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Success Story: Indiana Office of Technology Saves $500K Annually after Migrating Email Archive Data with Quadrotech

Quadrotech Migrates 90 Terabytes of Enterprise Vault Data to Microsoft Office 365 with Archive Shuttle

90 TB | ~37,000 STAFF | ENTERPRISE VAULT TO MICROSOFT OFFICE 365

Industry: State Government & Public Sector
Headquarters: Indianapolis, IN
Company Size: Approximately 37,000 staff (employees and contractors)
Website: https://www.in.gov/iot /

Challenge

IOT had 90+ terabytes of EV data to migrate, and a migration timeline to meet of one year. There were some other unique challenges that arose after the initial project scoping such as the need to place Enterprise Vault content in the Exchange Online Archive rather than the Primary Mailbox, and to comply with retention policies, IOT also needed to migrate complete ownerless archives that had been deprovisioned within the past three years.

Solution

After evaluating other vendors’ software, IOT chose Quadrotech through a Microsoft recommendation. Alongside Quadrotech’s knowledgeable employees was a proven tool. Archive Shuttle, Quadrotech’s most mature product, quickly and securely migrates enterprise email archives and journal data, like Enterprise Vault, to Office 365 and on-premise Exchange.

Outcome

Through retiring its legacy EV archive, IOT was able to reduce overall costs, improve security, and comply with retention policies thus achieving its goal to better serve the agencies across the state, as well as Indiana citizens.


An integrated IT organization to serve the government and citizens of Indiana

In 2005, the separate IT organizations across Indiana government were consolidated to form the Indiana Office of Technology (IOT) – a move that saves the state $13.9 million annually1. The organization is able to more efficiently and effectively provide IT services to all branches of government in the state of Indiana. As stated on their website, “IOT provides measurable, secure, consistent, reliable enterprise-technology services at cost-effective prices to our partner agencies so they can better serve our mutual customer, the Hoosier taxpayer.”1

The Email Archive: From cost-saving to cost-increasing

For ten years, IOT utilized Veritas (previously Symantec) Enterprise Vault (EV). The intent of investing in a third-party archiving solution such as EV was to address increasing storage needs with IOT’s Exchange on-premises deployment from both a hardware and cost perspective. However, since Enterprise Vault is an on-premises solution it requires a significant amount of infrastructure, and the requirements and maintenance costs only continued to grow as more data was stored within the archive.

IOT also found that EV licensing was expensive and challenging to manage. In addition to the capital and operational expenses associated with Enterprise Vault, the archive users had difficulty accessing their archives through the Outlook client plug-in, which resulted in frustrated users, lost productivity and a large volume of help desk tickets. While the EV platform once provided cost savings to the organization, with newer inexpensive cloud storage now available, it no longer made sense to invest in aging on-premises infrastructure. Looking for ways to lower IT costs and take advantage of more secure and efficient technologies that help achieve its mission, IOT targeted its legacy email archive system for retirement.

A better (and more cost-effective) way forward

In 2015 IOT purchased Microsoft Office 365 for its strong compliance capabilities, nearly limitless storage, and the vast infrastructure savings that accompany a cloud-based service. Elaine Kan, IOT’s Deputy IT Director, shared that due to the cost to maintain and license EV, IOT made the decision to migrate the data off and retire the third-party system completely. The organization found that an email archive migration to Office 365 could save IOT $500,000+ annually in EV licensing and infrastructure (hardware, storage, and backup costs). With the attractive benefits of Office 365 and its built-in archive, it made sense to migrate that data to Office 365. With an overall plan, IOT needed to determine how to best move their archive data to meet all their requirements.

IOT’s Unique Migration Requirements

Overall, IOT had 90+ terabytes of EV data to migrate, and they had a migration timeline to meet of one year. There were some other unique challenges that arose after the initial project scoping; Kan elaborated, “Due to our automated migration we specifically wanted to place Enterprise Vault content in the Exchange Online Archive rather than the Primary Mailbox, and to comply with our retention policies, we also needed to migrate complete ownerless archives that had been deprovisioned within the past three years. This is difficult to determine because the EV SQL DB does not retain much information on ownerless archives, in addition to the fact that we had a need to maintain the entire archive if it was de-provisioned within the past three years, not just 3 years of content in each archive.”

