New technologies and employee expectations are dramatically changing working practices. To enable people to work in a more mobile and connected fashion, enterprises need technologies that allow employees to be more productive and collaborative. But these demands and evolved working practices must also be balanced with the need to ensure that enterprise assets remain secure. At Microsoft's recent Inspire event in Washington, DC, the company formally announced Microsoft 365 in two editions: Business and Enterprise. The solution brings together capabilities from Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security.
A more integrated offering that aligns with the needs of organizations looking to digitally transform
Microsoft 365 is a consolidation of three technologies: Windows 10, the Office 365 suite of productivity applications, and the Enterprise Mobility + Security solution, which helps organizations manage and secure devices and apps utilized in the workplace. Microsoft 365 represents a new way for enterprises to purchase the combined technologies via a single offering. The Enterprise version of Microsoft 365 is targeted at large organizations, whereas the Business edition will be more suited to SMEs.
Digital transformation and the digital workspace are key areas of interest for organizations globally. Delivering against a digital transformation initiative can be difficult, however, with organizations often being unsure as to the combination of technologies that can help them improve productivity, modernize legacy systems, and secure devices and the data they hold. Another key digital objective is to enable employees to work across different devices and apps in an integrated and secure fashion. Microsoft 365 is the vendor's solution to such challenges. The integrated capabilities support organizations' efforts to improve collaboration and productivity and can enable employees to work securely anywhere, anytime, and on any device due to the inclusion of Enterprise Mobility + Security.
Simplifying its product set and licensing will certainly help improve enterprise understanding of which Microsoft technologies can support a digital transformation effort. Microsoft is shifting its messaging to focus on the business objectives and enablers this combined set of technologies can support, rather than on the more granular-level technology functionality. This approach will be especially useful in broadening understanding of the value of enterprise mobility management technology by way of Microsoft's inclusion of Enterprise Mobility + Security in this bundle. Device management capabilities are vitally important to modern organizations, and a more comprehensive enterprise mobility approach that embodies not only device management but also app management, productivity, and security is a key digital transformation pillar.
Adam Holtby, Senior Research Analyst, Enterprise Mobility and Productivity