Ditching ancient POP email / file storage

Our client, a recruitment firm with 9 staff, had been getting by with an old server for general file storage, and a form of email based on “POP” (post office protocol). In this scenario, mail is collected from the POP server (much akin to how people collected mail from pigeon-holes in work environments). The massive downside of this approach is that once it’s collected, the mail is no longer on the server and is thus the employee’s responsibility.

More importantly, POP mail isn’t suited to email delivery across different devices. For example, if the user sends an email from his/her PC, that email wouldn’t be in the “Sent Items” of his/her phone, making historical checking a nightmare.

Other problems revolved round the file storage and the fact that users wanted to access files from outside the office, which the current configuration prevented. It was so bad that the staff were in the habit of emailing documents to people outside of the office for them to work on, meaning conflicts of versions and multiple copies in multiple places.

Solution

When Nemark explained the benefits of our hybrid Office 365 / Dropbox solution the client was very eager to move on the project. The features below, in particular, were major drivers in their decision-making process;

1) Cloud-based mailboxes meaning automatic backups, taking responsibility away from the user
2) ONE set of mail folders across all devices meaning Sent Items on the PC would show in Sent Items on iPhone (for example)
3) Dropbox provides continuous back up of all files along with seamless access to files from inside or outside the office (given the relevant permissions)
4) Total removal of the old server and its attendant costs
5) Simpler Network
6) More space in the comms room (absent server and the six USB drives that were laying forlorn on shelves)

Outcome

The client was very happy with the real, tangible improvements to usability stemming from these changes, with the boost in staff morale (through reduced frustration), time savings and robustness more than making up for the relatively small monthly costs associated with the new facilities. Better still, there was comparatively small upfront cost too as no replacement server was needed!

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