Office 365 is renowned as a leading business solution due to its diverse range of productivity tools all “under one roof”. However, this versatility that trained users celebrate is the same one that beginners may be intimidated by. With so many options, which tool is best for what purpose? This article answers this for each Office 365 application and offers some tips for improved productivity.

Office 365: As powerful as you make it

This line of subscription services provides many innovative apps like SharePoint and Teams that empower collaboration. For this reason, it’s really no surprise that Office 365 is one of the most widely used business applications. Expert users easily navigate the software and benefit from its many productivity tools. However, to become a skilled craftsman of any kind you must first equip yourself with knowledge of your craft.

Aside from built-in features like intelligent cloud services and advanced security, what embeds Office 365 as a vital software is its broad range of utility. Applications serve a variety of needs that various tasks may require. If you can understand these applications and how they are helpful, you will optimise your business’ productivity by utilising them effectively.

SharePoint Online

SharePoint is a cloud-based intranet that allows employees to share files and information online while seamlessly managing and collaborating on this content. Useful features include project management, messaging, and shared document storage.

This is most often used as a user-friendly intranet for companies i.e., a communication platform which integrates across all other Office 365 tools. What’s more, it hosts powerful sites for organisations and it can be used to create new ones without any coding required.


Microsoft Outlook is predominantly an email application used to store, receive, and send e-mails. However, other features are included like Calendar that lists appointments and assignments, making it a task-management tool as well.

The appointment calendar promotes group and individual scheduling, and can be used to form task lists along with reminders of deadlines etc. For emails, users benefit from additional features like online voting and powerful security for private data.

Office Online

This is the browser-based, online version of the familiar Microsoft Office suite including Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote (it also includes Outlook.) Here, you can co-author all types of documents and edit them simultaneously, provided you have an internet connection. The main applications to know are:

  • Word: used to compose and edit text-based documents.
  • PowerPoint: for presentations formed of user-created slides featuring multimedia elements like pictures and graphs etc.
  • Excel: a spreadsheet application which can perform basic and complex mathematical functions and allow you to analyse data.
  • OneNote: often called a “digital notebook”, this is a note-taking program for information gathering and multi-user collaboration. It can collect users’ notes, drawings, screenshots, and audio data.


Microsoft Teams is the top-scoring messaging app for businesses. It serves as a centralised online workspace for real-time meetings and work collaboration.

It hosts many features like quick chat, scheduling, meetings, and is integrated with other apps, all accessible from the user-friendly dashboard. Therefore, Teams is very useful for the hybrid work model as it simulates the office environment effectively.


This is an internet-based storage platform with some free space offered to Microsoft account holders. It securely stores pictures and files which can be accessed from any device. What’s more, it is fully integrated with Windows 10.

A Microsoft 365 subscription includes 1TB of OneDrive storage that, for perspective, can hold 500,000+ photos and thousands of documents. Furthermore, it includes a mobile version that further increases accessibility to your files.


This application is used to manage team membership and it drives teamwork across all Microsoft 365. It adds users to a single group where they are connected to specific workloads and key apps required for collaboration.

Use it to appoint access to your chosen group for certain resources. By adding them to this group they automatically receive permissions to resources without you manually assigning them which means you save time. Resource access includes SharePoint documents, Microsoft Teams membership, Outlook email, and tools like Calendar etc.


This is another task management application. Here, you can create and sync your tasks across multiple devices e.g., phone, tablet, or desktop.

On this app, you can create task lists with ease and ensure you never miss a deadline with reminders and due dates. Other useful features like ‘My Day’ are built-in and encourage you to focus on pressing tasks on a selected date.

Unlock Your Business’ Potential with ThinkShare

Overall, Microsoft Office 365 is an unmissable gateway to a businesses’ full productivity. However, you must first understand what tools serve what purposes, and with so many this is an arduous task. This article only scratches the surface.

Ask yourself: is my company using its current software effectively? Would additional training allow us to achieve more? Are there alternative tools that we could expand with? ThinkShare can shed light on these critical queries, allowing you to review your current software options and seamlessly transition through digital transformation with our guidance.

Learn more about the benefits of Office 365 here or book a call with one of our consultants for more information on how we can support your business objectives.