Farewell to Microsoft Office 365

Today I stopped my subscription on Microsoft Office 365. Why? And what do I use instead?

Skjermbilde 2015-07-26 kl. 22.50.26About six months ago I worked a lot with other people that used Microsoft Excel for some reason. I got some problems converting some formulas and functions to other spreadsheets. So I made the decision to personally buy Microsoft Office for my iMac to make things easier for myself being a personal productivity addict. So, I ordered Microsoft Office 365 as well because I wanted to test out Microsofts online collaboration alternative.

What happened? It seemed that in my work situation the only thing I needed was Microsoft Excel. The other stuff like Word and Powerpoint I found was more complex than I really needed and slowed down my production. I found that Apples Pages and Keynote was far better tools for my use.

Then what about the collaboration tools in Microsoft Office 365? Collaboration? What collaboration? I found Office 365 to be a very “skinny” collaboration tool. Office 365 does not do anything that a lot of other tools on the market can do. Sharing documents? I can get that for free.

But what about discussion databases? What about blogs? What about simultaneous document editing between several editors (yes, they say it is there, but it really isn’t in true time case the other editors have to push their save button before I can see their text). And what about sharing documents with comments through the whole enterprise? Not available. You have to copy the docs into different sites.

What about project management – especially in collaboration with external collaborators outside the company? Externals that does not have the same software or have nothing more than a web browser.

What about web meetings with externals? What about communities both internal and external? What about this and what about that…

And there was the pricing. Office 365 is more expensive and less functional than other stuff I am using, partly free and partly paid for.

What I am using? In my daily work with my new company, Brainworker I use IBM Connections Cloud S1. In one single package it has a lot more functionality than Office 365. To get the same functions with Office 365 you have to buy even more stuff like Yammer, Sharepoint, Lync (now Skype for Business). All similar functions are included in IBM Connections Cloud S1. And you even pay less per user per month.

Privately I use the office package that comes with iOS from Apple, like Keynote, Pages and Numbers. I use Evernote for a lot of stuff and I use OmniFocus for planning and task management.

It all ended up with this reason:

– Why pay for something you don’t use because you have all this stuff already, both cheaper and better.

So I cancelled my subscription and saved myself some money!


Steve Ballmer leaves the Microsoft board and has started teaching

Just six months after Steve Ballmer left his job as CEO and president of Microsoft, he now also leaves his post on the Microsoft board.

According to Ballmer he has “become very busy” over the last six months as he has purchased LA Clipper basketball team, focused on civic contributions, started teaching and taken up studies. To continue serving at the Microsoft board would be “impractical” as he formulates it.

Ballmer is still a shareholder at Microsoft and says he will “promise to support and encourage boldness by management”.

News, Social Business

Microsoft’s Yammer is not well integrated into SharePoint or other Microsoft applications

” Microsoft’s Yammer is not well integrated into SharePoint or other Microsoft applications, for example. You can get a Yammer feed into SharePoint, but can’t get SharePoint tasks into Yammer without writing code.” 
In an interesting article in on how to make employees to keep using social enterprise software, Mr. Tom Petrocelli, research director, enterprise social, mobile and cloud applications, for Neuralytix, emphasized the importance of using enterprise social software that integrates easily into common work processes:

” Software designed to be used in applications where people live entails less of a behavior change,” Patel said. And he goes on:

” Some software integrates much better than others. Petrocelli pointed out that Microsoft’s Yammer is not well integrated into SharePoint or other Microsoft applications, for example: You can get a Yammer feed into SharePoint, but can’t get SharePoint tasks into Yammer without writing code.”

Read the whole article here!

News, Social Business

IBM Connections Mail uses both Domino and Exchange servers

IBM Connections Mail just got an update! The solution is probably one of the simplest ways to work with your email within a social collaboration framework. Whether your email server is called IBM Domino or Microsoft Exchange does not matter. It makes your work day easier and more productive. According to McKinsey, when users switch from one task to another, it really affects productivity. With IBM Connections Mail you can process your inbox with minimal context switching, saving time and efforts. Here are some of the capabilities in IBM Connections Mail:

  • Accept/Decline calendar invites
  • Save messages as draft
  • Adds support for Domino encrypted mail
  • Adds direct access to the Microsoft Outlook Web App
  • Adds support for Microsoft Exchange 2013

Source: Socialize Me


Razzia against Microsoft China

Microsoft China is under investigation for breaking antitrust laws by Chinese authorities. According to Reuters news agency Chinese government officials paid a sudden visit to Microsofts offices in China on monday.

– Representatives from China’s State Administration for Industry & Commerce, which is responsible for enforcing business laws, made the visits to Microsoft offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu, according to local media reports that were confirmed by Microsoft, Reuters writes on their website.

According to Reuters a source close to the company said the visits were most likely the preliminary stage of an antitrust investigation. If that is the case, Microsoft would be one of the biggest U.S. companies to fall under the eye of Chinese regulators as they ramp up their oversight in an apparent attempt to protect local companies and customers.

Read Reuters full article here.


How to save buckets of money on Microsoft licenses!

Want to save bulks of money on Microsoft licenses? Make sure you have the skills and the right attitude. Do not believe anything you hear from the sales reps, and be sure you know what you need and what you do not need.

Follow these twitter advises from Niels J. Hansen and you will be better off next time you negotiate your licenses with you Microsoft sales rep.


News, Social Business

Gartner: Microsoft (and customers) should probably start thinking about getting rid of SharePoint!

– Apparently SharePoint is on its way out and Microsoft should probably start thinking about doing away with it! 

This is according to Gartner analyst Jeffrey Mann, who also suggests that companies who rely heavily on SharePoint ought to start start preparing for a cloud-based future.

Mann, who was speaking at the 2013 Gartner Symposium said that about 28 % of companies who use SharePoint use it across their entire workforce. If you only count those companies using it for half their workforce the numbers climbs to around 70 %, he says.

But he also claims that “hardly anybody likes it”! Regarding user experience SharePoint scores low on ease of use, the amount of ongoing management it requires, and the fact that content isn’t easy to migrate between systems, says Gartner’s Jeffrey Mann who think the problem is that SharePoint has become a victim of its own success:

It’s become too big, too complex and too hard to manage and upgrade, especially since in many organisations it’s highly customised. It takes three to five years to develop and test a new version, and then another year or two before most businesses take the plunge and install it. As a result, many people are using versions of SharePoint that are least four years old, says Mann and concludes that customers should either move to the cloud or move out!