Logistically Possible: Acquisition Challenges Lead to Office 365 Success
Business acquisitions generate numerous challenges and implications, especially for the IT team. Issues such as multiple email domains and competing business platforms hosted both on-premises and in cloud complicates administration, maintenance, and data management and affect business objectives like customer experience and go-to-market strategy. With so many other acquisition details to manage, new employees, to enable, and all on a short timeline, the client turned to Netrix to address its technology requirements.
A privately-held logistics company who pioneered drop shipping in the 1980’s, has grown through a series of acquisitions to become a leader in specialized supply chain management, transportation, and last-mile delivery services in the U.S. The business is now ranked among the top 50 logistics companies in the country.
Recent acquisitions had burdened the company with three email domains, disjointed communications platforms, and complex and costly infrastructure to manage.
This technology predicament was not ideal or supportive of the company’s efforts to properly integrate the businesses and employees between the three entities. While two of three domain instances were cloud-hosted, the client determined that the acquired on-premises Exchange instance was consuming administrative and maintenance resources that could be better applied elsewhere. The on-premises email required the team to monitor security, backups, and storage for a large number of accounts creating manual work that a cloud-based solution could eliminate.
The client prides itself on its use of solid communication and collaborative technology to serve its customers and the desire to integrate the acquired employees with internal users was a primary driver for the effort. The need to share calendars, address books and real-time communication were key requirements to the ongoing customer service goals. The project would also be supporting an important secondary corporate unification goal from a Marketing perspective during a major rebranding effort following the acquisitions.
It was time to address changes by solving the technology issues to ensure that system adoption positively enabled all users, ultimately benefitting customers and prospects.
A thorough discovery process with the client team to review the data requirements and systems of the acquired entities was completed to define the scope of the project. Netrix performed an analysis of the various platforms available and a survey of the technologies that could be leveraged to migrate the client’s data to another platform. The discovery process also revealed that the email system was required to be up and running in less than three months.
Netrix determined that the cloud-based Office 365 platform was the best solution to consolidating the company’s email and enabling the enterprise collaboration tools the organization desired. To save time and expense, Netrix consultants leveraged an efficient cloud-based migration tool called MigrationWiz alongside onboard Exchange migration software.
The stakeholders and resources working on the project coordinated through regular status meetings and a collaborative Netrix hosted SharePoint project site capturing and sharing project deliverables, plans, calendars and status reporting. A detailed timeline was created early on, ensuring that expectations were realistic and team members were on task at the appropriate times.
Netrix completed the migration within the three-month timeline. The client’s email systems were all consolidated within the Office 365 platform, which provided a familiar, secure and flexible user experience for the collective users across the legacy and acquired organizations. The timely integration also successfully supported the re-branded email domain across dozens of marketing channels that helped usher in the new growth initiatives. The new email system and Office 365 platform continue to serve the business and users well, which in turn has led to ongoing customer satisfaction the client strives to provide to differentiate itself in the logistics space.
- Differing cloud and on-premises Exchange instances between entities complicated email management.
- Multiple domains and business platforms affected enterprise data accessibility and collaboration.
- Large amounts of data required migration between platforms for business continuation and customer history.
- The new Office 365 cloud deployment enabled both the email consolidation and user collaboration tools.
- Email data migration was completed in an aggressive timeframe to lesson user, business, and customer impacts.
- Netrix helped the IT team play an indirect and valued role in the organization’s go-to market initiatives
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