The ROI of Office 365: Making a Business Case

Office 365 Return on Investment

Today, we’re going to dive into the business case for Office 365 by examining the benefit well as some very intriguing 3rd party ROI research.

3 Reasons to Move to Office 365

Organizations move to the cloud to help them reach any number of objectives, but here are three practical and immediate benefits for moving to the cloud:

#1 Mobility – While the final numbers are not in yet, Gartner predicted laptop sales to surpass PC sales in 2015. That doesn’t even count all the tablets and smartphones used by today’s information and blue-collar workers alike. Mobility isn’t just an ‘option’ for most organizations, but a necessity. Office 365 can be deployed on a PC or Mac, and most plans include apps for tablets and smartphones. Plus, as we discussed in Part 1 of this series, because the application is installed directly on-device, users can keep working even when they aren’t connected to the Internet.

#2 Scalability – As with SaaS applications, it’s fairly easy to scale up and scale down, meaning you buy the seats you need when you need them. When you no longer need them, you simply turn them off. In this regard, both SaaS and Software + Services provide a tremendous financial advantage over perpetuity licensing, especially for larger organizations.

#3 CapEx to OpEx – Even though the application is deployed on-device, Office 365 is offered as a subscription service. This allows many businesses to move the expense from CapEx to OpEx budgets and often makes it more financially feasible than a large capital outlay.

Those are strong benefits for most of our clients, but business leaders, especially the CFOs we work with, are usually looking for long-term benefits and a more specific ROI analysis.

It’s Payback Time

Microsoft commissioned Forrester to do a Total Economic Impact Study on O365 for enterprise-level customers. Here’s what they found:

Office 365 ROI

The study includes the details behind these numbers. For example:

  • The move from the 2010 version of the Microsoft solutions to the Office 365 cloud-based solution meant that new infrastructure did not need to be purchased, installed, and maintained.
  • Server licenses for various Microsoft solutions were no longer needed.
  • Using Office 365 eliminated the need to undertake four [Control and Compliance] projects that would have otherwise been required.
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