Part of making a business successful is making choices about the hardware and software your company is going to use. Getting everyone on the same programs increases the ease and efficiency of communication and collaboration. For decades now, the go-to software choice for most businesses has been Microsoft Office. However, knowing Office is the best only gets you so far. You need to choose the version of Office that is right for you. For many, that is Office 365 Professional Plus, or Pro Plus, which has many of the best features while being more affordable than the highest-end versions. To learn more about Office 365 Pro Plus, visit SoftwareKeep.
Before discussing what Pro Plus has to offer, it is important to highlight what the “365” in the title means. Unlike previous editions of Office, where you made a single payment for a single installation of the Office suite, 365 offers you the chance to make regular subscription payments (either monthly or yearly, depending on the suite) in exchange for a lot of new features and free updates to the latest version of your Office programs. Pro Plus is available in both the Office 365 edition and in a traditional Office 2016 edition, so you can get it any way you feel comfortable, however, some of the add-ons (as opposed to the core programs) are only available through Office 365.
Office 365 is convenient because you are always up to date. No more worrying about trying to keep your software up to date and running smoothly. You will have access to all the latest and best features available. This is ideal for businesses that rely on Microsoft Office for their business needs.
To begin with, Pro Plus provides all the standard programs you would expect. These include Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and on PCs, Publisher and Access. Those last two programs are not available on the Mac editions of the suite. Beyond that, Office 365 Pro Plus includes one TB of cloud space on OneDrive, which allows you to save everything in the cloud and share it more easily (more on that in a moment). You also get the ability to install the suite on multiple devices (up to five). That means you can have Office on your desktop, on your phone, on your tablet, on your Mac, on your PC. Essentially, everywhere you do business, you can have your Office suite, and with so much space on OneDrive, you can jump right into work no matter where you are or what device you’re using. Pro Plus also has some excellent communications features, such as Skype for Business and Lync, which allow you to send voice messages. The most recent version of Office is also designed for collaboration and research, with the ability to joint create and edit documents with colleagues in real time while also messaging within the programs. At the same time, Insight in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint can allow you to search through documents and the web for information all by just right-clicking a word. Finally, Pro Plus allows you to network with an unlimited number of licenses. The suite is designed for big businesses, which means those communication and collaborative tools are even more powerful.
Perhaps the most notable feature missing is business email. While Outlook is included, Pro Plus does not support an Exchange server, which limits Outlook’s usefulness. This is also true with Skype for Business, which has limited uses unless you purchase further Skype for Business licenses or a different Office 365 plan. Less immediately noticeable are a number of features available in other suites. For instance, a number of useful communication and collaboration programs do not come with Pro Plus. These include the messaging system Yammer and the very useful file sharing program SharePoint. Lacking these can somewhat hinder your business productivity if you require a lot of large projects that involve multiple employees. There are also other features that come with the more advanced (and more expensive) Office suites, namely Enterprise E3 and E5. Among these are more advanced security and data protection. More on that below.
Absolutely. Depending upon your needs and the size of your business, you may be able to use a different version of Office 365. Office 365 offers a wide range of plans meant to accommodate every kind of business need. If you aren’t sure if Professional Plus is right for you, there are plenty of other options. For small businesses, those options include:
This suite is ideal for businesses that need to improve their online communication. If Outlook and Express are deal-breakers for you, and you don’t mind only having the Office programs in online form, Essentials is a great bargain.
The opposite of Essentials. With this you get all the programs on your desktop, but just like Pro Plus, you don’t get business email or the online communication programs. Again, unlike Pro Plus, you can only use this with 300 licenses or fewer. So, if your business is large, this won’t work.
If you want all the desktop programs of Business with all the online communication benefits of Essentials for your small business, Premium is for you.
However, if you are looking for unlimited users like Pro Plus offers, your options come down to the Enterprise suites, which include:
Enterprise E3 is far more comprehensive than Pro Plus. Here, you get all the programs, plus business email, plus the full use of Skype for Business. In addition, you get a number of more advanced features, such as better identity and access management, better encryption, and in general more data protection to make sure everything on your network remains secure.
E5 is the top version of Office available. It gives you everything E3 does, plus it adds more security, more data protection, and a number of other highly prized features, including audio conferencing and business analytics through Microsoft BI.
If you are looking for a more traditional, one-time purchase for one computer option, there are also Office 2016 packages available for home and for business. Those include:
The basic business package, with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and Outlook all included. Ideal for your at-home business work.
The same as the above, but with Publisher and Access included.
A volume license for company use. It includes everything in Professional except Access.
Different from Office 365 Professional Plus, this is also for company use, this includes everything in Professional, plus Skype for Business.
Don’t let all the versions of Office 365 confuse you. Check out SoftwareKeep and let us help you which version is right for you. Choosing the right version of Office is always a difficult but important task for any business. If you are looking for an Office suite with all the major Office programs but you already have an email network, Pro Plus may be the right choice for you. Pro Plus is a more affordable option than either of the major Enterprise suites or Premium, and it offers you most of what most businesses need. If you feel the savings are worth the sacrifice of a few features, Pro Plus can be a great option for your business.
SoftwareKeep is a trusted software reseller and a Microsoft Certified Partner. We exist to make tech accessible by helping people like you choose the perfect product, get a great deal, and install it easily. If you’re looking for genuine Microsoft software at the cheapest price – complete with 24/7 technical support and advice – you’re in the right place.