Staying connected through the Cloud

Authored By Nathan, Vendor Business Manager @intY a ScanSource Company

With the current health concerns around the world, my company has put policies in place to protect its employees. It is vital to the company that employees, like me, can work from home in a safe and productive way and that’s where using cloud-based software like Microsoft Office 365 comes in.

Office 365

Using Office 365 has allowed me to work at home as if I was sitting at my desk. I can access my emails and company documents and make calls, all from my laptop by using Office 365. It has not reduced my productivity or workflow if anything I am slightly more productive as I have fewer distractions. If staff members want to contact me, they do it via instant message or a call, all through Microsoft Teams.

A company’s culture and connecting employees together for collaboration, as well as delivering work for customers is crucial, and using the Office 365 suite allows me to continue to do that.  All my pre-booked meetings with internal teams and external partners are still going ahead via Teams, even if they were planned to be originally on site.

Using video conferencing through Teams, I can still be present in the meetings and others will be able to see my face and emotion rather than just my voice as you would on a traditional phone conference call. Teams has a feature where I can blur my background to ensure the privacy of my home remains and others in the meeting can only see me. I will also be able to see them and really feel a part of the meeting. Teams also has a useful status feature where a user can set their status as busy, available and do not disturb. They can also customize a status and allow people to know who they are working with or who they are in a meeting with.

Collaboration and Security

There are projects still going on with my team that I need to be a part of. I need to work closely with the UK and US teams and this doesn’t stop now I am working from home. By hosting these projects and their documents on Teams I can work collaboratively, creating and modifying documents in real-time. These can be PowerPoint presentations, spreadsheets, Word documents and more. This means that everyone is working on the same document and not duplicating work; I can even see who is modifying a document in real-time. The power of this should not be underestimated and is a key feature of modern workplace practices linked to remote working.  

Microsoft has a variety of security options to protect users and businesses when using the Office suite. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) ( is becoming a standard security policy across the globe. MFA is used to ensure that users are who they say they are, by requiring that they provide at least two pieces of evidence to prove their identity. If one of the factors has been compromised by a hacker or unauthorized user, the chances of another factor also being compromised are low, so requiring multiple authentication factors provides a higher level of assurance about the user’s identity.

With applications like SharePoint and Teams, I can continue to work with my team collaboratively even though I am not in the office. Microsoft removes security concerns with the Enterprise Mobility + Security license. There is a feature within this license called Azure Information Protection, which can protect sensitive company data by using the features that would prevent an employee from printing or saving a document that was only meant for reading. It can also prevent them from forwarding it on to another email address.

Another key feature of Enterprise Mobility + Security is risk-based conditional access, which will protect the business and the end-user from someone trying to log on pretending to be them. This tool will make high-risk users go through regular password changes and it will require MFA for medium- to high-risk users.

If you have not fully adopted the cloud and want to know how you can empower your employees to work remotely in a productive and safe way, then I would advise you to reach out to our cloud sales specialists and see how they can help.

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