Microsoft is a software maker based in the USA. Their products include Windows, a personal computer operating system; Surface, a line of tablet computers and other hardware; Xbox 360, a video game console, and many more. Bing is their search engine, which gives information about the worldwide web.
They have started providing business-based services as well such as cloud computing, email hosting, and office suites just to name a few. So even if you’re not using their popular software titles mentioned earlier, there’s still a chance that Microsoft could be your small business’s best friend soon enough.
In this guide, we will cover what exactly “cloud-based” means for those who aren’t familiar with it and how it can help businesses. We will also list Microsoft cloud ERP solution’s newest office suites.
So what exactly does “cloud-based” mean?
In its simplest form, cloud-based services are those provided via an internet connection. There’s nothing complicated about it and most companies offer this type of service now. This mainly refers to software-as-a-service (SaaS). So, say you have Gmail as your email service, for example. The email account is stored on Google’s servers online and not locally on your computer or mobile device.
Microsoft started doing the same thing with their cloud ERP solutions but instead of calling them by what they are, they came up with confusing names that don’t relate to anything about their services just so people can easily recognize it when shopping around, which I think is counterintuitive because if you’re looking for a particular type of service then it would be logical to search using its category name or abbreviation.
Why should small businesses care?
Cloud-based are mostly advertised towards consumers but many small businesses can benefit from switching to them as well. First of all, Microsoft’s cloud ERP solutions are very powerful and for the most part, they do what you need. One version includes all the same features as regular old Microsoft Office Professional (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, etc.) but with extra benefits like email hosting included. If your company already has a website then having at least an email address is necessary.
For example, Gmail offers their free tier that gives you up to 100 different emails per month which should be more than enough if your company uses less than this number of email addresses. Also, Microsoft cloud ERP solutions’ subscription services are competitively priced when compared with other companies offering similar services such as Rackspace or Amazon Web Services among others.
Their office suites are also fully compatible with Microsoft Office documents. So you can easily edit, save and open documents created by any version of Microsoft’s popular suite of business-oriented products such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook among others. They even have a plugin for their apps that allows them to read and write files on Google Drive, which is pretty cool because you’ll be able to share your data between the two services without having to constantly copy and paste it onto cloud storage space.
Here is a list of outstanding cloud ERP solutions:
- Office 365 Business Essentials
- Office 365 Business Premium
- Office 365 Enterprise E1
- Office 365 Enterprise E3
- Office 365 Enterprise E5
- Microsoft Azure IaaS Platform
- Azure App Services
- Azure Virtual Machines
- Azure SQL Database
- Azure Active Directory Premium
- Microsoft Graph APIs Platform
- Microsoft Power BI Pro
- Azure Media Services
- Microsoft Cognitive Services
There are many other options available to you that could potentially save you money or increase your revenue if they are implemented into your company’s infrastructure. Make sure you do whatever is necessary for these changes to occur because it will help you become more productive, competitive, and profitable.