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Easier move to Office 365 for small and midsized businesses

Microsoft wants to make it easier for small to midsized businesses (SMBs) to move to Office 365 and experience the ability for your employees to access team files from anywhere, collaborate in real-time from any device and get enterprise-grade security that works as hard for you as for the largest organizations.

Starting today, customers with 50 to 149 seats of Office 365 enterprise and small business plans can take advantage of the Microsoft customer success service Microsoft FastTrack. Previously available only to customers with 150 seats or more, FastTrack provides resources and dedicated engineers who can assist you, or the Microsoft Partner you work with, to implement Office 365, onboard users and get the most business value from your investment.

Speaking of Microsoft Partners, this global network of IT experts plays a critical role in helping companies small and large get up and running with the right technology. In addition to extending FastTrack to more customers, Microsoft is expanding the FY16 Adoption Offer to include Office 365 small business plans and adding payouts for customer deployments of 50–149 seats. This means Microsoft Partners will be eligible for a payout of $25 per seat for 50–149 seats, in addition to the existing payouts for 150 seats and above.Helping business grow

Gartner recently analyzed cloud email usage among public companies of different sizes, industries and geographies to see how Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps for Work are faring. The Gartner report finds that among these companies, Microsoft leads in all segments, and especially so among larger organizations.

Matt Katzer, a Microsoft partner and principal of Kamind IT, has helped thousands of SMBs get up and running with Office 365. He says there’s a good reason more companies choose Office 365 than Google for Work. “Companies tend to reach a breaking point with Google Apps around the 50-employee mark because it doesn’t provide the centralized management and security capabilities, nor the breadth of integrated collaboration tools, that Office 365 does,” said Katzer.

He points out that the needs of a company with five employees can change significantly by the time they have 50 employees. “Choosing the right solution early on can help businesses avoid the costs of integrating disparate systems or making a big change with their IT later on.”

Many SMBs understand firsthand the challenges with Google Apps. Ted Vu, co-founder of beverage retailer Tastea, says when the company started out, they used Google Docs and some other free software, but as the company grew, they wanted a solution that would scale with them. “We always knew we wanted to grow this business. We needed a trustworthy, scalable solution, and Office 365 is it.”

The right technology can be a great enabler of innovation and growth. Just ask the 60 million people who use Office 365 at work and the 50,000 SMB organizations who become Office 365 customers every month. Whether you’re currently using a cloud productivity solution other than Office 365 or haven’t yet made the transition to the cloud, there has never been a better time to choose Office 365 for your business. Sign up for a free trial here. If you’re ready to get started and take advantage of the FastTrack Center benefit, contact your Microsoft Partner or sign up for Office 365 today.



Frederik De Breuck is better known as Stonyarc (GamerTag). Next to writing and maintaining his personal blog he is the owner of and . He's also Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) since 2010 and works as Presales Director for Fujitsu Belgium.

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