Office 365 – Apples and Giraffes Comparisons

I was chatting with a long-term customer of ours the other day.  They have been using a “cheap” hosted email service (POP/IMAP) from their web site hoster for years.  The cost of providing email services to their 150 or so users has been ridiculously low (like tens of dollars per month) but, as you might expect, they have been growing less satisfied over the years.  They are now at the point where company ownership is allowing the techies to look into Office 365.

And right up front we have hit a hurdle … they are looking at Office 365 Business Essentials as the least expensive way for them to get into the Cloud and they are balking at the CAD $5.10/mth/user cost as they are comparing that to the almost no monthly cost of their current config.

Wrong, wrong, wrong!!!!  That is truly comparing apples to oranges or even apples to giraffes!  There is no comparison.

Let me explain (and forgive me if you read my banging on about this in past posts) …

Their current config with their web hoster gives them their website and POP/IMAP email, that’s the sum total.

The Office 365 Business Essentials subscription will give them the following:

  • Outlook/Exchange email with full phone and tablet support and “Clutter”
  • SharePoint (Sites)
  • Lync
  • Yammer
  • OneDrive for Business
  • Groups
  • Delve
  • Public-facing website

That’s one hell of a LOT more functionality than just POP/IMAP email and a public website!  Email might be the driver to get many organizations on to Office 365 but it is a serious disservice to ignore the rest of the Office 365 package.

The value of Office 365 truly comes from the sum of its parts and NOT just from email.  So evaluating the cost of Office 365 against another “just email” provider is not a proper or fair comparison.  In fact, it is not a comparison at all as it is much to flawed to be relevant.

When I pointed out all of this to my customer there was an immediate uptick in interest as, for whatever reason, they were unaware that all of the components mentioned above were part of the subscription.  The value statement for them immediately changed as did the discussion.  Now the discussion is all about how soon they can get all of their users up and running on 365!

So, remember, you have to compare “like with like” to make a valid comparison.  Don’t make the mistake of comparing apples with giraffes in your evaluation of Office 365 vs alternatives.  You’ll be doing yourself a serious disservice if you do!