Clients, candidates, prospects, colleagues, projects… How do you keep on top of everyone and everything if you’ve got an agency to run? Forward-thinking MDs are making the switch to Office 365. Out goes the hassle, expense and resource commitment associated with in-house servers and boxed software in comes a simple monthly subscription. But what about the day-to-day benefits? Are execs using the tools at their disposal to make life easier? Here are some of the ways Office 365 can make a difference…
Get your inbox automatically de-cluttered
When it comes to routine communications with team members, newcomers to Office 365 tend to find themselves gravitating towards the instant messaging capabilities of Lync – which is in the process of being rebranded as Skype for Business. This leaves email in a tricky position: you still need it for communications with clients and prospects but you could do without having to scroll through the routine ‘noise’ to get to what’s really important.
This is where Clutter comes in. It’s recently been rolled out to Office 365 customers and if you use it right, your inbox could get a whole lot smarter. It looks at what you’re doing right across Office 365, at what you’ve been working on, at the messages you’ve previously opened, sent and forwarded on, at the actual content of the message and whether it’s addressed directly to you or whether you’re being CC’d. It takes all of these signals to present what should quickly become a clutter-free primary inbox, tailored to what’s important to you.
Read spreadsheet data quicker
From an MD’s perspective, one of the big draws of Office 365 is its ability to give you an instant top-line impression of what’s happening. Take Excel, for instance, where the Quick Analysis tool lets you select the cells you wish to focus on and gives you multiple options for displaying this info in whichever graphical form you’re most comfortable with (e.g. charts, tables or sparklines).
Dip in and out of virtual workshops
SharePoint allows your entire team to work simultaneously on the same documents without risk of version inconsistencies. One of the best latest features from a managerial point of view is integration between SharePoint and Skype for Business. Let’s say your team is working on a presentation for a client, for instance. You can take a look and click ‘Chat’ to start chatting with everyone who’s working on the document to offer your guidance.
No need to attach files
So a new client has given you a proposal that you wish to pass down to your team. You want instant feedback. Instead of emailing it to everyone as an attachment, link it to SharePoint where it can be commented on centrally.
Go into meetings armed with just your iPad
Worried that your beloved iPad won’t quite cut it in a meeting? You needn’t be. Neither do you have to buy a Windows offering if you want a decent Office tablet experience. As of last year, all Office 365 subscribers get access to Office for iPad: something that’s been designed from the bottom up for iOS, which means you can access, present, edit and create everything from your favourite tablet without fear of formatting problems. In short, you can leave your laptop at home when on the move.