— Microsoft Corp. on Wednesday announced the global availability of Office 365 for Nonprofits for qualifying nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) through its software donation program. The donation is available immediately in 41 countries around the world and for up to 90 countries by July 2014.
“Today we are donating to nonprofits and NGOs access to Microsoft’s best-in-class cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools, enabling them to spend fewer resources and time on IT and focus on their missions addressing global issues, such as disease eradication, education and literacy, and environmental sustainability,” said Jean-Philippe Courtois, president, Microsoft International. “Nonprofits operate in the same way as any other organization or business; however, many lack the resources to implement the latest technology. The donation of Office 365 allows them to be more effective and efficient in the work they do.”
In a study by Microsoft’s software donation partner TechSoup Global, nonprofits reported that the top four advantages of cloud computing are easier IT administration (79 percent), cost savings (62 percent), improved collaboration (61 percent) and data security (54 percent).
“In many of the countries served by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), connectivity can be unreliable and equipment disproportionately expensive. Our Digital Divide Initiative aims to build professional capacity across our global network and help Red Cross Red Crescent National Societies that work in challenging environments to introduce technologies, such as cloud-based email servers, that are suited to their needs,” said Edward Happ, global chief information officer, IFRC. “Building on this, we’ve made available Office 365 as our cloud-based solution. The technology just works; it helps people do what they need to do. This means that the time and energy of the National Society is devoted to helping the vulnerable, not to managing its IT systems. It makes a real difference to humanitarian delivery at minimum cost.”
Office 365 for Nonprofits provides nonprofits and NGOs with access to Microsoft’s always up-to-date Office cloud service, tailored to the needs of nonprofits through the following benefits:
Ability to access information from virtually anywhere. Office 365 for Nonprofits increases an organization’s ability to work from virtually anywhere with access to documents and files from Office applications optimized for use across PCs, smartphones and tablets.
Easy collaboration. Nonprofits are able to work together easily across an organization by using familiar Office applications with email, shared calendar, document sharing and videoconferencing.
Easy IT implementation. Office 365 for Nonprofits includes access to easy-to-use administrative controls and the ability to install Office without uninstalling previous versions.
Reliability and up-to-date technology. Office 365 for Nonprofits allows organizations to spend less time on IT maintenance, while providing access to always up-to-date technology that is simple and easy to use. And Office 365 for Nonprofits is backed by industry-leading security features and a 99.9 percent financially backed uptime guarantee.
“Microsoft has a long-standing history of philanthropy, providing nonprofits with software donations and cash grants for the past 30 years,” said Lori Harnick, general manager, Citizenship and Public Affairs, Microsoft. “Office 365 for Nonprofits is a new, critical investment Microsoft is making in the global nonprofit community so nonprofits can streamline their IT and focus on doing more good.”
Microsoft’s donation of Office 365 for Nonprofits is part of the company’s 30-year history of community support. In fiscal year 2013 alone, Microsoft donated $795 million (fair market value) in cash, software and services to 70,286 nonprofits in more than 115 countries around the world.
Nonprofits and NGOs interested in implementing Microsoft Office 365 can check eligibility and order donations at http://www.microsoft.com/office365nonprofits. Migration information and resources can be found at http://fasttrack.office.com.
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