Office 365 for Nonprofits

Microsoft Office 365 for NonprofitsEligible organisations can now receive donated and discounted versions of Office 365, allowing charities and non profits to take full advantage of the cloud.

Benefits of Office 365

Office 365 deepens the word processing, data analysis, communication and productivity features of Office that your staff are already familiar with. Here are some of its key benefits:

  • Office web apps: You’re on your way home from the office and you realise that you forgot to update an important document. What do you do? With Office Web Apps, you can open, view and edit documents right from your browser (Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox or Safari) on your home computer. Your staff can use Office Web Apps on up to five of their own devices, giving them flexibility to work wherever and whenever they need to.
  • Hosted email: With Microsoft Exchange Online, you can access your email, shared calendars, and contacts from your PC, Mac, Smartphone or tablet without having to set up a VPN or remote access to your office. Office 365 provides users with 25GB of mailbox storage with attachments up to 25MB each.
  • Document sharing: Easily share documents with your colleagues with SharePoint Online, which is like an online document repository in the cloud. You can even edit documents simultaneously with others, saving you precious time.
  • High-definition collaboration: Microsoft Lync Online is an all-in-one tool for video calls, web conferencing, instant messaging, and voice calls. With high-definition (HD) video conferencing, you can meet and collaborate with out-of-office staff and volunteers. Lync Online includes a real-time note-taking feature so you can keep track of ideas and notes from your meetings.
  • Security and privacy: Along with built-in spam and malware protection for email, Office 365 also lets you add security to mobile devices. Your IT staff can manage and customise your organisation’s security options in a single console (a web-based admin centre). If your organisation deals with sensitive information, your data will be protected in the cloud. Office 365 is compliant with industry standards including HIPAA, FISMA, BAA, and others.
  • Support 24/7: Don’t have on-call IT staff? Office 365 provides 24/7 professional-level support for issues ranging from critical to mild (depending on the plan your organisation has).

Choosing the right plan

Charities vary in staffing and technical needs, so there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” Office 365 plan. There are two free donated plans:

  • Office 365 Small Business for Nonprofits
  • Office 365 Enterprise E1 for Nonprofits

The free donated plans do not include the full installed version of Office (which includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.). To supplement these free Office 365 plans, you can request a discounted version of Office through Microsoft and tt-exchange. Office Standard 2013 is available to eligible nonprofits for an admin fee of £15, and Office Professional Plus 2013 is available for an admin fee of £20.

Eligible organisations can also upgrade to the discounted paid plans, which offer the desktop Office apps. With these plans, your staff can use Office apps on up to five devices per user. The discounted plans are:

  • Office 365 Small Business Premium for Nonprofits (£1.30 per user per month)
  • Office 365 Enterprise E3 for Nonprofits (£3.40 per user per month)

The Small Business plans are designed for smaller charities with 1-10 users and no on-site IT staff. The Small Business Premium actually has a limit of 25 users. The Enterprise versions, on the other hand, are designed for organisations of all sizes that are running a server-client network, like Windows Server. The E3 plan can support an organisation with up to 250 users.

How to get Office 365

To find out if your charity is eligible to receive donated and discounted versions of Office 365, visit the Microsoft Office 365 for Nonprofits site.

You must be a registered UK charity in order to be eligible for Microsoft Nonprofit Programs. Eligible organisations will operate on a not-for-profit basis and have a mission to benefit the local community that could include, but is not limited to:

  • Providing relief to the poor
  • Advancing education
  • Improving social welfare
  • Preserving culture
  • Preserving or restoring the environment
  • Promoting human rights
  • Establishment of civil society

For more information about moving to Office 365, please get in touch.