Microsoft wants to get you and your customer facing employees into the Office 365 Cloud with new additions to the Office 365 Enterprise K1 subscription package.

When I worked in retail for several months a few years ago, one of the realities of my work schedule was that my time was spent on the store floor helping customers with product information and processing their purchases for payments and extended coverage. All of this work I performed on what is commonly referred to as a Point of Sale (POS) device which had limited capabilities when it came to resources that employees had to access regularly such as corporate training materials, just in time information about product launches, and other key employee information.

We did have a couple of extra laptops that were not part of the POS network that we could get access to this information as well however, that would all depend on how busy it was and sharing that time with other employees.

One option some of us had was the ability to remotely log into certain aspects of the corporate network from home but that access was limited and usually limited to training materials.

Well, Microsoft's Office 365 Enterprise K1 plan is a subscription that costs $4 per user, per month that could expand your companies ability to reach these employees and give them access to this information on a regular basis with full identity validation and from most any compatible device. No longer would these workers need to try and gain access to this content on a secondary machine in the workplace because they would be able to use their own devices.

Today Microsoft expanded what they offer with the Office 365 K1 plan to give these key employees even more tools and resources at their disposal so they can stay up to date on company information as they continue to be the face of your company.

Here are those additional products:

-- Microsoft StaffHub—Helps frontline workers manage their workday with schedule management, information sharing and the ability to connect to other work-related apps and resources. StaffHub was added to the K1 plan earlier this year.

-- OneDrive for Business with 2 GB of cloud storage—Provides employees a secure environment to store, manage and access files from virtually anywhere and on any device.

-- Skype for Business presence and instant messaging—Enables employees to communicate in real-time, along with the ability to participate in Skype Meeting Broadcast sessions.

-- Microsoft Teams—A hub for teamwork that connects employees to the people, tools and content they need to do their best work.

-- Office 365 Video—Provides employees with a secure, company-wide destination for posting, sharing and discovering video content.

-- Microsoft PowerApps and Microsoft Flow—Eases the automation of repetitive tasks and workflows.

As you can see above even the company will have new tools for scheduling workers with Staff Hub, holding all hands calls with Skype For Business, and encouraging employees to collaborate with Microsoft Teams.

As a former retail employee, I can vouch for how isolating it can seem when you just show up to work your shift and then go home. The Office 365 K1 plan seems like it provides the tools that can really help companies connect their employees with each other and the strategic mission of the business.

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