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Office 365 – The New Lifeline of SMEs

My recent interactions with SMEs in India have brought some of the most interesting findings to the table. It is their willingness to stop piracy by using Office 365 thereby making use of SaaS (subscription based payment on monthly basis). Further digging into this, I found two very important observations.

Firstly, they are excited with O365 offerings that has latest version of Office, 24x7 e-mail, Lync and on top of that having an access to SharePoint. These applications were initially considered to be the prerogative of large companies only and the small user was not considered to be enterprise user. Many of these small companies say that it has become lot easier for them to run their business without any overhead of IT and compliance issues. It is good to see that the same very community that once used to be leader in innovative ways to do piracy is now thinking differently. There was a time when they did not bother about updates and new features and were happy using whatever was loaded in their PC by the vendor who assembled their PC.

Secondly, many of them have stopped using Google Docs and now coming back to Microsoft Office due to its flexibility and very reasonable pricing of O365. My previous impression was that, only medium and large companies are going for O365 for very obvious reasons but now it seems that its popularity is trickling down to very small businesses as well, including individual users. As internet is becoming cheaper and faster day by day, we all know that SaaS is the next big thing but why would someone already using free services by Google Docs switch to paid O365. This is an interesting fact for which one of the reasons I feel is that world was always more familiar with MS Office than Google Docs and they always wanted to go back to MS office. That is where O365 has played a major role.

Does this mean that definition of enterprise user is now changing because irrespective of size and scale, everyone is now using same software to run their businesses? What is the new definition of the enterprise software or for that matter enterprise user? To me it seems that gradually the word “Enterprise Software” will disappear and it will get replaced with a new name…..”APP for Business”

  • Ashish Kamotra
  • April 10, 2022
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