Microsoft Office 365 offers compelling benefits, and many are making the switch. Though worth the hassle, the transition to Office 365 is involved and complex. Businesses must craft detailed plans as to how to fit the service to their specific needs. Such a move requires research, planning and preparation. Unfortunately, many businesses attempt to migrate blindly, without professional consultation. This can lead to inefficiencies and roadblocks in the process. The following are common pitfalls to avoid when migrating to Microsoft Office 365.
Navigating On-Premises vs. the Cloud
Office 365 migration is just that—a migration. In all likelihood, your business will be best served by operating in a hybrid environment for some period of time. This means that you will supplement your on-premises Exchange mail use with the cloud-based service before switching over entirely. The specifics of how much and how quickly to transition depend entirely on the specifics of your business’ operations. Don’t fall into the overambitious trap of trying to do too much too soon.
Choosing the Wrong Support Plan
Choosing the right Office 365 support plan for your business is crucial. If you opt for the hybrid approach, you should choose a plan that is compatible with hybrid synchronization deployments. The Academic, Government, Enterprise and Midsize plans all fit this bill, but the Home and Small Business plans do not.
Legacy Archive Export
Most on-premises legacy archive solutions are incompatible with Office 365; you need to get your data out of the archive solution before you make the switch. This can be an incredibly slow and complex process. It may be best to look for a third-party tool or an IT consultant to manage the export, rehydration and upload process.
Archive Data Import
Unfortunately, exporting data from legacy archive solutions is just the first half of the setback. Ingestion speeds for large amounts of data into Office 365 can be bottlenecked by Internet bandwidth and a variety of other factors. This could essentially grind the import to a halt. Again, we recommend working with a third-party tool or consultant to facilitate the process.
Factoring in the Costs of Add-Ons
Most of the beneficial features of Office 365 are built into the online suite. However, catering the specific services that your business needs may require a few add-ons. It’s important to research the “purchase services” options and determine exactly what you need and how much it will cost before moving forward.
Giving into Online Confusion
Blog posts can of course be very helpful to a certain extent (Why else would we be writing this one?), and everyone seems eager to offer tips and advice. However, this mass of information can be overwhelming and confusing, especially for a process that is so particular to each individual business. Why give yourself a headache? An IT consultant can help facilitate the migration process with their expertise and catered service.
AIS can help you avoid these pitfalls. We assist organizations as they migrate their on-premise Microsoft Office suite to the cloud. We can smooth the entire transition by handling subscription plans, integrating existing services and customizing the Office 365 environment to fit the organization’s needs. If you are considering Migrating to Office 365, we can offer you peace of mind and eliminate any issues or inefficiencies that may arise. Whether you are looking for professional assistance or simply have some questions before you start, call us today at 317-820-2497. An AIS representative will happily answer any questions you may have about this transition.