I get asked all the time about what tools are out there for migrating to Office 365, which is what I tend to leverage. Because if we’re moving from an exchange system that’s going to make the most seamless migration for your end users with the least amount of disruption. But a lot of times we are not moving from exchange systems to Office 365. We may be moving from Rackspace or Lotus notes or some other alternative email system and then we have to move to some third-party party tools.
Some of the third-party tools that we use would be like SkyKick or migration Quest. The advantage if these tools is that it can make for a very seamless either cut-over or staged migration, but the challenges are that you as an end user don’t get access to all these tools. Some of these tools are only accessed to us as Microsoft partners. Which makes it a challenge for you to have access to all the tools that you need to make a successful migration.
The last category that we talk about is the “do it yourself”, this is the manual process. It’s going to increase the most amount of effort but if you’re planning to do it yourself with your man hours, that makes it easier to justify the cost. If you’re paying someone else for it, it’s going to take that much more time. The challenge with the manual method is it’s manual, a lot of manual work and you have to do it. The challenge with the third-party tools is there’s still a lot of work for you going into this. This may be your first time moving your email, we move email every day. So, for you to pick a tool and go down the path and understand that’s the right tool. You could go down and make a capital investment and find out that actually you made the wrong choice on the right tool or it didn’t meet your technical needs for your project. That is why you work with us as a partner because we can help dive through all the information and help provide you the right tool that’s going to work for you to meet your business goals for a successful migration.