The obvious reason may be that Microsoft office tools are the most common software applications known to date and change cannot be easy for most IT departments. Global corporations, such as Motorola have migrated to Google Apps, from the traditional on premise messaging and collaboration environment. This article highlights the economic benefits of using Google apps in place of traditional office tools or legacy email solution provided by Microsoft Exchange. In this scenario, when the mail server is down for any reason, be it power, virus attack or bandwidth limitations, there is a big loss in productivity within the organisation. The traditional scenario also has got a high maintenance and administration costs. You need well trained IT personnel in order to keep up, and you need to constantly upgrade their IT skills, and the legacy solution also lacks mobility.
Google Apps is a cloud-based messaging and collaboration platform that includes mail, calendaring, instant messaging, as well as web-based collaborative documents (Google docs), Google Talk, Google video, spreadsheets, presentations and Google sites. Organisations which migrate from legacy mail solutions to Google Apps can realise a high return on investment (ROI) and short payback periods. New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) is an example of organisations that use Google Apps for their email solutions. I personally use Google apps through my NYIT mail and it’s a wow experience. Google Apps drives IT cost savings and key collaboration benefits. There is cost savings in IT infrastructure because Google handles your corporate mail and manage collaboration tools. Your organisation need not to worry about system maintenance, upkeep, patching and upgrades because Google does it all for you. To the end user, email search, spam filtering and archiving can be done faster, compared to office tools, and response time can be greatly improved. If you have used Gmail before, transition to Google Apps can be easy. Gmail is easy to use than traditional office software which normally needs end user training.
Google Apps collaboration benefits includes sharing and editing documents across teams and within teams, the ability to incorporate feedback more quickly, efficient virtual meetings as well as pushing more timely and relevant information to distributed teams. Google docs and Google sites allow for improved efficiency when interacting with external partners and suppliers.
When it comes to IT budget, Google Apps costs less compared to office tools. That is where Google compete with Microsoft. The licence fees for Google Apps is around P400 per employee per year, compared to over P1000 per year for Microsoft licence, without counting support and upfront cost. However, migrating from traditional email solution to Google Apps come with other costs such as internal implementation and rollout, testing, pilot, implementation and ongoing routine support. But these are ounce off costs, and ounce Google Apps are running, you Organisation will benefit increased productivity and low IT maintenance costs.
In conclusion, research has shown that organisations that use Google Apps benefit increased productivity compared to those using legacy email solution. The key driver to migration is collaboration tools. Team work can be greatly enhanced when using Google Apps. There is faster document revision reconciliation, timely project tracking information, efficient company wide information, efficient sharing and processing feedback. All this can be done anywhere, anytime. Unlike in the traditional on-premise set up, where you have to be at your desk to work and collaborate with your team members. It is no secret that demands on IT are growing. We are moving towards a cloud-based computing environment where corporate executives need mobility and constant communication with their teams. These people want to respond to and send corporate emails even when they are away from office, in a secure environment. Google Apps provide for these increasing demands and represent the next generation office tools, where productivity and IT cost savings is key to success for any organization across industries.