So, you’ve been selling on-premises for years, you’ve noticed the market has taken a cloudy turn, and now you’re ready to move to Office 365. Only problem is, your customers aren’t. For many small businesses, the cloud is new territory and confusion around exactly what the cloud is and its likely business impact might need to be addressed in your sales pitch.
Below we work through the common questions our Office 365 partners encounter and the simple answers that soon clear up any pre-cloud confusion.
1. I’m worried about security.
The most common reason customers who are looking to move to the cloud are hesitating is because of reservations they have around the security of storing their important information and systems in the cloud. For many small business, doubts around data security and a niggly fear that their business information will be hacked within seconds of migrating, are hard to let go of. The good news with Microsoft is that they make their security responsibilities clear. They are independently verified to adhere to the latest industry standards and regulations and are certified for ISO 27001, the best global security benchmark. Office 365 is the first major business productivity public cloud service to have done so.
2. Who owns my data?
Taking their information to the cloud means that small businesses need to let go of their servers. Suddenly they can’t see or touch the very thing that is holding the heart of their business, their data. With the server gone, replaced by this mythical cloud real estate they’re renting every month, many small businesses wonder if they still own their information. With Office 365, business owners retain all rights to their data, it’s theirs and theirs only. Also, because Office 365 is file collaboration rather than just cloud file syncing, small business owners can share their information with their team but manage their own internal permissions and security too.
3. The Cloud is not my comfort zone.
Much like switching jobs, homes or tomato sauce brands, fear of change can prevent many of us from doing things differently. This is just as true when it comes to moving a business which is used to a traditional on-premises infrastructure, merrily loading MS Office onto each PC from a trusty CD, to cloud-based set up using Office 365. Fortunately, Office 365 is a familiar stepping stone into the cloud for most businesses, with all the programmes they’re used to like Excel, PowerPoint and Word available, in full fidelity, there is little to no training or re-learning required.
4. It’s just Word online isn’t it?
Many small businesses aren’t aware of the true business impact the cloud can have, and a common misconception is that Office 365 is just the Office suite, but as web apps – big deal right? In fact, Office 365 is much more than that, and a key responsibility of us Office 365 resellers is to communicate its breadth such as; automatic updates and back-ups so that SMBs can focus on their business and not on IT, business-class email, calendars and online conferencing for improved collaboration, files accessed anywhere for better productivity. In fact, with the SuiteFiles and Office 365 package, there’s even more to Office 365 for your customers, including improved file sharing, access to invaluable content and time-saving templates.
5. What if the internet goes down?
It seems like a simple concern, but for many of our customers it’s a real one. In small business, every second counts to stay competitive and being dependent on internet uptime is a tangible risk. The good news is that being a cloud-based business actually enables businesses to work from anywhere. If an overzealous drain-layer means the internet office is down, your customer is no longer tied to their desk, they simply pick up their laptop, head home to their Wi-Fi or out into the sunshine to tether to their mobile device.
Our Partner Programme can move your small business customers to Office 365 quickly and easily with improved revenue for you. To find out more click here.