Office 365 Migration | Case Study
Premium Retail Services (PRS), a national retail servicing company based in Chesterfield, MO., found themselves at a pivot point. With record-breaking growth and more than 150 employees coming on board the following month, they needed to ramp up IT services quickly while holding costs steady. Whichever path they chose could not negatively impact existing users, especially during the upcoming busy Christmas season.
PRS’s core business is building and auditing merchandise displays, in-store marketing, and product support services. Spending additional money on commodity IT services did not make sense to PRS’s forward-looking CIO, Jeff Schremp. Instead, he believed that time and money should be focused on areas in IT that drive revenue, not on “keep the lights on” activities.
Faced with the prospect of adding a costly SAN storage shelf for e-mail and possibly even hiring a full-time Exchange administrator, PRS turned to their trusted advisor, Oakwood Systems Group, for assistance in finding a functional, easy-to-manage, low-cost alternative.
Oakwood worked with PRS to gain a better understanding of their network and data center capacity, expertise in relevant technologies, desktop readiness, and other critical factors. It was mutually agreed that a move to cloud-based environs would be the optimal path to accommodate growth and meet current business objectives. After examining cost, management overhead, features and, functionality, Office 365 was chosen as the preferred solution.
Oakwood Systems Group developed a roadmap to migrate nearly 300 mailboxes to Office 365 and developed step-by-step guides to assist end users throughout the transition. Training was also provided to bridge the knowledge divide between PRS’s current Exchange 2003 environment and the new Office 365 platform.
A critical need at PRS was around end-user migration scheduling and internal communication. PRS operated a lean IT department, and Oakwood was asked to take the lead on coordinating move dates with end users. Oakwood worked with users to schedule moves around critical business meetings and vacations. By utilizing a special migration support mailbox, Oakwood was able to minimize disruptions and maintain productivity during the move. Good communication also ensured that public folders and shared mailboxes were identified and moved along with their respective teams. As part of this process, unused mailboxes were decommissioned which helped reduce migration costs, licensing costs, and had the added advantage of de-cluttering the PRS directory.
When the 150 new employees were on-boarded the month following migration, PRS was able to quickly roll them onto the PRS network without absorbing substantial datacenter or IT personnel cost. While not every road leads to the cloud, this particular story is a true account of how leveraging the cloud helped one organization catapult to the next level of corporate growth while keeping operational costs in check.
Premium Retail Services Conclusion
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