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Microsoft, Surface and O2: The perfect business partnership?

Phil Wilkinson, Microsoft Product Manager at O2 Business, introduces new Microsoft Surface devices and assesses how they will drive the workforce of the future.

If we’ve learnt one thing from the past 18 months, it’s that the workplace has changed for good. Whether remote, flexible or hybrid, business owners and employees alike have a broad range of competing expectations around what it means to ‘go to work’. You only have to look at O2 Business’ own research, conducted in March 2021, which identified seven different employee types, the majority of those saying they preferred working flexibly and in a hybrid mix of remote and office work.

Over these past months, the separation between home and work has also blurred. Where once we discussed the need for an equal division of work/life balance, now leisure, socialising and family time find space between planning, collaborating, meeting and working.

Accommodating this way of working in your organisation requires the right technology – tools that ensure seamless connectivity and the ability to collaborate effectively wherever you are, whilst keeping identity and information secure. With this in mind, I’ve been looking at the latest generation of Microsoft Surface devices from O2.

Like increasing numbers of devices, they have hi-res touchscreens and HD cameras, ideal for working remotely. Many also have integrated SIMs for seamless connectivity. However, their real strength lies in the way they have been optimised to work best with Microsoft 365.

According to a Forrester Total Economic Impact Study commissioned by Microsoft, employees get nearly five hours in weekly productivity gains on common daily tasks and business processes using Microsoft 365 on Surface.

So why O2 Business?

Equipping your people with the right kit is an important first step, but the demand for flexibility presents a number of new challenges for organisations. The move to flexible work anywhere shifts the expectations of employees and challenges IT Teams about how to supply, deploy and manage equipment to a diverse base using cloud-based technology.  Meanwhile, the pressure is on to find ways to keep maximising your ROI. And then there’s security, which has become the number one concern for businesses of all sizes.

Finding the right partner to overcome these challenges is essential. We have more than 30 years’ experience in mobile led business, and a Microsoft Gold Partner for more than seven. So, we understand how to design, set up, support and transform Microsoft business environments into a modern, zero-trust network, securing against identity theft and protecting data.

In addition, from helping you to define and install your ideal Microsoft environment, we also provide a range of valuable managed services that relieve the burden on your IT Team and enhance your team’s productivity further.

1. Security and Management

Microsoft Surface takes security very seriously. With Microsoft DNA throughout, from the components all the way through to the cloud management tools, every Surface device maximises Microsoft software efficiency, underpinned by enterprise-level security from chip to cloud.

Partner with O2 Business, and between us we can secure your identity, user access and data flow, supporting your Zero Trust policy across your entire environment. And we don’t just mean on day one. As your partner we keep your security posture high throughout the life cycle of your Microsoft Surface devices.

2. Connectivity

The effectiveness and productivity of your workforce depends on fast, secure and dependable connectivity. And this is where O2 Business excels. We are offering business connectivity plans that can grow and flex with your business needs. We are the UK’s favourite mobile network operator. Virgin Media O2 has 47 million UK connections across broadband, mobile, TV and home phone.

3. Device Deployment

With O2 Business’ Device Enrolment, your Microsoft Surface devices can be delivered direct to your end users, wherever they are. We pre-configure the devices with your business applications, we set up, centrally manage, and get them ready to use. It reduces the burden on your IT team, and gets your people working with their devices straight away.

4. End to End Lifecycle Management

Faulty, damaged or stolen devices inevitably slow projects down, interrupting the collaboration businesses have worked so hard to foster. Partner with O2 Business, and we can ensure replacement devices are delivered quickly, to minimise potential project disruptions.

Microsoft Surface devices, optimised for Microsoft 365, are designed and built with end user experience in mind, whilst delivering all of the business benefits and ROI of a modern workplace. And with O2 Business as your partner, we can help to relieve the burden on your stretched IT department and deliver the Microsoft Gold Partner support you expect from us.

To review your Microsoft estate, or for more information, contact your O2 Account Manager, or call us on 0800 955 5590.

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