Microsoft Office 365 is hot. According to Gartner, 78% of enterprises are currently using or planning to use the cloud-based software suite as of 2016, a 13% increase from their 2014 survey. Satisfaction rates remain high, with respondents citing performance and breadth of features as top benefits, along with the ability to offload their IT workload to the cloud.
Non-profit organizations are also enthusiastic about migrating to Office 365, judging by the amount of interest we’re hearing from them here at Exigent.
Here’s what non-profits need to know to make Microsoft’s Suite of Office 365 for Non-Profits work for them.
Why Office 365? Shifting from licensed software running on on-premise servers to cloud-based software including email and calendar is a great fit for many non-profits, whose IT resources are often limited. It takes away the significant burden and expense of maintaining and updating these critical applications locally, as well as buying and continually replacing local servers for these applications. Office 365 is comprehensive and highly secure, and also offers additional productivity applications that can enhance the efficiency of your operations. This link lists all the benefits of Microsoft Office 365 for non-profits.
How do we get there? Most organizations, commercial or non-profit, need help transitioning from their current applications to Microsoft Office 365, whether they’re moving from an on-premise environment or from another cloud-based suite such as Google. Needed services might include:
Can we get a discount? Yes. The great news for non-profit organizations is that Microsoft supports socially beneficial organizations by offering donated software or discounted pricing for Office 365. Exigent also offers discounts to non-profits. We don’t sell Microsoft Office 365 software directly to non-profits due to Microsoft rules, but we do offer discounted Office 365 professional services, including those listed above, for qualified non-profit organizations. Many non-profits find the money saved through software discounts is well-spent on migration services to ensure the organization transitions smoothly to the new environment.
How do we qualify? This is key. Before any discounts can be granted, non-profits must qualify under Microsoft’s rules, which typically requires 501(c)(3) status and compliance with Microsoft’s anti-discrimination policy. While Microsoft sets the rules, processing applications and selling the discounted software is handled by a non-profit organization called TechSoup. The first step is to visit the TechSoup Office 365 site, click the Get It Now button, fill out an application and send in supporting documentation. The review process usually takes two to 15 business days. Once TechSoup issues a validation token, that’s the time to contact Exigent about professional services for Microsoft Office 365. We can help you determine what product to buy, and how we can help you migrate from your current environment.
Microsoft Office 365 can be a tremendous money-saver and productivity enhancer for non-profits, but migrating from the current IT environment often requires some technical know-how. Exigent’s Microsoft-trained technicians are ready to help qualified non-profits get there with discounted, highly refined migration strategies that help your organization quickly begin to see the benefits of this powerful product suite. Contact us today to talk about your specific needs.