What is Microsoft 365 Business?
by Adam Arnold
By now, you have likely heard of Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft’s premier cloud offering for business. Office 365 has a rich product listing that includes products like Exchange Online, Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint Online and Cloud Voice System. These services are all fantastic and when implemented with some of the necessary Security Offerings such as Advanced Threat Protection (email filtering) and Azure AD licenses (sign-in features and encryption), they make for a complete solution. So where do Microsoft 365 Business and Enterprise come in? This is Microsoft’s attempt to add some much-needed security, management, and licensing for the workstations as well as for Office 365.
Microsoft has realized that most of its small business customers need what enterprise customers need. They need Compliance (Data Loss Prevention, Archiving, and Litigation Hold), security (Advanced Threat Protection and Azure AD), and better overall Office 365 tenant management (Intune device management) were previously available a la carte but were virtually unknown to most 365 customers. These packages simplify the license and give organizations what they need—even if they didn’t know they needed or wanted it. Microsoft 365 Business is a simplified way to incorporate all of those features into 1 per user per month license. These packages make the license structure less complicated and easier to implement the necessary security and compliance features that ALL businesses should be using. Remember if you are using Business Premium or Microsoft 365 licensing you have a limit of 300 users.
Microsoft 365 Business $20/user/month (Max of 300 users) includes some of the following:
- Microsoft Office Business
- Sharepoint Online
- OneDrive for Business
- Microsoft Teams
- Exchange Online
- Microsoft Bookings
- Microsoft Invoicing
- Shifts/StaffHub/new name for Microsoft Teams Scheduling Software
- Windows Intune Device Management (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Advanced Threat Protection (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Azure Information Protection plan (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Data Loss Prevention (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Litigation Hold (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Online archiving (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
- Windows 10 Workstation license (Not included in 365 Business Premium)
Here is an excerpt of the 365 Business to Office 365 Enterprise E3 licenses that gives you an idea of the value for small businesses. It is very clear Microsoft understands that its business premium plans left their small business customers without some of the necessary security and compliance features for a successful cloud implementation.
Here is the license deck from Microsoft that explains what is available in more detail for these new packages:
Starting in February, Microsoft will begin selling these packages. It is a welcome move from a consultant’s point of view. License management has become so complicated, creating the need for embedded license products such as Advanced Threat Protection since the inception of Office 365. It is the hope that these new bundled products simplify the process.