TMCnet Feature
February 12, 2021

Technology Experts Highlight Business Benefits of Microsoft Teams, Zoom & Slack

A 2019 study indicated that 98 percent of professionals preferred to work remotely, and 97 percent recommended it to others. That was before the pandemic forced organizations to invest in remote infrastructure and offsite entire workforces. By July 2020, a reported 75 percent of business executives anticipated maintaining a remote or hybrid workforce. The abrupt shift in how organizations do business prompted industry leaders to make choices between Microsoft (News - Alert) Teams, Zoom, and Slack, among others.

Now that much of the dust has settled, managed IT experts are weighing-in about which of the three leading remote connectivity and productivity platforms have proven most beneficial. These IT leaders generally agree about the specific advantages of each software package. But they do not necessarily agree on which one an organization should use.

Experts Agree Zoom & Slack Are Videoconferencing Leaders

Many agree that because Zoom and Slack are primarily designed for communication, the videoconferencing aspects tend to outpace Microsoft Teams. Some critics go as far as to claim Microsoft Teams remains too unwieldy to be of value in this capacity. Technology gurus such as Envizion IT CEO Mark Veldoff recommend Zoom for specific professionals.

“To expand on the features of Zoom’s video conference that Teams is missing — Zoom allows you to move the participant’s video to anywhere on your desktop,” Veldoff reportedly said. “Being able to put your team closer to your camera presents a better image of yourself. You're looking at them instead of just a video of you sitting at your desk. The other feature is screen annotations. This is a big deal for engineers and developers that are doing a lot of design.”

Holden Watne, of Generation IX, advocates for focused communications applications such as Zoom and Slack because they tend to be more refined. He also points out that platform diversity allows organizations to pivot when one application falters.

“Like a lot of businesses, we use the Microsoft suite of products including Outlook, SharePoint, OneDrive. But we do not use Teams. Rather we pay for Slack rather than the free option of Teams,” Watne reportedly said. “Teams has almost the same functionality and probably integrates better with other apps, but Slack is a messaging tool first and foremost. As a remote organization, presently, it helps our teams collaborate much more seamlessly. It also integrates into the third-party apps that allow us to optimize our processes. It isn’t under the behemoth of Microsoft, and we like that. When there was an outlook crash, we were able to communicate over slack and didn’t have all of our eggs in one basket.”

Nick Allo, of SemTech IT Solutions, echoes the prevailing sentiment that many organizations work with Microsoft Teams out of convenience. But he also notes that Microsoft Teams has yet to deliver the wide-reaching benefits of pure communications platforms.

“I like Teams for working within an organization and some external users for projects. The Zoom, Go to Meeting, and WebEx, among others, are miles ahead for presenting, hosting large amounts of users, and retaining control during a meeting,” Allo reportedly said. “I think both serve a purpose. But most SMBs are making do with Teams since it is already provided with their Office 365 subscription. Why purchase something else unless you have the need?

Why Are More Companies Using Microsoft Teams?

Reports indicate that Microsoft Teams enjoys market share dominance that exceeds 115 million daily active users. A subscription may include many of the gold standard programs that have become necessary for the modern workforce.

“If you were to compare Zoom vs Teams for video conference option only, then Zoom is going to win out,” Guy Baroan, president of Baroan Technologies, reportedly said. “If you are a Microsoft Office user, then Teams is a great option for you to consider as your collaboration platform because you can get to it from anywhere in Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and most of the Microsoft365 services. This alone gives it a major advantage over Zoom.”

Although some call Microsoft a “monopoly” because of its total application package, few companies appear ready to buck the trend. Slack reportedly hovers around 12 million users. And although Zoom reportedly outpaces Teams in terms of daily active users, much of its recent growth stems from schools switching to remote learning and personal use. Ian Hansen, of Philantech3, sees the inherent value of a multi-faceted application package.

“It makes sense to have an integrated communication system built on the Microsoft Office platform for productivity that most of the corporate world is already using,” Hansen reportedly said. “Microsoft did a great job integrating existing Office applications into Teams. The sharing and collaboration features with the SharePoint backend, as well as the video calls, pulls everything together and can make for an overall better and more seamless experience.”

Technology Experts Tout Microsoft Teams Practicality

It appears that coupling industry-leading business productivity programs with a reasonably efficient videoconferencing tool wins the day for most organizations. The fact businesses are already paying for it, and workers don't need to change platforms tips that scale in Microsoft’s favor.

“For businesses that are already using Microsoft 365, there are tremendous benefits to leveraging Teams and keeping things in the Microsoft ecosystem rather than running meetings through another solution,” Michael Anderson (News - Alert), of 365 Technologies, reportedly said. “Teams Meeting links are easily added in Outlook and make recurring virtual meetings a breeze. Meeting recordings are automatically saved to your company’s Stream video library. Company contacts, recently accessed files across SharePoint and OneDrive, as well as functional or project teams, are all there in one pane of glass.”

Ilan Sredni, CEO of Palindrome Consulting, echoed the idea that Microsoft Teams offers the platform diversity necessary to complete projects effectively and enjoy seamless communication.

“Because of the full integration with the other Office 365 tools, we have the ability to create conversation channels for special topics,” Sredni reportedly said. “By integrating with OneDrive and SharePoint, we can reduce the emails and attached documents being sent. And at the same time, we can collaborate on those documents in real-time!”

» More TMCnet Feature Articles


» More TMCnet Feature Articles