thumbnail

Microsoft Suite vs Google Suite

The Microsoft Suite used to be the only sensible decision for any business.  

It faced some competition back in the 90s from Lotus and WordPerfect, but by the early 2000s, the OneDrive was the only true option for businesses in need of documents, spreadsheets or presentations. 

All of that changed in 2006, when Google Docs and Spreadsheets came around.  

Fast forward a few years, and you get the whole Google Drive suite, perfect for remote collaboration on your company’s documents. 

So what do you choose?

Do you have your employees set-up with a GSuite account?  

Or do you go for Microsoft’s Office 365 service?  

Which is better for businesses? 

Let’s delve into this. 

G Suite vs Office 365 In a Snapshot

poster

The two options have a lot in common.  

They’re both subscription-based services, both can work offline and online, and Microsoft even has its own toned-down browser-based version of its tools. 

Both platforms also have pretty much the same tools. Both Google and Microsoft offer document processing, spreadsheets, presentations, email, calendar, videoconferencing and a bunch of management and extra tools.  

But there are considerable differences.  

Most notably, there’s the capability of each platform. While Google Drive is simplified and easier to use, that’s because Office 365 has much more powerful features for each app. From small things like how customizable a table of contents is in each document processing app, to entire document management functionalities, Microsoft can help you create exactly what you want with deeper customization and more templates.  

However, that’s not the only thing you should take into account, so let’s get into each app and see what works best. 

Documents

poster

In the case of Docs vs Word, there’s not a lot to talk about:  

If you value a wide variety of document editing features, go for Microsoft. If you want to sacrifice that for accessibility and easier collaboration, go for Google.  

If you want your team to be able to create any type of document possible, Word’s the better choice. Here’s what they have over Docs: 

  • A lot of templates for reports, brochures and resumes
  • More chart types
  • More options for features that exist in both apps (like tables of contents, formatting and bibliography generation) 

That being said, the amount of amazing features can become overwhelming, and the menu of Word definitely takes longer to master than the one of Docs.  

So if you don’t need a lot of document processing (just double check that that’s accurate) Docs might be a better option, since it’s easier to use, and you can collaborate easier on documents with it.  

But in 9 cases out of 10, Word will serve you better.  

Not to mention, there’s not a huge barrier of entry here.

The Microsoft Suite has been around for decades. Most people in the workforce today know how to use it, at least for basic tasks. 

And if we’re honest, it’s not like you need a Master’s Degree in IT to get the hang of it. 

Spreadsheets

poster

The difference between the two options becomes even clearer when you talk numbers. Spreadsheets are a complex and important part of any financial department, so it’s important to make the right choice if you want to streamline the workload of your employees.  

Again, Excel does better when it comes to customizability, while Spreadsheets is a bit easier to collaborate on.  

But this time, the gap is deeper.  

Not only does Excel have a lot more templates: 

  • Over 60 for budgets, Spreadsheets has only 3
  • Over 17 types of charts, Spreadsheets has only 7 

But visuals based on big sets of data are easier to create.  

To top it all, there are considerably more functions and formulas to apply on cells.  

Conditional formatting is a bit harder to use in Excel, but it does offer more options for cells’ customization and filling.  

Not to mention, if you create custom software to analyze spreadsheets, or crawlers that have to fill in a spreadsheet, working from your browser will be tougher than having a desktop app. 

On the other hand, Spreadsheets is easier to use, for the same reasons Docs has a smaller barrier of entry. It’s simpler.  

Moreover, true to the gDrive spirit, it’s slightly easier to collaborate in real-time on Spreadsheets than it is to work together on Excel.  

But that doesn’t mean you should immediately go for Excel.  

All of its undeniable benefits are only worth it if your team actually needs a powerful spreadsheet editing software, so tick that box before choosing an option.  

However, do remember that this is barely a contest. Excel is better in basically every category. 

Slide Shows

poster

Again, templates and options abound with Powerpoint.  

You get considerably more presentation styles, but Microsoft doesn’t stop here.

