Microsoft 365 vs Google Workspace - how to choose?
If you are looking for cloud services for your business, you will probably end up asking yourself whether you should go with Microsoft 365 or Google Workspace. And how do you choose? How do you pick between Microsoft and Google? Clearly, both have benefits and drawbacks otherwise it wouldn’t be a difficult decision. So, you need to look at what is important to you and then decide which one scores more highly.
Microsoft 365 incorporates a number of applications such as Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook and OneDrive. While in the past Microsoft made you pay for products (anyone remember installing their software on discs?!), now they do a subscription-based service, meaning you pay monthly per user with the cost depending on your exact package.
Previously known as G-Suite, Google Workspace also incorporates a number of tools such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms and Gmail. They have a range of plans, all which come with a standard set of tools but offering different additional features depending on the price. Again, the cost is per user per month so you pick the plan that suits you.
We’re going to try to break down each for you when it comes to particular features or what you might be looking for when it comes to picking a cloud platform.
Many people grew up with Microsoft Office and find it familiar, making it incredibly easy to use. We all recognise the logos for Word and Excel, and you know exactly what you’re going to get from that service. These applications are robust, reliable, and have stood the test of time. From a user’s perspective, they have provided us with a great service. I’m sure we all remember the talking paperclip in the corner of our Word documents, and that nostalgia makes the experience of Microsoft very appealing.
However, Google has introduced itself as a worthy competitor. While Google Workspace doesn’t come with any friendly talking inanimate objects, it does provide a number of collaborative online features that make life very easy for its users. Google Workspace has a simple and streamlined interface, which makes it extremely user-friendly. Navigating through Google Workspace and finding your documents really is so simple that we’re going to give this one to Google Workspace.
When it comes to security, Microsoft 365 has an advantage over Google Workspace. This is because Google Workspace operates on an online platform where all the data is collected in the same place. If there is a security breach, then it means that all of your documents and data will be easy for hackers to gain access to.
Microsoft 365 offers a multi-factor authentication system, which is superior to the two-factor authentication that you get with Google Workspace. There is also an extra risk associated with Google Workspace in that it’s connected to a wide range of third-party applications and extensions. As users grant permissions within Google Workspace, they could unknowingly allow third-parties to access their documents and files. Overall, Microsoft does more in terms of allowing its users to keep their business data secure.
In terms of cost, both Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace offer several packages that contain varying levels of access to services. Google Workspace pricing is as follows, charged on a monthly basis per user:
- Basic package for £4.14, includes all basic apps and 30GB storage
- Business package for £8.28, includes all basic apps and unlimited cloud storage (or 1TB per user if fewer than 5 users)
- Enterprise package for £20, includes all basic apps and unlimited cloud storage (or 1TB per user if fewer than 5 users) and 24/7 priority support as well as a one-hour response time for critical issues
Microsoft Office prices are also charged monthly per user for these packages:
- Business Basic package for £3.80, includes the web versions of basic apps and 1TB storage
- Business Standard package for £9.40, includes the web and downloadable versions of apps and 1TB storage
- Business Premium for £15.10, includes the web and downloadable versions of apps, 1TB storage and advanced cyberthreat protection and device management
As we can see, the cheapest plans for both Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 both offer the online versions of basic web-applications as well as room for storage. From this point on, the best plan for you really depends on the size of your business and what you’re looking for.
If you feel like you’ll need IT support if something goes wrong, then perhaps the Enterprise Google Workspace package with 24/7 priority support and one-hour response time is the right choice for you. But if you just want basic web applications and as much storage as possible, Microsoft 365 Business Basic package is hands down the winner.
Communication and collaboration
Being able to easily communicate with team members is one of the more appealing aspects of cloud-based office suites. Both Microsoft Office and Google Workspace come with video conferencing software and allow documents to be shared and simultaneously edited by multiple users. Microsoft 365 users on all paid business packages will have access to Teams, a video calling and collaboration application designed for groups of all sizes.
Because Google Workspace only operates using online applications, it has been designed from day one to facilitate easy communication and collaboration between users. Google Calendar and Google Keep are perfect for making to-do lists and creating events to share between your team. Google Meets comes as part of the package and accommodates for video calls and instant messaging. Overall, the functionality and ease of use that comes with Google Workspace make it an overall better choice in this category.
Overall, it’s difficult to name either one of these technological giants as the clear winner. For smaller businesses, Google Workspace might be a better option. It’s very easy to use and has plenty of collaborative tools which allows for work to be shared quickly. However, it only offers 30GB of storage on its entry-level plan, which simply might not be enough for larger businesses. For this reason, we believe that Microsoft 365 provides a more complete package. You get more storage, the option of both online and offline applications and slightly better security due to multi-factor authentication.
Ultimately, it all comes down to what works best for you and your business. Depending on the nature of your day to day activities, either one of these office suites may work better for you. Whatever you choose, you won’t be disappointed. And if you do want to change something, you can easily upgrade to a new package or make the switch over to a different cloud-based computing system.
Plan IT Support is an IT support company based in London and Southend-on-Sea. We provide a range of IT support services to businesses in these areas, with a focus on delivering excellent customer service through our remote service desk. If you’re looking to make the switch to cloud computing, we can help you every step of the way and seamlessly migrate you onto the cloud with no disruption to your business.
Feel free to contact us with any questions or if you’d like a more detailed explanation of cloud computing and how it can benefit your company.