A personal mission of mine over the past year has been to listen deeply to the feedback we’ve received from partners. What I’ve heard is that you’re trying your best to bring Microsoft solutions to a fast-changing customer demographic, but it’s not always easy to help them make sense of the variety of solutions currently on the market.
Your customers have been struggling to make smart decisions in a world of increasingly fragmented cloud IT infrastructure. Whether they’re tying together disparate third-party point solutions or making do with legacy platforms that are merely “good enough,” we all know there is a better way.
To help you better serve your customers, I’m excited to share three announcements that are going to change the modern IT experience.
Microsoft 365 Business
We’ve been talking about the new Microsoft 365 for a couple months, but now it’s official. Microsoft 365 Business is now available worldwide. It’s a single solution designed for small businesses to empower teams, safeguard business data, and simplify IT management.
Microsoft 365 Business is ideal for partners who work with small and midsize business (SMB) customers. It brings together the power and familiarity of our best-in-class business productivity and collaboration tools, enterprise-grade device management and security capabilities, and simplified device deployment and user setup. Customers love Microsoft 365 because they can get everything they need from one vendor—simplifying their business processes and giving you a unique opportunity to grow your business through additional services layered on top of Microsoft 365.
The opportunity in simplicity
I’ve personally heard from many partners who are looking forward to getting Microsoft 365 Business into the hands of their customers, and we found similar anticipation in a recent Forrester Total Economic Impact Report.
“[This] is the next key component to advancing our strategy. We’re using it to extend our reach into our current customers and more quickly acquire new customers.”
— Will Rowley, Engagement manager, Cloud Direct
Microsoft 365 Business will help you improve profitability through an easy-to-manage solution that can reduce management costs, increase product revenue, and be delivered as a service through the Cloud Solution Provider program. It will also help expand your managed services offering and drive customer retention through a more cohesive and secure IT infrastructure.
“Other security solutions were overkill for my smaller customers. But now I have the opportunity to upsell to a 25-user-customer my MDM services.”
—Chris Oakman, CEO, Solace IT
For more specific details, check out the Microsoft 365 Business video overview here, and sales and technical resources available here. Be sure to take advantage of the USD$20 user/month MSRP pricing (see the CSP price list for local partner pricing). For those of you interested in transitioning your customers from the Microsoft 365 Business preview to the new SKU, watch this video for a step-by-step tutorial.
Microsoft Listings, Microsoft Connections, and Microsoft Invoicing
As happy as we are to bring a more simplified IT experience to your customers through Microsoft 365 Business, we’re equally pleased to announce several new business apps now available in Office 365 Business Premium and Microsoft 365 Business in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
These new apps— Microsoft Connections, Microsoft Listings, and Microsoft Invoicing—will help your SMB customers maintain the professional email marketing, online listing management, and estimates and invoices that are key to their productivity. It will also enable you to build additional managed services around marketing and business management to create added relevance for your customers. Find out more about this offering here.
A favorite tool in the Microsoft 365 Business suite is StaffHub. It’s the purpose-built app for Firstline Workers to stay connected and productive throughout the work day. And now, StaffHub is included worldwide with Office 365 Business Premium and Microsoft 365 Business at no additional cost.
With StaffHub, workers can view schedules, swap shifts, request time off, find information, and catch up with the team—all from the convenience of a mobile device. Partners in retail, healthcare, manufacturing, hospitality, and many other industries can start delivering StaffHub to their customers. Click here to learn more about this great opportunity.
Every day, we’re seeing the cloud transform how people do business. I’m sure these new solutions will help you build deeper relationships with your customers and deliver some of the most forward-facing technology and value-added services to reach the market in years.
Please share your thoughts on how we can better help you grow your business here in the Microsoft Partner Community.