With Powerpoint, you also have an easier time presenting: you can rehearse your presentation with Rehearse timings, and you have more options for displaying the slide show itself.  

Google Slides, on the other hand, isn’t impressive.  

It’s got a few templates, and it won’t let you create as many complex visuals like charts and graphs. 

But that’s a double-edged sword. 

With Google Slides, it’s lightning fast to create a presentation, so yet again there’s a debate of accessibility over powerful features.  

But we do want to draw your attention to something.  

All Google Drive tools, including Google Slides, can be accessed for free at any time, to their full capability, by anyone.  

The same can’t be said for the Office 365 platform.  

So if you’re weighing the two options so far…  

You could set the budget aside for the Microsoft Suite, and if your employees need to create a quick presentation, they can always use Google Slides on the side. 

Email

poster

When it comes to email software, the simplified GSuite really comes into its own.  

The interface on Gmail is considerably better than Outlook’s. It’s seamless, well designed and easy to navigate.  

Not to mention, in this case it’s not that much of a sacrifice in powerful features. Gmail lets you do pretty much anything you could do in Outlook.  

It seems that Microsoft caught onto this too, because they’re trying to make up for it. They recently added a Ribbon feature, which simplifies your interface a bit.  

But it’s still hard to compete with Gmail.  

So at least in this case, Google takes the cake.  

And that’s pretty much all of it in terms of important apps.  

So let’s ask the next relevant question: how much will this cost you? 

Pricing Compared

The two pricing schemes are very similar, and you’ll pay a monthly fee/user for both of them.  

But let’s dig deeper.  

Microsoft’s plans look like this: 

poster

For the full experience, complete with advanced threat protection and mobile management of files, you’ll be paying up to $20/month for each of your users. 

And that’s only with a one year commitment. 

However, for most businesses the Business Standard (and even Business Basic) is more than enough to cover the basic tools we talked about today.  

It’s also nice that you can try most plans for free for one month, so you won’t be buying into a long commitment without knowing what you get.  

On the other hand, a GSuite subscription will cost you: 

poster

Which is in the same ballpark.  

All the most important tools are available in either of these plans, and you’ll only get added security or overall customization and archiving features the more you pay.  

One thing we’ll note though is that GSuite only has a 14 day trial.  

But really…  

The pricing schemes are almost identical, so they shouldn’t play a big role in your choice. 

Extra Features and Quirks

Of course, both platforms have extra tools and tricks.  

Google has a lot of integrations and third party apps that you can add to your GSuite, like mind mapping tools, editing software or simple browser extensions.  

On the other hand, with Office365 you can integrate with all the best Microsoft tools. In fact, true to the comparison so far, with Microsoft Azure you can basically integrate anything you can dream of within your company’s interface. 

If that sounds interesting, make sure you read our article on Cloud Computing.  

Moreover, Microsoft’s Skype is a bit more stable than Hangouts.  

But other than that, it’s all about what your enterprise needs.

Not a lot of people use either Paint or Google Drawings to create a mock-up, but you can, and if that’s important for you, take that into account. 

So Which One Should You Use?

We’ve been working on Microsoft infrastructure for almost 10 years, and we’re very happy with it. It’s stable, easy to use once you get the hang of it, and it gives your enterprise enough flexibility to create anything you need.  

But our answer for you isn’t as straightforward.  

If you know you can afford both, we recommend Office 365 9 times out of 10.  

It’s simply better for everyone involved.  

But there are cases when GSuite might be a better choice. 

If you’re a small bootstrapped startup and you just need a solution to write a press release and crunch simple sets of numbers, GSuite might be the better choice.  

But if you don’t fall into that category, make sure you get in touch by clicking here.

We’re happy to guide you through the whole process of choosing and setting-up the best IT solutions for your company.

In Conclusion

The GSuite is easier to use and sometimes better designed.  

But considering the amount of functionalities and templates you get with Office365, we recommend choosing Microsoft in most cases.  

But we don’t want this to be one sided.  

So let us know - what do you think?  

Which is the best option for you?