For a long time Microsoft has been the dominant player when it comes to productivity offerings, releasing Microsoft Office in the 90s and quickly crushing the competition including Lotus and OpenOffice (called StarOffice until the late 90s). This, along with their significant presence in the Personal Computer operating system market, has afforded them a very strong advantage coming into the cloud and collaboration focused productivity market we have today. In the late 2000s, Google then decided to launch G Suite, in order to break into this market and carve away at the large pie Microsoft had mostly to themselves.
This offering was aimed at smaller/solo businesses, with a focus on collaboration between users and cloud/roaming capability. From the beginning Google Workspace has been a cloud productivity suite, only in recent times has Google developed the ability for the software to be used in a limited offline capacity.
Microsoft on the other hand, with their strong desktop development history, offer a much more fleshed out and deeper array of offline software to use. Though now they do offer cloud versions of their products, these are cut down and intended to be used if the desktop versions are not available/practical. In a sense, Google expects you to do your work on the Cloud while Microsoft would expect the majority of it to be in their desktop offerings.
The first of the two big things to consider in this race for your money and business is if collaboration/mobility will be a focal point for you and your business. With a hyper mobile team and multiple people needing to frequently work on documents at the same time, you may want to consider Google Workspace. Whereas a fairly traditional office will probably be more inclined to stick with mainstays like Excel and Word for their productivity programs.
The second thing to consider will be the size and scope of your business and whether you’ll be able to take advantage of all that Microsoft Office 365 can offer from its multitude of plans. Google Workspace seems to be thought of as a ‘stepping stone’ to Office 365 – used by start-ups or other small businesses that don’t want to yet commit to Microsoft’s full productivity suite.
The reality is that most of the features that businesses will need such as their own business email address, productivity programs, file storage, and collaboration tools are present from both providers. A medium or even large sized business can still be perfectly comfortable with what Google can offer them, the key is to take a look at what you want out of these subscriptions and what additional inclusions you can bolster your workflow with.
If you ‘think you might be ready to graduate to Microsoft 365’ or you’re currently going through a review of your productivity subscriptions – get in touch with the Altitude Innovations team to assess the options that best align with your business now and where you want to be.