Set up Microsoft Office 365
The third in a seven-part series on the effectiveness and efficiencies of a feature-rich, cloud-connected Windows 10 environment for small businesses
Previously in Building and growing your business with Windows 10 and the cloud…
In the first blog post of this series, we described how Windows 10 and Microsoft cloud services can provide you with powerful, scalable IT services without the need to configure, deploy, and maintain costly on-premises equipment. Next we established your organization’s online presence, reviewed single sign-on and user authentication, and added users to your domain—all without installing a single on-premises server. Now we’re ready for step 2 of the road map to a comprehensive cloud-based deployment for your small business.
When you use Microsoft Azure–based hosted services within Office 365, you benefit from maintaining control over your environment but having Microsoft take care of the required infrastructure for you. And because your Office applications and data are cloud-based, your users can access them in the office, on the road, at home, and on the device of their choice.
Office 365 applications and services
Along with email, your users will need key productivity tools to stay efficient and connected. Office 365 ProPlus offers businesses of any size a single solution that includes Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, and Publisher. And with Office 365, your users also get audio and video conferencing, instant messaging, and screen and file sharing through Skype for Business Online and Microsoft OneDrive for Business.
Deployment is straightforward: users install Office 365 themselves from your Office 365 portal using their single sign-on credentials. A simple Click-to-Run process installs the application suite on their device. With Office 365, your applications are updated automatically and you will always have the latest features and security updates.
For more information on options for fully installed Office applications across all your devices, visit Office 365 business plans.
Email is a fundamentally important application for any organization. Your Office 365 email service gives you the dual advantages of dependability and flexibility. It’s driven by Microsoft Exchange Online, either as a standalone service or as part of your Office 365 plan.
No matter what size your business, you need an email service that’s secure, reliable, and available. With Exchange Online, you get a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee. Users can access their mail using Outlook as an on-device app, on the web using the Microsoft Edge browser, or via their browser of choice. You can compare Exchange Online plans, both as part of Office 365 and as standalone options, here.
You’ve already set up your organization’s domain and added users to your Azure Active Directory. Next you need to set up your email service, before users install their Office applications, so they can save time by taking advantage of the automatic configuration features in Outlook.
To set up your email service:
- Visit your Office 365 admin center.
- Verify ownership of your domain.
- Update your user settings to switch from the initial onmicrosoft.com domain to your organization’s domain.
- Use the wizard to update name server records at your domain registrar. (The wizard tells you exactly which records to update, including the values you’ll need for each one, and it guides you through the steps.)
- If you’d rather, you can update your name server records yourself.
- Verify that email starts flowing to your new Office 365 hosted domain.
- Use single sign-on to open Office 365 email either with Outlook or Outlook on the web.
More detail on adding users and configuring your email service is available at the Add your users and domain to Office 365 page.
Now you’re ready to have users install Office 365 applications and start Outlook for the first time.
Once you have signed in to the admin center, added users to your organization’s hosted domain, and set up your existing name servers to redirect your email, you can tell your users to go ahead and install Office 365 on their devices. The process is simple and self-directed, with available documentation for users who need it.
- Sign in to Office 365 at your Office 365 user portal.
- Choose the language and select the 32-bit or 64-bit version of the Office software.
- Accept the license agreement, and click All done.
With single sign-on, all users need to do is start Outlook for the automatic mailbox configuration to complete (using the domain-based user name and password), and their inbox will be ready to use. Ask users to install Office 365 using Click-to-Run, a feature that offers faster download and installation of the latest versions.
For further information on users installing Office 365, visit Download and install Office using Office 365 for business on your PC.
Office 365 runs on iOS, Android, and Windows phone mobile devices.
Windows Phone 8.1 includes a preinstalled Office app and a separate OneNote app. Windows 10 phones are preinstalled with individual Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote apps.
On all these devices, users need to add Office 365 to the email settings as an Exchange Online email account, using their Office 365 domain credentials. Note that when they configure their email account with their Office 365 credentials, single sign-on enables them to also access resources for OneDrive for Business file storage, Skype for Business Online, and OneNote. These additional apps that are preinstalled on Windows phones are also available from the appropriate app store for iOS and Android devices.
A key feature of Windows 10 is an optimized user experience for PC or laptop, tablet, 2-in-1, or phone. Your users can use their Office apps to create new documents and access the documents they’ve saved to the cloud or to Microsoft SharePoint Online team sites.
When they’re working only with a Windows 10 phone, they may want to use it more like a PC to boost efficiency. With Continuum, they can connect their phone to an external display, keyboard, and mouse via a wireless adapter or dock. Then they can create presentations, write long email messages, update spreadsheets, and other tasks in a productive, PC-like work environment.
All while still using the device as a phone.
Users need the free Continuum app for their phone and a choice of wireless adapter or dock for their external display or TV. A wired or wireless mouse and keyboard complete the simple configuration process. For more information, visit Welcome to Continuum for phone.
Your domain is set up and you have configured users and devices in your online directory service. You set up email for your new online domain, and your users are enjoying single sign-on to their email and Office productivity applications. In the next post, we guide you through setting up a highly secure cloud storage solution for file sharing, and we explore the collaboration services offered by SharePoint Online. We also look at some ways you can help secure your organization’s data on devices, in transit, and in the cloud.
Still can’t wait? More about Windows 10, Office 365, Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite, and Microsoft Intune
Visit the following sites to learn more about the Windows 10 and Azure-based technologies and services that work together to provide a compelling solution for your cloud-connected devices and services.