The Vendor Search: Discovering Quadrotech

As the manager overseeing the project, and also the EV Administrator, Kan did her due-diligence to find a vendor who would meet their needs. We had completed a proof of concept with Archive360 but found that their tool ultimately lacked the flexibility and functionality we needed to address our automated migration processes,” disclosed Kan.

Kan discovered Quadrotech through a Microsoft recommendation. After speaking with the Quadrotech team, Kan was confident in their abilities to meet IOT’s specific requirements. Kan shared, “Learning that several individuals with deep Enterprise Vault expertise and previous employees of Symantec were involved in the development of Quadrotech Archive Shuttle was a major deciding factor in choosing Quadrotech as a vendor. I was really impressed with their talent and EV knowledge.”

Alongside Quadrotech’s knowledgeable employees was a proven tool. Archive Shuttle, Quadrotech’s most mature product, quickly and securely migrates enterprise email archives and journal data, like Enterprise Vault, to Office 365 and on-premise Exchange. Although it was Quadrotech’s first migration solution, Quadrotech continues to develop and streamline the tool for faster and simpler migration projects.

“There are very few custom requirements that we can’t take on with Archive Shuttle” explains Tony Sterling, SVP of Customer Success at Quadrotech, “We have years of experience delivering projects with unique needs, and have built custom workflows that are powerful, flexible, and fully equipped to handle anything we come across.” Once Kan confirmed that Quadrotech’s tool and processes were compatible with the project goals, IOT and Quadrotech got to work.

The Migration Process

IOT had automated the migration and communication process so that when Quadrotech completed a batch migration, that action triggered other scripts to notify the user and post-processing. The two teams worked well together: “We collaborated and worked closely with Quadrotech to ensure their process complemented our process, which resulted in a very successful migration,” said Kan. “There was a miscommunication during the project regarding the ownerless archive content and how much data needed to be retained, but once the discrepancy was caught, additional resources were added and Quadrotech was able to remediate.”

“As much as we strive to always get things right the first time, sometimes there are misunderstandings and miscommunications between our team and the customer. We pride ourselves on being a no-nonsense company, so we really appreciate when customers like IOT speak up if something isn’t quite what they were expecting – that way we can change course to address the issue and ensure a successful project for our client,” shared Sterling, “Our most successful projects are ones with open communication and close collaboration. Paired with an established migration tool, we find that those qualities are paramount for a successful migration project. IOT was a great client to work with for these reasons.”

Kan’s Top Tips for a Successful Migration Project & Working with Quadrotech

  • “Make sure you have a thorough understanding of your EV architecture and where your EV shortcuts reside. This will mitigate the non-standard methods used to access EV content. For example, several of our users moved EV shortcuts out of their mailboxes and into a PST file, which is extremely problematic. Luckily Quadrotech has a good understanding of EV and can guide users through their environment; however, it’s helpful if they are made aware of any non-standard configuration to save time and resources.”
  • “I would also suggest that the customer have a general idea of what they are looking to accomplish beyond ‘get content out of EV and into Office 365.’ We had a very clear idea of how we wanted the project to execute with our automated process, which helped streamline communications and processes.”

A Modern Workplace

“Overall, we had a very good experience working with Quadrotech, and I happily recommend them to other organizations looking to migrate Enterprise Vault to Office 365. Post-migration, we’ve had to do some user education so people knew to look for content in the Exchange Online Archive versus the EV shortcut, which resided in the primary mailbox, but it’s a small price to pay for all the benefits we’ve gained from centralizing our email archive data in Office 365,” communicated Kan, “Our IT Administrators and Managers are benefitting from simpler administration, lower costs, and less desktop support. We’ve removed reliance on expensive on-premises EV infrastructure and are seeing storage savings. Everyone within IOT is pleased with Office 365’s ease of use.”

Through retiring its legacy EV archive, IOT was able to reduce overall costs, improve security, and comply with retention policies thus achieving its goal to better serve the agencies across the state, as well as Indiana citizens.

Sources: 1. https://www.in.gov/iot/2416.htm

 

 

 

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