Every business has to face the fact that the days when one has to go to the office to access essential company information is already gone. The idea of remote work has penetrated organizations all over the world, and employees continue to become productive, whether they’re at the workplace, at home, or on the go.
However, this concept of working from anywhere forces businesses to surface work-related information to users in real-time to give them the ability to instantly respond to requests. In the past, that’s almost impossible to achieve. Today, though, because of cloud technology, employees can securely access company content anytime and anywhere.
OneDrive As A Cloud Storage Solution
OneDrive is part of Microsoft’s fantastic cloud storage platform. It provides offline and online access to your files. OneDrive allows users to store, share, and edit documents and media easily and quickly. And, because it uses cloud technology, you can do whatever you want with your files whenever and wherever you want to.
There are several obvious reasons why many people were compelled to perform a box to OneDrive migration of their files. Here are some reasons:
- OneDrive seamlessly integrates into Office 365 and also supports over 200 file formats and 100 languages.
- It’s also the cheapest cloud storage available today, without sacrificing security due to its secure encryption through Azure Information Protection.
Those benefits are only the tip of the iceberg, things that can mostly be enjoyed by individual users. But, for organizations that have more comprehensive demands for cloud storage and file syncing, what benefits does OneDrive really bring? After all, there must be more benefits, not just central cloud storage or an easy-to-use interface.
Here’s a closer look at the benefits of moving to OneDrive for Business:
Because OneDrive is always on, users get the assurance that they can access any content stored on it all the time. In fact, Microsoft has been consistently providing an uptime performance of at least 99.87%.
What’s with uptime? Why is it crucial? And, how does Microsoft make this incredible statistic possible? One can get the answers to these questions by breaking down what cloud computing or cloud storage really is.
The cloud is hardware with external connectivity, whether it’s a private (VPN) or public (internet) cloud. Data centers house this storage hardware. That said, when businesses use a cloud storage service, like OneDrive, it can take advantage of platforms, software, and infrastructure for their data without spending too much to acquire such technology in-house.
Since cloud needs a platform, software, and infrastructure, it’s essential to note that uptime here is the continuous availability of these things. With Microsoft’s minimum uptime of 99.97%, the potential downtime that users can expect is limited to just 25.9 seconds each day or only about 0.0002% of cloud storage-dependency per year.
Microsoft has also built fault tolerance into their data centers and a failover capability to other Availability Zones. This means that if one data center malfunctions or goes down, another one will become the primary node. Due to Microsoft’s redundancy across data centers that are geographically separated, it has consistently managed a fantastic level of uptime for its customers.
While OneDrive syncs any changes immediately right after it detects an internet connection, users still have the option to pause the syncing process, especially if they’re going to access their OneDrive through a tethered or metered connection. This enables users to save on bandwidth costs.
Since Microsoft data centers have spread across the globe, OneDrive is also the only platform for cloud storage that’s locally available on all continents of the planet.
This accessibility is, of course, useful to companies that operate internationally. OneDrive has multi-geo capabilities, so it would be easy for organizations to store localized content in a region through a single tenant. It empowers businesses, allowing them to meet data residency requirements in every geolocation as their data is created and hosted.
OneDrive is also available on different devices, such as Xbox, Windows Phone, Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows computers.
Extended Sharing Capabilities
Both OneDrive’s localized and online versions have extended sharing capabilities. This feature allows users to share content at a file or folder level with people outside and inside of the organizations. Sharing is also possible with anonymous users. All the user has to do is to right-click on the content and select the “share” option.
After selecting the “share” option, users can either choose other users they want to share the file or folder to or allow other users to directly access the data by copying the link and sending it through email.
Download Only The Files You Need
Device storage is truly a precious commodity nowadays, and it’s especially true for huge businesses. Even individual users are hesitant to give device storage up.
The problem with OneDrive in the past is that it would ask you to jeopardize your device storage since downloading one file means you have to download the entire OneDrive library. Of course, it could have a significant impact on the storage capacity of your device, depending on the total size of your OneDrive’s library. It won’t only eat up valuable storage space but also potentially slow down your device.
Fortunately, Microsoft has already addressed the issue by adding one new functionality. It now gives users the ability to download only the file they need without having to download the entire library.
OneDrive File Restore
It’s a nightmare to lose access to essential business documents. An organization has to avoid it at all costs. However, risks do exist, including malware infection that leads to corruption and sudden deletion of files.
OneDrive’s feature, called File Restore, is Microsoft’s way to address these risks. The File Restore feature allows clients of OneDrive to undo actions or changes applied to both folders and files by restoring OneDrive to a specific date within the last thirty days. That, of course, means guaranteed thirty-day accident protection for all your employees.
Before the introduction of OneDrive File Restore, IT teams of different business organizations had to backup each employee’s account. Imagine how incredibly difficult undertaking it was, especially for smaller IT departments.
Just imagine the sigh of relief your staff, especially your IT department, will breathe knowing that such protection exists. It doesn’t only provide peace of mind, but also effectively lessens the burden on all your employees.
Thanks to File Restore, there’s no need for your IT department to be involved. It’ll be Microsoft’s responsibility to back up each OneDrive account for thirty straight days. The user can then request file restoration even without help or troubleshooting procedures from the IT team.
Effortlessly sharing content is excellent, but such a convenience requires robust security measures to ensure that no essential data gets accidentally shared with the wrong people. Through OneDrive’s admin center, Microsoft has provided IT admins with various sharing capability levels. It takes away the worries of organizations that their sensitive company content is at risk.
Admins can set various sharing levels depending on what they deem is viable for their organizations. They can also enforce link expirations, which means users can only consume content within the allotted period.
Also, administrators can decide to permit users to share the content with others. An External Sharing option also exists, which gives users the ability to share content with individuals outside the organization.
OneDrive has a total of four external sharing levels, giving organizations complete control over how employees share content. Device Access and the ability to pull in compliance processes from Microsoft’s Security And Compliance Center through eDiscovery, Retention, and DLP are also other options that businesses can enjoy with OneDrive.
If, in the case where an organization is still not satisfied with the current level of security, they can also explore more security options available through the Information Protection portal of Azure. It’s a place where admins can configure policies for Office documents that encapsulate Rights Management Features. The policies covered include content lockdown, where users can’t copy, forward, and snip any content out of the shared document.
Offline Access To Documents And Folders In OneDrive
Internet access is becoming more prolific each passing day, but one can’t deny the fact that there are still areas that lack 24/7 connectivity. The lack of internet connectivity poses a significant problem to employees using cloud technology in the face of looming deadlines and pressing tasks. It’s a productivity killer since it can be incredibly difficult to get the job done without an internet connection.
OneDrive’s Offline Folders feature delivers the much-needed productivity boost and relief. This functionality enables users to save folders to their devices and open them anytime and anywhere. All changes performed offline will be synced immediately after internet connectivity returns. It, of course, is a lifesaver, especially for those looking to stay productive regardless of connection status.
OneDrive is an enterprise-grade product from Microsoft. It has become a trusted platform for businesses to work with, share, and store content with confidence. Companies can now manage content that their users create and collaborate on. It also gives employees the chance to work with a properly secured content.
All in all, Microsoft’s OneDrive is the easiest, most secure, and best-integrated cloud storage product available in the market today. If you ask whether moving to OneDrive for your business operations is worth it or not, the benefits above should convince you that it is indeed going to be an excellent move for your organization to do so.