This article first appeared in the Autumn 2016 issue of The Record.
You can have the best products in the world, but without an empowered, efficient workforce, your chances of success are slim. This was the simple notion driving C&A’s radical digital workplace transformation, as it set its sights on a massive opportunity to expand into China.
C&A, a Dutch-based fashion retail chain with locations in Europe and South America, was embarking on an expansion into China. The company has locations in Europe and South America, and was on an expansion into China. But its on-premise version of Exchange 2010 was causing disruption to the daily routines and abilities of its Chinese branches. Servers would crash unexpectedly; mailboxes were limited to a relatively small 300 megabytes; junk mail was a constant issue; and sending and receiving mail in a timely manner was increasingly difﬁcult. After researching the solution, C&A believed a modern Microsoft Exchange solution, hosted in the cloud, would solve its issues.
Avanade set out to deeply understand the client’s business strategy and future plans, and presented the most attractive solution for the company to address its competitive needs. From there, Avanade designed and delivered an Ofﬁce 365 solution, migrating a workforce of over 700 from Exchange 2010 to Exchange Online hosted with Microsoft Azure. Avanade also helped C&A to successfully reconﬁgure and initiate a new domain name system to improve access and stability. Perhaps most impressively, Avanade successfully completed the work in just two months.
The cost savings of moving its productivity applications to Azure have been tremendous, but the impact it has had on C&A’s workforce is equally signiﬁcant. End users now beneﬁt from a modern user interface, available anywhere on any device, and a massive increase to two gigabytes of storage. The IT team has plenty to be delighted about, too. With less time wasted on manual operations, staff are more focused now on driving strategic initiatives that align with the business.
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