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Microsoft Office 365 for government users is the ideal solution to security, compliance, and agility needs in the government sector. Each subscription plan offers cutting-edge features designed around a personal computing suite and a secure, user-friendly interface.

Office 365 Government

Here is a not-too-well-known fact: Microsoft is the only software vendor that offers a complete hybrid cloud approach to IT solutions. What that means for government agencies ready to transition to the cloud is that by subscribing to Office 365 government agencies can:

  • integrate their on-premises data centers into private, public, and government maintained clouds
  • undergo a partial to complete digital transformation consistent with their mission and priorities
  • rely on a trusted and monitored network with levels of security and compliance

Office 365 meets 3 mission-critical IT challenges

Microsoft Office 365 solves several IT problems for government agencies, specifically the need for security, compliance, and agility.

What that means for agencies:

  • Security involves protection of data–from regulated personal information to highly classified defense information.
  • Compliance requires airtight assurance that data is safe from unauthorized access either inadvertent or through sinister intent.
  • Agility is the ability to respond quickly as new IT solutions make mission accomplishment easier.

The Office 365 service plan

Office 365 U.S. Government plans include features available to private users. In fact, Microsoft has designed this product around the paradigm of personal computing, which is moving to an intelligent cloud environment and is reinventing the notion of productivity in support of mission accomplishment.

The plans are available to qualified government entities–i.e., U.S., state, local, territorial–on a monthly subscription basis. There is no limit to the number of licenses the agency can purchase.

Standard features available to government Office 365 subscribers

Backed by 24/7 support for mission critical issues, each Office 365 U.S. Government subscription plan includes access to MS Office on line, email and calendars, collaboration through conferencing and team intranet sites. Users can share and store their files in the cloud under the supervision of a security and privacy monitoring and access control system designed to keep data safe and private.

Going the full-installation route

The full-featured plan is the Office 365 U.S. Government E4 with the following features:

  • full installation of Microsoft Office applications–This feature includes the new version of Office 2016 (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, and OneNote) for both PC and Mac. (Note: MS Access is not available to Mac users). Each licensed user can install Office 365 on up to 5 PCs or Macs
  • Office 365 for tablets and phones–Users can install Office 365 on up to 5 tablets and 5 phones
  • Online versions of Microsoft Office–Includes cloud access to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • file storage and sharing with 1 terabyte of cloud storage for each user
  • a business-class time-management solution with email, calendar and contacts management list–Each user owns a 50-gigabyte inbox
  • Skype for Business for unlimited online meetings–Includes instant messaging and video conferencing
  • dedicated intranet sites for agency teams–Includes customizable security settings and permissions for access control.
  • a corporate-style social network–Employees can collaborate across agency department boundaries and locations
  • application management with access and computer activation restrictions for work groups
  • “Business Intelligence” on demand–Analyze and view data using the power of MS Excel dashboards
  • Protection against data loss and compliance violations–Covers system files and email. Includes rights management and automatic legal hold in cases of data breach
  • hosted voice mail with a built-in auto attendant
  • enterprise telephone calling capabilities of Skype for Business Server 2016–Provides unified communications for PCs to either improve or replace a PBX phone system

Compare plans designed for the specific needs of U.S. Government organizations with the chart located on this page.

What Government Agencies Get for Free

Government Office 365 subscribers benefit from a lifetime of automatic Office 365 software updates. Software update and maintenance headaches go away. Agency IT staff are freed from technical trouble shooting and can concentrate more in mission-critical areas.

Office 2016 upgrades

Additionally, Office 365 now incorporates the newest version of the MS Office 2016 Office suite upgrades. Online as of November 2016, among other new and enhanced features, with Office 2016, users can:

  • turn data into maps with Excel’s new Maps chart–Annotate the maps with insights, trends, etc.
  • collaborate online in PowerPoint and edit presentations in real-time.
  • in Word, adjust text spacing, show breaks between syllables, and highlight each word as a document is read aloud.
  • take advantage of enhanced accessibility support to read and edit Word documents, Excel workbooks, and PowerPoint presentations and projects.
  • enjoy enhanced file management with the new Recent tab and files “Shared With Me” feature on the Open menu.
  • take advantage of enhanced graphics tools without resorting to third party “expert” software.

How agencies procure Microsoft online services

Typically, buying a subscription to Office 365 for a government agency requires working with a Microsoft partner. The partner helps the agency to license and install the software and get moving in the cloud.

We are your Microsoft partner

Whatever your agency’s local Omaha needs and plans on moving closer to full cloud deployment, InfiNet Solutions can help you. Contact us at info@omahait.com to learn more, or call us at (402) 895--5777.

Michael Johnson , January 20, 2017