This article first appeared in the Winter issue of The Record.
When Hewlett Packard split into HP and Hewlett Packard Enterprises (HPE) in November 2015, more than 300,000 employees were migrated to the Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise productivity suite. Not only has this allowed both companies to reduce costs and increase workplace collaboration and productivity, but it has also enabled HPE to build on its existing core competencies in Office migration services. Today, it’s using these expanded competencies to help enterprise clients as they adopt Office 365.
“An increasingly globalised workforce, the consumerisation of IT and ongoing cost pressures are forcing business leaders to rethink how employees work, collaborate, and communicate,” says Barbara Spitzer, service line leader for Hewlett Packard Enterprise Services for Office 365 at HPE. “Younger workers are driving a less device-centric mindset and Office 365 provides them with the productivity tools and applications they need to work efficiently in the office, at home or on the road. The productivity suite also reduces the need for in-house IT infrastructures and enables staff to focus on higher value-add activities.”
HPE helps clients to understand exactly what elements of their infrastructure they need to change to successfully migrate to Office 365.
“We identify clients’ goals for deploying Office 365 so we can answer the questions they might not realise they needed to ask,” explains Spitzer. “Do they need to update their on-premise Exchange or Active Directory services before migrating? Have they planned an Identity and Access Management strategy? Do they have sufficient bandwidth to access Office 365 applications? How quickly do they want to adopt the workloads?”
Spitzer adds that HPE works with clients to establish an adoption plan for each Office 365 workload and implements monitoring tools so they can track progress. Importantly, HPE also helps clients plan and manage the end user experience.
“A recent HPE survey showed that the top two barriers to Office 365 adoption are end user confusion and resistance to change, so senior executives must clearly communicate how the migration will affect employees’ daily tasks,” she says. “HPE assists clients with developing end-user training activities and appointing site champions to help drive successful migrations. For example, we provide Empower, an end user training portal with hundreds of articles and videos, and Skill Tracks, pre-packaged bundles of targeted training to progress users from beginner to expert level.”
To date, HPE has migrated more than two million user workloads to Office 365.
“We have a process to capture and share the lessons we’ve learned on all our customer migration projects with our Office 365 team, enabling us to apply this expertise to any new client projects,” Spitzer comments. “Working with HPE reduces the time, risks and costs traditionally associated with Office 365 migrations. Plus, our partnership with Microsoft has allowed us to jointly develop a delivery model that is tightly integrated with the Microsoft Fast Track programme so our clients can realise business value faster.”