How Not to Succumb to the Next Office 365 Outage

Microsoft Office 365 and its cloud-based productivity solutions have revolutionized the way businesses communicate  and manage data.  Microsoft and its Cloud First / Mobile First Strategy has traversed the classes, delivering a world-class SaaS-based solution to all.

Enterprise-grade delivery can now be provided to customers small or large, including rich capabilities such as voice, IM, Teams, conferencing, and much more. These services are provided without discrimination, often with more ease to smaller market segments – this is the power of cloud and scalability.

With SaaS-based solutions, we also get predictable costs, no capital expenditure, and the ability to work anywhere, on any device.  Microsoft also takes care of 100% of the infrastructure by managing critical patching and security upgrades – plus there is the promise of “rolling release.”

Microsoft is always going to keep the technology current and relevant to the business and market, since keeping the customer on the latest and greatest versions is a basic tenant of SaaS-based delivery.

When presented like this, it all seems like there is only an upside to cloud-based delivery and productivity solutions in the cloud.  Is this really the case?

Navisite, after tens of thousands of Exchange migrations and 500+ Office 365 implementations, is uniquely positioned to answer this question.  One of biggest challenges we encountered even prior to Office 365 was ensuring that customers have access to email all the time.  This is the basic promise of always-on email access.

Outages occur…even with a service as solid and reliable as Office 365. These events are inevitable, and the question businesses need to ask is, “What is the impact of an outage to my business?”

Measuring the Cost of Outages

Various sites exist that monitor Office 365 for outages – https://outage.report/office-365.  These show that Office 365 does and has experienced some serious outages, that if not mitigated against can be costly for businesses.

If we look at a 500 seat business with an average labor rate of $30 per hour.  Based on most businesses’ reliance for email being 85% to operate efficiently, a four-hour outage will potentially cost that business $12,750.  This, however, is a hard cost.

The other soft costs are what have businesses more concerned.  These soft costs are far more expensive, coming in the form of: orders being late, orders being missed, sales being missed, or clients going to a competitor.  The true value of these costs is almost impossible to measure and way more expensive to a business.

Then there is the impact on businesses’ reputation.  Businesses cannot put a price on this, except to say that outages can be detrimental, if not devastating, to operations, and are potentially damaging to its reputation.

So, what is the answer to this problem?  How do we ensure that businesses always operate on a business as usual basis?  How do we mitigate against outages that can be damaging to your business’ reputation or finances?

The answer is simple.  Office 365 needs to be wrapped with a business continuity solution – the ability to deliver that always-on email presence, that promises that when Microsoft fails to deliver, your employees can continue working and delivering your services in a business-as-usual manner.

Business Continuity

Email continuity sits in between the Microsoft Office 365 Service and the Internet.   Providing a secure emergency inbox in the event of an Office 365 outage allows users to send, receive, read, and delete emails while Office 365 is offline.   The secure emergency inbox contains a 30-day rolling view of email, ensuring that any business can continue operating efficiently.  For maximum performance, this type of solution would be used in concert with an archiving solution.

Navisite uniquely positioned its Managed Office 365 offering by offering business continuity as a standard component of its offering, through Proofpoint Essentials – the only provider in the market that does this.

The promise of “always-on” is delivered with every subscription sold by Navisite, at no additional charge.  And organizations can opt for added protection with Proofpoint Enterprise, to layer on advanced protection like attachment defense, Data Loss Prevention (DLP) and email encryption.

If your organization would like to ensure that it won’t succumb to Office 365 outages, lose critical business and experience decreased productivity, visit our product page to learn more about Navisite’s built-in protection for Office 365, call us at (888) 298-8222, or contact us for additional information.

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