Intergen has over 350 staff, based in seven offices across New Zealand, Australia and the United States. With a migration from Exchange 2007 to Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) and then to Office 365, Intergen has now taken their email into the cloud.
Before moving to the Cloud, Intergen ran Exchange purely on-premise, with Exchange servers in each main office around New Zealand. These servers were virtual machines running on Hyper-V server hosts. All Intergen’s Exchange data was being protected by System Center Data Protection Manager 2010.
With an extremely busy Infrastructure Services (IS) team, Intergen looked to the cloud as a way of taking some of the load off its overburdened IT staff, freeing them up to focus on providing a first-rate service within the organisation. Using the phased migration approach, migrating 350 users in three time zones created a relatively complex migration project.
With Exchange managed on-premise, the IS team had to manage the entire Exchange infrastructure, the VM platform and the threat management gateway. They were also responsible for backing up all data and the provision of secondary data protection. These were resource-intensive exercises which necessitated dedicated staff having Exchange knowledge and training. By moving Intergen’s mailboxes online, time wasn’t the only resource being saved. With Exchange running entirely on-premise, 20GB of RAM and 700GB of storage were being consumed. In addition to reducing administrative maintenance and winning back staff time, Intergen has now regained the hardware it had allocated to running Exchange on-site and backing up 450GB of data.
As Murray Newman, Intergen’s CFO, says: “As we grow globally and our staff become more mobile, we need to provide them with the tools to do the job. If we had to set up Exchange servers in each office, this would cost us significant time, resource and money.”
“For Intergen the decision to move to the Cloud was a ‘no-brainer’,” says Tony Stewart, Intergen’s CEO. “As a Microsoft partner, we’re strongly committed to Microsoft technologies and directions, and the Cloud is a core part of this. For the Cloud, we’re all in – to borrow an expression from Steve Ballmer. We advocate Cloud solutions for our clients, and it made perfect sense for us to lead by example.”
Intergen IS Consultant, Patrick Squire, says: “By moving Intergen’s email online, we’re not spread so thinly.
We’ve been able to streamline our efforts and reduce the number of technologies our team needs to be skilled in. This means we can now afford to focus our attention on future business improvements and on being more responsive to the daily IT needs of Intergen’s staff.”
As a company in growth mode, with expansion happening right across Australasia and into America, it made sense to adopt a more internationally focused IT strategy, with an emphasis on high availability – business as usual from anywhere in the world and in any time zone.
Tony Stewart says, “With the February 2011 Christchurch Earthquake, everything came to a standstill, our office was in the red zone and we couldn’t access anything for months. Luckily, because our email was in the cloud – we were able to contact our staff straight away and continue business without the burden of lost information.”