Business transformation. It generally sounds good, right? Who wouldn’t want to transform their business processes, overhauling old or inefficient ways of doing things and embracing new ways of working? The new, after all, is often what unlocks creativity and innovation.
However, business transformation can also be a huge undertaking. There’s a reason why many professionals specialise precisely in transformation and change management. Particularly for smaller organisations without a specialist function in place, business transformation can fall to the bottom of a long list of important tasks.
This is one reason why small and medium organisations should be so excited about Microsoft 365, the new platform encompassing Office 365, Enterprise Mobile + Security, and Windows 10. This is a solution with the potential to drive real and tangible business transformation – with little specialist input and management required from staff.
It’s all thanks to the consolidated, holistic approach which underpins how Microsoft 365 has been designed. This isn’t just a platform for supporting day-to-day operations. Rather, it enables businesses to embrace three of the core facets of any business transformation programme – data insights, collaboration and creativity – in an automated, always-on fashion.
Data analytics and insights are at the heart of any business transformation strategy. After all, without them, how do you know what you need to transform in the first place? Yet in the modern enterprise, where data is spread across myriad different networks and devices, even accessing the relevant data for information business transformation, let alone consolidating and analysing those data, can be a serious challenge.
Microsoft 365 offers a single centralised platform for all your organisation’s documents and data storage. OneDrive, the advanced cloud storage facility built into Microsoft 365, synchronises work files between locations and devices, providing a clean and seamless centralised data source. This means that Microsoft 365 can be the engine for truly shared sources of information within an organisation, allowing business transformation to touch every department, rather than one or two functions.
Microsoft 365 has been designed to engender seamless collaboration and cooperation within organisations, no matter how geographically dispersed your workforce is. Microsoft Teams, the company’s powerful new collaboration solution, is built in as standard. So too is the document management and collaboration tool SharePoint, and Microsoft PowerApps and Flow for generating simple digital workflows.
Collaboration is often the key to unlocking business transformation because it brings together different points of view and knowledge bases, therefore solving problems and unlocking new ideas that were previously being tackled in repetitive ways. Fostering greater collaboration within your organisation can have the same skills impact as hiring swathes of new talent – at no cost.
Microsoft has thought carefully about how to foster creativity with the 365 platform. A range of familiar productivity applications, many with a genuine creative element, are included as standard. There are opportunities for people to collaborate with voice and video as well as text. Meanwhile, application developers will find a raft of exciting functionality within the platform, including the Fluent Design System and .NET Core 3. Microsoft 365 is designed to encourage organisations to develop and expand the platform in ways to suit individual organisations – it is a productive, creative platform.
For a smaller organisation, it can be also be difficult to get new technologies adopted. Included in some licence levels or as an add-on, Microsoft MyAnalytics provides information to both the company and the individual around how they are using these new technologies, and also how they are spending their time. This can help ensure the investment in the transformation is realised by the company – and remind the user of the better ways of working.
Business transformation does not have to mean hiring a change manager or developing a major new business strategy from the top down. It really can be about deploying a single platform for encouraging greater insights from data, greater collaboration within your organisation, and greater creativity among teams and individuals. Microsoft 365 is designed to do just that.