G Suite Gains Enterprise Ground as Users and IT Get More Comfortable
by Lea Rabinowitz on

G Suite is still the underdog compared to Microsoft Office 365. What’s keeping enterprises away? With Google dominating the consumer space, introducing it into the workplace seems like a natural fit for employee experience and productivity.

The problem is, enterprises are ingrained in the Microsoft stack, and have been building entire workflows around Office products for years now. Even cavemen businesses were using Excel to calculate which sticks created the best fires. Joking aside, enterprises are heavily invested in customizations and how they use Office tools, so it’s no wonder that they aren’t comfortable moving away from their legacy productivity suite.

According to Gartner Senior Research Analyst Joe Marino, “One of the biggest hurdles for Google achieving broader enterprise adoption is just the fact that the company’s products aren't identical to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and other Microsoft Office apps.” What we’re seeing here is enterprises having a case of the sweatpants. Their legacy product is comfortable, so why change it?

There are some good reasons to change. G Suite began as a cloud-native set of communication, file sharing and productivity applications, which bodes well in the current digital transformation climate. With a nimble platform, Google is able to introduce on average, six new G Suite features and updates a week. That alone simultaneously proves Google’s drive to adapt their product to fit the enterprise, while also making IT uncomfortable in navigating uncharted SaaS applications.

Technology Trends Are Changing the Way We Work 

There is an undeniable shift to cloud, and it’s changing the way that enterprises work. But that begs the question—how does the transformation affect the relationships of enterprises with G Suite and Office 365, respectively?

A study of 949 IT professionals around the world has provided some insight:

  • Enterprises that use G Suite are more likely to run their IT in the cloud. By 2020, 50% of G Suite users will be 100% cloud-run, while only 34% of Office 365 users will rely fully on cloud operations. SaaS applications are being heavily adopted, but infrastructure complexities will hinder Office 365 organizations from being exclusively cloud-run.
  • Since Google hasn’t hit its stride with G Suite in the enterprise, it tends to serve smaller organizations. That hasn’t held back the adoption of SaaS applications though. In 2018, 50% of G Suite organizations with greater than 5,001 employees will use more than 11 SaaS applications. Comparatively, only 38% of Office 365 organizations will exceed 11 SaaS applications.
  • SaaS applications, while touted as easy change-makers, are anything but for IT professionals. With the comfort of working with legacy systems, and the lack of best practices and mature management solutions of SaaS applications, it’s no wonder IT is struggling. One win for G Suite here is that only 56% of professionals believed their jobs were becoming more difficult with the adoption of SaaS applications, compared to 62% for Office 365.

How to Make IT Happy with G Suite

In a cloud-centric world, G Suite may gain traction, but there is still more IT can do to make the transition a happy one.

The same report above detailed the top criteria for choosing SaaS applications. For G Suite, administration and management, and customer support were high on the priorities list. This comes as no surprise, since SaaS applications are moving outside of the firewall and are tied directly to an organization’s productivity. When every employee is working in a platform, almost every minute of the day, all the systems involved have to work. And when they don’t, users are going to notice.

With SaaS applications booming, and an upward tick of data and services hosted in the cloud, it becomes a greater challenge to ensure a positive user experience. That’s why IT teams should consider an application monitoring solution so that they have visibility of G Suite performance and end-to-end network activity, from the service to the end user.

Monitoring instills a sense of confidence and comfort for IT with:

  • Proactive alerting that enables delivery of consistent, positive user experiences.
  • Powerful troubleshooting tools that ease ghost issues, lost emails or missing Google Docs.
  • Benchmarks that show how long a normal request should take, based on monitoring against a specific instance.

If your organization is using or considering switching to G Suite, download our white paper, Monitoring Business-Critical SaaS Applications: Ensure Performance to Boost ROI, to learn what is necessary to deliver a productivity tool that meets user expectations, without overpaying for service.

Filed Under: cloud computing, Performance Monitoring

Tags: G Suite , Office 365 , SaaS applications