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Maximising Productivity: Unleashing the Full Potential of Microsoft 365

In the  fast-paced digital landscape, employees often find themselves juggling multiple apps to accomplish their daily tasks. However, this multitasking can lead to increased distractions and reduced productivity. In fact, studies suggest that an enterprise with 2,500 employees could lose a staggering 325,000 hours of productivity annually due to this app overload. The good news is, by making the most of Microsoft 365, you can streamline your workflows, enhance collaboration, and reclaim lost productivity.

1) Teams vs Slack: Streamlined Collaboration

Why continue paying for Slack when Microsoft Teams offers an all-encompassing solution? Teams seamlessly integrates with Microsoft 365, consolidating all collaboration tools and productivity applications in one user-friendly dashboard. With features like video and voice calls for up to 300 users (paid plan) and granular notification options, Teams outshines Slack in efficiency and functionality.

Cost Impact: Paid Slack subscriptions start at $11.35 per user per month.

2) Teams Meetings vs Zoom: Remote & Hybrid Excellence

For most organizations leveraging Microsoft 365, Teams is the go-to choice for remote and hybrid meetings. It offers advanced features like multi-factor authentication, breakout rooms, and real-time collaboration on shared documents. While Zoom is a strong contender for webinars and larger participant numbers, Teams provides a comprehensive solution for most meeting scenarios.

Cost Impact: Zoom for business costs AUD $310 per user per year.

3) Loop vs Confluence: Co-Creation and Collaboration

Microsoft Loop offers a versatile platform for co-creation and collaboration. It combines kanban boards, Gantt charts, wikis, to-do lists, and comment boards in a flexible canvas. While Confluence is widely used, Loop presents a compelling alternative with its seamless navigation and integration capabilities.

Cost Impact: Confluence costs $8.70 per user per month for organizations with more than 10 users. Loop is currently in free preview.

4) Planner vs Trello: Project & Task Management

Both Microsoft Planner and Trello provide card-based kanban boards for project and task management. However, Planner, as part of the Microsoft 365 suite, offers seamless integration with various apps, making it a powerful choice for team collaboration.

Cost Impact: Trello’s standard plan starts at $5 per user per month for business users.

5) SharePoint/OneDrive vs Dropbox: Document Management & Collaboration

SharePoint excels at document management, file sharing, and team collaboration, providing 1 TB of storage within SharePoint and additional space with each license. While Dropbox offers cloud storage and sharing, it lacks the rich interface and interactive features of SharePoint.

Cost Impact: The Standard business Dropbox plan is $277.20 per user per year.

6) Power BI vs Tableau: Business Analytics

Power BI, a part of the Microsoft Power Platform, offers interactive visualizations and business intelligence capabilities. While Tableau provides comprehensive customizations, Power BI is a robust alternative for data visualization and reporting.

Cost Impact: Tableau’s pricing starts at $59 per user per month.

7) Microsoft Forms vs SurveyMonkey: Survey & Poll Creation

Microsoft Forms provides a user-friendly interface for creating surveys, quizzes, and polls. It seamlessly integrates with other Microsoft 365 apps, making it a viable replacement for third-party survey tools like SurveyMonkey.

Cost Impact: Minimal. SurveyMonkey’s free version offers adequate functionality for most users.

8) OneNote vs Notion: Information Repositories

OneNote and Notion serve as repositories for notes and information. OneNote, tightly integrated with Microsoft Office, offers organized note-taking and handwriting support. Notion, highly customizable, provides databases, templates, and rich media support but may require more time for configuration.

Cost Impact: Notion business plans start at $11.80 per user per month (annual billing).

9) Power Apps/Power Automate vs Everything: Process Automation

Microsoft Power Platform enables user-friendly, time-saving solutions with low or no-code app development. It competes with various business process management tools, offering proactive process automation.

Cost Impact: Quickbase starts at USD$35/user per month, while Appian’s business plans start at $75/user.

10) Word vs Grammarly: Writing Tools

Microsoft Word and Grammarly serve distinct purposes for writing. Word offers built-in spelling and grammar checks, while Grammarly provides advanced writing analysis. For most users, Word’s native features suffice for basic writing needs.

Cost Impact: Grammarly’s business plan costs $21 per user per month.

So, to wrap up : 

Before adopting another SaaS product, consider the untapped potential within your Microsoft 365 suite. By leveraging its extensive range of applications, you can streamline workflows, enhance collaboration, and boost productivity across your organization. Make the most of your investment and unleash the full power of Microsoft 365.

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