole office. That way, you’ll be able to pinpoint any issues early in the process and prevent wasted time.
5. Let your migration support team complete the process.
At this point, your migration support team should step in to complete the process. They’ll contact you if they need access or help with anything.
Aventis Systems is here to help you navigate through moving to Microsoft Office 365 with licensing, migration, and IT Support. Once you’ve migrated, your Microsoft Office 365 subscription licenses are supported for their full term — one year — during Aventis Systems’ normal business hours. Reach out today for more information and support.