Can you use Office 365 Home for small business?

Office 365 is used by a man on the laptop. Microsoft customer used computer software. New product is tested by IT specialist. San Francisco, February 2020

There’s a difference between home- and commercial-grade tools. It’s essentially common sense that the drill you use to put up the curtains in your house won’t stand up to being thrown in and out of toolboxes and used eight hours a day on a job site.

But it can be easy to ignore home vs. commercial with our digital tools—in particular, Microsoft 365. It can be harder to tell the difference visually between a commercial-grade version of 365 and the home version. Whether or not you can see the difference, what’s under the hood matters more than you think.

Why do people use 365 Home for small business?

Some people buy the Microsoft 365 home edition for their small businesses because it’s cheaper. They see the sticker price, think, “Oh, it will do everything I need,” and don’t bother digging deeper.

Others might have bought a computer that already had an Office license on it and decide not to bother upgrading because it’s already on there, they can use it, and it’s paid for, so why not?

Office is more than just Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. There are features like Exchange (which lets you set up emails with your domain name) and Teams (which is better in the business versions of 365) that you just can’t get with the low-end version.

The most crucial difference, though, is security.

The difference in security

There are no built-in security features in the home versions of Microsoft 365. They’re not designed to be secure. You’re not going to have the same security needs at home because it’s just you and the family; you’re not managing multiple accounts, sharing sensitive business files, or anything that requires additional security. 

The business versions are different. They’re designed with both security features and compliance in mind. They include:

  • Malware protection
  • Ransomware protection
  • Phishing protection
  • Email encryption
  • User security training
  • Lost/stolen password protection
  • Dedicated admin accounts

And that’s just the basic Microsoft 365 Business version. Higher tiers have even more features.

Don’t leave your organization open to costly data breaches and the lawsuits that can follow. Think of it this way: you could save that money using the home version of Microsoft 365, but is it worth the risk? Use the right tool for the job. And if you’re not sure which version is best for your needs, we can help. Talk to TeamLogic IT today.

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