Microsoft 365 is purpose-built for forward-thinking businesses looking for the competitive edge – combining industry-leading software for powerful collaboration, advanced security and seamless device management. Powered by Windows 10, Microsoft 365 will be a welcome change for IT teams, in regards to patch management. The sections below detail this evolution and new services available to customers.
In the past, deploying an operating system (OS) was a big project. It needed budget, management, consultancy, OS deployment skills, and large amounts of infrastructure and people. The new operating system was a major change from the previous, requiring a lot of testing to ensure application and hardware compatibility, not to mention the impact to end users who had to readjust how they worked.
After deployment, business returned to normal, however the IT department still had an overwhelming number of ongoing patches to manage. Unfortunately, due to workload pressures, it was not uncommon for IT teams to skip or delay updates and patches in an irregular fashion. This inconsistency left holes in the patching process, enabling vulnerabilities to be exposed and delaying the release of new OS features to end users. Quite often, there was no collective or scheduled process and the onus was on IT to perform all required testing for deployment, before moving onto the next patch or upgrade.
Figure 1: Illustration of selective patching versus full patching.
Windows 10 will be the last operating system organisations need to deploy. Gone are the days of major disruption to users, struggling to familiarise themselves with changes to the interface and design of their applications. Microsoft delivers automatic updates for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus, these updates are more frequent, but far less disruptive. Feature updates are released every six months enabling new capabilities and hardware support on a semi-annual basis. This continuous evolution ensures organisations stay current and secure.
IT now has the added challenge of having to allocate more resources, on a more frequent basis to test and support OS updates. It’s a costly and constant process. Conversations with our customers have told us that on average, it takes one dedicated full-time employee to manage this process.
There is a much simpler solution – Microsoft 365 as a Service.
Data#3’s Microsoft 365 as a Service provides organisations with a highly skilled subject matter expert to visit your business on a regular basis. This Data#3 specialist can provide best practice guidance, implementation, maintenance and reporting on your Microsoft 365 service.
By leveraging this service, organisations can offload the need to maintain specialist OS deployment skills in-house, freeing these resources to focus on more valuable IT priorities.
Microsoft 365 as a Service also ensures organisations are always up-to-date with Semi-Annual Channel SAC (previously Current Branch for Business) and Semi-Annual Channel Targeted SACT (previously Current Branch) release versions. Well managed and consistent upgrades ensure organisations remain supported by Microsoft, and have the latest security updates and vulnerability patches.
This service provides maintenance for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus, Data#3 can also align additional Microsoft 365 services, such as Intune, Azure Information Protection, Cloud App Security and Application Portfolio Management.
To learn more about Microsoft 365 as a Service from Data#3, Australia’s largest Microsoft partner, please contact your account manager or complete the enquiry form below.