Most people have heard of Microsoft 365 (M365) – previously Office 365 – as it contains all of the standard products many of us use on a day-to-day basis, from Word, Outlook and Excel to Teams and OneNote.

The flexibility that it affords users, providing web-enabled access your Microsoft tools from any device, anywhere, as long as it has an internet connection, has made it a popular choice with over 1.3 million companies (as of June 2021) around the world using it.

As well as this flexibility, M365 gives you automatic updates, including bug fixes and security updates. This means you are always working with the latest version and new features as they’re released. The other compelling feature is the low cost of ownership that comes courtesy of the subscription model. The PAYG pricing means you can easily budget for and scale usage as needed, without huge upfront investment in licenses and migration projects.

So, you’re ready to make the move to M365 – but are your organisation and infrastructure ready?

M365 readiness

To make sure your organisation is prepared to take advantage of the opportunities that the cloud and M365 present, we suggest undertaking a readiness assessment. This can help pinpoint any gaps or areas for improvement that will ensure a successful engagement with the cloud technologies.

Get ready

We’ll run a comprehensive review of your current infrastructure, including:

  • network and internet connectivity
  • user authentication, including Active Directory (AD) and Federation services (ADFS)
  • security posture
  • current Azure/Office 365 tenancy (if you have one)

This helps you gain a clear understanding of your current technical, security and operational capabilities and how they align with requirements.

The assessment will provide you with the tools you need to achieve a rapid and seamless integration of M365, including:

  • defined and documented requirements for a business case
  • a custom roadmap and strategy, including risk analysis
  • flexible service options to mitigate the need for additional hires
  • configuration changes to increase collaboration, security, and operational efficiency

It will also help you reduce any possible technical or security risks and put you in prime position to make best use of all the capabilities of M365.

M365 design and implementation service

If you already know where your challenges with an M365 implementation are and want some help to address them, our team can help.

Your M365 needs to be highly available, performant, optimised, and secure – ready to take on the organisational demands of not just today but tomorrow too. This means being properly designed and architected so you can keep your end users happy and realise the true value of your investment.

We can offer practical help, guidance, and support throughout every stage of the architecture process, be it for a full architecture or for a single business service. Your requirements will be defined during the presales and on-boarding phase, then documented in a full statement of work that also includes timescales, costs and deliverables.

Our experts can cover both the technical design of a service as well as identify the ongoing management requirements for it, including security, patching, testing, and support. They will work with you to:

  • create a roadmap and strategy
  • ensure integration with your current environment
  • plan migrations
  • assist with governance and change management

This all will help you build a fully operational M365 model to support your organisation going forward.

M365 migration

Moving to M365 is a first foray into the public cloud for some organisations, so understanding the challenges and pitfalls can be a steep learning curve. However, as a core business application, a secure, timely and cost-effective migration with no operational impact on your end-users is crucial.

Migrate with confidence

Even if you’re making good progress on your cloud journey, Maple can help you plan, execute, and test a successful M365 migration with our end-to-end M365 migration service.

We follow a standard migration framework that we have developed and optimised over time. This includes an initial discovery phase to make sure we fully understand your current environment and what you’re looking to achieve in terms of ‘business outcomes’. These requirements get documented in a full statement of work that also includes timescales, costs, and specific deliverables.

Using our tried and tested methodology, the team will work with you to deliver an efficient, secure, and low risk  M365 migration, ensuring:

  • rapid adoption of M365 services to support business operations and transformation
  • no operational impact up on your end users and overall business continuity
  • knowledge transfer and support to make sure you maximise your investment in M365 and its capabilities going forward

We can also help you manage your M365 implementation with our M365 backup and support services if you need us to.

Backup as a service

With the increased adoption of M365, it’s important to remember that Microsoft operate a shared responsibility model. That means they don’t provide backup as part of the suite – they themselves even recommend implementing additional third-party backup for M365.

Maple can provide backup protection for all your M365 data across Exchange, OneDrive, SharePoint and Teams data to give you peace of mind and help you stay compliant.

Maple’s Backup as a Service for M365 will protect the core M365 applications, taking away the backup workload from your in-house team and freeing them up to focus on other projects.

  • Rapid on-boarding ensures you can be up and running a in few short days
  • Reporting gives you clarity that backups are completing successfully and you’re staying compliant with your internal policies
  • An online portal means you have full visibility of any tickets at any time
  • Rapid response and resolution mean that our team are on hand to respond to queries and restoration requests when you need them

A simple per user cost means there’s no hidden charges at the end of the month. All storage is included, and all data retained for the duration of the contract.

M365 support

The UK was already experiencing an IT skills shortage, but fast-forward to a post-pandemic and post-Brexit world, and the increase in demand is making that shortage even more keenly felt. But keeping your infrastructure, including M365, performant, available, and scalable when needed is more important than ever. If a lack of M365 skills is impacting your team’s ability to deliver on your business goals, Maple can help.

Peace of mind without breaking the bank

Maple’s M635 support service means you can access 24x7x365 service management for your M365 environment at a predictable and affordable cost. From monitoring, to change management, to incident management and resolution, our M365 support provides a flexible, proactive service that works around your team and their skills. It covers all M365 services, including N365 deployments outside of the NHS Shared Tenant.

Benefits of the service include:

  • Freeing up your team from day-to-day tasks, such as monitoring and reporting, to focus on business-driven or transformation projects
  • Transparent commercials that enable you to scale your operation or requirements without any hidden costs and in a predictable way
  • A ‘hybrid’ delivery model that extends your existing team and flexes around their requirements, ensuring you only pay for what you need (e.g. out of hours and holiday cover only, through to 24x7x365)

We’ll work with you to define your specific requirements during the presales and on-boarding phase, then document them in a comprehensive service operations manual. This is created at no extra cost and confirms the scope of the service and the agreed SLAs, as well as any additional timescales and costs.

M365 consultancy

If none of the above services are an exact fit with your needs, or you just want some expert advice on something specific to do with M365, our consultants are always on hand to assist – just get in touch with the team.

Get the most out of M365, whatever your requirement, with help from Maple