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I don't identify as a millennial but, according to the internet, I fall into that generational category. I'm too old to have watched films on a tablet in my pram or parent's car but I struggle to remember a time before the internet. And like many, I expect answers in minutes, not days or weeks. I like information available to me on my mobile, tablet and laptop. Maybe, rightly or wrongly, that's why my generation has been described as the 'entitled generation'.
Looking at how I like to communicate and engage with my colleagues at work, and as a Microsoft licencing specialist, I was interested to see how Microsoft can help increase my productivity, whilst keeping me protected. The obvious solution for this is Microsoft 365 (or M365*).
In 3 years, Microsoft suggest 50% of the workforce will be mobile, and that doesn’t surprise me. When I look around my local coffee shop it’s not unusual to see people locked into conferences and telephone calls on their laptops or tablets and our cities are abound with hot desks. To make the most of this ‘out of office’ working I use M365 and the seamless access I have to all my applications. I can revert back to the document I began on my tablet and open it again on my phone remotely, or on my PC at work - and my experience between devices is continuous.
As an 'entitled' millennial I switch between tools or devices throughout my working day. When I'm switching between programs in Office 365, I can exercise this 'entitlement' by going from Teams to Yammer or onto Groups. I'm part of a wider team who have different ways of working and we can choose which programs in Office 365 we prefer. Satya Nadella captures this idea perfectly in his book 'Hit Refresh' when he writes, "We wanted to make sure we have full-touch Office on the platform with the most market share." Today, it's no longer about everyone being on a Windows device; we have options which empower us to work faster and more productively, in a way which suits us.
While no productivity solution will ever negate the need for email, I often find myself looking for alternative ways of communicating with my team, preferring to use email (our old friend Outlook) for one-off or formal correspondence. In an ideal world, wouldn't we all want to lower the flurry of emails that come into our inbox that make it a challenge to sift the useful from the spam?
When working on projects, my team and I work on a continuous thread that allows me to go back and see how something has evolved organically. The ability to co-author with members of the team, on Microsoft Teams, whether they are sitting next to me or based in one of the seven Softcat offices saves time and boosts productivity. And with the recently released Guest Access within Teams, that collaboration can be extended outside of Softcat as well! There'll be a lot of time saved when I'm working on large scale projects, and more importantly this is secure.
Yammer is still my port of call when casting a net for information at work outside of my 'frequent contacts'. The familiar social media feel makes it intuitive to use and easy to adopt. I'm often surprised at the support and advice from areas of the business I'd never think to ask, and the increased speed at which I receive a response than if the message were via e-mail.
Increasingly, organisations are embracing technologies such as cloud computing, video and audio conferencing to help deepen engagement with their customers, support people working remotely and, ultimately, drive growth. There's always a balance to strike between teamwork and security. Organisations can enable people to work together anywhere they want - but what's the risk? It's the longstanding conundrum - how do you keep your users productive whilst also keeping them secure? Not only do we need to keep users productive, but how do we enable them to be creative? If you're in M365, Enterprise Mobility and Security allows for securing data, users and devices in a way that's pragmatic and doesn't hinder their experience.
It's evident that Microsoft are transforming their technology in an impactful way. M365 provides a solution that's inclusive for all types of people and all types of communicative preferences, helping us all work together in a way that keeps us engaged, fulfilled, productive and secure
Are you looking to make your people more productive? Get in touch with our Microsoft specialist using the button below, or speak with your Softcat account manager for more advice on how this can benefit your organisation. Head to our dedicated Microsoft 365 page and find out more about how Softcat's technical expertise in Microsoft can give your organisation the Freedom to Work.
*M365 is the overarching modern desktop that includes O365 E3/E5, EM&S E3/E5 and Windows E3/E5.
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