by Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft 365, Microsoft Corporation
This is the Foreword for Office 365 for IT Pros, 2021 Edition. The writing team is grateful for the support we receive from Microsoft engineering groups, who answer our many questions patiently and endure our complaints without rancor.
If you’ve attended an event like Microsoft Ignite or engaged in our online forums, you know that Microsoft is more than a company—it’s a lively, opinionated community. This community includes employees, but also partners, customers, and of course, MVPs. Technology experts who generously share their knowledge with the wider community, MVPs embody the Microsoft mission to “help every individual and every organization on the planet achieve more.” They also provide invaluable, independent perspective back to Microsoft, helping us improve experiences and support our customers more effectively.
One of our most accomplished and prolific MVPs, Tony Redmond has built an admirable body of work around Exchange and Office 365. In addition to “Office 365 for IT Pros”– co-authored with a team of deeply experienced IT experts – he’s written hundreds of related articles and blog posts and is a valued speaker at conferences and events.
This seventh edition of the ebook lands at a critical moment. As digital transformation has become a top priority for leaders everywhere, organizational success now centers around IT. And along with end users, developers and security and compliance professional rely heavily on their IT colleagues too. COVID-19, and the mass move to remote and hybrid work, have accelerated these trends. Without IT, organizations simply couldn’t get work done. Meanwhile, the world has learned a vital lesson about digital readiness – while every organization is on its own journey to the cloud, we’re all feeling the pressure to get there faster. No one feels that pressure more than IT pros.
Part of Microsoft 365, the world’s productivity cloud, Office 365 includes Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Teams, Planner, Stream and OneDrive for Business – just to name a few. When you deploy Office 365, you guide your organization through an essential step on its cloud journey. We understand that successful deployment is priority number one, and that’s why we’re so supportive of this book. It offers not just the nitty-gritty on everything you need to deploy successfully, but also creative ideas and perspectives to really squeeze the juice out of Office 365. Written in the true spirit of the IT community, it’s collaborative, straightforward, detailed, and impact driven. Importantly, it also covers components like Azure Active Directory and ISV products that build out the larger ecosystem. Because as Tony says “Nothing, even Office 365, survives in a vacuum.”
I want to thank Tony and team for their ongoing work on this ebook and everything else they do to support our IT community. I recommend this new edition wholeheartedly and am so glad to share it with all of you.