How Microsoft 365 Business Standard Differs From Premium
Microsoft 365 is one of the most popular and recommended choice when it comes to productivity tools for businesses. Previously known as Office 365, Microsoft has now rebranded its productivity suite to Microsoft 365, which offers packages with more advanced device management and security. It is designed to combine together Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility and Security to facilitate your business’ day-to-day operations.
Since 2020, Microsoft 365 has been offering two major packages that are suitable for meeting business needs and requirements. These are Microsoft 365 Business Standard and Microsoft 365 Business Premium. While these two provide similar support, they have key differences that make one more ideal for you than the other. Read on to find out what makes Microsoft 365’s Business Standard and Business Premium plans different from each other.
What is Microsoft 365 for Business?
Microsoft 365 is described by Microsoft as the main productivity cloud across work and life for both individuals and businesses. It is a unique combination of the classic Office applications that everyone loves, with functional and powerful cloud and security services. Depending on the subscription plan you choose, Microsoft 365 may also come with device management and other organisation-wide IT and access controls.
As the successor of Office 365, Microsoft 365 is known for offering a great deal of functions that are better than what the Office suite is popular for. Microsoft 365 is basically the amalgam of all the improvements that Microsoft had been adding to its Office 365 platform over the years. With better productivity, collaboration, security, and deployment tools, Microsoft 365 is now considered the all-in-one solution for an astonishingly wide range of business IT needs and functions.
What Microsoft 365 Business Standard can offer
Microsoft 365 Business Standard is the standard package for businesses and organisations that require business email, online meetings and chat, and cloud file storage in addition to the use of Office applications across several devices. If you are looking for an extensive and robust plan for your business, the Business Standard package is ideal for you.
With Business Standard, you and your team members can enjoy access to web, mobile, and desktop Office applications as well as the standard suite of cloud services, including Teams, OneDrive, Exchange, and SharePoint. In addition, this plan also provides you with Exchange-powered business email and calendaring, useful collaboration tools like guest links, and the latest security and compliance offerings of Microsoft.
Priced at $12.50 per user per month, the Microsoft 365 Business Standard Package is considered a cost-effective choice for many businesses. However, compared to the Business Premium Package, there are some few things that the Business Standard plan leaves out, which could have the potential to be truly remarkable and transformative.
What Microsoft 365 Business Premium can offer
Of all the packages offered by Microsoft 365, Business Premium is the most expensive yet comprehensive and powerful option. Available at $20 per user per month, this plan provides your business with some impressive and profound features that the other plans do not have. It contains everything that is found in the Business Standard package, plus several transformative features and functions.
The Microsoft 365 Business Premium package provides additional add-ons of advanced device management and cyber threat protection to enable businesses and organisations to improve their security. For those enterprises that require advanced remote work solutions and enhanced protection from threats like malware and ransomware, the Business Premium plan is the best and wisest choice.
Critical features exclusive to Business Premium
To better understand how exactly Microsoft 365’s most expensive plan is more powerful and transformative compared to the other packages, it is necessary to highlight the three particular features that are exclusive to Business Premium. These features are all crucial for businesses that want to manage their digital assets well: conditional access, mobile device management, and Intune.
1. Conditional access
Conditional access basically refers to the management of who has access to what, when, and from where. Businesses, whether complex or not, all have some files that are too sensitive for all users to access and modify. For instance, your company’s financial documents or data are sensitive information that most of your employees should not have access to. If such documents are stored on a network with no conditional access, anyone can access, share, or steal them.
Conditional access is essentially the feature that enables you to limit files and folders to the appropriate audience, time, and even location. While all Microsoft 365 plans offer limited access control like guest links, only Business Premium provides you with additional Advanced Threat Protection and Information Rights Management. Basically, if you require full control of conditional access, you must subscribe to Microsoft 365 Business Premium.
2. Mobile device management
These days, more and more mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets, and smartphones, are now being connected to corporate networks. While these devices offer convenience and additional functionality, they also pose a security risk and create device management problems, whether they are company-issued or BYOD.
With Microsoft 365’s mobile device management (MDM) tools that are only available for Business Premium subscribers, the process of managing mobile devices has become greatly simplified. With these tools, you can already choose what services your employees can and cannot access from their personal devices.
Moreover, the MDM tools also enable you to set organisation-wide IT policies and subsequently implement them on company-owned devices. For instance, many businesses that use these tools lock down their company-owned devices in order to prevent users from installing software without the approval of their IT maintenance team.
Intune is basically Microsoft’s solution for mobile device management and mobile application management. The power and productivity of this solution are deeply impressive and transformative, especially when used to its fullest potential. Using Intune, you can have full control on what can and cannot be done on your company devices.
Critically, the control offered by Intune is not limited to Window PCs. It also extends to mobile devices and tablets. By using Intune, which is only accessible through Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan, you can even control the way people’s personal devices interact with your network. This service has the ability to identify organisation data and have it separated from a user’s personal information.
If your business requires advanced security, Microsoft 365 Business Premium is truly your best choice. Compared to Microsoft 365 Business Standard, the Business Premium plan offers advanced protection over its applications and services. Hence, this package substantially reduces the risk of a data compromise and overall threat to your business. It enables greater protection over your working environment, which has already become more necessary now due to the prevalence of cybercriminals.
Nonetheless, you may also opt for the Business Standard plan if you think it already meets all your business requirements. To be sure, it is best to consult your IT team regarding the matter, or seek the advice of a reliable company that provides IT support and maintenance services.
Here are JK Tech, we have a team of professional IT consultants who can help you with everything that you need to improve your business’ IT posture. From designing and developing solutions to implementing them, we will be here to assist you and make sure that all your needs are met. In addition to IT consultancy, we also offer a great variety of other robust services, including IT equipment leasing, IT maintenance services, IT security services, and more.