Microsoft are well-known the world over as being one of the leading providers of digital business solutions. Their fame originated with the Windows operating system, and then grew with their Microsoft Office products. Now, their most well-know product among businesses is Microsoft 365 – a complete solution for business productivity. Microsoft 365 is used by businesses across many sectors; but what about sectors with unique challenges and requirements, such as the Legal sector?
We discussed this matter with a Microsoft Partner based in London, who have been providing outsourced IT support London solicitors and legal firms have used in the past. They discussed how Microsoft 365 can be leveraged to answer some of the sector-specific demands of working in law.
Microsoft 365: What Is It?
Microsoft 365 is a suite of products and services aimed at fulfilling the day-to-day work requirements of businesses and professionals. Businesses pay for Microsoft 365 on a per user, per month basis, which gives them access to the latest software in the plan, including all subsequent updates and new features that are added. The Microsoft Partner we spoke to told us that the managed IT services London companies get from them usually involves provisioning them with Microsoft 365 solutions. The capabilities of Microsoft 365 can be split into 3 main categories:
Office Productivity – the main purpose of Microsoft 365 is to maximise office productivity. Whether its writing up documents or spreadsheets, creating presentations, or making notes for a case, an individual’s recurring office tasks can be optimized with the following products:
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Microsoft OneNote
These programs cover most of the content creation and general productivity requirements of a business.
Communication – whether it be formal correspondence, or a casual conversation with a colleague, communication is incredibly important in business. With Microsoft 365, virtually all forms of internal business communication is covered by the following products:
- Microsoft Outlook (email client)
- Microsoft Exchange Server
- Microsoft Teams (instant messaging & videoconferencing)
It should also be noted that an additional license may be purchased to unlock VoIP capabilities within Microsoft Teams. However, the standard Microsoft 365 for Business plans are still very good for enabling efficient communications.
Storage & File Management – For solicitors and legal firms that wish to streamline their file storage and management, cloud storage is undoubtedly the best option. In Microsoft 365, two products are included that give organisations lots of flexibility around storage and file management:
- Microsoft SharePoint – ideal for create shared storage for teams, departments, and the company as a whole.
- Microsoft OneDrive – designed to provide every licensed user with 1TB of their own cloud storage drive.
Advantages of Using Microsoft 365 for Legal Professionals
Solicitors and legal firms have to undertake a diverse array of activities each and every day. Microsoft 365 can help them do this in the most efficient way possible. TechQuarters provides IT support for solicitors and legal firms, we spoke to them and they told us about some of the key benefits they have seen based on their time working with these organisations, and providing them with Microsoft 365 licensing:
Better Workflows & Productivity
Considering that Microsoft 365 is primary designed for business productivity, it is unsurprising that facilitating better workflows is one of the biggest advantages of using these products. Everything from content creation, to file sharing and co-authoring is made easier with the use of Microsoft 365’s cloud-based products and services.
All of the products and services in Microsoft 365 are cloud-based. This means that you can have the apps installed on your desktop and your mobile, and you can access the web versions of the app, and you will be able to access all of your files and data just the same across all these platforms. For modern solicitors, who need to be able to work on the go, this is a big advantage.
Easier Cyber Security
All of the apps and services in Microsoft 365 – and all user data – is hosted in the Microsoft Cloud, and therefore, all data is protected by the enterprise level cloud security that Microsoft have invested in developing. Additionally, Microsoft accept liability for data breaches, which not only shows how confident they are in their security, but also provides solicitors and legal firms with a good degree of legal protection.