As part of the Real World with Cloud Services series, we spoke to Myles Kaye, Director at Atominx, about why Atominx stopped using Google Mail to manage its messaging and collaboration environment, and switched to Microsoft Office 365. Here’s what he had to say:
Q: Please tell us about Atominx. Kaye: In 2009, I founded a one-man web design shop in Manchester, United Kingdom, that I called Atominx. The business has grown steadily from the very beginning, and now Atominx is a 10-person studio offering a broad range of design services for websites, mobile applications, and graphic media.
Q: Why did you want to switch from using Google Mail? Kaye: When I started Atominx, I adopted the basic Google Mail service because it was easy and it was free. But as we hired more people, developed new offerings, and served more customers, Google didn’t keep pace with our collaboration needs and business goals. Once we had four employees and six freelance designers trying to collaborate with just the very basic email and chat tools in Google Mail, it began to feel restrictive. We pieced together other collaboration solutions, such as Windows Live Messenger and the Dropbox document-sharing web service, but we were working from too many IDs in too many different places. I realized that we were outgrowing Google and that we also needed to develop a single, communication domain and a more professional identity. Q: Why did you choose Microsoft Office 365 to replace Google? Kaye: I wanted to consolidate all our collaboration and productivity tools in a centralized environment. While evaluating several solutions, I discovered Microsoft Office 365. We were already using Microsoft Office 2010, so we had a lot of trust with Microsoft, and Office 365 offered all the features we needed. As soon as I started to use Office 365, I could tell it was a solid, complete solution.
Now my employees and designers send and receive email messages from a single Atominx domain, and they can use all the functionality in Microsoft Outlook to manage their email, calendar, contacts, and tasks; Lync Online for instant messaging; and SharePoint Online to share documents. By using Office 365, we are working with a common set of tools, so we can all send, open, and work together on documents, presentations, or spreadsheets.
Q: What benefits are you experiencing by using Office 365? Kaye: With Microsoft, we got all the features we wanted—and more—in a completely integrated service from a provider we trust. It's just so easy to communicate and share information using Office 365. Now, when I send an instant message asking somebody for a file, they just drag it to their Lync Online window and I have it instantly. By communicating from a central domain, we can project a single business identity, which positions us more competitively. Google couldn’t support our growth, but Office 365 helps us give customers the right impression—that we are business professionals, equipped and ready to meet their needs. I started using Google because I wanted an easy ride, but I wound up spending five to ten hours a week helping my team change user settings or download attachments. Using Office 365, I spend less than an hour a week on maintenance and troubleshooting. It has freed up my time so I can focus on building my business.
Read how this design studio finds room to grow with Office 365,or see the full story online. For more success stories about people like Myles Kaye at Atominx, learn from other, real-world testimonials on the whymicrosoft website.