A few months ago, Big Green IT’s account rep received a call from a panicked client. They discovered that a now-former employee, who’d held an important position within the company, deleted his entire email mailbox shortly before his employment was terminated. Losing the contents of that mailbox would have a material impact on the company, they needed to know what were their options were for recovery.
Luckily, Big Green IT was able to give the client very good news. Since Big Green IT had SkyKick’s Cloud Backup for Office 365 in place, all it took was a few clicks for the entire deleted mailbox to be completely restored.
“We decided to offer an Office 365 backup solution because we saw that the third party ecosystem offered far more features than what is native to Office 365,” explains Wade Walker, Big Green IT’s Manager of Cloud Services. “We evaluated a variety of options and chose SkyKick because of its superior feature set. We saw that SkyKick has the most comprehensive coverage for backing up Office 365—and making lightning-fast restores the norm.”
A focus on infrastructure and “green” solutions
Since the company’s launch in 2013, Big Green IT has focused on the infrastructure, network, platform side of their clients’ IT environments. Being committed to “green,” eco-friendly approaches, the company was an early adaptor to cloud solutions. “We run our own systems 100% in the cloud,” Wade shares. “We believe that by replacing on-premises hardware with shared data centers, cloud services can significantly reduce the environmental impact.”
Whether customers want to move their IT systems to the cloud, keep things on-premises or create a hybrid solution, Big Green IT is there for them. Big Green IT provides IT consulting services; IT assessments, architecture, procurement, migrations and implementation; and managed services for cloud-based environments. Customers appreciate Big Green IT’s white-glove service, ability to provide expert advice as they navigate their technology journey, and commitment to the environment.
“Embracing the cloud has helped propel our company’s success,” says Wade. “As we move customers to the cloud and prove to them that Azure, Office 365 and SkyKick is a very robust and reliable set of services, we gain trust. Once a customer starts trusting the cloud we are able to move more and more of their services there. The cloud gives our customers a dependable and highly scalable solution with a predictable spend model. Needless to say, they like that!”
SkyKick streamlined and automated the migration process
When Big Green IT first started migrating customers to Office 365, they did everything manually. Although things went smoothly, the process was extremely labor-intensive.
“We realized this was not the most efficient use of our time,” Wade relates. “To shorten the migration timeline and provide a better experience to our clients, we decided to use a migration tool. We picked SkyKick because of its feature set. We especially liked the ability to choose whether to do a data-only migration, a full migration, or a hybrid of the two. This flexibility has proven to be very important for many of our projects.”
Example of SkyKick’s flexibility:
For the client’s frontline workers, who tend to use email through a web browser, Big Green IT provided a data-only migration. For the rest of client’s employees, all of whom primarily access email through a desktop or laptop, mailboxes were moved using the full SkyKick Migration Suite, which delivers extended migration project automation. This includes Office 365 provisioning, desktop readiness, and Outlook configuration and profile creation. It was a 50/50 split between SkyKick’s data only option and the use of the entire Migration Suite. This flexibility of options gave Big Green IT the ability to meet their client’s needs perfectly.
SkyKick helps Big Green IT close more sales
“With the SkyKick migration tool we not only have flexibility, we also have predictability regarding how long a migration will take,” states Wade. Our sales people’s ability to speak with confidence about the timeline helps close more sales. Our engineers appreciate this too and also report they find the tool quite easy to use.”
Wade points out that offering SkyKick’s Cloud Backup for Office 365 helps during the sales process as well. “With SkyKick’s backup solution we can address concerns about Office 365’s backup capabilities right from the start,” Wade says. “In an initial scoping call we’ll bring up SkyKick immediately, as a solution for addressing the backup limitations of Office 365. We’ve found that many of our customers must meet regulatory or compliance requirements, so data retention can be critical. SkyKick’s backups meet these needs.”
Big Green IT’s clients also appreciate how easy the SkyKick backup portal is to use. “While we give them a choice,” Wade relates, “the vast majority of our customers see how simple it is and choose to manage their backups and restores themselves.” Of course, if and when customers do choose to call in for support, Big Green IT can restore their data very quickly.
Advice for other partners
Wade’s advice for other partners regarding how to successfully sell SkyKick’s products is to mention both the backup solution and the migration tool at the very beginning of any Office 365 discussion, and include it all in a bundle. Taking this approach sets client expectations regarding what is and is not included in the Office 365 suite from Microsoft. This helps the Partner then establish themselves as a trusted advisor, who has the solutions the client needs. Mentioning the migration tool up front also provides a great opportunity for the partner to explain how they will ensure a smooth migration process.
SkyKick evolves with Office 365
“I’ve been very impressed by SkyKick’s attention to detail and commitment to keeping their product offering current,” Wade says. “They have been very fast to incorporate the ever-evolving changes in Office 365. For example, we’re seeing more and more customers adopting or looking into adopting Teams. It’s nice knowing that the solutions we’re providing accommodate that.”
Embracing the cloud has helped propel Big Green IT’s success, and SkyKick’s solutions have helped support that. Automating the Office 365 migration process with SkyKick’s Migration Suites makes Big Green IT’s migration process faster, easier, and more profitable, all while providing a better customer experience. Once data is migrated to Office 365, Big Green IT uses SkyKick’s Cloud Backup for Office 365 to ensure their clients have the robust and easily-recovered backups they need.