On Premises Exchange Vs. Office 365 A2
I'm after some advice or thoughts on this. We are imminently moving away from our current email system (Link2ICT (Bham) Zimbra).
The way I see it I have 2 choices, On premises Exchange or Office 365. I have been doing some research on the pro's and con's of both but I would like some input from this forum on any previous experiences you may have had with this.
(I will have to explain to Leadership the various differences between the services and need to explain it in as simple terms as possible, because it seems they all think that Outlook = Cloud and that email = website and the the broadband is email (garrrghh!). An actual quote from an SMT member "if the internet goes down we'll still be able to access Office 365 because it's in the cloud (facepalm) - I can deal with this and hopefully get them to understand what exchange actually is and how this all differs including that if the internet fails then there will be no access to an email platform anyway.)
Some background: I have neither installed or managed an exchange environment before. The schools I have worked in have always used hosted email of one type or another.
I can (hopefully) resource the exchange server in our existing virtualised environment without too much difficulty so infrastructure cost would be negligible. Although I am worried about future mailbox growth in terms of storage. (I have about 3TB free and unallocated on the SAN)
We have EES in place so I can get the exchange licenses / CAL's through that.
On the other hand O365 = free (at the moment)
150 Staff, 1000 Students - Secondary School.
Any help or thoughts gratefully received.