Getting Started with Office 365


What is Office 365?

Office 365 is a collection of cloud based services that work together to increase productivity through collaboration. Office 365 includes a web interface for email, calendaring, contacts and tasks that is very similar to other web-based email platforms. What sets Office 365 apart are the additional features that allow users to store documents in the cloud, access files on the go, share documents with other users and collaborate in real time. Office 365 also provides a workspace for groups of users to communicate with each other, manage a group calendar, store group files, and share notes in a group notebook.

Not to be confused with the full version of Microsoft Office Software that may already be installed on your computer, Office 365 can be easily accessed through a web browser, which means you are not limited to working on a specific device. In fact, Office 365 also has a collection of Mobile Apps that you can install on all your mobile devices. If you prefer to manage your email and documents directly on your computer or need to work offline, you also have the option to connect your existing installation of Microsoft Office (full desktop software) to Office 365 cloud services and sync your email and files to your computer. Don't have the full version of Microsoft Office installed on your computer? Your Office 365 account through the University of Guelph also includes a subscription license for Microsoft Office that will allow you to work locally on your computer and does not require an internet connection. You are able to download and install the subscription license version of Microsoft Office Pro Plus (full desktop software) directly through the Office 365 web portal on up to 5 computers. This subscription license also allows you to install the mobile app version of Microsoft Office on up to 5 tablets and 5 smartphones. 


What comes with Office 365?

Watch our Information Webinar for a general understanding of Office 365.

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Why Office 365?

  • Ease of use

  • Reliable integration with mobile devices

  • Enhanced security

  • Hosting in a Canadian data centre

  • 10X the email storage of current Gryph Mail (50GB vs. 5 GB)

  • Enhanced collaboration and document sharing capabilities

For additional information on the Office 365 Gryph Mail Migration Project, please visit the CCS Office 365 Project Page.

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Office 365 Features

Outlook Web App: Email, Calendar, Contacts and Tasks on the go

Within Office 365, the mail, calendar, contacts (people) and tasks components are collectively referred to as Outlook Web App (OWA). The Outlook Web App is a web based interface for managing your email, calendar and contacts. As long as you have a compatible web browser, you will be able to able to access your email, calendar, contacts and tasks through the Outlook Web App, from any device. Users will also be able to configure Office 365 to work with the desktop version of Microsoft Outlook, which offers more advanced email and calendaring functions. For additional information regarding which features are available in the Outlook Web App compared to the desktop version of Microsoft Outlook and to help decide which version is best for you, visit the following link to Microsoft Support: Compare Outlook, Outlook Web App and Mail & Calendar apps

To get started on learning about the Outlook Web App, please visit our Online User Guide and refer to the Mail, Calendar, People and Tasks sections.

Additional Outlook Web App resources from Microsoft Support:

To get started with the desktop version of Microsoft Outlook please visit the Microsoft Outlook Training page from Microsoft Support.


OneDrive for Business: Unlimited, secure cloud storage

OneDrive for Business is an integral part of Office 365, and provides place in the cloud where you can store, share, and sync your work files. You can update and share your files from any device with OneDrive for Business. You can even work on Office documents with others at the same time. Access our Online Training Resources to learn more about Getting Started with OneDrive.

Additional OneDrive for Business resources from Microsoft Support:

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Office Online: Work on documents from your mobile devices and collaborate in real time

Office Online is a free version of Office that you can use in your web browser. Office Online doesn't have all the features of the full version of Microsoft Office and is similar to Google Docs in the sense that you have the ability to co-author a document in real time. Access our Online Training Resources to learn more about Getting Started with Office Online.

Additional Office Online resources from Microsoft Support:

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Teams: Collaborative apps, conversations, transferring of data, and the basic tools that team based work needs

Microsoft Teams is an entirely new experience that brings together people, conversations and content—along with the tools that teams need—so they can easily collaborate to achieve more. It’s naturally integrated with the familiar Office applications and is built from the ground up on the Office 365 global, secure cloud. Office 365 Teams provides groups of people with a collaborative shared workspace integrated with the Outlook Web App. Help your team stay up to date using conversations through Mail (Outlook), schedule meetings using a shared calendar, collaborate on files using a shared OneDrive for Business and share information, such as meeting notes, using shared OneNote Notebook.  Access our Online Training Resources to learn more about Teams

Additional Office 365 Teams resources from Microsoft Support:

Download Microsoft Teams for Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

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Groups: Collaboration made easy with a shared workspace

With the introduction of Microsoft Teams, CCS will no longer be creating new Microsoft Groups as Teams offers the same functionality as Groups.  Users scan create their own Teams rather than putting in a request.  Users with existing Groups are encouraged to switch to Teams or they make continue Groups.

More information on Teams as well as how to create Teams can be found here:  https://www.uoguelph.ca/ccs/office365/getting-started/what-is-office365#teamsCollab

Office 365 Groups provides groups of people with a collaborative shared workspace integrated with the Outlook Web App. Help your team stay up to date using conversations through Mail (Outlook), schedule meetings using a shared calendar, collaborate on files using a shared OneDrive for Business and share information, such as meeting notes, using shared OneNote Notebook.  Access our Online Training Resources to learn more about Getting Started with Groups

Additional Office 365 Groups resources from Microsoft Support:

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Additional Office 365 Features

There are additional features that Office 365 offers but have not been made available to University of Guelph Office 365 users. These components require additional planning, training and support and may become available to users in the future. This list includes:

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Microsoft Position on Online Access to Office 365

Microsoft Office 365 is a collection of cloud based services that work together to increase productivity through collaboration. Office 365 can be accessed through a web browser or mobile device to access your email, calendaring, contacts and tasks. You can also work with attachments through online versions of Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, PowerPoint).

But what browser provides the best experience with Office 365? Microsoft provides guidance depending on the device you are using.

Office 365 Outlook Web Access

For Office 365 accessed through Outlook Web Access (OWA), Microsoft’s statement of support is that the latest versions of Internet Explorer, Edge, Chrome, Firefox and Safari should all designed to work with OWA. 

See: https://products.office.com/en-US/office-system-requirements?ui=en-US&rs=en-US&ad=US#Browsers-section

Office 365 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote)

To work within the online version of Office Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote Microsoft offers guidance on how to get the best experience depending on the device that you are using (Desktop/laptop, Tablets, and Smart Phones).

See: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Office-Online-browser-support-AD1303E0-A318-47AA-B409-D3A5EB44E452

Office 365 Mobile Access

Office 365 is designed to work best with mobile devices using Microsoft’s Office applications. Microsoft provides versions for Windows, Android and IOS. Microsoft supported mobile browsers are also supported.

See: https://products.office.com/en-US/office-system-requirements?ui=en-US&rs=en-US&ad=US#Mobile-devices-section

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Getting Started

Ready to begin using Office 365?

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