Microsoft 365 business editions: Standard, or Premium? What’s the real difference?

In March 2020, Microsoft rebranded their Office 365 Business plans as ‘Microsoft 365 Business’ plans. There are a few different options from Basic, through to Premium, each with different features.

Looking at the Standard and Premium plans at a glance, it can be difficult to decipher quickly and easily which one might be the better fit for your business.

Microsoft 365 Business is right for you if you’re a business of under 300 users, looking for efficient and easy-to-use Cloud based business and productivity tools. If you’re likely to have over 300 users, don’t worry – there are three Enterprise plans to choose from that can adapt to your business.

Here’s a few thoughts on Standard and Premium plans, simplified to help you make a speedy and informed decision about your Microsoft Business needs. *If you prefer, just jump straight to our comparison table

Microsoft 365 Business Standard:

Microsoft 365 Business Standard will give you access to both desktop and mobile versions of all of the productivity apps you need: Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote (plus Publisher and Access on PC only). As well as this, you will be able to store and share files on OneDrive with up to 1TB of cloud storage per user. 

Using Microsoft Teams to create a hub for collaboration, teamwork, chats and meetings will help you to create the culture that you want for your employees and clients. You will have business-class email and calendar functionality through Outlook with a whopping 50 GB mailbox per user.

Keeping your customers’ data safe has never been more important since GDPR regulations kicked in on 25 May 2018. Microsoft 365 Business Standard has built in security that will monitor your devices to ensure everything is running smoothly. 

One of the highlights about using Microsoft 365 for any growing business, is that you only need one license to fully cover the Microsoft 365 apps on up to five different devices per user. This hassle-free solution means that your employees can be on the go, working anywhere in the world, and still have access to everything that they need. 

As well as this, with this plan Microsoft guarantee around-the-clock phone and web service so that you can get the help you need, when you need it most. 

This plan costs just £11.30 user/month. You can transition any time to the Microsoft 365 Premium Plan if you outgrow the Standard Plan or your needs require a more robust solution with added security. The transfer is done seamlessly with no loss of data or documents as you upgrade to Premium. 

Microsoft 365 Business Premium: 

To put it simply, the Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan will provide you with everything that the Standard Plan does, plus a few brilliant bonuses. 

The most significant additional benefit is the provision of advanced security software. You will have access to comprehensive protection against cyber-threats in all forms. The Microsoft 365 Business Premium level security software will defend your business against sophisticated phishing emails and ransomware attacks on every level. Cyber-security attacks cost the world £1.2 trillion in 2019. This is a top priority for businesses worldwide – it can affect anyone and is not something to take lightly.

Despite the security software being incredibly thorough, it’s actually really easy to add to all of your devices. With the Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan, you’ll be able to manage all of your devices and add security features quickly and easily with Microsoft Intune. Microsoft Intune is a cloud-based service that focuses on mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application management (MAM). This will allow you to be confident that every device is covered in every location and will also come in handy when looking at your data protection regulations. Installing encryption of sensitive information through the Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan will lessen the risk of data being accidentally shared in the wrong places or becoming unaccounted for. 

Microsoft 365Business Standard Business Premium 
Web, desktop & mobile versions of the apps X
Integrated email & calendar X
Cloud storage and sharing 
Microsoft teams for chat, teamwork and collaborationX
Security & compliance 
Easy installation & support 
Remote device management for encryption and security
Advanced comprehensive security against sophisticated attacks 

If you’re still not sure which plan would be the right fit for your business needs, then get in touch with us to discuss your options. Our team of experts understand your priorities and we will provide you with our recommendations based on your needs.