In the last two decades, we’ve gone from software to apps, from doing most of our work from one desktop to migrating workflows between PCs, tablets and smartphones, and from an isolated system to the connected cloud.
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Public cloud adoption is at 91% among businesses, and the next big trend that Microsoft is tapping into with their new Windows Virtual Desktop is moving entire desktop environments from PC hard drives to the cloud.
One thing that this move to cloud computing has done is make deploying new software across an organization much easier.
Instead of having to go computer to computer to install a new software, now companies can use the Microsoft Store for Business to instantly deploy a new application across all their Windows 10 devices.
Using the Microsoft Store allows for expert installs with less disruption and streamlines the entire process of choosing, deploying, and administering office applications.
Following, we’ve got an overview of the Microsoft Store for Business and why it’s an excellent resource for businesses.
Microsoft Store Overview
Need an application to help you manage time tracking and billing? Looking for a team educational app? The Microsoft Store for Business has hundreds of both free and paid apps focused on company needs.
The store allows companies to find, acquire, manage, and distribute applications for their organization for Windows 10 and Windows 10 mobile in volume.
Beyond being a place to purchase software for your business, the Microsoft Store acts as a central repository from which you can track and manage all your provisioned applications across employee devices.
How do you sign up?
To sign up, visit the Microsoft Store for Business. You need to be a Global Administrator for your organization. You can sign up using an existing account (i.e. the one you use for Office 365, Azure, etc.) of they’ll create one for you during sign up.
Benefits of Using Microsoft Store for Business
If you thought the Microsoft Store was just a place to buy apps, you’re missing a lot of the additional benefits you gain from using it.
Centralized Application Management
Have you ever had to search your office for software packaging to find the product key so you could switch software licensing from one computer to another?
When you use the Microsoft Store, you have a centralized area where you can manage all your company app purchases, including:
- Order history
- Provisioning to another user
Flexible Options for Bulk Deployment
You can easily purchase applications in bulk and deploy them to employee devices in a number of ways, including assigning apps to individual employees or making them available through your private store (more on that next).
You can also choose to use a management tool from Microsoft or a third party that gives you advanced distribution options. You also have an offline licensing option.
Create a Private Store
A private store is a feature that allows you to create a store where your employees can go to view and download applications that you’ve provisioned.
For example, say that your management wanted to make it easier for your team to conduct online meetings and webinars, so they provisioned a certain number of licenses for the app GoToMeeting.
But, since they were unsure exactly which users would need the app, instead of just purchasing one for everyone, they purchased a certain number and made them available in their private store. This means that users can visit the company’s private store and download only the apps they need, and the company isn’t paying for unused software.
The private store also allows you to create collections, which can be a group of apps meant for a particular department. For example, you may have a collection of apps meant for your sales team and another collection of different apps meant for your accounting department.
Manage the Update Process
Keeping software updated is important for your company’s data security. It’s not so easy to ensure all users are updating their apps like they should if you don’t have a central place to manage it.
This is another incredibly helpful feature of the Microsoft Store for Business. Apps are automatically updated across all devices, so you can ensure user devices are always have the latest security updates as well as access to the newest app features.
Access to Multiple Free Apps
Another great reason to use the Microsoft Store is to discover free apps that can improve your office productivity and won’t cost you a thing.
A few of the free apps currently on the front page of the store are:
- Fresh Paint
- Microsoft Remote Desktop
- RemindMe for Windows
- One Calendar
All apps also have a star rating which can help you zero in on the apps that other companies found the most helpful.
Get Help Choosing the Right Apps for Your Office
There are so many great applications out there, and once you start using the Microsoft Store, you’ll find even more. Get help sorting through all the options! Magnify247.com can help you choose the most productive apps for your office, so you’re streamlined and not overwhelmed.