Centralizing User Management for Office 365 and G Suite

Written by Greg Keller on September 7, 2016

Share This Article

To have one identity across both Office 365 and G Suite requires a modern directory service that can be independent. JumpCloud’s Directory-as-a-Service

Why would you want to be centralizing user management for Microsoft Office 365 and Google for Work? Aren’t they mutually exclusive? Why would an organization leverage both O365 and G Suite at the same time?

Sometimes what happens in the field is not as clearly outlined as the pundits would have you believe. Many organizations are simultaneously leveraging Google Apps and O365. Moreover, they are thriving with them and happy to continue paying for both solutions.

For these organizations, the question is, “How do we centralize user management across both platforms?”

Why SMEs Embraced G Suite

To understand what is going on with the enterprise productivity space, you need to rewind to a few years ago. As G Suite made a significant push into the market, many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) embraced it. In the beginning, the primary reason was to have Google run the email server. Instead of purchasing Microsoft Exchange, it was easier to outsource it to Google.

G Suite works great. But it’s productivity suite isn’t as powerful as the well-established Microsoft Office productivity suite. Users were comfortable with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint – and these programs also offered functionality not present in their Google counterparts.

How Microsoft Took Hold With Office 365

familiar office tools transparent

Over time, the G Suite productivity suite became more useful, but many users in an organization still leveraged Office. Microsoft made a significant push to stem Google’s inroads into its core money maker, Office, with the introduction of the cloud-based Office 365 suite in 2013.

Now Microsoft was back on equal footing with Google. Microsoft had its version of hosted email and also enabled users to leverage Office in the cloud or on-prem. Organizations started to sign up in droves. In the meantime, Google was adding significant functionality, including their popular video conferencing platform, Hangouts.

Clutching On to Both G Suite and Office 365

Centralizing user management

Organizations were in a quandary. Many had shifted to G Suite and were happy with the email platform. For many users, the productivity suite was good enough. For Office licensing, Microsoft shifted these very same organizations to O365. So, organizations made the best of it and picked what they needed from each platform. While some users would be only on G Suite, others would be on Office 365. And in some cases, every user would have both. The overall costs weren’t significant enough to warrant choosing one or the other.

But IT was confronted with a significant challenge by choosing both platforms: centralizing user management across both O365 and G Suite.

Managing users within each platform might work for a tiny organization. However, attempting this even in a relatively small organization of 20 people could result in a major headache. Since the two giants didn’t play nicely together and enable user management from one to the other, IT admins were left to search for an identity management platform that supported both.

Of course, the other requirement was that the directory service needed to be delivered from the cloud. Both G Suite and Office 365 enabled the move to the cloud. Consequently, centralizing around an on-premises and self-managed platform, such as Active Directory or OpenLDAP, defeated the purpose of moving to the cloud.

DaaS Is Holding User Management To Higher Standards

The Directory-as-a-Service® platform from JumpCloud seamlessly integrates with both Office 365 and G Suite while centralizing user management across devices, applications, cloud infrastructure, and networks.

Delivered as a SaaS-based, cloud-hosted solution it matches the model of the productivity platforms while not favoring one or the other. As an independent cloud directory service, JumpCloud treats O365, G Suite, Macs, Windows, Linux, and AWS, all as first-class citizens. You centralize the user’s identity and enable them with the tools that they need.


If you would like to learn more about centralizing user management across O365 and G Suite, drop us a note. You may be surprised to know that not only can you integrate with those platforms, but your entire IT environment can be centrally managed for user access. Please sign up for a free account to try it yourself. Your first 10 users are free forever.

Continue Learning with our Newsletter