Why Microsoft

A blog about Microsoft's strategic and technical differentiation.

Hyatt Hotels tells us 'Why Microsoft' is their Cloud Provider.

Hyatt Hotels tells us 'Why Microsoft' is their Cloud Provider.

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Mike Blake, CIO for Hyatt Hotels Corporation, is our guest blogger today and will describe why he made the decision to move to the cloud and why he chose BPOS to meet the needs of Hyatt's employees world-wide. Hyatt Hotels Corporation first began in 1957 when Jay Pritzker purchased the Hyatt House motel in Los Angeles. From that single motel, Hyatt Hotels Corporation has grown to worldwide portfolio of 434 properties and includes marquee brands such as Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt and Hyatt Regency. Recently, Hyatt Hotels Corporation made the decision to move to the cloud for their productivity solution and chose Microsoft's Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) for 57,000 employees.

Hyatt Hotels Corporation had been looking at the cloud for quite some time before making the decision to move from our current solution, Lotus Notes. Our internal surveys showed that there was a lot of user dissatisfaction with Notes, and once I became the CIO of Hyatt, I decided that it was time to make the change. We needed a complete, next-generation cloud solution from a provider that could be a strategic partner to us.

Making the leap to the cloud was a big decision for Hyatt. We operate more than 400 properties worldwide, meaning IT must serve users around the world – as well as enable collaboration with a huge network of partners. The cloud seemed like the perfect opportunity for us to reduce the costs of operating such a distributed infrastructure as well as improve our ability to collaborate with partners and suppliers. We had heard a lot about security and privacy concerns as well as data sovereignty and control, but after we really began evaluating cloud solutions, we found that we could actually improve our security and privacy controls by moving to a single cloud-based provider globally and providers such as Microsoft provide rigorous protection protocols that in some areas exceeded our own.

The decision to move use Microsoft BPOS was made after careful evaluation of competitive solutions offered by Google and IBM. We ultimately decided to go with Microsoft because of their proven track-record and commitment to the productivity category. We also expect to save upwards of 30% over our previous solution. This reduction in TCO appealed not only to me but to other members of the executive team who were part of the decision process including our CFO, COO and CMO.

BPOS provides a complete communications and collaboration solution to meet the needs of our 17,000 information workers. Given the nature of our business we have many employees who do not have regular access to a PC but still require access to email and other corporate materials. Microsoft offered a compelling way to connect our 'deskless' workers into the same system. With BPOS, 40,000 of these 'deskless' workers, front desk agents, hotel staff, and housekeeping personnel, will now have access to the same email system as the rest of our company.

Looking ahead, we will begin our transition to BPOS in August and be fully deployed by the end of the year. We anticipate many tangible benefits.

  • We expect to see better collaboration across Hyatt properties globally. For example, our group sales teams will be able to use SharePoint Online to collaborate on large deals. We think this will allow them to deliver a great, consistent experience to our customers. In addition to SharePoint Online, Exchange Online will be part of this mix. Our large customers do not use Google or IBM for email; they use Exchange too. This will make communications with them more efficient, ensuring that things like calendar requests and formatting just work. Lastly, our 17,000 information workers and 40,000 of our 'deskless' workers will now all be using the same email solution – Exchange Online – ensuring better collaboration and communication across properties and from corporate. Ultimately, we expect this to translate into a better sales experience and new revenue opportunities overall.
  • We expect to reduce total cost of ownership by 30% compared to our existing Lotus Notes system.
  • We expect to see improved employee satisfaction and adoption. Our people were not happy with Lotus Notes, and merely knowing that we are moving away from Lotus Notes to Exchange and Outlook has already created a good deal of excitement among our employees, who are anticipating a more positive and productive experience.

Hyatt Hotels Corporation is excited about this new partnership with Microsoft. At Hyatt we pride ourselves in being a top provider of vacation properties and a leader in the hospitality industry. To be a leader in our industry you need to carefully choose all providers – this includes our technology partners. Microsoft will help us bring Hyatt to the next level of service to our clients. We are excited to bring BPOS to our teams!

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