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How your business can thrive with the new 2022 pricing for Microsoft 365

Nobody likes higher prices, but in the past year none of us could avoid paying more for almost everything. CNN noted that the prices we paid for our household items, transportation, and groceries all went up in 2021. The Wall Street Journal noted that “[f]ood prices are estimated to rise 5% in the first half of 2022, according to research firm IRI,” so higher prices seem an inevitability for 2022 as well.

Microsoft announced last year that the prices for their Microsoft 365 Business and Enterprise subscription plans would slightly increase starting in 2022. At the time, Microsoft noted this was “the first substantive pricing update since we launched Office 365 a decade ago” and that their new “pricing reflects the increased value we have delivered to our customers over the past 10 years.” The following table compares the old pricing for Microsoft 365 Business and Office 365 Enterprise plans with the updated pricing that takes effect on March 1, 2022:

Amaxra consultants understand that no business wants to pay more. We are early adopters of Microsoft 365, with a decade of expertise at using this cloud-powered productivity solution at our own company as well as implementing Microsoft 365 for our expansive base of small-to-midsized business (SMB) customers. Amaxra believes we can show why these slight increases in price for Microsoft 365 Business deliver measurable value for your organization.

Collaboration for hybrid workforces with Microsoft Teams

Real-time collaboration is a must-have for any business today. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for employees “living in lockdown” to safely collaborate with peers and partners in real-time was a challenge for many corporate IT departments. For organizations with Microsoft 365, real-time collaboration was quickly and easily enabled with Microsoft Teams. Amaxra can point to our own real-world example of how Microsoft Teams enabled the transition to efficient and collaborative remote working. At the height of the pandemic in 2020, Amaxra used Microsoft Teams to safely conduct all business so efficiently that we eliminated our formal office space.

However, many workplaces are transitioning to hybrid working environments. Hybrid workforces can choose to either work in a centralized office environment or work remotely via any device they’re comfortable with using. Microsoft Teams enables hybrid workforces because it is cloud-powered collaboration app available on any internet-connected device. Just in the past year, Microsoft added 300 new features to Teams for enabling safe and productive collaboration in hybrid working environments—and those new features were incredibly valuable.

The immense value of Microsoft Teams for IT supporting hybrid workforces

Imagine a formal team meeting with your peers in Microsoft Teams scheduled by your manager working remotely from her home office in Denver to include employees working from a coffee shop in Seattle and in the huddle room at the headquarters in Orlando. Microsoft added unlimited dial-in audio conferencing for Teams so the employees can phone into the meeting using a toll-free number when WiFi connectivity is spotty. During the video meeting, the number of onscreen faces shown in “gallery mode” was increased to 49 total meeting participants and those participants can virtually raise their hand and react to speakers using emojis. Anyone in the meeting can share screens and collaborate with a virtual whiteboard. Meeting leaders can assign specific attendees with lists of follow-up tasks that are tracked in Teams or using integrations from popular third-party project management software. Closed-captioning for differently-abled employees are generated in real-time with speaker attribution and full transcripts of the meeting (along with are automatically stored securely in the cloud for later review.

Recall that at the height of the pandemic, many businesses scrambled to find ways to enable real-time collaboration for all employees, often paying for multiple different software and services from competing providers. Yet those companies using Microsoft 365 were given a panoply of Microsoft Teams collaboration features that made every meeting incredibly efficient anywhere your employees work—without having to buy and integrate anything new into your existing IT stack. Every business owner knows that’s worth an extra dollar or two per month.

Added cyber-security for all Microsoft 365 users

Ask any IT leader what keeps them up at night, and you’ll most often get an answer related to cyber-security at the business. Ransomware attacks took over the headlines, and in just the first three months of 2021 the UK’s Cyber-security Centre recorded three times the number of attacks they saw in the entire year of 2019. The open source Java Log4j exploit first posted in December 2021 was called “one of the most serious I’ve seen in my entire career, if not the most serious” by top U.S. cybersecurity defense official, Jen Easterly. Amaxra’s CIO is closely watching these, and other cyber-security exploits related to deepfakes, industrial IoT, and the cloud for 2022.

As the threat landscape evolved, Microsoft added new cyber-security capabilities to Microsoft 365 Business and Enterprise plans such as data loss prevention (DLP) for email and documents, sensitivity labels, and message encryption to help keep your company’s important data safe. To best support remote and hybrid workforces, Microsoft also added rich mobile device management (MDM) and other cloud-based cyber-security tools such as the Endpoint Manager to Microsoft 365. These cyber-security features are embedded into Microsoft 365 Business and Enterprise plans, which would cost significantly more than the $2-$4 extra dollars per month if purchased from a separate vendor then integrated into your company’s IT stack.

Trust the Microsoft 365 licensing experts at Amaxra

We stressed the importance of choosing a Microsoft Gold-level partner such as Amaxra. Not only will your company enjoy a consultative experience where our experts provide you with advice on how to maximize every dollar spent on Microsoft 365, but you also get enhanced service delivery and support.

Contact me at rosalyn.arntzen@amaxra.com or call 425 749 7471 if you have any questions or comments on this blog.

about the author

Rosalyn Arntzen

Rosalyn Arntzen, President & CEO of Amaxra, founded Amaxra in 2007 after a successful career working for several multi-national companies around the world. Under her leadership, Amaxra is proud to have been on the Inc 500/5000 fastest growing companies in 2013 and 2016. You can contact Rosalyn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/rosalynarntzen.

Limited time offer: Let Amaxra manage your Office 365 licensing and we will configure security such as multi-factor authentication at no additional cost. Email technology@amaxra.com or chat with us on this website to find out more.

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