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Microsoft Office 2016 – Whats New? Why Upgrade?

Everyone is discussing the advantages and disadvantages to upgrading to Microsoft Office 2016, and you may be wondering whether this change in software is worth your time professionally or personally. While the added features in this version aren’t numerous, they are worth your consideration if your business depends on teamwork and collaboration.

Microsoft Upgrade CloudMoving to the Cloud

Office will now deliver small updates through the cloud as they’re needed, so you can rule out major releases of new software versions in the future. The heavy reliance on cloud-based storage is one of the biggest changes in the program, and many of the business-oriented features will rely on your ability to store in this manner. If you’re concerned about security, keep reading to learn about an upgrade that may put your fears to rest.

A Collaborator’s Dream

The most impressive changes are those that allow multiple users to view and edit documents simultaneously. Imagine inviting two of your colleagues to look at your report while you’re lounging at home or traveling abroad. Microsoft will now show you exactly where each of your collaborative partners are editing within the document, and it will even identify them by name.

If you need more intimate contact to get the job done, open Skype right in the document and have a video chat. This allows you to discuss a project while everyone involved has eyes on the same document, and all of your changes are made in real time. This is similar to some features offered through Google Docs, but you have the convenience of using the familiar features and layout of Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Microsoft Upgrade ChartsComplex Charts in One Click

The pre-designed charts available in Microsoft Office 2013 were rather standard, but that all changes with this updated version. You can now create waterfall charts and other complex designs with a single click of the mouse. This is useful when creating reports and other business documents, and it may allow you to incorporate more creativity into your document design processes.

Search It Fast

Have you ever wasted time clicking around in a Microsoft program because you knew that it was capable of completing a task, but you weren’t sure how to get started? This hassle is eliminated with the “Tell Me” search bar. It’s located at the top of your document, and you can type in search terms in order to find specific features. You can also open a side bar that allows you to search Wikipedia, search the internet, or look up a definition without leaving your document.

Data Loss Protection Program Expanded

The advanced collaborative features of Office 2016 may have you concerned about the protection of sensitive information as it’s stored and shared through the cloud. Microsoft solves this problem by offering their Data Loss Protection Program for Word, Excel and PowerPoint users. This will allow your IT team to create guidelines for how you want documents shared within your organization. Once the rules are set, the program will help you enforce them as your users take advantage of the collaborative features.

microsoft-upgrade-searchShould You Upgrade?

Whether an upgrade to Microsoft Office 2016 is in your best interest depends on how you will use the programs. If you believe the collaborative features will solve problems for your company, then you may consider the upgrade essential. If you’re interested in expanding communication options for team members often working outside of the office, then those collaboration features are likely to benefit your company.

If the ability to collaborate in real time with multiple users isn’t something that your company would use, then you may not consider an upgrade worth the time right now. Microsoft has promised new feature releases through Office 365 in the future, so you may want to hold off and see if those upcoming updates make the 2016 version more useful to your company.

If you have further questions about upgrading your Microsoft Office programs or need technical assistance in general, contact us at your earliest convenience.

  • 11/02/2015
  • IT