I know it’s a broad statement, but every attorney should be using Microsoft Office 365 just for the email alone.

Office 365 Business Premium makes it extremely easy to get setup with professional-grade email services. They provide high reliability, 50GB of email storage, and you can send attachments up to 150MB. You get access to Outlook for your Mac, PC, mobile devices (mobile phones and tablets) and you instantly have access to all your data from any device. The email service boasts one of the best SPAM filters and they have very high uptime with many redundant servers. In fact, they guarantee 99.9% uptime.

For $12.50 a month (with annual commitment) you can get the Office 365 Business Premium. At GlobalMac IT, we believe in the value of this specific plan so much that we automatically include it with our services. The way we see it, it’s a no brainer. Office 365 is a much better option for email than anything else out there. If you’re not on 365 yet, you likely fall into one of these four scenarios: Exchange in-house, G-Suite, IMAP/POP email account or an email such as katietheattorney@yahoo.com. Here’s why Office 365 is better:

Exchange in-house.
If this is the case, unless you have more than 100 users, you are very likely needlessly paying a significant sum to your IT company to maintain the Exchange server. These costs add up both in physical server costs, backups, and ongoing maintenance costs. We’re talking tens of thousands. You will have more uptime hosting your email with Outlook 365 than you could ever have with an in-house server.  If you have 10 users, your costs for Office 365 Premium are $1,500 per year. No IT company running an Exchange server in-house can compete with these prices. And don’t let them tell you it’s more secure. It’s not.

G-Suite (formerly Google Apps).
As stated by a recent Wired article, “The improvements Google has made still don’t measure up to Microsoft.” You’re paying $5 per user at a minimum, unless you’ve been hanging on to a grandfathered plan. Very few attorneys can work with the G-Suite apps and go without Microsoft office. For only $7.50 more per month than what you’re currently paying, you would get the entire Microsoft Suite, which you need anyway.

 IMAP or (yikes!) a POP email account.
This is most common with users who are using the free email included with their web-hosting package. The majority of the remaining email providers do not make their email service one of their top priorities. Instead, web hosting is their priority, and they throw in the email accounts. When you get a cheap or free email service, however, you’re going to pay for it with downtime, tons of spam, and other annoyances (low storage limits, lack of support when you need it, etc.).

Something Like Katietheattorney@yahoo.com.
It really does pain me to say that I see this far too often.  Not having a business domain email broadcasts to the world that you are a hack and that you practice out of your parent’s basement as you pay off our law school loans. Whether or not that’s actually the case, I guarantee that having such an email address is costing you business as this is the impression you’re making.

Here some details of what comes with the Premium plan:

  • Office 2016 apps for PC and Mac. This includes Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, and Onenote. Each user can install Office on five PCs or Macs, five tablets (Windows, iPad, and Android), and five phones.
  • Business-class email hosting with 50GB mailbox.
  • OneDrive for Business gives each user 1TB of personal cloud storage that they can access from anywhere. It also syncs with their PC/Mac for offline access. You can also easily share documents with others inside and outside your organization and control who can see and edit each file. [Note: We do not recommend this as a file sharing solution for Mac-based law firms.]

 

Tom Lambotte is the CEO of GlobalMacIT, a national company providing complete end-to end legal technology consulting services to Mac-Based law firms. Operating as a Managed Service Provider, their service enables their clients to delegate all technology-related responsibilities so they can leverage their technology and convert it into a profit-generator for their firm.