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Four Pillars for Maximizing Microsoft 365 ROI: Reporting, Delegated Administration, Automation and License Optimization

office 365 ROI

For many enterprises, Microsoft 365 (M365) is their largest SaaS expense. With so much money at stake, you want to ensure every dollar counts. M365 IT efficiencies can save hard dollars taken as pure savings or devoted to other IT investments. Or as is often the case, money and time saved on M365 IT operations can be spent better securing M365, improving the user experience or promoting new Microsoft services.  

Sample ROI Annually

Reporting

M365 comes with a fair share of built-in reports, but not enough to satisfy everyone. Generating new M365 reports or customizing existing ones often involves creating PowerShell scripts, which take significant IT time to build and also can take hours to run – slowing down IT processes. Nor are reports commonly automated, meaning they can be launched and run with one click.

As a result, M365 shops often DON’T report on things they really need to know, or waste precious IT time finding what they DO need to know. CoreView analyzed a shop with 10,000 users and 7 virtual tenants. A virtual tenant is when IT takes a single tenant and breaks into separate tenants that can be managed independently. This 10,000 user shop produced 2-3 reports each month for each tenant, adding up to 92 monthly reports.

Report automation is a game changer. Let’s assume each report takes 45 minutes to create, including data export, normalization and data presentations. With automation, IT saves 69 hours a month or 828 hours a year. In staff costs, that represents a savings of around $62,100 a year. In a squeeze, that could cause some staff reorganization. More often, those 828 hours can be spent doing other, more productive tasks.

Delegated Administration

The set of administrative roles provided by Microsoft for a Microsoft 365 deployment are designed around a centralized management model. Within the admin center, there is no way to setup regional management rights for administrators who ONLY want to monitor and manage their local business unit or geographical site users. For large enterprise organizations, or companies that are split into multi-tenant Microsoft 365 environments, there are complex administration requirements to support their deployments. What if they want to delegate admin tasks by different countries, business units, or office locations? What if they want to enable help desk engineers to perform ONLY simple admin tasks on their regional users? 

Luckily, CoreView saw this gap. With CoreView, you can segment your users pretty much any way you like—by location, business unit, department, and more. Once you have those user groups configured, you can delegate a specific set of admin permissions to administrators who will ONLY be able to view and manage that specific subset of users.

By delegating tasks formerly done by M365 Global Admins, your IT staff saves myriad man hours that can be taken as pure savings or devoted to more strategic tasks and projects.

Let’s assume 30% of M365 tasks currently handled by central IT can be delegated to other operators, perhaps even power M365 users that work in local company departments. These tasks could include help desk requests, password resets, Teams configuration, or provisioning new employees. This simple change could save a 10,000-seat organization with 5 central IT admins 2880 hours a year in the time spent. That represents either $270,000 a year in pure savings or 240 hours per month of time freed for central IT to do other things.

Automation

Too many M365 admin chores are done manually – in effect recreating the work every time it is done. A far better way is figuring out how to do a task perfectly, then automating it through a workflow so it is repeatable perfectly and safely. Then do the same for all your repeatable tasks. By automating admin tasks through workflow, which include updates to the on-premises Active Directory environment, IT administrators save hours of manual effort each week – time better spent for more productive and satisfying endeavors.  

Even better, everyone can use the same workflow and do the task with no mistakes. No more going to the onboarding expert, or scratching your head when that person leaves the company! 

By automating common and often complex tasks, this work is performed far more quickly. And since it is usually one click, these common M365 tasks can be delegated even to non-IT staff – saving more time.

How much time? Let’s take a look in our 10,000-seat example, where 1,000 processes per month can be automated. Each of these goes from 20 minutes to just 2 minutes with automation. The result? Some 300 hours a month are saved, with a net economic benefit of $270,000 a year.

License Optimization

M365 licenses are often a black hole, so IT spends money without a complete understanding of unused and underused licenses.

For our 10,000-seat example, the Microsoft 365 license agreement is $2.3 million a year. By reclaiming unassigned/inactive licenses, which represent 8% of the total, the company saves $184,000 each year. Now by downsizing the 7% of licenses that are oversized, such as E5 licenses not fully exploited, you can save another $96,000 annually for a total savings of $280,000.

These savings can be put back into the IT budget or perhaps used to upgrade licenses to E5’s for more features and better protection.

Get to Work on Workflow 

Microsoft 365 doesn’t come with administrative workflows built-in. Fortunately, CoreView provides a workflow solution so easily created, customizable IT admin process steps can be run automatically from the CoreView workflow engine – often in one click. These automations can reach towering levels of complexity, as many different steps are chained together and performed in the appropriate and exact sequence. 

Find out for FREE how much you can save with CoreView

Significant savings regularly represent far more than the cost of the CoreView solution, resulting in a highly positive ROI and extremely quick payback on money spent.

A free CoreView Microsoft 365 Health Check will find the state of your tenant’s security, administration and license costs and usage.

See how CoreView can help you with this

Learn more about securing and optimizing your M365 and other SaaS applications.

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