By Rajat Bhargava Posted June 6, 2019
At face value, it doesn’t seem like Microsoft Office 365 and Google for Work would ever be used together. In fact, Microsoft has spent billions to try and crush G Suite, so why would organizations leverage both together?
Microsoft and Google certainly prefer to be the only productivity suite in use. Nevertheless, many organizations leverage both platforms. Their challenge quickly becomes how to have one identity for Office 365 and G Suite.
G Suite Makes Inroads
Before we walk through how to build a centralized user account across both O365 and G Suite, let’s discuss why this scenario even exists.
G Suite has made huge inroads over the past five-plus years in converting Microsoft Exchange on-premises email to Google Apps. Exchange came on the scene in 1993 and has ruled the roost for almost two decades. Google introduced Gmail in 2004 and, with its price tag of $0.00, quickly began taking bites out of Exchange’s market share. Today, the majority of mid-sized businesses use G Suite and an overwhelming 92% of Y Combinator startups are using G Suite.
Google got its foothold with Gmail – and that was the gateway to millions of businesses beginning to use the entire suite of G Suite for Work. To give some context, the Microsoft Office suite had been the dominant solution for many years. Today, more than 5 million businesses are using Google for work.
But while G Suite is a strong competitor to the Microsoft Office, it isn’t at the same level. Google Sheets simply isn’t designed to be as powerful as Microsoft Excel. So, what happened for many organizations is that they off-loaded their email hosting and still leveraged Microsoft Office. And this is where things get tricky.
Microsoft Office 365 Stays On Track
The strengths and weaknesses of O365 and Google Apps explains why organizations leverage both solutions.
Executives still used PowerPoint for their presentations, finance still used Excel, and Word docs were still the format of choice for inter-company communication. However, for internal and lightweight use, Google’s productivity suite was just fine.
Google has continued to improve their suite of solutions, and they have made some smart moves by integrating Google Hangouts into the platform. Hangouts have taken off, and many use it to make video calls.
Organizations that have shifted to G Suite still like their email hosting, video conferencing, and lightweight apps, but they also need the benefits of the Microsoft Office 365 platform. As a result, they purchase both.
Each Solution Remains In Its Own Lane
The consequence of that decision quickly shows up in how to centrally manage user accounts across both cloud productivity platforms. G Suite doesn’t share users with O365 and vice versa. G Suite directory is a solution for managing user accounts on G Suite and Google-related accounts. Office 365 leverages the Azure Active Directory, which manages accounts for all things Azure. It is a significant challenge to manage accounts across both O365 and G Suite. It can’t be done through either service.
Get On Pace With One Identity for Office 365 and G Suite
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® not only centralizes user management across cloud services, such as O365 and G Suite, but also systems, applications, cloud infrastructure, and networks. One identity can be leveraged across all of these IT resources.
The benefits of this approach are to reduce the number of accounts and passwords that employees need to deal with. On the IT side, the centralization of user identities makes onboarding and offboarding easier and more secure.
If you would like to learn more about how you can leverage Directory-as-a-Service to create one identity for Office 365 and G Suite, drop us a note. Sign up for a JumpCloud account to see it for yourself. Your first 10 users are free forever.