Office Organization: Time to upgrade Microsoft Office?

Now that the stand-alone version of the most updated Microsoft Office (Office 2019) is available, you may be wondering if it’s time to move ahead. The short answer is “yes.” Still trying to convince management that it’s worth doing? Here are some points to make.

Office 2010 support ends October 2020

Given the amount of time it takes to implement a new version of software, this isn’t a great deal of time! While 2010 will still work, no support, fixes or security updates will be made. This is especially important to industries that are beholden to regulatory bodies that demand that you are using the most secure versions of software.

New features

Flash Fill: Excel

This was introduced in Excel with Office 2013. Try typing four sets of cities, states and zips in column A in a blank spreadsheet. Now in column B, type the two-letter state code for the first set and just the first letter of the next one. You’ll notice that the next two states pop up in a list. Just press enter and they’ll fill in.

Flash Fill

Repeat this (full first, first character of next) for both cities and zips. If the first letter of the second item is the same as the first one, you may need to type it fully, as well. The third one, in both cases, should yield your pop-up list.

Screen Recording: PowerPoint

Record screen operations live and create a playable video inside a presentation. You’ll find the Screen Recording button on the Insert tab in the Media group. Select the portion of the screen you’d like to record and go! Windows Key+Shift+Q stops the recording process. It will initially appear as a playable video object in a slide. However, if you right-click it, you can save it as an MP4 file.

Save media as

If you’re already on the newest version and you tried this feature when it first came out, it was sluggish and created some pretty huge files. They have apparently done some work to it and it really flies now.

Read Aloud: Word

Eyes a little tired? Have Word read your documents to you! While I wouldn’t call the Read Aloud voice natural, it isn’t monotone. It does respond to question marks and commas. It can also help you correct errors that wouldn’t necessarily be caught by spelling or grammar check.

Read Aloud

SaaS vs. ‘Boxed’

There are also great new features that cater to the Microsoft Surface user like ink to text and ink to math. You also have the ability to work with 3-D models, too! And as they add new features, if you’re an Office 365 user, any other new features they come up with will automatically be added to your suite. Some people have been waiting for Office 2019 because they don’t like the idea of SaaS (Software as a Service). But before you decide to install this new feature-rich Microsoft Office version, consider that what it really is, is the most updated version of Office 365 desktop, boxed up. And with the first new feature added to Office 365 after you install Office 2019, yours will be “old.” While Microsoft will provide patches and security updates and resolve issues, it will not upgrade it to include new features the way Office 365 does.

So, if you’re considering the change to the newest version, also consider a different way of implementing your Office suite software.