Microsoft is helping organizations of all sizes realize greater cost savings, IT efficiencies, and increased flexibility with web-based productivity solutions. As adoption of cloud computing accelerates, we’re offering customers from coast to coast the world’s most utilized productivity solution, 365 days a year.

Last week, we announced our next generation cloud productivity service, Microsoft Office 365. Office 365 brings together SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, Lync Online and Office desktop software in one automatically updated cloud service.

For the first time ever, it doesn’t matter if a business has one employee or thousands of employees – we’ve made it easier to deploy and update productivity solutions that were once reserved for large enterprises allowing organizations of all sizes to discover new ways that technology can advance their business.

It’s especially gratifying to see that more state and local governments are taking advantage of the cloud in a tight fiscal time – including New York City, and the states of California and Minnesota. They join a growing roster of organizations such as DuPont, Godiva, Volvo Car Corporation, San Francisco State University, Coca-Cola Enterprises, the entire state of Kentucky education system, and Starbucks that are using the cloud to become more productive, while meeting stringent privacy and security requirements and cutting costs.

The Big Apple. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently announced the city will use Microsoft’s cloud computing platform to modernize its IT infrastructure, improve citizen services, save millions of dollars in coming years, and centralize technology resources across more than 100 city agencies. We’re humbled that when given the opportunity to choose, people select Microsoft more than any other company to help them be more productive with the familiar tools they know and use every day.. In fact, more than 750 million people use Office on the desktop, making it a brand that people worldwide know and trust. Perhaps Carole Post, commissioner of the city’s Department of Information Technology & Telecommunications said it best; Microsoft won New York’s business “both from a cost perspective as well as the suite of tools and opportunities”.

California. The New York City news comes on the heels of a big win for one our partners, Computer Science Corporation (CSC), which announced last Monday evening it was awarded the contract to consolidate California’s executive branch e-mail systems onto the Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite. Under the terms of the agreement, CSC will provide our cloud services in a secure cloud environment, offering comprehensive e-mail, services and collaboration tools for mobile users. CSC will also provide migration services to the new cloud, and standardize e-mail across all state agencies that select the service, potentially eliminating 130 e-mail systems that use three different e-mail platforms.

Minnesota. The State of Minnesota’s Office of Enterprise Technology (OET) signed a groundbreaking agreement with Microsoft to enable communications and collaborations services to be delivered to 33,000 state employees via Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). The move makes Minnesota the first U.S. state to move to a large email and collaboration suite in a private cloud environment.

More than 500 state and local governments representing 48 of 50 states currently have Microsoft Online Services. We believe even more will choose Microsoft and our partners to help them migrate to the cloud. We welcome New York City and the States of California and Minnesota to Microsoft’s productivity cloud. We are thrilled to have them become among the first Office 365 customers next year.

Posted by Chris Capossela
Senior Vice President, Marketing, Microsoft Office Division