We have found that our customers have found the following cloud services to be most beneficial to their businesses.
Google Apps for Work has been a very cost-effective solution for those businesses that have large mailboxes, large shared folders that they want to make available to the web, or those who don’t otherwise have a strong affinity to Microsoft products. One of the greatest features of Google Apps for Work is the Gmail interface and Google Drive. These web apps are quick and responsive, making use of Google’s incredibly fast search technology. It is simple to add additional space in either Gmail or Google Drive for a small additional fee.
The downside of Google Apps for Work is that it is a little more difficult to integrate the email into Microsoft Outlook and some of the settings, such as Out of Office Notifications, need to be managed through the web interface as opposed to Outlook.
Microsoft Office 365
Microsoft’s Office 365 offering has been improving over the last few years and is now a formidable competitor to Google Apps. There are three levels of business offerings: Office 365 Business Essentials, Office 365 Business, and Office 365 Business Premium. The differences come down to whether or not the business needs desktop versions of Office as well as fully hosted email.
The best part about Office 365 is that you can purchase your email, full desktop Office applications and a full collaboration platform (through SharePoint Online) for a low monthly fee. It also offers up to 1 TB of storage per user through OneDrive for Business.
The downside of Office 365 is when mailboxes approach 50 GB or if large file shares need to be synchronized with OneDrive, it can be problematic.
Office 365 also has a non-profit offering available in Canada.