Microsoft Office 365 Gains Favor with Small Businesses; Highest Planned Adoption in 20-49 employee size category
San Jose, CA, August 8, 2012: A Techaisle primary research survey conducted with SMBs in the US shows that Microsoft Office 365 is gaining traction among small businesses. As per the survey, 10 percent of small businesses are actively investigating adoption of Microsoft Office 365.
The overall 10 percent is comprised of relatively higher plans in the 10-19, 20-49 and 50-99 employee size segments, with 12 percent, 30 percent and 26 percent plans to implement, respectively, while the 1-4 and 5-9 segments were below the average at 6 percent and 8 percent, respectively.
In addition to the benefits of remote work capabilities and improved collaboration, small businesses reported wanting to offload the management of their email and calendaring systems (MS Exchange) from in-house to online hosted versions. Communications capabilities are not currently seen as the most important functions as many users are already familiar with free versions of pc to pc calling systems and online subscription services.
Small businesses that have currently outsourced their Exchange online are paying an average US$12 per user per month but with Office 365 they can get equal and additional functionality for US$9 per user per month from a channel partner or established IT vendors such as Dell (part of Dell Cloud Business Applications portfolio) or US$6 per user per month directly from Microsoft and most recently from Verizon Wireless (an offering within Small Business Essentials).
As with any transition there are many questions and concerns for the user as they wrestle to learn new technology. Most of the questions relate to how SMBs should treat Office 365 in relation to the overall online strategy of the business. For example:
- “I am very happy with my website hosting; I do not want to move my website - only emails and use of Office software. Can I do it?”
- “We have only 11 employees but have more than 20 email addresses. Do I have to pay for all of these email addresses?”
- “What is the difference between user and email address?”
- “Can I create separate workspace for each project where only a few employees have access to, like we do with other online file sharing sites?"
- “Who can help us integrate with CRM?”
Nevertheless, the results of the survey are very positive for Microsoft and channel partners who are looking to make the leap to cloud-based and managed services with technologies that are relatively familiar to users.
Techaisle is a global SMB ICT Market Research and Industry Analyst organization delivering forward looking insights and Tracking the Future of SMBs and Channels. Techaisle conducts surveys with SMBs and channels in 25 countries to understand market trends, opportunities, buying behavior, and IT priorities. Techaisle’s services include: Syndicated Research Reports, Custom Consulting, Market Forecast, Competitive Intelligence, Segmentation and Predictive Modeling. For more information on Techaisle or its global products/services, please visit www.techaisle.com.