and Why That’s Difficult
Blog: http://www.MyCentralAdmin.comTwitter: @ferringer
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Blog: http://www.MyCentralAdmin.comTwitter: @ferringer
Office365: how the Cloud makes IT easy - SPTechCon SF 2012
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Office365: how the Cloud makes IT easy - SPTechCon SF 2012


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It’s a great story: your business desperately needs email and collaboration to be successful, but let’s face it: Exchange and SharePoint are far from easy to implement or run. To the rescue come Microsoft’s Office365 offering, allowing you to buy that critical email and collaboration functionality as a utility, just like you do electricity or water, and you don’t have to have an IT geek to pull it off!

But as easy as Office365 makes this, it’s still not a piece of cake to pull it off and fall in love with what you have. Because it’s such a simple and compelling story, there’s a tendency to gloss over, ignore, or fail to allow for some minor issues and limitations that can unfortunately add up to irritation, frustration, or even worse, a loss of productivity and profit.

This session is less about the numerous benefits and features of the new Office365 offerings from Microsoft Online Services and more about how you need to be able to identify the small things that can trip you up and be prepared to address them proactively. It will show you how to consider some of the unexpected solutions you need to have in place to implement a cloud-based solution for business communication and collaboration and how to make sure that the possible opportunities present in Office365 can be realized by your organization without pain, frustration, or failure.

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  • How many current Office 365 customers? Anyone considering Office 365Any MS Partners in the room? Selling MSO?
  • Italics = sarcasm!This is a utility. This is a direct replacement for the IT systems that companies use the most. The functionality it offers is not much new over what you can get with on-premise implementations
  • It’s fast.It has a defined costYour users know how to use it (mostly)You can lose your IT, on purpose!
  • How long does it take to deploy a new server? A new platform? You can have Office 365’s capabilities for your organization in days, not weeks or months! But its not just start up. New features are there faster too, from the people who make the features for the products. You stay on the cutting edge, without the cost and pain to being there.
  • What business productivity suite do users know? Switching to a new option means that your users have to learn how to use it. And it may seem like a simple thing, but there’s a lot to that processWhat can be done with it?What can’t be done with it?Common activities are differentOffice 365 is still Office. You don’t have to retrain your users to use itOther seamless integration points: single sign on, client app integration.
  • How do you define the cost of an IT platform?Hardware costSoftware LicenseImplementation timeSkills of your implementorOngoing support, maintenance, and updatesDatacenter costsUpgrade testing and deploymentNow it’s a simple monthly cost, per user covered!
  • Office 365 plans expect to range from $6 to $27 a user a month, $6 is the Kiosk worker SKU Also includes on-premise client access licenses for usePlans for SMB, Enterprise, EducationCan include BES, PBX, etc99.9% Uptime via SLA
  • This can be a good thing!Focus on YOUR business. Spend your time and resources on running your business better! If IT is not your business, you don’t have to do it. Support is built into the product. No patching, maintenance, troubleshooting, etc
  • But its not all wine and roses. There are problems with Office 365, including several that you may not consider until you’re fighting against them.There are new costs to considerYou have to play by their rulesYou have to re-learn how to do the simple thingsYou may miss your geeks!
  • Where you spend your money is going to change. Office 365 places a huge premium on having an open internet connection capable of getting your users to the systems they need to do there job.That means your bandwidth usage is going to go up. AND it means that your pipe needs to be able to support that traffic! Not only that, but what happens when your internet connection goes down? Do you have a backup?Licensing is still tricky too. Do you understand all the options, and where the best value for your organization lies?Also, is your client software compatible? Is it up to date?Also, scaling easily means that your costs can also go up easily. But it doesn’t go back down easily…And then there’s the cost of migration, transition, and adaptation of other systems!!! Having fun yet?
  • You have to play by their rules. You have to accept the features and functionality made available to you by the service; gone is the opportunity to turn every single capability on and off as you see fit.This is about service for the lowest common denominator, and you’re going to have to fit your needs to their services, rather than fit the service to your needs.How will your other systems integrate? If you don’t have local servers, can your other systems use Office 365 accounts for authentication? Can you train your users to manage multiple accounts?Can you wait on functionality like Business Intelligence or Records Management?Can you deal with a set list of blocked file types? Or restricted sizing on site collections (100 GB max)? Are 14 days of backups enough? Oh yeah, and how do you feel about Sandbox Solutions?
  • If you move EVERYTHING to the cloud, how does your organization print its documents? How do you manage accounts?How do you save critical documents?How do you store documents you can’t put in SharePoint Online?How do you need to integrate these systems with Line of Business applications? Do you integrate calendaring? Customer data? Security?
  • Again, there’s more cost here too.More systems to support
  • If you replace capabilities in your organization, they are lost. You may not have onsite support any more. You may not have a support organization that directly knows your business and its users intimately. (And no more unwashed weirdos walking around in “Han Shot First” t-shirts)How do you configure synchronization? How to you maintain it? Monitor it? Are you able to set up ADFS Federation?If you’re a MS Partner, how does this affect you? How do you manage the relationship? How do you make money? Are you ready to provide other services?
  • What is there to love about the cloud?ElasticResponsiveRedundantFlexibleWhat’s the reality?How redundant is it? Answer: as redundant as you PAY to make itHow responsive is it? Answer: as responsive as THEY choose to beHow flexible is it? Answer: as flexible as YOU want to beCan you get your data back out, or is it the Hotel California?Can you back your data up if it goes offline?
  • Office 365 does have redundancy built it, but like Amazon its not quite what you might expectYour systems and data are confined to one datacenter, somewhat like Amazon’s Availability ZonesBut, that datacenter also has a failover to protect it should it go down, so there is redundancyOn the other hand, your data only lives in that datacenter. Even though it can be accessed from anywhere in the world, its going to stay in that datacenter, not be geographically replicated or distributed, which can mean that global users may have latency issuesAnd unlike Amazon, you can’t pick the datacenter that it goes in, that’s based on your billing address
  • There’s a lot that goes into considering a move to Office 365. It may seem easy, but its not something that should be taken lightly.Things to consider:How do you use the systems you’re looking to replace? Do you have custom needs?Do you truly understand the limits of the product?What do you integrate it with?It’s great for new organizations without much baggage to migrate inIt’s great for organizations who don’t have a lot of specific or unique requirementsIt’s great for cost-sensitive organizationsIt’s great for organizations that don’t want to invest in IT expertise
  • Office365: how the Cloud makes IT easy - SPTechCon SF 2012

    1. 1. and Why That’s Difficult
    2. 2. Blog: http://www.MyCentralAdmin.comTwitter: @ferringer
    3. 3.  3 | SPTechCon San Francisco 2012
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    9. 9.     $5.25 a user a month  $5 a user a month     $6.50 a user a month Total Cost $29,970 $20,100 Per Year 10 | SPTechCon San Francisco 2012
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    21. 21. Blog: http://www.MyCentralAdmin.comTwitter: @ferringer